Supergirl: 2.10 We Can Be Heroes
We Can Be Heroes is a Jimmy heavy episode. I was a little underwhelmed by the ep but not just because of my feelings on Jaaames and his storyline, I think the show may have a few bigger issues that I’m starting to notice (more on that in a moment).
After Livewire, apparently, escapes her prison, Kara decides to take Mon-El out in the field with her. This of course proves to be premature and because he’s so preoccupied with keeping Kara safe, some cops get hurt. This creates some nice tension as Mon-El really does seem to want to be better but just can’t quite get into the full hero swing. Guardian of course turned up and in trying to help the cops that Mon-El should have been protecting, gets knocked out leading to Kara realising who he is (note to Kara: You never take of an injured persons crash helmet!). This leads to some more Jimmy whinging and whining about wanting to be a hero. With James complaining about Mon-El being nothing but a dumb Jock earlier in the show, he’s shown to have little self awareness. His eventual speech to Kara about needing to be a hero and not being meant to be in Superman’s shadow is grossly self-involved. I think this might actually be the nail in the coffin for me with his character. It feels like the show had Jimmy there for one purpose, realised that didn’t work and tried to repurpose him but in the most obvious, uninspired way. With his little ego of fragile masculinity already showing thanks to his entitled treatment of Lucy and Kara in the first season, his Budget Batman antics this season and his “Its not fair I want to be a hero” attitude are doing nothing to redeem him. However, Winn in tandem with the tedious Jimmy storyline, as well as his DEO stuff, is still continuing to grow and really improves with each new episode.
J’onn has some good stuff in his side story with M’gann as it foreshadows that the White Martians may be heading back to punish her for being a traitor and he gets to move forward in getting past his hatred of her, with his friends encouraging him to reach out to one of the only survivors of his planet. Mon-El and Kara have more great stuff, especially near the end of the ep when he finally confesses he has feeling for her, this plotline has been so much sweeter than I expected it would. Though, can be do something about Mon-El’s super suit? That can’t be it right? Its like Winn isn’t even trying anymore…
Eventually the team discover that Live Wire is actually being held prisoner by a mad scientist who is harnessing her power to create Live Wire clones. SG - with the help of her friends of course – rescues Live Wire and the two enemies even team up to defeat the badguy in the end, with Kara letting Live Wire go just this once. Superheroes love letting their villains go just this once. There is some great interplay between Supergirl and Live Wire and the focus on powerful women during the finale, always present in the show, is great and exciting – especially after dealing with so much of James and Mon-El and their easily hurt feelings this ep.
Okay, I have to be honest. I think Supergirl might be getting a bit… boring. I’ve been thinking it for a little while now. There is so much I love about this show but, while its fun with some great ongoing character work, it can also be a bit, well, boring. Even the first season was a little bit boring. The first half was a little boring while it found its feet, the villains of the first season (especially once Kara’s aunt was gone) were a little boring, the Winn/James/Lucy/Kara romantic plots were all a little boring. Max Lord stuff was a snoozefest. Remember Cat’s son? Exactly. The show this season is desperately missing Cat, the bite and emotional depth as well as the drive for Kara that she brought hasn’t been replaced and with J’onn’s secret out in the open and Alex’s relationship, for now, in a happy place I’m just starting to feel like we’re treading water; something is missing. Don’t get me wrong, this episode is fun and has some great character work but something is missing in the show as a whole and in retrospect, I’m beginning to wonder if it ever truly had it?
This show falls somewhere between Lois and Clark: The New Adventures of Superman and Smallville in its tone and approach to storytelling (both incredibly flawed shows that I love unconditionally). Its light and fluffy with emotional depth, its not as interchangeably episodic as Lois and Clark but not as convolutedly longform as Smallville and while I love its upbeat, hopeful, fun approach I do occasionally miss the slightly darker or more mature edge of a show like Smallville. A Storyline like Jimmy/Guardian would benefit form the kind of exploration of the addictive nature of being a hero and the psychosis behind such a decision that Smallville would draw on, not just Jimbo complaining that he doesn’t get to feel special.
There are as always some great lines and moments this week, Mon-El telling Jimmy his motorcycle is cool and saying he might get one even though he doesn’t need it; J’onns mind-meld with M’gann gives us some more of the great Martian landscape visuals and Kara saying Clark makes having a nemesis look easy ( “like an evil penpal you see once a year”) was great. I’m even interested in the concept of Guardian and SG doing a bit of a Batman v Superman thing, since Jimmy is being such an arse. But Jaaaaaames, she will crush you.
Also, big bonus points for David Bowie reference in the title!