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Supergirl Recap: The Martian Chronicles

by CATHY MUNSON-KLEIN

Originally published on MetaWitches and re-published here with their permission.

 

Okay, has everyone who watches Jane the Virgin had enough time to process this week’s events? Are we ready to talk about Supergirl? The Metawitches household needed a few minutes to get back on track.

It’s another tough episode for Kara, emotionally. She’s still on a bit of an ego trip, which she’s using to avoid her real feelings, and the people who make her feel them. The show is finally starting to dig a little deeper into her issues and past. Childhood trauma is something the Berlantiverse loves to explore. They do it fairly well, addressing it in bits and pieces over time. I’m looking forward to seeing what they do with Kara’s past, and how they relate it to her personality, if they take it further than they did tonight. The Flash has brought up some fascinating aspects of Barry Allen’s character, especially in Season 1.

Kara enters the alien bar looking as sick as she did at the end of last week’s episode. Mon El serves up a club soda on the rocks. He’s learned her regular order! She brings up the conversation that made her look sick last week, when he confessed his feelings for her. She tells Mon El that he was right, she doesn’t share those feelings, because she’s a busy person with two intense jobs. Even if she did have time to date, she wouldn’t date a bartender at an intergalactic bar, not that he should take that personally. She tries to let him down gently by basically saying things like, “It’s not you, it’s me. I just don’t like to date people like you.”

Mon El disappears for most of the episode, probably so that he can film a Vampire Diaries episode. He’s decided to act out his frustrations as his evil alter-ego, Kai.

Alex meets Kara at the bar. It’s Kara’s Earth birthday. Kara is expecting that she and Alex will do something special, but Maggie surprises Alex with VIP Barenaked Ladies concert tickets. Kara’s upset to be ditched again, but tries to hide it and tells Alex to go enjoy the concert.

M’gann is working at the bar and realizes that J’onn has been shapeshifting in order to follow her so that he can protect her. She’s telling him that she doesn’t need his protection just as a White Martian attacks them. Kara joins the fight in the alley, but the White Martian gets away.

At the DEO, Kara tells Winn that she thought he’d be off “guardianing” instead of working. She argues with him a little more about working with James. Since he’s just the unimportant tech guy, his commitment to the work probably isn’t very strong. Winn tells her he has a calling to do this, just like James does. Kara’s making an attempt to insult everyone in her life for the second week in a row. But only with the best of intentions, of course. Sometimes I wonder if she’s under alien mind control, or if someone stole all of her chocolate for the year.

J’onn and Winn are monitoring the city for the White Martian and prepping strike teams. Kara suggests J’onn stay at the DEO for protection. I nearly fall out of my chair. OMG, now she doesn’t even want J’onn to fight? She does realize that she’s not invincible, right?

M’gann shows up to let the team know that the White Martian is specifically after her, to make her pay for her war crimes. She doesn’t want or need protection from the DEO either. Geez, it’s ok to ask for help, people.

M’gann is back at the bar. The White Martian walks in, disguised as a human. It turns out that M’gann was Armek’s wife 300 years ago on Mars. She tried to kill him when she left him. She’s considered a bigger criminal on Mars than even J’onn. He’ll give her two hours to turn herself in, then he’s coming after her friends. M’gann decides to leave town, but J’onn convinces her to stay. She’s important to him and a good person.

Maggie and Alex are getting ready for the Bare Naked Ladies concert, but Maggie realizes that Alex is distracted. Alex is worried that Kara is mad at her for ditching Kara on her Earth birthday. Alex says she’ll work it out with Kara later, but Maggie sends her off to work it out now, because she’s the most supportive girlfriend ever, and we need to get all of the regulars into the DEO for White Martian Shapeshifter Tag.

When Alex arrives at the DEO she’s in uniform. They must not recognize her there if she’s in regular clothes, just like Kara. Kara insists that she’s not upset about her Earth birthday. Suddenly there are two M’gann’s in the DEO and a fight breaks out. J’onn locks down the facility so that Armek can’t escape. But, he could be posing as any of them, or hiding somewhere else. J’onn has them each wave a hand over an open flame to test which one is Armek. It’s a test the Green Martian resistance developed. Armek is posing as Winn. More fighting ensues, but Armek/Winn escapes. He sabotages the reactor that powers the building. The team needs real Winn to shut the reactor down before it explodes and takes ten city blocks with it. He has to be in the building in order for Armek to have been able to read enough detail from Winn’s mind to reprogram the reactor. They need to search the building.

M’gann asks if Supergirl can use her Xray vision to look through the walls to find Winn. Supergirl replies that “someone” lined the walls with lead. I wonder if J’onn did that as part of his petty feud with Superman, or if he was worried that Supergirl would peak into the bathrooms. Or is the DEO trying to hide something from Superman and Supergirl behind lead-lined walls?  Experiments? We need government transparency in every sense of the word.

Kara and Alex team up to search for Winn. Kara admits that she actually was mad about her Earth birthday. She confesses that she feels her closeness with Alex slipping away, and after losing her parents the way that she did, she’s afraid of losing Alex, too. Melissa Benoist delivers Kara’s speech in a beautifully restrained way. Kara’s trying not to get in the way of Alex’s relationship with Maggie. She’s truly happy for her sister. She’s not being dramatic or manipulative here. Emotionally, she’s just gone back to being that little girl who’s suddenly lost everyone and doesn’t want it to happen again. Alex is the only person on Earth that she’s been able to count on for the whole time since she arrived. That’s why Earth birthday is such a special day for them to spend together. But it’s not in Kara’s nature to draw attention to herself or to ask for things for herself, so it takes her a while to figure out how to express her feelings.

