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There are spoilers in this review. Duh.

There are so many great things to unpack in this episode that I’m not sure where to start. I think Supergirl is one of the best shows on TV, and I feel that way for a few different reasons. I think that it’s great to see a superhero who solves things with love and hope. It is totally cheesy, and I don’t usually like cheesy, but maybe I’m just so tired of all these dark and gritty superheroes. I love them too, but occasionally it’s nice to have someone who has the heart of a hero and wins by sheer force of will. I like that she’s providing such a positive role model for girls and young women. I like that she’s proving you don’t need to be a tough emotionless badass to be a hero. Don’t get me wrong, I love my tough badass ladies too, but Kara’s young and sweet and awkward and there’s a place for that. There are a variety of women in this show and they’re all different. I’m going to save some of this for the end of the review and just get on with this particular episode. Previously on Supergirl, Non used Myriad to take over the minds of everyone. It ended with Kara facing off with a mind controlled Alex. Maxwell said he could stop it but it would kill innocents, and Cat convinced Supergirl not to accept that. J’onn was seriously injured and his cover is blown. James and Kara kissed but then he was brainwashed. Alex and J’onn went on the run as fugitives looking for her not-actually-dead father. There’s a lot going on!

The fight with Kara and Alex is difficult to watch, and it’s quite lethal and unnerving. But their mother shows up (the original Supergirl!) with J’onn and talks Alex down. She proves that the brainwashed people can fight back against Non if they have good reason. It was Cat’s idea to try and broadcast an emotional plea from Supergirl where she encouraged the city to fight off the mind control and take back their lives. Is this super cheesy? Yes. Did I love it? YES. I do like that Supergirl is constantly about her relationship with the people of the city and how it’s a partnership in a lot of ways. I think Melissa’s skilled at riding that line of cheesy but sincere with Kara. It does work and people come back to themselves. Kara and James try to talk about what happened but they’re interrupted. Non has now decided on a new plan, thanks to Indigo’s influence, which is to kill all the humans and find another world to dominate. Harsh, man. A little weird how quickly you’ve moved on from your beloved wife, but I think Indigo is kind of using powers on you a little too. Or she just appeals well to your ego.

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“Better Angels” — Supergirl is forced to do battle with an unexpected foe and must risk everything — including her life — to prevent Non and Indigo from destroying every person on the planet, on the first season finale of SUPERGIRL, Monday, April 18 (8:00-9:00 PM, ET/PT) on the CBS Television Network. Pictured left to right: Mehcad Brooks, Melissa Benoist, Jeremy Jordan, Chyler Leigh and David Harewood Photo: Cliff Lipson/CBS ©2016 CBS Broadcasting, Inc. All Rights Reserved

They start to kill humans instead, by using the prisoner ship to effect their minds in a lethal way. Maxwell takes Kara to the side and points out to her that she might not survive the coming battle. This leads her to accept she could be walking into a suicide mission and to say goodbye to her loved ones. She tells them how much she cares for them, and I wanted to highlight her relationship with Cat the most. It’s been one of the most important ones of the show, and I love to see a mentor/student relationship like this one. It clearly gets to Cat, and this comes back later on. J’onn has been arrested but Lucy sets him loose so he can help Kara against the other two. He takes on Indigo while she takes on Non, but it turns out defeating them doesn’t change the fact everyone’s going to die. The only way to stop it is to take the prisoner ship and shoot it into space, which Kara can do, but it’ll be her death for sure. After an emotional farewell to Alex, Kara sacrifices her life. TAKE NOTE, Batman vs. Superman. This is a real martyr’s death that actually works. Kara wakes up back home to find that Alex took her pod and piloted it to save her sister. Ahhhh! Tears.

J’onn is given command of the DEO back, and I smiled a lot. It’s by Lucy and her reluctant father, and he says instead he’d like it to be a partnership. Does that mean Lucy’s staying? I hope so! I really like her. Kara is shocked to find out when she gets to work that Cat’s given her an office. Cat tells her that she’s no longer her assistant and she can figure out her new title and duties, and she believes in her. At this point I’m like rolling in the feels, which I already felt from Alex/Kara. Cat calls Kara by her name for the first time, and it’s just so lovely. Kara also chats with Clark, who was put to the side for this episode after trying to help them, and their convos are adorable as ever. Kara sits down with her family and friends for dinner, and Jimmy kisses her for real. Aw! But they’re interrupted when they see something fall to Earth and goes to investigate. It appears to be something Kryptonian. BUT WHO IS IN THE NEW POD? Dum dum duuuuum. We better find out next season. You better renew this, guys, I will lose my shit if you don’t. This is an important show no matter how cheesy it seems, and here’s why.

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As I mentioned before, this show gives us a superhero that is extremely relatable but also admirable. Kara is many things. She is cute, sweet, awkward, kind, heroic, but she’s also shy and hesitant and not always certain of herself. She gets frustrated and angry, and still feels the pain of losing her family and her world. She wants so desperately to do well and to do good. She cares about having the cape but also her real life. She is the superhero people actually need. I think it was great to have Barry show up, because he’s that person too. Do I like angsty superheroes? Yup! Do I like sweethearts too? Yup! They serve different purposes, but no less important. Beyond that Supergirl is about relationships. Friendships. Found family. Mentorship. Sisters. These are all varied characters with their own needs and goals and personalities. We got Jimmy’s attempt to get out of Superman’s shadow and his growing feelings for Kara. We have Winn, who I have been the harshest critic of, move through his broken heart to remain a good friend and believe the best in people. We have Cat’s warming up after being a cynical and cutthroat woman, while she still maintains her edge. We have Alex struggling to maintain her own life and identity separate from Kara and with Kara. And we have J’onn, the last Martian, who has found a family again. It’s just … marvelous really.

Supergirl is not a perfect show. It had a rocky start while it was trying to find itself. It had some filler episodes. It wasn’t always sure where to focus. But it did get on solid ground and build itself up to an excellent mix of drama and optimism. It moved the characters forward too! Especially Kara, who next season will be trying a new job and position in her life, while … doing whatever it is with the pod person. I’m guessing it could be Superboy? Or Power Girl? She’ll continue to balance out her life with her superhero life. This show deserves to stay alive. It’s not a typical procedural with the cookie cutter plot so many stations lean on. I had Xena and Buffy growing up, and they meant a great deal to me, they inspired me. It sounds weird, I know, but I do think that media can change a life if it’s done well. A book or a film or a tv series, something that strikes an emotional chord with someone, it matters. I like to think this matters to young girls and teens and grown women too. And I’d also like to think that it’s not just women who can find reasons to love this show, that it could reach a broader audience too.

Anyway tl;dr, Supergirl is great. Everyone should watch it. If it doesn’t get a second season we riot. I have a lot of feelings about it. The end.

 

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