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TV Review: Supergirl S1E9 Blood Bonds

Melissa Benoist Supergirl 1A standoff ensues between the DEO and Astra’s forces also Non kidnaps Hank, while Kara tries to refute Cat’s allegations that she’s Supergirl.

CBSSupergirl returns from its holiday break with a brand new episode that has the DEO and Kara figuring out what to do when Hank is kidnapped.

The episode is a mix bag with Kara talking to her aunt a lot in a boring, predictable way. It has the warm and fuzzy boringness and feels really anticlimactic. The whole situation could have built into something much more, but it just seems to fizzle leading in a direction that’s somewhat predictable.

What is actually good is Kara dealing with Cat thinking she’s Supergirl. We get some solid insight as to what someone like her would keep a job like that. It’s always a good question considering how powerful she is, not like she really needs work, or can’t work for the DEO. The end of that situation is handled really well with a nice twist that makes sense.

What’s really solid is the build of Maxwell Lord which the series has been slowly progressing into a worthy bad guy. It hasn’t been obvious, and what he’s up to isn’t obvious at all. But, this episode gives us more in that storyline than any episode before.

This wasn’t the best episode of the series, but a welcome return to the small screen that has me excited for the latter half of the first season.

Overall rating: 7.8

TV Review: Supergirl S1E8 Hostile Takeover

Melissa Benoist Supergirl 1Kara faces off with Astra after her aunt challenges Kara’s beliefs about her mother; and Cat is threatened with being removed as CEO of CatCo after a hacker exposes her private and damaging emails.

CBSSupergirl goes a different route this episode. While there’s movement in the Supergirl/Astra storyline but really the focus is Cat and her being threatened with being fired.

Not only does the episode reveal that Cat has another son, but as she says herself she’s dealing with the “walking personification of white male privilege.”

The episode takes on its girl power theme through this storyline focusing on Cat this go around. It addresses the issues of a woman being the CEO of a corporation. It’s something we don’t see often in a drama, let alone an action series like this one.

The story also feels right at home and natural for the series.

It’s also clear there’s a bigger plot concerning Astra, and we get a taste of some of what that is. Also on tap is Henshaw/J’onn mentioning his powers in a nice wink and smile for comic fans.

Overall, the episode is solid in that while there was action and adventure, it also is very personal in many ways in its focus on Cat addressing a real world issue.

But, with all of that, we also finally get someone being smart when it comes to secret identities instead of everyone being an idiot about it all.

The end fight scene had some good and some bad, but overall much more good than bad.

Treating characters intelligently. Addressing real world issues. Lots of action. This is a solid episode, especially after last week’s excellent reveal.

Overall rating: 8.1

TV Review: Supergirl S1E7 Human for a Day

Melissa Benoist Supergirl 1Kara and her friends are forced to rely on their inner strength and courage when an earthquake strikes National City, while Alex’s mistrust of Hank reaches its breaking point when the earthquake traps them in the DEO with an alien escapee called Jemm.

CBSSupergirl adds another familiar face in a big payoff episode that runs a story that’s been done over and over, but, it’s done really well here.

Supergirl has lost her powers after last episode which saw her go against the Red Tornado. Unfortunately an earthquake has hit the city and everyone is looking towards Supergirl to save them which she can’t. That has the stereotypical story of people realizing the superhero within them. We’ve seen this story before and here it’s done decently. It’s very cute and there’s some moments that definitely gave me feels.

But really the bigger story is the D.E.O. and and reveal of who Hank Henshaw really is. We’ve been teased that he’s not human and we finally get the reveal.

Stop reading if you don’t want to know.

You good?

Ok, here we go!

Henshaw is in fact the Martian Manhunter! J’onn J’onzz is now on television and the outfit and look is reminiscent of the New 52 version, but it actually looked really good!

This feels like a great payoff and reveal, one that was well worth the teasing and the time it took to reveal it was solid, not too long, not too short.

It may be that reveal that saved the episode from being cheese, but overall, it pumped me up excited to see what comes next.

Overall rating: 9

TV Review: Supergirl S1E6 Red Faced

Melissa Benoist Supergirl 1Stress makes Kara go too far during a training exercise against a military cyborg commissioned by General Sam Lane, while Cat’s mother comes to visit and Winn helps Alex investigate her father’s death.

CBSSupergirl adds a familiar faces for fans of DC Comics as Red Tornado makes its debut on the series along with General Lane.

While the introduction of those characters may have kept the comic fans focused, really the episode is about women and expectations of how they react in public. Coming up a few times, there’s talk of Supergirl/Kara not keeping her cool and how that is a societal faux pas. It’s nice for the episode to really just put that out there as it has danced around the “lady like” subject for some bit.

