Supergirl: Nevertheless, She Persisted Review
The CW’s Supergirl Season 2, Episode 21: ‘Nevertheless, She Persisted’ had a chance to wrap the season properly after witnessing a balance of good and bad episodes, however, it failed to tie up an loose ends or even properly utilizing it’s cast. Our worst fears came true when we saw that the season two ender was nothing more than a rehash of what went down during last year’s freshman finale. However, there were some emotional moments that came out through this poorly executed finale between Kara (Melissa Benoist) and Mon-El (Chris Wood).
At least the fight between Kara and Superman (Tyler Hoechlin) was done with right away. Having Superman brainwashed in the season finale was a repeat of what happened to him last season, making it bad that he had to come back to be under the control by Rhea (Teri Hatcher) through silver kryptonite. What was good was that it didn’t happen for the whole episode as Kara managed to overpower him and knock some sense into him. We did get to learn about silver kryptonite, which worked pretty well in explaining the appearance of General Zod (Matt Gibbon). It gave a good tease of Superman and Zod’s rivalry without going too much into it.
So much of the visual effects seem to have been spent on that fight scene between Superman and Supergirl. We commend the crew for attempting to create and choreograph the fight on an epic scale, especially since the show doesn’t tend to display Kara’s super strength a lot. Perhaps most of that energy should’ve been put into the climactic battle? Kara’s fight with Rhea didn’t leave that same impact as it did with Superman. Even the scenes with the Daxamite ships destroying the city looked terrible. Watching these past two episodes proved that there is certainly a limit to what the show’s visual effects department can do, and it shows. We do have to give them some credit in trying to create some visually stunning shots of the invasion with the budget they have.
Just like the visuals, the episode also suffered from a poorly written script. The show used almost the whole roster of characters from the cast for the finale, but not many of them served a purpose for the overall plot. Alex (Chyler Leigh) and Maggie (Floriana Lima) didn’t have much to do in the episode. All Winn (Jeremy Jordan), Lillan Luthor (Brenda Strong), and Lena (Katie McGrath) ended up doing was fixing the cube that Lex created in order to create a fail-safe against the Daxamites. James Olsen (Mehcad Brooks) appeared in just one scene for the whole episode. M’gann’s (Sharon Leal) return felt like she was shooed in last minute. Her comeback would’ve worked if it was just only her making a psychic connection with J’onn (David Harewood).
What was also bad was that not all the seasonal plotlines were resolved. We didn’t find out what happened to Cadmus since most of the focus was on the Daxamite invasion. Even the anti-alien movement in National City didn’t play a huge part in the finale after having a big role early on in the season. Even for Lena, we didn’t get to see her make that choice between becoming a Luthor and being the kind of hero that National City needs. Perhaps we may get those for next season, but it does leave a hole left unfulfilled since those were perhaps the best parts of the second season.
With an alien invasion, it was weird that the episode didn’t tap into the fear of aliens taking over National City and perhaps the whole world. The episode focused too much on Kara and her friends, completely ignoring what the people of National City may be going through knowing that their world is under attack. The show didn’t truly embrace the fact that all this destruction is taking place on Earth due to the personal battle going on between Kara and Rhea.
What did work in the episode was its focus on Kara’s main relationships: her family connection with Clark, romantic relationship with Mon-El, and her mentorship with Cat Grant (Calista Flockhart). Speaking of Cat, it was great to have her return in these final two episodes even if it was temporary. It’s always been a treat to have Cat bestow some wisdom onto Kara with her trademark comments. It’s too bad we won’t be seeing her as much as we want to in the new season.
Another character that we enjoyed seeing make a return was Superman. After that sibling battle, it was nice knowing how well Tyler embodied the Man of Steel since he was cast. The actor brings all the appeal and charisma that Clark/Superman brings in the comics. Some people may find it offensive on the whole idea that Supergirl is ‘stronger’ than Superman. We get the feeling that the show is trying to degrade Superman in order to bump up Supergirl. At the end of the day, it doesn’t really matter who is better. Is it so bad that Kara may actually be stronger mentally as well as physically? Kara grew up knowing that her home world is gone while Clark didn’t have memories of Krpyton but was raised by a good family on Earth. Kara was afraid of what followed after the destruction of Krypton as she navigated Earth as a teen feeling like she didn’t belong. She had to work hard to get to Clark’s level, so the episode did something right on that part.
Toward the closing minutes of the finale, the romance between Kara and Mon-El ended on a bittersweet note. It felt natural that the only way to get rid of the Daxamites was also the very thing that would prevent Mon-El from being with Kara. Seeing the two lovebirds saying goodbye was a powerful scene to perform and both the actors did a fantastic job displaying their raw emotions. With Mon-El leaving Earth, it was tough to say goodbye to their relationship, but at least it was a good way to leave things between them. It also paved the way for Mon-El to embrace his destiny like the comics when that wormhole appeared, which may have him visit the 31st Century and meet up with the Legion of Super Heroes. Even the reveal of a demonic Kryptonian baby during the last few minutes of the finale left some interesting developments to be made on who the Big Bad will be in season three.
In the end, the season finale didn’t make up the fact that the second season of Supergirl had some problems. The episode tried to use some of the main characters, but it left many unanswered questions in regards to some plotlines and character arcs. Superman’s return and the emotional farewell to Kara and Mon-El’s relationship were the only things that saved this disappointing season finale.
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