In the ‘Supergirl’ recap for the season debut on the CW, Supergirl teams up with her famous cousin to help thwart an assassination plot in National City…
By Damon Martin — Editor/Lead Writer
Supergirl is finally home where she belongs.
The fun and spunky superhero series that debuted on CBS last year finally moved over to the CW this season and while the excuse may have been ratings or production costs, the real reason is this was the place this show should have always been.
The CW has already established itself as the home for the DC Extended Universe on television with ‘Arrow’ (going strong for five seasons), ‘The Flash’ (arguably the best superhero show on TV) and ‘Legends of Tomorrow’ (combining elements from both previous series into one fine time traveling romp).
Now ‘Supergirl’ joins the line up and the show is already thriving through the first episode minus a couple of small hiccups.
The debut episode on Monday night also introduced us to the new Superman played by Tyler Hoechlin, who landed the coveted part after a search this summer to cast a new Man of Steel to join his famous cousin in National City this season. Hoechlin did an admirable job for his first turn as Superman — he’s dashing and very much fills the traditional shoes of the character unlike the mopey, dour version played by Henry Cavill in the most recent DC movies.
Still it feels like ‘Supergirl’ missed a golden opportunity to bring back Tom Welling to play Superman after 10 seasons in the role on The CW’s original flagship superhero series ‘Smallville’. At 6’3″ and 39-years of age, Welling just seems like an age and size appropriate Superman, not to mention he’s got plenty of experience playing the part.
That being said, Hoechlin did a fine job in the debut episode and here’s hoping he grows into those famous boots and cape as the season progresses. Not a bad start, but for me, he’s not fighting comparisons to the great Christopher Reeve (who is probably still regarded as the best Superman of all time) but he’s going to have to work up to Welling, especially after he defined that role for a decade.
With that said, let’s recap the season 2 debut of ‘Supergirl’ titled ‘The Adventures of Supergirl’…
The first episode of season 2 picks up just moments after season one ended as Kara and her friends finish a toast only to see a ship go flaming by the window, tearing through the National City sky. The celebration ends early as Kara and J’onn J’onzz fly off to stop the object from crashing into something or somebody that could do serious damage.
After bring the ship to the ground while avoiding any innocent bystanders, Kara rips open the hatch to a Kryptonian vessel and discovers a man inside, completely unconscious and showing no signs of waking up.
They take him back to the DEO — a new DEO out of the dank basement and this time in the bright lights of a skyscraper — where they discover that he must be Kryptonian because their tools aren’t breaking through his impenetrable skin. The other problem is he’s not waking up and so they are going to have to wait to find out some answers on this mysterious new alien who has landed on Earth.
Away from the alien crash landing, Kara is preparing for her first actual date with James but she’s rather nervous. Not so much that she’s anxious about finally going on a date with him but more because she’s not really sure how she feels about him anymore. It’s a rather dramatic shift considering Kara spent all of season one pining over James, but perhaps the new team running ‘Supergirl’ have other romantic plans for these two? Or perhaps this is a slow burn to getting them together down the road (Barry and Iris on ‘The Flash’ ring a bell?).
Either way, Kara’s date gets cut short after the Venture — the first commercial space craft set to leave Earth — deals with an explosion and she’s forced to race off to save the day.
Kara gets there in time but just she’s soon joined by her famous cousin Superman (aka Clark Kent), who saw the same explosion on television back in Metropolis. He flew off to help save the Venture and meets up with Supergirl as they both team up to keep the vessel from crashing back down to the ground.
Since he’s already in town, Superman agrees to stick around and help get to the bottom of this explosion because they discover that it wasn’t an accident. Somebody wanted to blow up this ship and it doesn’t take long for the super cousins to come up with a prime suspect.
Enter Lena Luthor to National City.
Following Lex Luthor’s 32-consecutive life sentence incarceration courtesy of Superman, his little sister Lena Luthor has taken over the family business and relocated to National City. She claims that she’s just trying to rebuild the corporation as a force of good after her brother ran things like a megalomaniac for so many years.
It turns out Lena Luthor was also supposed to be on The Venture but was the only passenger who didn’t show up, which makes her a prime suspect in the explosion.
