SUPERGIRL S1 E6 "RED FACED" REVIEW!
By Jarrett Kruse
Supergirl has been an unexpected delight this Fall and I seriously have enjoyed every episode that has aired. And this week is no exception with the introduction of one of my favorite DC characters, the Red Tornado! I like that these new characters are being introduced organically and as part of the narrative and not forced on us like so many superhero shows try to do. There's no need to cram everything we want to see into one episode and I think that the show runner's know that its ok to spread things out for the babealicous survivor of Krypton. This week added even more to the existing core characters and their backstory as well as introduced us to some new characters that were pretty hard to love. I'm looking at you Cat's mom and General Lane!
The episode opens with Kara flying peacefully above National City when she has to descend down onto the street to stop two testosterone fueled road ragers who are about to mow down a kids soccer team. Kara stops the two cars but totals one of the vehicles in the process. The owner is irate and tries to throw a punch at Supergirl and she proceeds to break his hand scaring all of the little overprivileged tykes recording the incident with their iPhones. The footage makes headlines all over the city and the DEO and specifically Henshaw is pissed. Kara is definitely dealing with some deeply buried anger issues. Whether it is over Jimmy or her job or directed at her dictator boss, Kara needs a release of some sort.
Meanwhile, perfect couple James Olsen and Lucy Lane are back together and going strong except Lucy's Army General father (24's Glenn Morshower) is in town and wants to have dinner. James is not thrilled because General Lane is a real SOB that has never approved of him for his baby girl. Also in town is Cat's mother played by Joan Juliet Buck and if you thought that Cat was abrasive and obnoxious, you seriously have not seen anything yet. This woman is absolutely vile and you almost wish that Kara would just melt her with her heat vision.
Alex & Kara guilt Winn into helping them hack the DEO database to help find out what exactly happened to Jeremiah Danvers when he worked for the agency. I kind of felt bad for Winn giving in to help because he has his own daddy issues with his own pop being in the clink and all. However he would do anything for Kara because he is seriously and deeply in love with her and you can't help but be rooting for him. The only lead the sisters have is that a year after Jeremiah started working for the DEO, he was dead. More on that later...
At the DEO base camp of sorts, tanks roll up and both General Lane and his legal counsel, JAG corps attorney and daughter Lucy is on site demanding that Supergirl follow their orders. Henshaw is pissed that they are trying to use Kara as a puppet to try out their new weapon dubbed "Red Tornado." However, Kara wants to beat this android robot in front of Lucy I think in hopes of impressing Jimmy. Dr. Morrow, the Red Tornado's creator, is on site as well and the test fight begins. It does not last long and Supergirl beats the crap out of the billion dollar toy but goes a little too far getting in some late punches. The machine flies off and disappears going into stealth mode and heading towards National City. General Lane fires Dr. Morrow on the spot and blames Supergirl for the test going awry. The fight between Kara and Red Tornado was actually pretty cool and I like how they translated the character to the small screen from the comic book page. Its definitely an action figure that I would purchase if DC Collectibles were to make one. I'm thinking they have to make one of Supergirl within the next year if the show can stay level in the ratings and get renewed for a sophomore season.
Back at the office, Kara cannot take any more of Cat's insults and blows up at her boss but quickly apologizes once she realizes what she has done. Cat decides the best course of action for this insubordination is to forward the phones and take Kara out for drinks. A lot of drinks. At the bar, Cat explains to Kara that she's not mad at her but has something else beneath her that caused the outburst. Their is anger behind the anger and it is that which is troubling her, not Cat's usual demanding self. Kara realizes that her boss is right and there is something underneath that is bothering her but she just cannot seem to pinpoint what it is. At first I figured it was Jimmy but its not so much Jimmy as what he has in his life. Kara does not feel normal, even in the Supergirl suit and it is beginning to weigh on her. Can she ever have what Jimmy and Lucy have? She voices this to Jimmy when the two of them "train" together to get their aggression out. Jimmy hits a heavy bag, Kara hits a Buick! For a minute, Kara lets her guard down and hints at her feelings for Olsen but pulls away.
