Following on from my alternative opinion of the Supergirl trailer, I caught the first two episodes of the show, and I thought I’d talk about the show weekly (I can already see DeAno rolling his eyes).
This review is going to get spoilery, so if you haven’t seen the episode yet and are planning to soon, turn away now… If you’ve given up on the show after the pilot, maybe have a look…
The first thing this episode does is confirm that Kara Danvers is going to remain the geeky, Clark Kent-esque person she was in the pilot. This, however, is not a bad thing, because she uses it to her advantage with Kat Daniels (Calista Flockhart) to gain some valuable advice, and also drops it in a chat with Jimmy Olsen (Mehcad Brooks) to good effect, reminding him that she’s not just the superhero, or just the geek.
The second thing this episode shows is that she is fallible, overeager, and will make mistakes. Just because she’s an alien and has powers doesn’t mean she knows how to use them yet. It also shows that she can learn from her mistakes.
The third, and most important thing this episode shows is hints of the greater story arc and insights into the other characters. A few key moments include Kara learning to fight from her sister, Kara teaching Jimmy about teamwork, a flashback to Krypton showcasing Kara’s knowledge and curiosity, and a confrontation between Supergirl and evil auntie Astra. Hank Henshaw is revealed to be slightly more than human. While his backstory (he says he used to have a family) may not quite match his appearances in the comics, there is something going on there that shows that the writers aren’t just picking up names from the DC Universe without considering who they were. Time has also been taken to show how expensive it is for a real city to have a superhero breaking things everywhere, and that superhero becoming concerned by that.
This iteration of Supergirl is closer to the Donnerverse interpretation than any of the comic book versions. The comics often had Supergirl at odds with her cousin, or worse, falling victim to plots from her cousin’s enemies – in other words, she never had her own truly independent tale without the Man of Steel involved. The limitations, either intentional or contractual, have turned this Supergirl into a female version of the big blue guy, but with the advantage of greater intellect (some Kryptonian schooling) and enemies that can actually hurt her.
The first episode had a huge task, and while it succeeded in some ways, it failed before it had a chance because of unfortunate timing (with that SNL sketch). Those who haven’t given the show a second shot might want to, simply because this show is hinting at the kind of depth that other DC shows like Arrow and Flash have, and is building that depth quickly, not just in storylines, but in characters. I give the first episode a 6/10, but the second, a 9/10. We’ll see what the third one brings.
What did you think of the show? Are you going to watch? Do you think I’m full of shit (Not you DeAno!)?
Let me know in the comments