Review: “Crossfire” is the Worst Episode Yet of Supergirl Season Two

Monday, 07 November 2016 - 10:21PM
DC Comics
Supergirl
Monday, 07 November 2016 - 10:21PM
Review: “Crossfire” is the Worst Episode Yet of Supergirl Season Two
Supergirl season two has been an exciting ride so far. New characters, like Miss Martian, Mon-El, and Superman have been introduced to the show, and the screenwriters haven't been afraid to incorporate social commentary on relevant issues by creating some really interesting parallels between extraterrestrial beings and immigrants. However, the momentum that's been building suffers in this week's episode due to numerous superhero cliches and retreading overworked territory. Though the plot definitely moves forward, "Crossfire" is one of the slowest episodes of Supergirl to date, and is potentially the worst episode yet of Supergirl season two.  

"Crossfire" follows Supergirl's attempts to assimilate Mon-El into society while she simultaneously attempts to stop a team of criminals hired by Cadmus and who are using dangerous alien tech to try and sway the public's perception of extraterrestrials. She quickly discovers that Mon-El is going to make his own choices as an Earthling, and her battle with the criminals reaches its tipping point at a gala held by Lena Luthor. In the end, Kara decides to let Mon-El forge his own path on Earth, and with a little help from Lena, Cadmus' criminal crew is finally dealt with.

Meanwhile, Jimmy begins his transformation into the Guardian. Having lost his camera in an attack held by the Cadmus' criminal contractors, Jimmy's feelings of powerlessness and uselessness finally provoke him to try and change things by becoming a vigilante. Winn initially discourages him, but in the end, he agrees to help Jimmy develop a suit that can help him tackle crime in National City. Just as well, the episode also reveals that Lena Luthor's mother is the head of Cadmus, foreshadowing some of the family drama undoubtedly to come.  

While there were definitely a lot of fun moments in this week's episode (especially those involving Mon-El), "Crossfire" fails to capitalize on its strengths and instead focuses on worn out themes and retread territory, making it feel like an extremely generic take on a superhero show. Jimmy's motivations to become the Guardian are among some of the most cliched to plague an origin story, and the episode itself follows a strikingly predictable plot. And though the show touched on the issue of gun control, the social commentary in this episode was half-baked, making no real point about the issue. The writers have already demonstrated in the past that they can handle political themes like these without coming off as too biased, so why wasn't this particular issue played to its potential?

In the end, it's episodes like "Crossfire" that are partially to blame for superhero fatigue. It's just another generic entry into yet another show about yet another superhero. If the genre is to survive, it will do so by innovation - by introducing new types of stories using unconventional methods (the recent Marvel film, Doctor Strange, is a beautiful example of this). Supergirl seemed to be finding it's niche by incorporating so much social commentary and by spotlighting the extraterrestrial encounters that take place in the show. However, Supergirl has also demonstrated a knack for using certain cliches and tropes that diminish its attempt to stand out as something truly different. Hopefully, Supergirl continues to find itself over the course of the season, and is able to transform into something genuinely exceptional.    

Supergirl returns next Monday at 8 p.m. ET on the CW.
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