The first rule of this week’s episode of ‘Supergirl’ is you don’t talk about this week’s episode of ‘Supergirl’. Just when you thought things might settle down for the Girl of Steel, she finds herself smack dab in the middle of National City’s alien fight club.
The action begins with a scene I don’t quite understand. It’s a flashback to the planet Daxam during the destruction of Krypton, which shows how Mon-El was sent to Earth in a Kryptonian pod thanks to a prince for whom Mon-El was a palace guard. Okay, that’s all well and good, but in last week’s episode when Supergirl told him what happened to his planet, Mon-El seemed to be oblivious to the fact that Krypton had exploded and wreaked havoc on his homeworld. Back in the present, Mon-El seems excited about getting out into the world and seeing what it’s like, but he’s told by J’onn that he needs to stay at the DEO for now, for his own protection (or, in other words, until they find out just how dangerous he might be).
J’onn heads back to the bar where he met M’gann and… wait! What’s this? They’re no longer playing Dolly Parton music. That’s two head-scratchers for me and we’re barely five minutes into this episode. It’s like the writers and directors aren’t paying attention to each other’s work. Anyway, J’onn learns that M’gann got away from Mars because a White Martian refused to kill anymore and helped her escape an internment camp. J’onn says he’s never heard of a White Martian being nice before, but goes along with M’gann’s story. He asks her if they can “bond,” but it’s less sexual than you might think. It’s actually a “meeting of minds,” which I guess is kind of like a Vulcan mind meld.
Maggie calls Alex and Supergirl to the scene of a crime where a dead alien’s body has been found in the trunk of a car. It has some sort of claw still sticking out of its shoulder, so Alex takes it back to the DEO for analysis. Winn determines what sort of alien it’s from, and Maggie and Alex go to confront the only one known to be in the area. The alien sprouts claws from its arms and attacks both women. When the tide turns and it looks like they have the advantage, a group of men show up in a van, throw the alien in the back of it, and speed off.
Back at the DEO, J’onn tells Alex and Supergirl that he’s not the last surviving Martian after all. Supergirl goes to talk to the holographic image of her mother (the first we’ve seen of actress Laura Benanti this season; I suppose the footage of her could have been shot in L.A. and added to this episode) to tell her that she had her very first story published. Mon-El storms in and talks about how hot Kara’s mom is. He then asks Supergirl if she’ll take him on a tour of the city, but she doesn’t think it’s a good idea.
Maggie gets a tip about the missing alien and asks Alex to join her, wearing something nice. The two women don masks and are granted entry to a secret club patronized by National City’s rich and famous. Just when I was hoping it was an ‘Eyes Wide Shut’ club, it turns out to be a ‘Fight Club’ club. The main attraction for the attendees is watching two aliens go at each other, UFC style. The first match is between the alien that those guys threw in the back of the van and Miss Martian herself, M’gann. Alex called in Supergirl for backup, but when she lands in the middle of the fight arena, she’s tossed around like a ragdoll by a large reptilian alien. Alex and Maggie are able to break the event up, then Alex attends to a hurt (but not seriously injured) Supergirl.
Alex and Supergirl reveal to J’onn that they saw M’gann fighting at the club. He visits M’gann at her apartment (morphing right through her locked door, actually) and asks her what she thinks she’s doing. M’gann tells J’onn the identity of the person who runs the club – a woman called Veronica Sinclair, who also goes by the name “Roulette” (Dichen Lachman). Supergirl tries to give her a stern warning, but Sinclair points out that since aliens aren’t considered people (didn’t the President sign a law saying otherwise just last week?), she’s not doing anything illegal.
This week’s best scene is actually the most lighthearted. Mon-El talks Winn into sneaking him out of the DEO by offering to let Winn give him a superhero name and create a costume for him. The two guys go to a Halloween party at a bar, where they both load up on alcohol. This all but toasts Winn, but of course the alcohol has little effect on Mon-El. Someone takes an ill-advised punch at him after he snaps another guy’s wrist in an arm wrestling contest. Seeing that things are taking a turn for the worse, Winn grabs Mon-El and rushes him out of the establishment.
J’onn yets at Winn when he finds out about this. Supergirl has a sit-down chat with Mon-El where she talks about her parents and how she thinks they allowed her homeworld to die. Mon-El tells her that it wasn’t her parents’ fault and then gives her tips on how to defeat the reptilian alien should she face it again (which is a pretty good hint that she will before this episode ends). J’onn tries to apologize to M’gann, but is instead captured by Sinclair. Her men take him off to be the part of the main event in the next alien fight club match.
When everyone realizes that J’onn has been taken, Supergirl goes back to the site of the last fight club, only to discover that the place has been cleaned out because each event takes place at a different location. Understanding that the rich and famous all get invited, she goes as Kara to see Lena Luthor and asks for the address of the upcoming match, which Lena gives over.
At the fight club, Martian will square off against Martian. Even though J’onn doesn’t want to fight M’gann, she has other ideas. The two go at it for a while before he finally talks her into not fighting anymore. Realizing this might happen, Roulette unleashes the reptilian alien to fight them both. However, Supergirl and Alex (plus a team from the DEO) crash the event and put a stop to everything.
Roulette is arrested, but Maggie soon has to let her go again due to “orders from on high.” Supergirl tells Mon-El that the DEO has released him into her custody. She says she was sent to Earth to help train and watch over Superman, and since she never got that chance, she sees training Mon-El as fulfilling part of her destiny.
In the final scene, J’onn visits M’gann once again to let her know he doesn’t hold any grudges with her and that he’ll be around if needed. After he leaves, however, M’gann morphs out of her human form into that of a White Martian!
I have to admit, I didn’t see the While Martian twist coming (and it’s a pretty good one), but otherwise this is a rather so-so episode. Still, it’s better than last week’s entry. The best acting this times comes from David Harewood (who plays J’onn), but it’s a shame that so much of these episodes have to be devoted to over-extended action sequences. Yes, I realize that’s why a lot of people tune in, but it would be nice to see a mix of different types of episodes instead of just ones that have a three-fight minimum every week.
Jimmy Olsen is absent this week, but it appears that he’ll get more than his fair share of screen time in Episode 5.