Sooo, it was an interesting night on Supergirl. We had three high profile guest stars. Winn was unlucky in love, AGAIN, but refused to accept it. Maggie and Alex officially deserve more screen time. Alex can get you Hamilton tickets if you need them.
Oh yeah. We also confirmed that Mon El is the Crown Prince of Daxam. And that he lied about this to Kara. Which she finds unforgivable. There were some threads woven through the episode pointing out Kara’s lingering prejudices towards Daxamites in general, and Mon El in particular. Teri Hatcher, as Mon El’s mom Queen Rhea, took good care of her little boy in this regard. Winn’s storyline with Lyra was also used to highlight Kara’s arrogance and inflexibility. Given how long I’ve been calling out Kara for those traits, it was a very satisfying episode in that way.
Kara and Mon El start the episode enjoying Kara’s funemployment with a Netflix and junk food binge. Mon El suggests that they watch one of those movies where people just break out into song out of nowhere. Kara asks if he means a musical, and suggests Funny Face, gushing about the whole idea for a few minutes. Chris Wood is visibly holding back laughter while she gushes. Then they confess how happy they are with each other to each other and are generally perfect and cute and adorable and in love.
Cue Queen Rhea of Daxam, who assumes that the earthlings are holding her baby hostage. She uses TVs and monitors to demand his release or they will retrieve him using force.
The team assembles at the DEO. No one can figure out why someone is making a big deal over a Daxamite guard. Winn is missing, so he can’t help them with information the way he usually does. Mon El says he doesn’t recognize the ship that’s in orbit. Supergirl decides to go check it out. The ship fires on Supergirl, and hostilities escalate.
Mon El decides to surrender himself, rather than continue to risk Kara’s life. Obviously he also knows who’s up there waiting for him. Just as he’s being beamed up alone, Kara jumps into the transport beam with him, so that they both end up on the space cruiser. Wow, after all of those lectures she’s given to Mon El about listening to her needs and following her instructions, you’d think she’d return the favor. No one mentions this though. Mon El’s wishes aren’t important, in the field or in the relationship, even when it’s explicitly about him.
They materialize on the ship. Mon El tells Kara he didn’t want her to come with him, cause…stuff. Everyone in the room bows to Mon El, except the King and Queen, who Mon El calls Mom and Dad. They are happy they’ve finally found him. I love it when Kevin Sorbo plays evilish. The King and Queen give Mon El hugs and kisses and tell Kara she’s lucky they didn’t kill her after what Krypton did to Daxam, or some words to that effect. Teri Hatcher was born to play a disapproving mother in law.
Kara is upset when she realizes that Mon El is the prince, because that means that he didn’t tell her who he really was when they met, and she’s the only one who’s allowed to do that to people. Mon El tells his parents that he thought they were dead. They are overjoyed to have found him alive and they’ve planned a feast. Kara is invited. She accepts, with a bitter tone of voice. Queen Rhea accepts Kara’s acceptance in the spirit that it’s given. Queen Rhea doesn’t miss much. It’s not really a happy day for Mon El.
The family reunion feast is filled with tense conversation. The King and Queen followed Mon El’s beacon to this galaxy, and also got word of him at Slavers Moon. They were surprised to hear that he was freeing slaves. Some sniping goes back and forth between the King, Queen and Kara about slaves. The King and Queen are unrepentant and feel they treated their slaves well, after freeing them from terrible circumstances. Kara feels that slavery is slavery.
Next they move on to Mon El’s escape from Daxam. He doesn’t want to talk about it, but Kara insists that he tell them about his “heroic” escape. I don’t think he’s ever described his escape as heroic, or himself as heroic when he was on Daxam. Mon El says that he was in bed with a woman when meteors rained down on the planet. His guard ran into the room and grabbed him, then escorted him outside to a Kryptonian escape pod. The guard got rid of anyone who was in their way, including the Kryptonian who was in the pod and was stupid enough to think he could go back to Krypton. The guard shoved Mon El in the pod, set a course, and it took off. It all happened very quickly.
