Supergirl: Shelter from the Storm review S3 E18

I’d promised myself I wouldn’t get back onto reviewing Supergirl until I caught up on Agents of SHIELD and Gotham, but the last few weeks motivated me. Shelter from the Storm did a lot of damage to the title character, but like Smallville, Supergirl’s best character now is definitely a Luthor.

At some point this season, Supergirl has become one of my least favorite characters on her own show.  Braniac-5 and Mon-El continue to excel at being the most annoying by far, but the writers have done Supergirl dirty and none of it was truly necessary.

Kara used to be far more empathetic to people’s concerns. Ever since the Mon-El split, the writers have hardened her with little of the optimism and cheeriness from the Season 1 character. Despite insisting Kara is over him, the writers sure have made Mon-El influence her for the worst.

That showed up again when Kara immediately went on attack mode upon learning Lena had Kryptonite. Lena rightfully called Kara out for being so panicky about one thing when there were several dozens of ways Lena could get killed on a given day. The Flash writers do this to Barry a lot as well, but the hero really shouldn’t come off so decisively wrong this often.

supergirl shelter from the storm - supergirl and j'onn

Alex tried to get in on the crap on Lena moment by demanding where Ruby was being held. Lena had her securely in hiding far away from Reign. And it’d worked just fine so far. Kara and J’onn went to protect Sam’s mother, who was thrilled they came by so she could reveal Sam drew Reign logos on her wall. You’d think this would have been useful information to pass on to the DEO or FBI earlier?

Naturally, Reign comes through and impales her mother, who says she loves and forgives Sam. That was a powerful moment with just the right amount of emotion and tragedy. I’ve got tons of problems with this season, but Reign is not one of them. At this rate, I’d put her on the top tier of Arrowverse villains alongside Prometheus, Deathstroke, Reverse Flash and Season 1 Malcolm Merlyn.

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The most clueless moment all season was the Legion deciding their mission was accomplished once Purity and Pestilence killed each other. Somehow they managed to convince themselves that they didn’t see Reign absorbing all of their powers so they could return to the future.

Supergirl has become as bad as Arrow and The Flash about suiting up too many supporting characters. It undermines their purpose when they start off in these forced assistant roles only to become heroes too. Flash has somehow managed to validate Cisco and Caitlin’s powers, but Supergirl has an incredibly mixed message.

supergirl shelter from the storm - reign vs supergirl

Every episode, all the supporting characters spend so much time propping up Kara like she’s got this incredibly fragile ego when’s she’s freaking Supergirl! That’s the greatest problem with the show. She shouldn’t need superhero sidekicks unless things have gone terribly wrong. And in that pinch, Alex wearing Winn’s magic super suit shouldn’t be a game-changer.

That’s why it was so laughable that Braniac suggested that if any one of the three Legion members remained, Supergirl’s chances of defeating Reign would increase by 30%. Braniac has done less than nothing, Saturn Girl can throw rocks around and Mon-El has a nifty cape trick, but somehow they’re the difference in stopping Reign???

I wasn’t mad at Ruby for stealing Alex’s phone and trying to reach her mother. Lying is the default character trait of everyone in the Arrowverse and it’s about time that created some major consequences. Reign comes through after a Superman tribute gauntlet and nearly kills Alex until Supergirl and Mon-El arrive with their stunt capes. I cracked up when Alex said she couldn’t get a shot off like that was going to matter anyway. Mon-El proved his worth by crushing the Kryptonite and putting it in to the rail gun, which was good enough to knock Reign out.

Give it up to Supergirl for apologizing to Lena. The Kryptonite came in handy and Reign wouldn’t have been stopped without it.  And while we’re at it, let’s give Mon-El back his spine as he somehow dismissed his very important role in defeating Reign and deflected it to give Supergirl more praise. Dude, seriously go back to the future.

supergirl shelter from the storm - mon-el

Lena reunites with Kara, who’s been off doing something? Lena says she’s never going to trust Supergirl again because of how she tried to turn James against her. That’s something that Lena’s mother would do and was hardly the act of a friend.

The great irony of course is that Lena isn’t wrong. Supergirl put James in a terrible position and acted like a worse friend for demanding he betray his girlfriend. This isn’t the Jedi Council asking Anakin to spy on Palpatine, this is a friend asking a dude to spy on his woman. That’s how relationships work. The couple is down for each other and don’t hold silly secrets for the sake of advancing a plot.

Overall, the writers really put Kara/Supergirl in a crappy position here. She’s 100% in the wrong and she can’t possibly come at James or Lena with some high ground here. Other random notes, the J’onn scenes with his dad are tough to watch. Watching his father slowly lose his mind would have been more impactful if he was around for a season before, but it’s still emotional.

Shelter from the Storm was an odd entry this season as it fully justified Lena as being right all along. There was some strong action scenes and surprisingly smart character decisions. Now let’s see what happens next week with Reign.

Rating: 8.5 out of 10

Photo Credit: The CW

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