Supergirl has been so solid this season that not even the return of one of my least favorite characters could derail it. Wake Up marked a pivotal point in the season with Mon-El’s return, the emergence of Reign and the debut of the Legion of Superheroes?
Let’s start with the easy one — the emergence of Reign. This episode seemed to drastically accelerate her subplot. First, we learn she was adopted and her mom wasn’t exactly Martha Kent as she kicked Sam out once she got knocked up. That was weird and largely unnecessary backstory for Sam that felt like a cheap way to get sympathy.
Sam whips up her own Fortress of Sanctuary, which seems like exactly the kind of thing the DEO should be able to detect, but won’t in this case. And Sam now seems very eager to become a hero like Supergirl. Too bad her advisor says she’s got a different path of becoming a war bringer. That’s going to make the next girl’s night very uncomfortable.
I was glad this episode actually addressed J’onn’s subplot with his father. The writers have almost forgotten about it and it’s one of the few subplots that needed some progressing since M’yrnn is now on Earth. This never needs to be the full plot for an episode, but it’s nice to see some development here. And I’m kinda curious of the potential Perfect Strangers vibe with J’onn and M’yrnn as roomies.
Those were solid elements of Wake Up, but the big moment was the return of Mon-El. After making Kara so weepy and distraught in his absence, I immediately got worried when he returned with a sweet beard. Fortunately, this wasn’t the standard happy reunion. Mon-El was focused on returning to the ship the DEO operatives found under the sea. I’ve been very impressed that the writers are taking the time to foreshadow events and pay off some old storylines. This was the same ship that was briefly shown when the submarine attacked the harbor.
It was a little frustrating that Mon-El was so mysterious in his reunion with the gang. I know the writers wanted to make the reveal of his wife, Irma Ardeen (Amy Jackson), a big revelation, but it was forced drama when a conversation would have sufficed. A simple, ‘hey, the seven months for you was seven years for me. I’ve moved on and joined this awesome team of heroes in the 31st Century and married one.’ Granted, that would have left Wake Up with 25 minutes to kill, but it would have made more sense.
This big reveal irritated me for a few reasons — none of which are of any importance to all but the most obnoxious Legion of Superheroes fan. First, just what is the deal with so many blonde comic book characters played by brunettes? At this point there’s only two blondes — Supergirl and Sara Lance — throughout the Arrowverse. Why is that even a thing?
The second is more important. Why is Mon-El married to Saturn Girl? This isn’t just because Lightning Lad is my favorite Legionnaire, but because this opens the door for silly romance drama. In the Legion, Irma is from Titan, a planet full of telepaths who can — you guessed it, read minds. Just imagine all the fun in store when Irma reads Mon-El’s mind and finds that he still loves Kara. For now at least, Kara and Mon-El are definitely on a break.
Also, was Blok in the chamber? And where the heck is Shadow Lass? Part of my concern for how Supergirl is treating the Legion is because that’s one property that CW could really make into a great show. And there’s no reason to get too funny with the continuity by mixing up some of the iconic pairings like Shadow Lass and Mon-El and Lighting Lad and Saturn Girl. Plus, I’m a huge fan of Braniac-5 and Supergirl.
While I’m a little cautious about the future of some of these developments, Wake Up did a solid job of setting the table for the post Crisis on Earth-X direction of the season. I’m curious and optimistic the quality continues in the second half of the year.
Rating: 8 out of 10
Photo Credit: The CW