November 21, 2016

Thoughts on Supergirl 2x06 "Changing"

I've been super inactive lately just in terms of posting stuff. To the like five of you who care about this, sorry (but thank you obvs. for caring!). It's been a super busy month—depressing af too obvs.—and honesty Supergirl and the impending release of Elliot Wake's newest book are the only things fueling me through these last few weeks of 2016.

Really loved this latest episode of Supergirl! This episode had so much awesome in it, it's kinda insane when compared to the previous episodes that honestly haven't been that exciting for me. It's like they saved it all for this.

Alex's coming out was amazing; just so real! Multiple threads of character and different emotions going into it too which was fantastic! It would've been so easy to make this completely happy or just prey on the painfulness, but Chyler and the writers really run the full gamut of Alex's emotional spectrum which was very smart. It gave us an Alex that reacted differently about her being gay when in the company of different people and that was su smart, because it made her more human that way. Super resonant! They even played on the fact that she's an adult coming to terms with this; I just... like, this is amazing! We've never seen that before, not really. I cried, seeing this kind of representation on screen. I also found it satisfying just from a narrative standpoint that Alex and Maggie didn't end up together by episode's end. This was realistic too in how Maggie handled herself and how Alex reacted, and I'm glad that this didn't fall into the trap of insta-love. This is a relationship that's worth the growth and the depth; I'm so glad they're in it for the long haul.

Winn and James finally got to take more active roles in the show which was nice to see; as soon as James showed up in that suit before he even spoke I knew that dude had a voice modulator! He doesn't look nearly as silly as pictures made him out to be; the suit works great in motion. Mon-El and M'Gann are also growing as characters. I'm still not crazy about Mon-El as a character in his own right yet; his use as comic relief is good but I don't know if there's enough depth to this guy to draw his hero trepidations story out for so long. M'Gann Mors though, it should be neat to see where her relationship with J'onn goes after the reveal in episode four that she's a White Martian and her donating blood to J'onn this episode. Setting up conflict is great and I hope they do as equally good follow through.

And coupled with all of this great character work is an external story this week that I actually cared about. I've been thinking a lot about this episode since it aired last Monday. I'm mostly just super happy that Alex's story is being treated as real and as a legitimate character journey. (It's obviously made a big enough impression on me to write this!) Part of why I hadn't posted reviews of the previous few episodes (besides me being swamped with school stuff) is because the external plots of the past few episodes just haven't been all that interesting or nuanced to me. Alien amnesty acts are all well and good, and having a political allegory is fine, but how the show's been handling stuff like this is just so obvious and as such loses a lot of the impact for me. But this episode we have a debut of a classic Superman villain in a way that ties more directly into how the characters themselves are acting (prominently with Winn, James, and Mon-El), so there's more stuff to care about with regards to the external plot this time around, which was so great.

Also, I think I was still used to Supergirl taking a more active role in the show—she is the star, after all. But that was a last season thing; this season is all about interpersonal relationships and how the character dynamics can be shaken up, which is fantastic and it is what a second season is supposed to do. Kara's character is developing very slowly and her arc as a reporter is like the least interesting of everything going on, which I initially thought to be a negative, but on looking back, this is probably all to the benefit of the show because it allows room for other stories to be told. Now, we have Alex and Maggie and their relationship, Winn and James as a team, J'onn and M'Gann's conflicting relationship, and Kara being supportive of her sister.

So yeah, I loved this episode! More like this, please!!