At dinner with General Lane and Lucy, Jimmy feels the wrath of the old Army guy when he tells him that he is not good enough for his baby girl. He even goes so far as to call Jimmy a glorified paparazzi but he manages to keep his cool when Lucy returns to the table. I'd have socked the old codger in the nose but Olsen must have been chanting "serenity now!" under his breath. When the Lane's leave and take to the streets of National City after dinner, the rogue Red Tornado is coming after them and Supergirl manages to save all of their lives. The robot creates all sorts of cool looking tornados on the busy streets as a diversion to evade capture. Back at the DEO, General Lane is now even more angry at Supergirl even though she just saved his and his daughters life. Henshaw has discovered that the Red Tornado is laced with lead which means that this is not a device that was meant for insurgents in hostile areas. This is a piece of tech to protect the public from the Kryptonian aliens! Didn't see that coming but it was a cool twist. This whole time though I am thinking, "its gotta be Dr. Morrow controlling the Tornado because he's pissed for getting publicly fired and humiliated."
Meanwhile Alex is having a candlelight dinner with Maxwell Lord who she consulted on the Red Tornado case. However I think she is interested in him personally over professionally. Lord lets her know that the android is not acting alone and is being controlled by something or someone--Dr. Morrow. So if they can find and take out Dr. Morrow, they can stop the Red Tornado but they need a way to draw both of them out at the same time. Alex finds Morrow and he is controlling RT with a neural telepathic relay interface that controls his cerebral matrix. At the same time, Supergirl is ready to square off against Red Tornado and the brawl begins and the way they cut the footage, it is two fights at once! Supergirl versus Red Tornado and Alex versus Dr. Morrow. Although I don't know any other doctors of science that have such mad fighting skills like Morrow. Alex gets out of a chokehold and shoots Morrow which should stop the Red Tornado...but it does nott. The machine has become sentient and is still fighting Supergirl! Cool! Kara's anger gets the best of her and she blows a gasket by emptying her heat vision on the robot blowing him to bits. Clearly Kara is not dealing with her anger issues in a constructive way and its going to take more than punching a few cars like ROCKY to clear her head.
It looks like Lucy Lane is sticking around National City a bit longer because when her father comes to collect her to go back to Metropolis with him, she declines. She tells the General that she is resigning from her JAG Corps post and that Jimmy is not holding her back. Tough girl because this is not a guy I would be talking back to. I'm really not sure if Jimmy is happy that she is staying or upset because her staying in town means a big time commitment and thats a pretty big Matzoh ball to be left out there in the ether. I am fine with Jimmy and Lucy staying together because I think that Kara's intense infatuation with Olsen is just that and nothing more. And how can you not be rooting for Winn?
Speaking of Winn, he has found some information about Alex's father Jeremiah. If you remember from an earlier episode, when the sisters got caught "joy-flying" as teenagers, the DEO led by Hank Henshaw showed up at the Danvers home wanting to take Kara for national security. However, Jeremiah took the hit and brokered a deal to work for the DEO instead because he was the foremost authority on Kal-El/Superman & Krypton. Winn has located a file on Jeremiah's death, most of which has been redacted. However he was able to extrapolate that Jeremiah was on a mission with his partner in South America to apprehend a hostile alien and never made it home and was thus presumed dead. However his partner showed up a month later at DEO HQ without a scratch and no memory of the incident. That agent was Hank Henshaw and not only was he the last person to see Jeremiah alive, but it is his digital signature that has redacted the file. I seriously am dying to know what Henshaw is with the red eyes and the super strength and now this? Its killing me! I'm sticking to my shapeshifting alien theory for now.
Cat stands up for Kara to her awful mother before she leaves for good and I pray her character does not return to the show. She was just that obnoxious and abrasive and makes Cat look like Miss Congeniality. When a glass drops and breaks, Kara quickly goes to clean it up with Cat's warning to be careful and then it happens. Kara looks at her hand and there is blood. Real red human blood. WTF?? Did Kara blow out her powers using her heat vision to destroy Red Tornado? Whatever happened, this is a very cool twist that I cannot put my finger on. If ever there was a time to leave a voicemail for her cousin in Metropolis, I think that now is the time.
Only six episodes in and I friggin love Supergirl. Melissa Benoist is my favorite TV crush and she has this part nailed when I truly thought that she would not be able to handle it. But I loved to get proven wrong especially when it is stuff I am passionate about. It really feels like the show has been on for a few seasons already and not just a scant five episodes. To me, that is the sign of a really good program that you can watch over and over and not get bored when their is nothing else to watch that night. And after last night's big time trailer of Batman Vs Superman: Dawn of Justice, Supergirl may be the only DC property that fans are not yelling at and dissecting and just enjoying because its hard to argue that this show is fun from top to bottom.