J’onn and M’gann are also searching as a team. J’onn tells M’gann that he wants to take care of her and protect her forever because she fills the hole in his heart. Her spirit is brave and beautiful. M’gann says she’s brave because he showed her how to be. They spot Winn and Alex being held unconscious in Armek’s webs. They realize there are two enemy White Martians in the building.

Martian Alex and Kara have reached the reactor room and start to fight. Kara’s fighting techniques are limited, since she could accidentally damage the reactor. J’onn gets Winn to the reactor room so that he can shut down the reactor before it overloads. Winn notes that whoever reprogrammed the reactor was a genius. Armek was, of course, using Winn’s brain to do the recoding. J’onn and Armek begin their fight, with M’gann, in her Green Martian form, joining in. Both White Martians are beaten, and Winn shuts down the reactor with 12 seconds to spare.

Once the clean up is done and the facility is unlocked, Alex rushes off to see Maggie. Winn asks Kara if she minds if he checks in with James, and she okays it, as long as he’s safe. J’onn is already with M’gann. Kara is left standing alone and teary eyed.

M’gann tells J’onn that Armek’s ship is orbiting Earth. She’s going to take it back to Mars to try to rally other Martians to become more peaceful and tolerant. She cares about J’onn, too, and he’s changed her forever. She says goodbye and beams up to Armek’s ship. J’onn is alone again, the last Green Martian.

Late that night, Alex shows up at Kara’s door with a Happy Earth Birthday cupcake. Maggie was understanding about Alex missing the concert, because alien invasions happen, what are you gonna do?

Alex remembers the conversation that Kara had with the White Martian that was pretending to be her. She promises that she not going anywhere, ever. She also thinks that Kara is using Alex as a way of avoiding her real feelings about Mon El. Kara says Mon El is complicated, and she’s afraid of another failed relationship. Alex encourages her to take the risk.

Kara runs into Mon El at Cat Co as he’s picking up a date for lunch. He says that she rejected him, so it’s time to move on and keep trying to find the one. Kara was obviously thinking about talking to him, but is put off by him having moved on already. I’m pretty sure Mon El’s date was casual and he would have walked away in a second to listen to what Kara had to say.


Alex’s little alien family is having a tough week. We’re 0 for 4 with the alien love confessions. Kara didn’t want to hear Mon El’s and told him this week he’s not her type at all, Kara confessed that she needs Alex to a Martian instead of Alex (it’s love, even if it’s not romantic; Kara still took a risk), M’gann left the planet as soon as J’onn made his confession, and Mon El was already dating someone else by the time Kara decided to confess her feelings back to him. Bad timing rules on Supergirl.

Kara started her current behavior right after she went off planet to Slavers Moon. She was put in the type of environment she hadn’t been in since she was a little girl. Escaping from the castle may have triggered memories of escaping from Krypton. At the same time, she was as powerless as her human friends because of the moon’s red sun. She probably felt helpless when she couldn’t save them using her typical methods, and she’s never trained to fight without her powers. She doesn’t even carry a weapon. In her mind, humans are unable to fight as well as aliens, and she’s just had her abandonment issues triggered at the same time as two of her closest friends are ignoring her while they put themselves in danger. Her sister has already been ignoring Kara for her new relationship. No one’s doing anything wrong here, but Kara’s parents and entire culture were taken away in a violent explosion when she wasn’t prepared for it. If she’s been triggered, she’s going to be sensitive to the risk of losing more people she loves to unpredictable violence, and to feeling like people are choosing that risk over her, the way her parents stayed behind on Krypton. Mon El and J’onn might have had similar experiences, but they were both much older when they lost everything. J’onn is busy with his own emotional crisis. Neither Kara nor Mon El himself give Mon El credit for having emotions as deep or complex as hers, but I’m certain they’re there. He has reasons of his own for playing the role he’s played so far.

These lead-lined walls are really bothering me. The DEO is now housed in a tower. Besides the extra work and cost involved with lining the walls with lead, lead is poisonous to humans, and heavy. That means that the building has to be reinforced to hold up the extra weight, and the walls would have to be sealed so that lead dust isn’t leaching out and giving everyone who works there lead poisoning. This is the DEO, where walls are getting smashed open all of the time. It’s not something the DEO would have done lightly. So, was that a throw-away line they didn’t think through, or a set up for something bigger? If Mon El is allergic to lead, like in the comics, he’s going to be even more sensitive to the lead in the building than the humans, and develop unexplained symptoms.

We’re going to ignore the presence of Mr Fusion Home Reactor in the building, out in the open. That was too far into comic book silliness to complain about.

Mon El: Apparently Earth males are only supposed to express their feelings about sports and occasionally monster trucks. So. Who knew?

Kara to Alex: Ever since I’ve been on earth, I don’t know what life is like without you there all the time. I felt that changing and it just was scary. When my parents put me in that pod on Krypton I don’t think I realized what was actually happening. I didn’t know that I was saying goodbye to them forever. It’s just that I’ve been abandoned before, and I didn’t want to be abandoned again.  😭 😭 😭 😭 😭

Agent Vasquez’s hairstyle looks super cute.

 

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