Three things are important to remember here:
1- Mon El was the Crown Prince of the royal family. Of course someone was charged with making sure he escaped safely. Every country in the world does that for its leaders and their families, including the US.
2-Kara escaped from Krypton in virtually the same way. She was the child of a rich and influential family who was given preferential treatment because of it. She left most of the planet’s population behind to die. Not very heroic.
3-What is it Kara thinks Mon El could have done in the face of planet-wide destruction? It was a one person pod. There wasn’t room to save anyone else. He was shoved in and sent on his way before he knew what was happening. More importantly, because he was the Crown Prince, the guards and most of the population would agree that he should be high on the list of people to be protected. Now, because he is alive, he is in a position to be a reformer and end some of the unfair practices of his people.
Kara walks out on the dinner and returns to Earth. Mon El follows. She lets loose on him for being a liar. He asks if she would have given him a chance if she’d known who he was, given how she feels about Daxamites? He tried to tell her the truth many times. Kara says she can’t even look at him, since he’s someone who benefitted from the cruelty on his planet, on top of lying to her. She flies away.
Winn and Lyra are at the National City Art Gallery. Lyra thinks it would be a great idea to break in through the side door after hours and have wild museum sex. Winn bypasses the museum security system.
The next day, Winn is still riding high from his museum visit. Then he gets a phone call from Maggie asking him to come down to the station. Van Gogh’s Starry Night was stolen from the museum during the night. Security footage shows Winn there alone.
Alex and James arrive at the police station to help Winn. Lyra’s phone is disconnected, and it’s probably not a coincidence that she doesn’t show up on the surveillance video. It looks like she framed Winn. Alex and James ask Maggie to release Winn to them to help with the investigation. She gives them 24 hours.
J’onn says that Lyra’s species doesn’t show up on video or photos. Alex finds two other major art thefts in the last nine months with the same MO. It appears that Lyra is a con artist, and Winn continues to have bad luck with women. James seems to be an accepted part of the DEO team now, so Kara, Winn, Alex and James agree to go question people at the alien bar about Lyra. James asks if they should call Mon El. Kara tells him no.
Alex has Kara hang back so they can talk for a minute. Alex suggests that Kara sit this op out since she’s so upset over Mon El. OMG, not okay,
Alex writers. Kara’s an adult, she can keep working even if she’s had a fight with her boyfriend. This isn’t the Whedonverse. Kara says some judgey things about Mon El, and Alex says some wise things about listening to the person you’re in a relationship with. This is unlikely to happen, since Kara never listens to Mon El. It’s her way or the highway. Then Mon El will grovel until she forgives him. This has been their relationship dynamic since day 1. If Kara were a guy, and treated a woman the way she treats Mon El, people would be outraged.
Queen Rhea appears on the DEO stairs. She wants a word with Kara. She’s dressed for the occasion this time. The queen starts by thanking Kara for taking care of Mon El since he’s been on Earth. Then she moves on to the hard truths. Daxam is a wasteland, destroyed by Kara’s people. She wants to bring their people home and rebuild. The planet needs a new leader, like Mon El, to inspire hope in people.
Kara: You want to take Mon El back to Daxam?
Queen Rhea: Would you rather that he stay here and learn by degrees that he’s not good enough for you?
Kara: You don’t know me.
Queen Rhea: I know your kind. I know what your integrity means. He’s Daxamite royalty, and you’re starting to despise him for it.
Kara: I don’t despise anyone.
Queen Rhea: But you think you’re better than him. Than us. Do what’s best for him. Tell him to speak to his parents. The people who love him.
Kara: What makes you think he’ll listen?
Queen Rhea: Because he’s under your spell. He has no idea how unforgiving your people can be.
The queen has Kara’s number already.
James, Alex and Winn question the regulars at the bar. One, Boris, drives a hard bargain, and gets Alex to promise him Hamilton tickets, orchestra section, in exchange for information. He tells them that Lyra hangs out at a particular trailer park. Alex reveals to Winn that the alien who plays King George in Hamilton owes her a favor, so she can get the tickets.
