It certainly wasn’t a great week for superhero TV. What did you think? There’s spoilers afoot, so if you haven’t watched them, don’t read on.
Supergirl – Season 1, Episode 18– “World’s Finest”
This might have been one of my favorite episodes of the season, for the pure fun of it. It wasn’t particularly well written or full of suspense. The bad girls were meh, but it was really just fun. In typical Barry Allen fashion, he is doing his dimensional travel thing and misses the mark, ending up on the Earth where Supergirl lives. It is not at all the same universe he normally inhabits. That was a sticking point for me. I am sure that they did that because it was a cross network crossover event, and they wanted to insert a reason it didn’t happen more often. Also, Grant Gustin is not the Barry Allen of the Superman universe, Ezra Miller is. So, they needed an excuse. That part fell flat. But the rest was just cute. Melissa Benoist got to play the adorable Supergirl from the first few episodes when she was still excited about going public as Supergirl. And Cat Grant got to be Cat Grant. One of the best lines in the show was when she went all Deadpool and said, “Seeing you all standing there doing nothing you look like the attractive, racially diverse, non-intimidating cast of a CW Show”. It wasn’t great, but it was fun, and clearly Benoist and Gustin have great chemistry from their time together on Glee.
Gotham – Season 2, Episode 16 – “Prisoners”
Jim Gordon is in jail, and apparently he’s been there awhile as we see the days and nights pass with Jim laying in his bunk. The warden shows up and with a dig about “his friend, the former police commissioner”, who Jim brought down, they move Gordon out of protective custody and into general population. This goes exactly as you would expect it would. He meets a new friend, Puck, who I have no idea why he was there. He was a toss away character that was only there to tell Jim that he was a hero and to say “I’m not going to die in here,” which is precisely what he does. Very predictable episode. We do see Harvey Bullock tossing himself on the mercy of someone, begging for help on Jim’s behalf. It was filmed well, so it isn’t until the end that we see who it is. I thought maybe it was Butch, or even the return of Fish Mooney, but instead it turns out to be the return of Don Falcone, who helps break Jim out of jail. Yet another moment where Jim has to give up his integrity to a bad guy. Is he truly a hero? That seems to be one of the themes in Gotham City overall, no matter which incarnation you are watching. Even the good guys are bad. No true heroes. (See Batman v Superman) I thought this episode wasn’t one of the best this season. Certainly, nowhere near there the quality and suspense of the previous week.
The Flash – Season 2, Episode 17 – “Flash Back”
Barry is more determined than ever to learn to run faster and go fight Zoom. I imagine we’ll see that showdown soon as we are only a few episodes away from the end of the season. So, he decides he needs help, and the only one who can help him is Harrison Wells, but not Harrison Wells, Harrison Wells, but Eobard Thawne, Harrison Wells. So, despite the protestations of his genius friends, Barry does his time travel thing and goes back in time to a place before he brings down Eobard and pretends to be his old self. Of course, Eobard, also a genius, figures it out and captures future Barry, partially because he figures it out, and partially because old Barry shows up. Luckily, (is it luck) a time wraith shows up and they all have to work together and Eobard has to let future Barry go to draw the time wraith away. When future Barry gets back to the future (hey that’s kind of catchy) everything is all good, no changes to the timeline, right? Duh…of course there is a change to the timeline. All pretty predictable, not the best episode of the season. The one thing I will give it, we get to see Tom Cavanaugh’s acting chops. He plays two completely different Harrison Wells in the same episode.
Agents of SHIELD, Season 3, Episode 14 – “Watchdogs”
Was this episode Marvel’s way of tying AoS to the MCU or to the actual real universe, as an armed group called The Watchdogs troll the internet and look for aliens/Inhumans. They are, of course, radicalized by someone smarter than them, in this case, former Agent of SHIELD, Felix Blake, reprised by Titus Welliver (I’ll be reviewing Welliver’s second season of Bosch on Amazon Prime soon) One of the main themes to come out of this episode is the idea that SHIELD, or specifically, Daisy, is using her powers to coerce info out of a bad guy. Trampling of civil liberties, anyone? Seems to be a theme lately. BvS. is all about that. (Have I mentioned how mortified I am that Batman brands people?) In Supergirl, the theme has come up multiple times, most notably when the DEO is holding Maxwell Lord in a secret location without due process. Now here. Interesting that this theme materialized this year. One another note, the episode sort of centers around Mack, who is trying to take a few days off and re-energize, after Bobbi and Hunter had been disavowed. We get to meet his brother, who is completely disenfranchised in life, and ripe for joining The Watchdogs. We get to learn some of Mack’s backstory, and we get to see Mack’s cover blown with his brother. Nice to get a bigger glimpse at who the big guy is. As for the Watchdogs…..cool uniforms, dudes.
