Three superheroes are better than one in a decent episode that addresses several ongoing subplots…
There have been a lot of secrets and withheld emotions rolling around Supergirl season two, but ‘We Can Be Heroes’ impressively moves a lot of these out into the open.
First off, the Guardian subplot has been one of the bumpiest of this season, so it was good to have James’ vigilante secret finally come out into the open. That said, Kara’s overzealous reaction – basically, stop or I will stop you – didn’t sit right. Her assertion that only super-powered beings can be superheroes seemed surprisingly prejudiced for her, even though it wasn’t obvious that she was only acting that way because she is worried for her friends’ safety.
Mon-El, meanwhile, graduated from “superhero kindergarten” and did a shoddy job of it when he protected Kara instead of civilians. As such, it came that he is in love with Kara. This revelatory moment, while straight out of a teen drama, was well-done and recalled the scene from season one where Winn likewise admitted his love for Kara. Unlike on that occasion, though, Mon shot her down before she could respond, which leaves the door open for how she feels about him.
As ever on Supergirl, the villain-of-the-week plot is the least interesting part of the episode. There is no way that I can believe that Livewire, who was dispatched fairly easily in her two appearances in season one (though the second required help from the Flash) – is Kara’s nemesis, as we were repeatedly told this episode. That said, the twist that Livewire was the victim here was a nice role reversal, though the mad scientist who experiments on her was paper-thin (he didn’t even get a name).
The most powerful part of ‘We Can Be Heroes’ has to be Martian Manhunter’s subplot, as he finally forgives M’Gann for lying to him about being a White Martian. Due to her dying from a psychic attack, he travels into her mind to save her – and back to those dark days on Mars in the process. We have had similar character beats for J’onn before this season but this one felt the most meaningful.
All in all, another solid, if unremarkable, episode for Supergirl‘s second season. By this point in the show, the villains-of-the-week are just an afterthought. We are only here for the heroes.
- Kara’s elitist attitude that you need powers to be a superhero was very reminscient of The Incredibles. Careful, Kara, you don’t want James to turn into Syndrome.
- “Forgiveness isn’t a gift you give someone else. It’s a gift you give yourself,” says Alex. I prefer Giles from Buffy‘s version: “Forgiveness isn’t given because someone deserves it, Buffy, it’s given because they need it.”
- It’s not part of this episode, but it’s just been announced that Teri Hatcher will turn up later this season as this year’s big bad. She previously played Lois Lane on Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman. That should be fun.