After the horrific attacks in Paris and Beirut over the weekend, CBS decided to postpone the already scheduled episode of Supergirl — which apparently centered around a terrorist attack in National City — and instead aired the Thanksgiving episode that was slated for next week. This shuffle in the schedule could have led to some continuity gaps, but apart from a weirdly resurrected Jimmy/Lucy relationship, it didn’t feel too out of place. So what did we think of the latest incarnation of Livewire’s origins?
Well, before we get to the Villain of the Week, we cold open to a gnarly looking alien breaking free of “his” chains and rampaging through the DEO’s underground bunker. Fortunately, Kara was onsite to subdue the beast — and also learn that the “he” is a “she,” to which Kara gives the best line reading of the night.
While Supergirl was taking care of business at the DEO, Alex — who had the day off, I guess? — was frantically bugging her sister over her earpiece. What’s got Alex so riled up? Well, it’s Thanksgiving (a week early) and their mother, Eliza Danvers, is coming to town for the holiday. Kara is thrilled about it, but Alex is the opposite. Apparently, Supergirl isn’t the only secret identity in the family since Alex is a closeted DEO agent. She also has some unresolved mommy issues that stem from the jealousy that comes with having an alien sister who can fly, and shoot laser beams from her eyes to help cook dinner.
Kara flies back just in time to welcome their mother to her apartment. She doesn’t even change into civilian clothes and greets her at the door in full Supergirl regalia. Of course, she’s super psyched to show her mother she’s a superhero and is totally adorable about it.
Meanwhile, shock jock Leslie Willis is on the air and spouting off about how much she detests Supergirl. It feels like the writers are using Leslie to represent haters of the show since many of her criticisms mimic the ones that abounded when the show was announced. Also, she’s “live and wired,” natch.
Apparently, she didn’t get the memo from a few episodes back. The media is supposed to love Supergirl now. It turns out that Willis’ show is on air owned by CatCo, and the boss doesn’t appreciate the hero she practically trademarked to get strewn through the mud. So she demotes Leslie to traffic chopper duty. That’s going to be important later.
Kara is going around the office inviting her #Superfriends to her place for Turkey Day. Winn is the first invite because he’s her bestie (is there a fanbase for this ship yet?) and because he doesn’t have a family to go home to. We learn that Winn Schott is actually a Junior and that his father is serving time in prison. Though he doesn’t mention it, I’m pretty sure Winslow Sr. also has a thing for toys.
Winn is on cloud nine at the prospect of spending Friendsgiving with Kara and her family, but is soon brought back down to Earth when she also extends the invite to JimmyJames.
Unfortunately, James and Lucy Lane have rekindled their romance (in Offscreen City — or the original Episode 4. Guess we’ll find out next week) and are having a couples getaway over the holiday. So now Winn and Kara are sad about their crushes.
When Leslie’s chopper hits some turbulence, it starts going down. Because if you know anything about Super mythos, helicopters are never a good idea — especially if you’re named Lois Lane. Of course, Leslie isn’t Lois, so instead of getting rescued, she gets electrocuted by a bolt of lightning with Supergirl caught in the middle. Instead of being killed by the bolt, Leslie is imbued with special abilities. It’s basically an origin straight out of Superman: The Animated Series.
Back at Kara’s apartment, Alex was right to be wary of her mother visiting. While Eliza is indeed proud of Kara’s ascension to superhero status, she also scolds Alex for letting her secret out (and now her mommy issues make sense). We then flashback to life in the Danvers home when Kara and Alex were little kids — and honestly, these scenes are way better than the action in the present.
After bedtime, the two sisters sneak out of the house and Kara shows Alex a whole new world by flying around the city. After their magic Krypton ride, the Danvers are furious and scold them — but mostly Alex — for being irresponsible. This is also when the parents make like the King and Queen of Arendelle and forbid
Elsa Kara from using her powers again. Right on cue, agents from the DEO come knocking, led by none other than Director Estes Henshaw. They’ve finally come for Kara and plan to use her for nefarious reasons since Superman has refused to cooperate.
Rather than give up his newly adopted daughter, Pa Danvers offers himself up to the DEO. After all…
So it seems that Alex wasn’t the first Danvers to work for Henshaw. In fact, their father’s death is somehow linked to Pa Danvers’ time at the DEO under Henshaw. When the sisters learn this, they realize it’s up to them to uncover the mystery of how their father died. And for the first time this season, I actually give a shit about the DEO plotline.
Back in the present, the newly christened Livewire is wreaking havoc all across National City. She zeroes in on one of the people she blames for her current predicament, Cat Grant. One evening when Cat and Kara are working late, Livewire materializes from the electricity in the building.
She goes toe to toe with Kara and eventually escapes. The next day, DEO agents posed as the FBI investigate the scene. Though Livewire isn’t alien in nature, they still help Kara devise a way to trap her using a machine straight out of Ghostbusters. In fact, Kara even calls them out on it.
Of course, the second big boss fight doesn’t go according to plan, even with the Ghostbusters doo-hickey in tow. So Kara does the next best thing and finds a firehose because water is Livewire’s Kryptonite in any version of the story.
Overall, it was another strong episode of Supergirl — which despite strong numbers for its debut, is actually on the bubble at CBS for renewal, which is a shame. The twist about Kara and Alex’s father is a really strong one and provides more opportunities for Dean Cain to be on the show. Hopefully, the ratings will stabilize enough for CBS to give them a full season to play out.
In the meantime, we’ll wait for next week to fill in the gaps regarding Lucy and James’ budding romance since it looks like the one that was supposed to be this week’s episode will be airing then.