We also get to see Supergirl have a lot of issues taking on the Red Tornado. With its strength and ability the character really gives her a run for her money.

The episode in many ways takes on the ending of Man of Steel. How the ending is shot mimics the anger Superman had on his face facing Zod. Both touch upon how these two beings are supposed to be so much better than us all, but like every person they too have anger underneath it all that some times just needs to come out in cathartic rage. It’s interesting the television show can make you think of that film in a different way.

The ending gets really interesting in that it grows the mystery of Alex’s father and Cat’s reaction to her mother. Plus…. Supergirl bleeding!?

Overall rating: 8.2

Supergirl Gets a Full Season Pickup by CBS

Supergirl has been picked up for a full season by CBS. The network has ordered seven additional episodes bringing its first season to 20 total episodes. The series is one of television’s top-rated new shows averaging 11.24 million viewers a week.

The series stars Melissa Benoist as Kara Danvers/Supergirl along with Calista Flockhart, Mehcad Brooks, Chyler Leigh, Jeremy Jordan and David Harewood.

The series has had some trust by CBS as it was the first new series to get the greenlight for this season. It’s produced by Greg Berlanti who also produces Arrow and The Flash, two other successful television series based on DC Comics.

Supergirl airs Mondays at 8pm going against another television series based on a DC Comics property, Gotham.

Melissa Benoist Supergirl 1

TV Review: Supergirl S1E5 How Does She Do It?

Melissa Benoist Supergirl 1Kara must protect National City from a series of bombings and babysit Cat’s son, while James is visited by Lucy Lane.

CBSSupergirl finally gets us to a bigger story, as it’s revealed there’s a big bad on the horizon, or at least in front of us. The episode has Kara balancing her life, and doing what she can to do her job too.

The episode is cute in many ways, revolving around Jimmy’s love life and the rather complicated matter than it is.

But, as usual, the episode really revolves around Kara/Supergirl and what she does and what she says. The episode portrays her in a relaistic way as a hero who can’t do it all, and does mess up, and have to make choices. It’s a solid episode in many ways because of that.

I’m not a fan of Kara and Jimmy getting together, which is teased as usual, but not gone through with. It’s cute, but Jimmy should be her mentor and friend.

There’s also some solid moments of a young boy looking up at Supergirl as his hero, a nice nod that her fans go across gender.

The episode isn’t deep at all, but a very cute and entertaining hour.

Overall rating: 7.9

TV Review: Supergirl S1E4 Livewire

Melissa Benoist Supergirl 1Kara’s foster mother visits for Thanksgiving, while an accident transforms a volatile CatCo employee into Livewire.

CBSSupergirl juggled this latest episode in light of the Paris attacks. The episode that was to air had bombings occurring across the city. In its place, we get the debut of Livewire, a classic DC Comics villain and one nice adapted for this live show.

This episode has the character being a shock-jock employee of CatCo who’s transformed due to a freak accident. The episode has pretty decent special fx, and Brit Morgan who plays Livewire is pretty entertaining in the role (though she shares a bit too much of a look with Liv from iZombie.

But the hear of the episode rests in the relationship of daughters and mothers. We learn much more about Cat Grant and why she might be a bit tough on Supergirl, and Kara and her sister tell their mother the truth about things (as if she didn’t know Kara was Supergirl, that’s not the secret).

But, we get some solid family interaction out of it and a very cut and sweet moment between Kara and Winn. Through all of the action, the episode really revolves around the relationships between the characters and dealing with their family.

The episode also takes on its tone directly with lots of talk about discourse and being positive. Some have had issues with the tone of the show, being too nice, where I think the positive attitude is a welcome change. It’s actually talked about in a roundabout way.

The episode bounces back nicely from the previous episode. And awesome secrets revealed!

Overall rating: 7.8

TV Review: Supergirl S1E3 Fight or Flight

Melissa Benoist Supergirl 1Supergirl’s powers are put to the test when one of Superman’s most formidable enemies, Reactron, shows up in National City to take her down. In the meantime, Cat makes plans to run an expose on Supergirl.

The first two episodes of CBSSupergirl were a breath of fresh air with action mixed with a positive message, starring a girl. Much of those two episodes saw Supergirl figuring out the whole superhero thing, making mistakes along the way. The big thing though was though Superman exists in this world, his role was in the background.

This third episode puts him in the foreground, even stepping in to save Kara in a battle against one of Superman’s foes Reactron. That moment kind of kills a lot of the message of the first two episodes. Superman steps in to save her which has her flipping out how he did so. While I kind of see how the writers think this helps push her message, to me it hurts.

