Superhero Weekly: Supergirl’s brilliant Luthors and Arrow preaches in Spectre of the Gun

Double-crossing spoilers lie ahead.

supergirl-s2e12-luthors

(Source: The CW)

Supergirl hasn’t had an amazing episode in a while until this week’s Luthors. The show made a masterful move by introducing Lena Luthor this season, as well as her scheming mother, Lillian – who happens to be the head of Cadmus. In this episode, both characters take over the screen with a vengeance.

Lillian’s trial goes as well as you might expect. Lena tries to keep a distance from her mother even she requests a visit. That is, until Kara convinces Lena to go see her. Meanwhile we get flashbacks to Lena as a child meeting the rest of Luthor family and playing chess with Lex himself. Lillian reveals Lena IS a Luthor, one that patriarch Leonel Luthor fathered with someone other than Lillian. When Metallo himself is put on the stand, it turns out he has his kryptonite powers again and frees Lillian from her detainment. Supergirl shows up, but Metallo blasts a crane so that she has to choose between saving the lives of the crowd or let them get away.

The Guardian makes an appearance as Metallo frees/kidnaps Lena from jail. Jimmy is hurt (as he well should be), but he’s even more hurt by Kara still trusting Lena. We get a rare glance of the history between Kal-El and Lex when Jimmy explains Superman would still believe Lex’s innocence even when confronted by evidence. Lena has become Kara’s blindspot. There’s security footage of Lena taking out synthetic kryptonite from L-Corp. Of course this cements Lena’s image of another guilty Luthor in the eyes of everyone but Kara. Yes, it will turn out to be altered.

We get to see a very reluctant Lena in conversation with Lillian as she takes the trio to one of Lex’s hidden weapons cache. What they don’t know is that Metallo is about to go nuclear. Also joining them is… Cyborg Superman (sorry the name makes me cringe). The actual weapons vault can only be opened with Luthor’s DNA. Since we now know Lena IS a Luthor that makes her the key. Of course this sounds more like the reason why Lena has been brought along, but Lillian insists she can still have a place at Cadmus.

Battle time soon ensues as Supergirl dashes into battle. In typical Kara fashion, she’s trying to do several things at once – let Lena know she’s on her side and try to convince Metallo to stop using his powers. When that proves useless, she’s trapped by Metallo. In a last minute Han Solo fashion, Martian Manhunter manages to intervene. Kara, J’onn and Lena take off while Henshaw and Lillian somehow managed to escape the Metallo explosion as well.

I’ll save my comments on the finale and cliffhangers for the Highs/Lows. Also, no new episode for The Flash this week.

arrow-s5e13-spectre-gun

(Source: The CW)

 

Arrow finally got political this week. Well, kinda. Sorta. A gunman enters city hall and shoots up the offices, killing seven people, injuring twenty-four. District Attorney Adrian Chase is shot. This opens a debate on gun control because nobody has ever- wait a second here.

Guns have been featured in the show before. Spartan (Diggle) uses a gun. Wild Dog uses two. The military uses guns. All of Damien’s baddies were paramilitary. Vigilante literally uses guns as well. There’s been a lot more guns in the show since its inception. So, why now? Because for some reason Arrow chose this angle. And somehow, I do want to commend them for the intention more than the execution.

Rene gets a lot of highlights in this episode, as the flashbacks are all about his family life in his pre-Wild Dog days. I found myself feeling some empathy for the guy although I mostly dislike him. Also, dishonourably discharged and packing. That never gets addressed again, but he gets to be assistant to Quentin. I share Thea’s disbelief at that decision. Also, Thea’s back.

I’ve become numb to Oliver’s mayoral speeches. More to the point, the show tiptoes around major issues. Notice how Oliver mentions abortion at some point but neglects to offer an opinion while talking to the councilwoman. But boy, did I love Quentin Lance in his one moment as he tells the Mayor to try and try again.

In the end, the councilwoman Pollard agrees to something called the Firearms Freedom Act that both protect freedoms and rights perfectly and- Wait, that’s not the way it should end, right? To tell you the truth, that’s an all too perfect solution. Starting with the name, which is a complete nod to politics nowadays, we never get to find out what’s supposed to be. Is it a gun registry? Then call it what it is. And if you have figured something else, something revolutionary, then we really need to know.

Highs/Lows/Checkmate

  • That Lena Luthor scene at the end. She’s dressed in full black and contemplating a chessboard, reminiscing of the games she used to play with Lex – and win. She moves a piece. This is a wonderfully ambiguous setting in which we’re left to wonder if Lena just played everyone.
  • I know some people are really going for the Kara-Lena angle, and to be honest that final scene seemed to be going somewhere. But on a different subject, anybody else think Kara is this close to revealing her identity to Lena? Or perhaps Lena has figured it out already?
  • Alex introducing Maggie as her significant other to the rest of the team. I honestly thought they’d knew already. J’onn’s response was perfect. “Of course I knew, I’m psychic.” When Alex asks him why didn’t he say anything before he replies, “it wasn’t for me to say.”
  • We get a little scene between Eve Tessmacher and Kara, although it’s all a setup to show how Mon-El is still in love with Kara.
  • Lillian finds Lex’s thingamajig that is obviously a McGuffin for another episode.
  • And we once more address Kara and Mon-El, because it has been so damn transparent that the show wants to these characters to hook up. It still feels forced. We seem to have gone through every romance trope in the book. Can we step this up from a teenage dramedy? Apparently not. Can we at least have Mon-El mature further?
  • Apparently we get a respite. Mr. Mxyzptlk has just entered Kara’s world. Cue the music, things are about to get crazy. Couldn’t you at least give him the hat? Add the hat next time. This looks like the perfect segue to a musical episode.
  • I think I’ve said all that needed to be said about Arrow’s gun control episode, but it bears repeating: there has been shootings long before in this show and with nastier consequences.
  • And please, Rene’s access to guns is obviously illegal. This falls completely out of gun control. So is Spartan’s access to guns for that matter. And yes, Vigilante has a point when he says he’s just like Green Arrow with a more efficient weapon.
  • Curtis and Rene’s discussion of the AR-15 was really naive, and I guess it illustrates some of the public’s ignorance about what is the most popular gun in the US. At least Dinah set that record straight.
  • Quentin Lance still gets the more mature lines of every episode. Try and try again.
  • The whole point was to find some common ground that would guarantee safety without trespassing the second amendment. That common ground, that brilliant piece of legislature that was accepted (albeit reluctantly) was never shared with the audience. Too bad, because even if it ended being up a gun registry, it would’ve been nice to know.

That will do for now.

, , , , , , , ,

  1. Leave a comment

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: