Skip to main content

Supergirl Review (S1E2): 'Stronger Together'



★★★★☆ (4/5)

One of the biggest questions regarding Superman over the years has been how do you make such a powerful, indestructible, seemingly perfect hero interesting. Well, the creators of CBS's 'Supergirl' have found a way to approach that topic with his cousin, Kara, by exploring her time on Krypton (something that's not possible with Kal-El), wrangling her ego and realizing she needs more than her brute strength to be an effective superhero. While the Kryptonite-infused sparring session with Alex was a great ego-check for Kara, who inadvertently caused an ecological disaster while trying to steer clear a tanker from a fire in the opening, it reminds us Supergirl is still a hero in training. 


Episode two, 'Stronger Together,' builds on the excellent but crammed pilot with some more character development for Kara, the endlessly charming Melissa Benoist, James (Mehcad Brooks), and Cat (Calista Flockhart). The episode packed a more emotional punch because it examines the sense of loss of her home world, the dubious intentions of her mom's evil twin General Astra (Laura Benanti), and poignantly reunites Kara with her mother via hologram in a makeshift Fortress of Solitude within the DEO that can answer her questions but can't deliver the hug she desires so much. 

The flashbacks help inform the present when a hellgrammite, an insect-like race that can conceal itself as other species, is on the loose and on the DEO's radar. It's a more immersive experience we get to share with Kara than we did with Superman because didn't grow up on Krypton.

There's also some dynamic parallels with the mentors in Kara's life. Her highly skilled sister and her ambitious boss both impart some wisdom on her that emphasize paying your dues. Kara's overconfidence and reliance on her superior strength makes her vulnerable in other ways. Cat describes her rise to the top by being Perry White's assistance and working harder than her male counterparts out of necessity. If you wondered why feminism is important these are just two examples that will influence the growth of one woman, albeit a super-powered one. 

The second episode offered a lot of positives. Bucking a trend that Berlanti shows tend to have as far as the slow reveal of the big bad on the show, General Astra makes her presence felt almost immediately. Surprisingly, the two go toe-to-toe and while Kara is still a novice her fighting spirit is inspiring even to her evil aunt. Thankfully, Hank Henshaw steps in with a kryptonite knife that hurts and befuddles Astra. We'll have to wait to find out as to why Alura imprisoned Astra at Fort Rozz to begin with. 

Teamwork becomes a theme as Kara learns to appreciate her own Team Supergirl as Winn and James learn they're both in on the secret. It's funny that they address the whole glasses as a disguise for a superhero but James' line that Cat won't recognize her because she can't her now speaks to more than just appearance. And as suave and put-together as James is there's a layer of his character that's peeled back a little. Cat puts the pressure on James to get her an interview with Supergirl and he begins to doubt his worth outside of his relationships to heroes from Krypton. 



This leads to one of the best scenes so far on the show when it's Kara building him back up instead of the other way around for once. “Part of being your own man is knowing when to accept help,” she tells him and it speaks volumes to this team effort that she's trying to foster. She's not interested in doing it alone like her cousin. 

The second episode wasn't without some glitches. Astra feels a little one-dimensional as the villain so far, Cat showed a little more depth but not a lot, some of the dialogue sounded like blatant exposition, and I'm still looking for some light-hearted banter between Kara and Alex. It might be nit-picking but with a show this good and well-intentioned it doesn't detract from all the positives. 

On the bright side, there was a Perd Hapley (Jay Jackson) sighting who found his way from Pawnee to National City. Oh, and what's up with Hank Henshaw's glowing red eyes? I'm sure it's nothing. We also got a glimpse of Maxwell Lord (Peter Facinelli) who wasn't too fond of Supergirl's heroics.

'Supergirl' is still evolving before our eyes and like the titular character it's finding its legs. Benoist's performance helps make the show a joy to watch and you can't help but root for her. The added development with James and Cat helps to flesh out the supporting cast some more. 'Supergirl' has a lot on its mind and a lot of moving parts but remains a fun action-packed hour full of heart. 

Check out the preview for the next episode, 'Fight or Flight.'


Supergirl 1x03 "Fight or Flight" - Supergirl’s powers are tested when Reactron, one of Superman’s formidable enemies, arrives in National City and targets the young hero. Also, Cat plans to run an exposé on Supergirl, on SUPERGIRL, Monday, November 9th on CBS Peter Facinelli guest stars as tech entrepreneur Maxwell Lord.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

PREVIEW: 'Tet' #4 by Paul Allor and Paul Tucker

We've seen Eugene's story. But during his last day's in Vietnam, he finally learns how Ha survived the war. She's always been much stronger than him; and much stronger than he's given her credit for. With all their secrets gone, Ha and Eugene must decide how to move forward.

REVIEW: 'Cyber Force' #3 by Bryan Hill, Matt Hawkins, and Atilio Rojo

The story of Aphrodite is the focus of 'Cyber Force' #3. This compelling chapter continues to build the new world of Top Cow's reimagined original title. Corporate greed leads to murder and coercion until one doctor's obsession results in a powerful revelation.


CYBER FORCE #3 
Writer: Matt Hawkins, Bryan Hill Artist: Atilio Rojo Letterer: Troy Peteri Editor: Elena Salcedo Publisher: Image Comics Release Date: May 30, 2018 Cover Price: $3.99
Score: ★★★★1/2 (4.5/5)
Marc Silvestri released 'Cyber Force' twenty-six years ago and this second reboot of the former flagship series rests in the hands of writers Bryan Hill and Matt Hawkins. It was only a matter of time before we'd get the whereabouts of the sentient android Aphrodite. Hill and Hawkins dedicate this issue to her story, and it's probably the best in the series so far. We get very little Carin and Morgan in order to give what is essentially an unnerving scientific horror story. 
Cyber Data is the or…

WONDER WOMAN OF THE DAY: Fitness Model Gia Macool Embodies the Amazon Princess

The closest we'll ever get, probably, to superheroes in real life is through the great work of cosplayers. You see them at every pop culture convention from the very basic to extremely elaborate costume design. However, you don't have to be a cosplayer to enjoy dressing up as your favorite superhero from time to time. Take fitness model and entrepreneur Gia Macool for example. An accomplished fitness competitor and model, Macool is also a big fan of DC Comics' Wonder Woman. She shows her love of the iconic Amazon Princess in her fitness wear, meal prep accessories and even a full blown photo shoot in a Wonder Woman costume. 

For decades comics have featured very muscular superheroes, male and female, epitomizing the human form at its strongest. So when bodybuilders and fitness pros decide to suit up as these costumed heroes, they are the embodiment of those fictional characters in the flesh. Macool looks like she stepped out of the pages of a Wonder Woman comic with a suit …

PREVIEW: 'The Ghost, The Owl' Hardcover by Franco and Sara Richard

On a cool evening on the swamp, a figure appears dancing across the water. A human figure, but far from a human form. A Ghost, a young girl spirit that seems to have lost its way. A good Samaritan owl decides to help against the wishes of his animal brethren.


What mysteries does the ghost girl hold the secrets to and what will happen when she and the owl unlock them together?  Will they find out what happened to her? Will she find her way to where she needs to be?  What will happen to the animals in the swamp and surrounding forest? An adventure with the most unlikely of pairs, the Ghost, the Owl.

THE GHOST, THE OWL HC
In stores on 5/2/2018 Writer(s): Franco Artist Name(s): Sara Richard Cover Artist(s): Sara Richard
48 pgs./ A / FC                   $9.99





PREVIEW: 'Hack/Slash vs. Vampirella: The Heart Is A Lonely Killer' TPB by Shawn Aldridge and Rapha Lobosco

The Vegas strip heats up as Cassie Hack and her companion Vlad are on the trail of a deadly slasher and meet the lovely, yet lethal Vampirella. The team-up event you’ve been waiting for is a high stakes game of chance when they have to take on The Queen of Hearts!


This Volume collects the complete, 5-issue series by Shawn Aldridge (The Dark and Bloody) and Rapha Labosco (James Bond), and features all of the covers by Jenny Frison, Carli Ihde, Jen Vaughn, Kyle Strahm, Chrissie Zullo, Goran Sudzuka, Michael Dooney, Bully Tucci, and more!

Hack/Slash vs. Vampirella: The Heart Is A Lonely Killer TP
writer: Shawn Aldridge artist: Rapha Lobosco cover: Jenny Frison FC  |  136 pages  |  $19.99  |  Teen+  
COLLECTING ISSUES 1-5