After a season that feels like it’s gone on forever (seriously, networks, I think the day of 20+ episode seasons for dramas is behind us, unless the quality can be maintained – which rarely happens), ‘Supergirl’ finally starts wrapping Season 2 up with an alien invasion story that is high on action and low on intelligence.
As I suspected from my recap of last week’s episode, the Daxamite mothership beamed Lena Luthor aboard. She awakens to the smiling face of Rhea, who tells her that they’re going to create a new world together. Mon-El is present as well, and Rhea informs him that he’s going to take a bride. Yep, Rhea plans for him to marry Lena.
Meanwhile, Daxam troops are down in National City destroying everything in sight. Some dialogue in the episode suggests that National City is the only city being invaded by Rhea – which makes about as much sense as an alien fleet arriving on Earth to take over Kansas City while leaving the rest of the planet alone. Anyway, the DEO is attacked by a bunch of the aliens, causing Alex to order an evacuation. Instead of using the door, she does some ‘Matrix’-like moves and hurls herself off the edge of the building. Thankfully, Supergirl is on her way and swoops in to save her.
Our heroes regroup at the alien bar they frequently visit, with J’onn still out of commission due to the alien device Rhea used on his brain. As the group discuss their options, Lillian Luthor (Brenda Strong) shows up and offers to work with them in order to take on Rhea. Everyone is opposed to the idea, but before Lillian leaves, she asks Supergirl one more time to reconsider.
President Marsdin (Lynda Strong) flies toward National City on Air Force One to talk with Rhea – and she’s not alone. Along for the ride is Cat Grant (Calista Flockhart), whom we haven’t seen since Episode 2 of this season. Cat tries to get the two powerful women to broker a deal between each other, but Rhea isn’t interested and opens fire on the plane. Cat is thrown from the explosion, but Supergirl saves her (the second falling body she’s caught this week). The rest of the plane is destroyed. However, Supergirl and Cat find the President coming out of the rubble and learn that she’s an alien. Not one second is spent by any of the three mourning the dozens of other lives that have just been lost in the crash.
The President is taken back to the bar, where the others find out she’s an alien too. Despite the fact that I’ve spent most of the year (as have many of you, I’m guessing) thinking Marsdin was a White Martian, it turns out she’s not a Martian at all – but an alien refugee from a planet called Durlan. Once again, not one of our characters seems worried that the President of the United States is completely illegitimate (unless being a natural born citizen isn’t a Constitutional requirement in the ‘Supergirl’ universe). Of course, she can’t be made illegitimate since she’ll be giving orders to our main characters as the episode continues to unfold.
The President has a plan to destroy the mothership with a positron cannon on the roof of DEO Headquarters. Unfortunately, the building is currently guarded by Rhea’s soldiers. Marsdin orders Alex and Maggie to get control of the weapon. Supergirl, however, doesn’t want to fire it since her lover (Mon-El) and best friend (Lena) are on the mothership. After a heart-to-heart conversation with Cat, Supergirl decides to take Lillian up on her offer to help.
Lillian knows that Superman (whom Supergirl has been unable to contact, just in case you were wondering) has a Phantom Zone teleporter (or something like that) up at the Fortress of Solitude. Cyborg Superman will be able to adapt the device so the three of them can beam directly aboard the mothership. When Alex learns about this plan, she tells Kara to get off the ship as quickly as possible before the positron cannon is fired.
Rhea stages a formal wedding between Mon-El and Lena on board the mothership. (She threatened to blow up children’s hospitals if they didn’t agree to the ceremony.) Before the vows are completed, Cat Grant and Winn interrupt with a video transmission displayed both on the ship and all across the city, telling the citizens of National City to resist their alien oppressors.
Supergirl, Lillian and Cyborg Superman beam aboard and track down Mon-El and Lena. However, Lillian double-crosses the Girl of Steel and beams back to the Fortress of Solitude with only her daughter and Cyborg Superman, leaving Supergirl and Mon-El behind. Fortunately, Supergirl expected a double-cross, and had Winn build a backup transport device. She convinces Mon-El to use it while she stays aboard to talk some sense into Rhea. (Yeah, like that’s going to work.)
Under orders from the President to fire the cannon, Alex hesitates while her sister is still on the ship. By the time she makes the decision to shoot, the cannon is blown up by laser beams. Rhea basically tells Supergirl that all her plans have been for naught. Then, all of a sudden, Supergirl is decked by someone and sent flying across the room. It’s Superman – and he seems to be working for Rhea.
Meh. A lot of action this week, but I didn’t really feel engaged by this story. Yes, the Superman twist at the end is nice, but we’ve seen so little of Superman on this series, the idea of a Superman vs. Supergirl fight doesn’t seem earned at this point. Besides, we all know that either Superman is under some sort of mind control (and if he is, why didn’t Rhea just use the same method on Supergirl?) or he’s faking it (and, again, if he is, is he going to answer for the enormous loss of life that happened while he was putting his plan in motion?). Then again, maybe it’s not Superman at all, but some kind of clone Rhea created from his DNA. (The episode has some talk about how Rhea was going to use the DNA of Mon-El and Lena to create an heir.)
I did enjoy seeing Cat back this week. Last season, she sort of got under my skin week after week, but seeing her after a long absence was nice. However, the writers missed a golden opportunity by not having Mrs. Harrison Ford say “Get off my plane!” (or some variation of it) while aboard Air Force One.
Don’t mistake my sour attitude. I still like ‘Supergirl’ and its characters, but I’m really not engaged in this current plotline. As I said last week, Rhea is just not a very threatening or effective villain for our heroes. At the very least, I hope next week’s finale wraps up all this silly Daxamite stuff, allowing ‘Supergirl’ to start Season 3 fresh.