Arrow – Season 4, Episode 17 – “Beacon of Hope”
The episode after Felicity says, “I’m already gone” and leaves Oliver and Team Arrow. I wasn’t sure how it was going to play, and they did a nice job of it. There is one touching little moment between Laurel and Ollie and I was all like….uh-oh. It was one of the better episodes of the week, I thought, but primarily because of the several stories going on at the same time. The return of the Bug-Eyed Bandit, who actually starred in one of the early episodes of The Flash. It was a cross-over episode that had Felicity help Team Flash beat her, by hacking her little mechanical bees. The interesting part of the episode was that Team Arrow inadvertently finds their Felicity replacement in her assistant, Curtis, who stumbles into the Arrow Cave. An admittedly dumb plot moment. Even Quentin Lance says something about it. I kind of dig the little mechanical bees thing though. We also see Damien Darhk taking over the as head of the prisoners in jail and who he aligns himself with. That was kind of a surprise ending. Overall, I thought it was a pretty good episode that got me looking forward to what’s next.
Legends of Tomorrow – Season 1, Episode 8 “Night of the Hawk” and Episode 9 “Left Behind”
Somehow, I missed an episode here, but it really is two episodes tied together, so a joint review is OK, right? The first episode finds the team dropping in a small town in 1958 where they find Vandal Savage posing as a small town doctor doing experiments on human beings with material from a meteorite he found. He is trying to create an army of hawk people. When Kendra and Ray pose as a married couple, Savage and his wife show up with tuna casserole. An amusing bit, to be sure. Lots happens, and we see plenty of diversity themes as Kendra and Ray pose in an interracial marriage and Jefferson is a black kid with a white girl, while Sara is sexually attracted to a female coworker. All of those themes are addressed full on, although it seems a bit preachy jamming them all into one episode. At the end of the episode, Savage is on the run and they are all getting ready to leave when Chronos shows up and hijacks the wave runner, leaving Sara, Ray and Kendra behind….in 1958.
The beginning of episode 9, “Left Behind” shows the three realizing they are trapped and coming to grips with the idea that they need to start a new life. Ray and Kendra, together, and Sara leaving the two of them to find a place she belongs, which appropriately turns out to be with Ra’s al Ghul and the League of Assassins. When the team finally gets the time ship working again and shows up, the three have been trapped in the late 1950’s for two years, and Ray is getting ready to propose to Kendra, thinking that they are never leaving. They gather up and go to Nanda Parbat, and are immediately captured by Ra’s and the League after Sara gives them up. This is actually the better of the two episodes. Matt Noble reprises his role as Ra’s al Ghul, and they get to use the really cool Nanda Parbat set again. We get an interesting turn of events as Chronos reveals a secret and then when he shows up at Nanda Parbat to kill the Legends team, the League and the team work together to bring him down. Ra’s al Ghul hears the team’s story and releases Sara to continue her mission with the team. We even get to see a young Talia al Ghul. Fun.
Kind of a slow week, I guess. Gotham and The Flash are taking the week off.
Week of 4/3 – 4/10
Monday 8pm – CBS – Supergirl “Myriad”
Kara must devise a way to free her friends when Non and Indigo employ mind control to turn all of National City’s citizens into their own army.
Tuesday 9pm – ABC – Agents of SHIELD “Paradise Lost”
SHIELD tries to learn more about a dangerous new enemy and a secret from Malick’s past surfaces and threatens his Hydra legacy.
Wednesday 8pm – CW – Arrow “Eleven Fifty-Nine”
Oliver and Diggle learn that Merlyn plans to break Darhk out of prison. Meanwhile, Laurel gets a surprising offer; and Felicity has a heart-to-heart talk with Curtis.
Thursday 8 pm – CW – DC’s Legends of Tomorrow “Progeny”
Rip tells the team they are headed to the future to take out a powerful ally that Savage needs to conquer the world. But when they learn the target is a 14 year-old boy who will one day become an evil dictator, the team is split about the morality of killing a child, even if it does save the world. Meanwhile, Sara talks Snart through a rough patch; and Ray learns something that could impact his future with Kendra.
Watching any of the above shows? What are your thoughts on where they are going, or where they came from? Got any really cool predictions as we are in the season wind downs? Let me know in the comments below. I like comments. I need validation. I was that way as a kid too. “Maaaaa. I mowed the lawn without being askeddddd.” So, feed my inferiority complex, will ya.