After a week off, ‘Supergirl’ returns with its tenth episode of the season, one that finally puts some focus on the character of Winn. As it turns out, Winn has a bit of a family secret of his own, which he’ll have to come to terms with during the course of the episode.
Things get underway with a prison break, during which guards get killed by a yo-yo that has razor-sharp blades sticking out of it. Viewers will soon learn that this new villain is called “Toyman” (Henry Czerny from ‘Revenge’), but more important is his real name: Winslow Schott, Sr. That’s right, Toyman is Winn’s father.
Our first glimpse of Supergirl in this episode is flying in the air with the Martian Manhunter, who’s trying to teach her a few aerial maneuvers. After coming back down to the ground, Kara asks him (now morphed back into Hank Henshaw) why he doesn’t come out and show everyone who he really is. Hank/J’onn insists that he can do more for the world as Hank Henshaw than he can as J’onn J’onzz.
Back at CatCo, Cat has a meeting with Lucy Lane during which she offers her the job of General Counsel for the company. Lucy is flattered, but wants to make sure Jimmy is okay with them working together in the same building (and, as it will turn out, the same floor). Jimmy is kind of wishy-washy about giving her a straight answer, which leads to some episode-long tension between the two.
The FBI shows up at CatCo to question Winn about his escaped father. The agent in charge (played by Emma Caulfield from ‘Buffy the Vampire Slayer’) wants to know if Toyman has reached out to contact him. Winn insists that he hasn’t, but when he and Kara are alone, he shows her a doll that was mailed to him at the office along with instructions on where to meet. Kara talks Winn into working with the FBI to set up a sting. He meets his father at a local arcade after closing hours. After a short conversation with his dad, the FBI storms in, only to discover that it’s just a hologram of Toyman. Further, he’s put poison gas in the stuffed animals hanging from the ceiling and releases it on Winn and the FBI team. Fortunately, Supergirl comes bursting through the roof (wouldn’t the open door been just as fast?), sucks up all the gas and flies back up into the sky to dispose of it safely.
Alex talks Hank into using his Martian Manhunter shapeshifting skills to find out what Maxwell Lord is hiding inside his building. To make sure Max isn’t in the building when Hank is, Alex asks him out to dinner. While she’s wining and dining him, Hank morphs into Max to check out the mysterious Room 52. He sees the girl with the blackened eyes, who may not be a Supergirl clone after all, since no one in this episode mentions how much she looks like Kara (and I still can’t tell if it’s Melissa Benoist playing the part or another actress). We learn in this scene that not only does Martian Manhunter have the ability to walk through solid objects (that’s how he gets inside the room), but he can also wipe a person’s memories. He does that to a guard that catches him in the room. I’m not sure if these powers are in the comic version of the character as well, but J’onn J’onzz has so many powers on this show that one wonders why the city needs Supergirl at all.
As is par for the course with most episodes of ‘Supergirl’, our hero has at least one showdown where the villain gets the best of her prior to the showdown when Supergirl finally wins. Here, she meets up with Toyman in an abandoned toy factory, where he manages to get her stuck in quicksand inside a large lettered toy block. Kara hears what sounds like a little girl crying inside a box hovering above her, so she uses her super-breath to freeze the quicksand and break free. However, when she opens the box she thinks the little girl is inside, it turns out to be just a Supergirl doll.
Winn worries that he’s going to wind up turning into a villain like his father and tells as much to Kara. While he’s spilling his guts to her, he also kisses her. Kara flinches away from him. Rejection! Poor Winn. Now feeling even more depressed, Winn leaves the building, but gets kidnapped by his father on the way out. Taking him to an undisclosed location, father tells son that he’s going to make his former boss pay for stealing his ideas. But Toyman isn’t going to kill him… Winn is. He gives Winn a real gun made to look like a toy and tells him to kill his old boss at a toy convention where he’ll be accepting an award. Toyman tells Winn that he’s planted ten bombs at the convention waiting to be detonated if Winn doesn’t go through with it.
Winn goes to the convention, gets up on stage and is ready to shoot his father’s former boss, but can’t go through with it and fires into the air instead. Supergirl bursts down through the ceiling (come on, Kara, use the door!) and Winn tells her about the other bombs. She quickly scans the room with her X-ray vision then uses her super-breath to create a wall of ice between the bombs and the people there. (Seriously, no other people were in the other parts of the building?) The bombs go off, shatter the ice, but result in no human casualties. Toyman is taken into custody. My guess is we’ll most certainly see him again, given his connection to Winn.
Back at work, Winn apologizes to Kara for kissing her, but also tells her that he’s in love with her. Of course, Kara doesn’t feel the same way and worries that this is going to change things between them. Before leaving, she sees Jimmy out on the terrace of the building kissing Lucy – which should at least help her understand how Winn feels. The episode wraps up with Kara and Alex having a ‘Game of Thrones’/pizza night back at Kara’s apartment. Unbeknownst to either of them, Maxwell Lord has planted a miniature camera on Alex’s purse and can both see and hear their current conversation. Max now knows that Alex is Supergirl’s sister. Perhaps even more importantly, he knows Supergirl’s secret identity.
Gee, I wonder if Martian Manhunter will just wipe Max’s memory? Maybe he’ll wipe Winn’s too. That seems like a simple solution for a lot of the problems on this show. That said, I thought this was another strong entry for a series that seems to be getting better and better.