The show should be centered around Kara/Supergirl, but instead Supes steps in to save her. She fought villains so far where she gets her but kicked and needs to come back to defeat them later. That’s nothing new. And Reactron isn’t well known enough that viewers might care that he’s super difficult to beat. The message given in the moment is that Supergirl did indeed Superman, to me belittling the positive message up to this point. And the fact others were stepping in to make Supes happen doesn’t help matters at all.

The show ends with a bit of a spin from a message from the Man of Steel, but still, the episode feels like a misstep in many ways. The first two episodes soared high, this one came back to Earth.

Overall rating: 6

TV Review: Supergirl S1E2 Stronger Together

Melissa Benoist Supergirl 1Kara must put doubts aside as she tries to apprehend an escapee from the Kryptonian prison; Cat pressure James for an interview with Supergirl.

The debut of CBSSupergirl was a breath of fresh air with an action oriented comic based television series with a positive and feminist bent. It’s a show I’m sure little kids were excited to watch, and parents hopefully were ok with them doing so.

The second episode continues the positive message and gets us to more of what will likely be the season’s major nemesis, Supergirl’s Aunt.

What really suprised me about the episode is its positive aspect. The show had Kara learning a bit about fighting and self-defense, but more importantly about self-confidence. With her abilities, she still doesn’t quite know how to use them, which leads to her making mistakes and taking a step back about her role.

There’s a nice comedic aspect about it all, but there’s a great positive message that’s reiterated at the end of the episode. It’s clear Kara doesn’t have confidence, but through some sound advice she takes that step back, and starts with small tasks to build up her how she feels about herself. It’s a great lesson I can see many parents attempting to impart on their children.

The show exudes positivity from the lessons taught to the humor, even the bright colors all just make me smile. It’s nice to watch a show without a hint of grim and gritty. Comics as a whole needs more of that, and this show is showing how it can be done and done really well.

The show is more than just Supergirl, it’s also about Kara the regular person. Seeing how she deals with having the dual life. How she reacts to how people treat her and her alter-ego. There’s very much a human touch to it all. My only fear is the series stumbles in this department, particularly in the romantic space, but maybe those fears are unfounded.

The second episode wasn’t quite as magical as the first, but it’s an hour of television the whole family can watch, enjoy, and feel good about it all.

Overall rating: 8

TV Review: Supergirl: Pilot

Melissa Benoist Supergirl 1Coming this fall to CBS is Supergirl, based on the classic DC Comics character. Starring Melissa Benoist as Kara Danvers/Supergirl, the series is an empowering fresh take on the superhero genre, and it also so happens to star a female lead, something that’s been lacking from the television comic adaptations other than DC’s iZombie.

I’ll just straight up say, I loved the pilot. It’s probably the most fun I’ve had when it comes to a live adaptation of a comic character since The Flash reboot.

The show quickly takes us through Kara’s trip to Earth, even getting the elephant in the room out of the way, how it compares to her cousin Superman. The age issues are dispelled really easily, and the show moves on.

The first episode plays out like a pretty standard origin tale, but it all feels natural and progresses nicely. That’s partially due to Benoist’s take that makes her a more socially awkward character than her cousin. She plays it off really well, especially when she meets a familiar face, Jimmy Olsen called James Olsen here. Played by Mehcad Brooks, I’m sure too many folks will be focused on the fact the character’s race has been switched from the traditional comics. The use of the character is important as it gives us a known quantity to help guide Kara in her adventures. When you see the first episode, it all makes sense as to why he’s there.

But Olsen isn’t the only familiar face to pop up. Kara’s boss is Cat Grant played by Calista Flockhart. But, there’s even more for the geeks. Hank Henshaw is a part of the show, he too race switched but you don’t hear people complaining about that (a post for another time), but even more fun Dean Cain and Helen Slater play Kara’s parents. Cain played Superman in Lois & Clark, while Slater played Supergirl in the movie adaptation.

The first episode beyond exceeded my expectations, giving us a show that takes on misogyny in superhero comics in a cheeky way, and gives women a hero to really enjoy and look up to. The episode exudes positivity, and left me wanting more immediately. It was the one television show I was most nervous about, but after this first episode has me wanting to see more, and if it’s consistent it could be one of my favorites on television right now (currently The Walking Dead and The Flash).

This show might seem like it’s about girl power, but in reality, it’s fun for everyone. It’s not a bird. It’s not a plane. It’s not a man. It’s Supergirl.

Overall rating: 9

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