Lyra lives in the Jupiter Springs Trailer Resort, under the train tracks. She’s not surprised to see Winn, but she plays it cool, insisting he was nothing but a mark. He reluctantly accepts her answer, leading her outside, where the Guardian is waiting. Lyra’s big, mean friends are waiting, too. Guardian and the goons fight, with an assist from Alex, while Winn chases Lyra after she runs. The goons jump in a van and escape. Alex finds Starry night in the trailer.
Winn confronts Lyra again once she’s in her human rights violations cell. She admits that she’s been stealing paintings because the people she works for are holding her brother hostage. Winn says he would have helped her had he known. She told him that she came to Earth alone. Now she tells him the truth. Her planet was ruined by war, her parents starved to death, she and her brother spent six weeks in the dark below deck being smuggled to Earth, she’s a thief. Her brother wasn’t bringing in enough for the gang he works for, so she’s trying to clear his debt. If they don’t get the painting by the end of the day, her brother’s dead. She didn’t want to con Winn. She likes him, but she had to save her brother.
Winn briefs the DEO team on the situation. The buyer for the painting is an alien career criminal named Mandrax. J’onn knows of him, but doesn’t think they can trust Lyra.
Mon El approaches Kara. According to all of the rom-coms, she should be ready to forgive him for his stupid mistake now. Kara tells him to go talk to his mother. He doesn’t want to talk to his mother, he wants Kara to tell him how to make things right between them. She brushes him off, and lectures him on how to feel about his parents and being royalty instead. Things she hates, but tells him to embrace, because she’s lost her parents and culture forever.
Winn frees Lyra from her cell, and asks her to trust him. They take the painting to the scheduled hand-off. The exchange is made, and Bastian, Lyra’s brother, is brought out. Mandrax checks the painting, and discovers it’s a fake. A fight breaks out. Guardian jumps out of the shadows to take on Mandrax, but is no match for him. Eventually, Alex shows up with a large strike force, complaining about traffic. The DEO must not be able to use their sirens. They take down Mandrax and the gang.
Lyra didn’t know that she and Winn were part of a larger plan involving the DEO. She’s impressed that Winn was able to keep a secret from her. She gives him a hug in thanks, then reunites with her brother.
Winn, the real Starry Night, and Mandrax are returned to Maggie just under the 24 deadline. Winn has been exonerated. He asks Maggie to give Lyra and her brother a break on the other art thefts. She replies that she doesn’t have any hard evidence, so she’ll take their help as a sign that they’ve turned over a new leaf. Winn grabs Maggie’s shoulder and enthusiastically tells her she’s a good egg. Maggie gets all stern with him, and tells him to leave before she changes her mind. He scurries away. Maggie proudly notes to Alex that she scared him. Alex says that it was almost as good she can. Those two need more screen time for banter.
Back at the DEO, Winn asks Lyra what she’ll do next. She says that she and Bastian will move on, since there’s nothing for them in National City. Winn says, “That’s it, you’re just going to leave?” Lyra says she thought he hated her now. He tells her, “Not even close.” They kiss, then Lyra goes to the med bay to check on Bastian.
Kara saw the exchange, and can’t believe that Winn is willing to forgive Lyra after she lied to him. Winn tells her that Lyra wasn’t trying to hurt him, and was trying to help someone she cared about. She’s worth it to him. Winn is mature enough to realize that not everything is about him. And maybe there are extenuating circumstances sometimes. He asks what’s going on with her and Mon El, and she starts to lie and say nothing’s the matter. Winn says he knows it’s something. Whatever idiotic thing Mon El’s done, Winn is sure Mon El has his reasons. Kara has to decide if the reasons are good enough for her or not.
Kara goes back to her apartment. Mon El is there waiting for their weekly lecture turned break up talk. He tells her he owes her a lot. She stares at him judgily. He tells her what a spoiled, useless person he was until he met her, and how amazing she is, and how much he loves her. He tells her he loves her with everything he has, and she’s so special. She agrees that she’s so special, and she deserves better than him. I have to restrain myself from slapping her right through the TV. You told him this morning how happy you are with him, he’s just laid himself bare for you, he’s willing to give up everything for you, and you respond by being a self-centered, egotistical b*tch? Remember that speech about paying attention to what you have and how lucky you are to have it?