When Clark Kent and Kara Danvers show up to ask her a few questions, they are both skeptical about her excuse that an emergency came up — she is a Luthor after all — but when Lena offers up a flash drive with schematics to the engine part built by Luthor Corp that exploded on the plane, they both agree to give her a second chance. Clark is still very suspicious but Kara seems to believe that Lena is telling the truth.
After taking the flash drive back to the DEO where Winn — who has quit Cat Co. and now works exclusively for the DEO — examines the contents, he realizes that the part that exploded was directly below one particular seat. The one that was supposed to be occupied by Lena Luthor.
She wasn’t responsible — Lena was the target.
It turns out Lex Luthor, while still in prison, hired an assassin named John Corben (if that name sounds familiar, it should) to kill his sister. Corben made an attempt on her life by blowing up the Venture and now he’s going to use some high powered drones to bring down her helicopter while flying across down.
Thankfully, Supergirl and Superman show up to thwart his plan, even when he attempts to distract them by going after innocent people all over National City. Supergirl saves Lena, Superman saves the people and all is right with the world except trying to locate Corben and prevent his next plan of attack.
Back at the DEO, Superman and J’onn J’onzz have a very icy relationship because it turns out they teamed up on a mission years ago and discovered another alien ship that was loaded with kryptonite inside. Superman wanted to destroy it because it was the only thing that could kill him but J’onn disagreed and kept the powerful weapon just in case some other aliens from Krypton showed up one day and weren’t as friendly as Kal-El.
Speaking of alien visitors, Superman takes some time to examine the mystery guest who arrived in the pod out of nowhere the day before but he doesn’t have any answers either. The show runners behind ‘Supergirl’ have already revealed that this is Mon-El — a survivor from Krypton’s sister planet that also got destroyed — and he will team up with Kara at some point this season. But can he be trusted? Time will tell.
Meanwhile, Supergirl and Superman are focused on the task at hand and that’s stopping Lex’s assassin from killing his sister.
Up, Up and Away
Despite the threat on her life, Lena stages a big press conference to announce the change of her family company from Luthor Corp to L-Corp, but just as predicted, Corben makes one last attempt to kill her. Once again, Supergirl and Superman intervene, but this time Corben distracts the cousin duo by nearly bringing down a skyscraper, which means Lena is left out in the open and unprotected.
Supergirl stops the building from tumbling over along with some help from Superman while Alex ends up being the big hero after she finds Corben and bests him in hand-to-hand combat. Just when it looks like Corben will have his revenge after picking up a gun, he’s shot in the back thanks to Lena Luthor finding a weapon of her own. The day has been saved, Lena Luthor is still alive and the enemy has been stopped.
In the post credits scene — a staple of the CW hero-verse — John Corben is being held together on life support when he’s approached by a shadowy figure from Project Cadmus (the same group that supposedly captured and kept Jeremiah Danvers alive all these years) and she offers to save his life. Corben agrees and now he will be transformed into the villainous Metallo, who DC Comics fans will know as one of the big bads from the history of the Superman universe.
In other news from this episode….
Cat Grant seems uneasy throughout the episode as if she’s just itching to get out of the office. For those unaware, Calista Flockhart was moved to recurring status this season and won’t be appearing in nearly as many episodes, so this was clearly the beginning of her transition off screen.
Kara decided on her new dream job at Cat Co. after the investigation with Clark — she wants to be a reporter. Cat then reveals on the day Kara showed up asking for a job, she scribbled the word ‘reporter’ on her resume and hired her on the spot.
Kara also puts an end to her relationship with James and says they would be better served as friends rather than romantically involved. An abrupt ending considering all the time spent getting them together last season so we’ll have to wait and see where this goes.
Speaking of romance, Cat Grant has a huge crush on Clark Kent but he’s still hopelessly devoted to Lois Lane, who is back in Metropolis.
Plenty of nods to the old school ‘Superman’ movies including Winn asking Superman about his original battle with Lex Luthor from the first film as well as Cat Grant’s new assistant being named “Miss Teschmacher” just like Lex Luthor’s gal pal from the original Richard Donner classic.
There was also a mention of Corto Maltese — a fictional place that exists in the ‘Arrow’ universe.
Finally, Superman decides to stick around National City for a little while longer to get some quality time with his cousin while helping her around town wherever he’s needed.
‘Supergirl’ returns next Monday night at 8pm ET on the CW.