He apologizes and grovels some more, she tells him he’s worthless and lazy some more, and that love is hard (mostly because she sets the bar so high- Winn and Lyra figured it out just fine), then she throws him out. I think I’m supposed to be crying along with her, but I can’t root for a relationship where one person expects nothing from herself and so much from her partner. Please set Chris Wood free so he can go find a partner who’ll appreciate him. Bring Containment back.
Mon El beams up to his parents’ ship and tells them he’s not going back to Daxam. He’s become a more moral person, and he can’t live the way he did on Daxam any more. He’s staying on Earth, and he wants them to leave forever. They send him back to Earth.
It’s time to set up The Flash-Supergirl Musical Crossover!
Winn did some work on Cisco’s little interdimensional breach opener. He gives it back to Kara, and tells her he thinks he and Cisco would be BFFs if they ever met. Kara glances over at Mon El and says she could use an interdimensional vacation. J’onn interrupts to say they have an unusual prisoner passing through, so everyone needs to look sharp. The prisoner, Music Meister, played by Darren Criss, is brought into the room. He promptly uses his crazy eyes to whammy Kara while everyone stands there and watches. Then he grabs the breach opener and jumps through to find The Flash. Kara passes out and dreams she’s in an evening gown, about to go onstage and sing.
Kara is hurt and shocked when she finds out that Mon El is the prince. It must be kind of what it feels like for people who’ve known her a long time, then find out she’s Supergirl. Except most of what he’s told her is the truth. He didn’t lie about his home planet or what he’s been doing everyday since he came to Earth. He lied about the distant past, a faraway place, and people he thought were dead, in order to avoid racism when he was trying to start over. You will never convince me it matters as much as she acts like it does.
The King’s name is Lar Gand, one of Mon El’s comic book names. The King and Queen will be back, right? I need more of their back-handedness.
Jeremy Jordan played Clyde in the musical version of Bonnie and Clyde. I kept expecting him to fall into a James Cagney gangster accent and act like Clyde during the entire episode. Then he actually used that accent in The Flash musical episode the next night.
Mandrax is played by Paul Lazenby, prolific stunt man and actor, who’s been in tons of sci-fi and fantasy movies and TV shows. He’s had one of the coolest careers ever. I looked him up because I recognized the way he moved around.
Does Kara feel guilty for leaving everyone on Krypton to die, and for the destruction of Daxam? Shame? Is that why she’s projecting those emotions onto Mon El so hard?
Why are all of the couples so unequal on this show, this year? It wasn’t that way last season. This season, we have good boy J’onn, bad girl M’Gann; good boy Winn, bad girl Lyra; Extra Super Good Girl Kara, Reformed Prince of the Damned Mon El; and wise, experienced Maggie, fumbling, emotional, inexperienced Alex. At least the King and Queen of Daxam seem to be on equal footing, and they are presented as villains. Every other couple has one partner who’s always right while the other is always wrong. The woman is wrong in 2/3 of the hetero couples. Kara gets to be right because she’s the superhero, so she’s functionally male. So is Maggie, most of the time, as the character who has more experience, is less emotional, and expects to set the agenda in the relationship.
Metamaiden predicted that Lyra would turn out to be bad in some way the first time she saw the character, based on her sexual confidence, slightly strange looks, and superior strength. A female character can’t have all three characteristics and be a Good Woman. As we learned tonight, she was correct. Not only did Lyra lose her Good Woman status, she lost her Strong Independent Woman status. She became a victim who needed to be saved by Winn, both morally and physically. I may have mentioned the misogyny in the Whedonverse earlier, but the Berlantiverse is hella bad too, and I don’t know if I’ll still be recapping their shows next season. It’s too stressful and time-consuming to write long rants and then erase them, week after week.