Previously on Supergirl, we got to meet James Olsen’s lovely sister Kelly, and also Kasnian Kara, plus J’onn broke his pact to be a peaceful man by killing Manchester, and Lena found out not only is her brother the piece of shit we all knew him to be but her trusty assistant Eve Tessmacher has been double-crossing her all this time.
We ended the last episode with Eve tying a chloroformed Lena to a chair in her office and leaving a note. We open this episode with Alex storming into Lena’s office and finding her still unconscious and reading the letter that I guess was just a villain monologue in paper form.
Lena starts to come to and Alex takes her vitals and tries to keep her calm.
Lena tries to explain what happened, already on the defensive, but Alex read the letter, Alex knows this was all Lex and Lena had nothing to do with it. Alex knows Lena is good. Lena eventually gets out this heavy, broken, “I’m sorry” and Alex replies with a firm, “You have nothing to apologize for.” Eve made her choices. Lena couldn’t have known.
Supergirl and J’onn are trying to find Lex when J’onn tries to use his powers and ends up glitching out and falling from the sky. Supergirl saves him, but J’onn takes himself out of this particular fight so he can figure out who he is. He spends the whole episode talking to a vision of his dad and in the end he decides to bury the Martian secrets somewhere safe but it’ll be a solo adventure to get there, so at the end of the episode he leaves.
Kelly Olsen goes to see her brother in the hospital and is surprised to see him dressed and on his way out.
She tries to talk him into resting a while longer but he swears he’s fine…but then a dropped tray shakes him up a little. Kelly, being a psychologist who is trained in trauma, really wants him to take it easy. But James just wants to get back to work and feel useful again.
Speaking of being useful, Supergirl has brought donuts to the DEO.
She wants to team up with the DEO to find Lex because he had superpowers last time she fought them, but Col. Haley says that they’ve been rerouted to DC to cover the press conference where they announce the decision about the Alien Amnesty Act in case there’s rioting. But Alex suggests that she go with Supergirl, and Col. Haley, much to everyone’s surprise, agrees.
Alex fills Supergirl in on the Eve betrayal, and since Supergirl and Lena don’t have the best history of getting along (and since Alex doesn’t remember Supergirl is Kara and doesn’t know to be like “and Kara is her best friend so we’ll leverage that), Alex decides to go talk to Lena alone.
Supergirl gives Alex a watch that she can summon her with and Alex heads off. Before she leaves herself, Supergirl also gives Brainy back his ring, for which he is extremely grateful. (Oh she also gives us a reason why precious perfect Nia isn’t in this episode: She’s off in the fortress of solitude trying to dream up a solution to this Lex problem.)
Lena is in the hospital, looking more glamorous than anyone has ever looked in a hospital, and is watching the news call her a victim over and over again until she decides she can’t take it.
She puts on just another royal purple outfit as a personal attack to me and goes to see her mother in prison. Lillian is looking as holier-than-thou as ever and Lena demands to know where Lex is.
Lillian lets it slip to Lena that Eve is in love with Lex, hence the betrayal, but also is trying to hurt Lena, saying Lex outsmarted her. Lena tells her that she’s not alone, and Lillian scoffs at the idea. She says sure Lena has friends now, but what will they say when they find out she was helping Lex find this cure? Sure, she was developing this cure to save everyone, but she accepted help from Lex with the promise to cure him, too.
Lillian, doing what she does best, speaks right to Lena’s biggest fears. Tells her that soon her friends will hate her, soon she’ll be alone, deserted.
Lena leaves her mother and finds the opposite kind of human waiting for her in her office: Alex Danvers. Lena’s defensive at first, again, but Alex quickly reassures her she isn’t here to accuse Lena of anything. She’s here to ask Lena for her help. Which is all Lena ever wanted, to be trusted.
So Lena apologizes for jumping to conclusions and talks to Alex about how Eve is probably the weak link in Lex’s wall of evil. Alex knows Lena is her best source of info for Eve, and Lena is in, but Alex tells her in full disclosure that she’s working with Supergirl on this. But Lena knows how important stopping Lex is, and she can can put aside her feelings about Supergirl to work as a team.
So work as a team they do. Alex, Lena, and Supergirl go to the suburbs to talk to a relative of Eve’s. Together. The three of them.
They originally went there to find Eve’s Aunt Mary, but instead they find Eve’s cousin, Bitsie, who has twins and gosh just hasn’t seen Eve in ages.
Lena asks if Bitsie was ever sick because Lena remembers Eve mentioning a cousin with cancer who also had two kids, and she says no; Lena thinks she’s lying and Supergirl confirms her heartbeat is too fast to be telling the truth. Though to be fair, my heart would be racing if those three were in my eyeline, too.
They don’t have to wait long to find out though because Bitsie unthinkingly grabs a pan from the oven without mitts, so they know Eve used Lena’s serum on her. Bitsie starts to panic but Lena and Alex watch, impressed, as Supergirl talks Bitsie down and convinces her that they just want to save Eve from Lex’s clutches.
So Bitsie finally tells them about Eve’s secret lab at National City University, home of The Sweatshirt.
Meanwhile, Eve and Kasnian Kara are sneaking around a basement somewhere in cute little hats and Eve tells Kasnian Kara the plan in slow, loud words even though she’s talked to her before in a perfectly normal voice. She gives Kasnian Kara an outfit to change into and before she goes she pauses for a moment to revel in how much she really does look like Kara Danvers.
Kelly Olsen goes to visit her brother at work and comes bearing referrals for psychologists who specialize in trauma. Not donuts, but definitely better for you. James is still feeling stubborn about not needing help, because this isn’t the first time he’s been attacked, and besides it wasn’t even Lex that attacked him this time, it was Manchester Black, and he’s dead now. Kelly is concerned because she can tell he’s suffering and she knows there’s plenty she can’t tell. James snaps at her and says she only ever comes to visit him when he’s weak and she can boss him around and that maybe she should just go home.
Across town at Eve’s secret lab, The Triad snoops around and eventually Supergirl finds a safe to bust open. When she gets in, she finds a stash of Harun-El. Horrified, she spins on her heels to face Lena in horror.
Lena tries to explain that she didn’t lie, she gave Supergirl’s mother all the Harun-El she had, she just…made more. Lena is furious that Supergirl just automatically turned on her and assumed ill intent, and points to this as a reason she doesn’t usually like working with Supergirl. Alex steps in and takes Lena’s side, and reminds Supergirl that Lena saved Argo, rescued Sam, and saved James’ life using this Harun-El; she’s doing good with it, just like she said she was.
Supergirl lets out a breath and says, “You’re right,” surprising Lena and Alex to the point that Lena literally says, “Excuse me?” in response.
Supergirl explains that she feels the weight of the world on her shoulders, and especially with her cousin gone, the idea of her enemies getting stronger and the world being harder to defend stresses her out. And when she’s stressed, she does tend to jump to the worst case scenario. She apologizes to Lena, genuinely. Lena, who earlier this very day did a similar kind of conclusion-jumping with Alex, understands and appreciates Supergirl’s honesty and apology.
Supergirl, Alex, and Lena all agree to let bygones be bygones, and their conversation was so earnest and mature and everything I ever wanted from this show.
So three of the most beautiful women on any planet work together and find blueprints to Lillian’s prison, the gun most likely used to shoot James, and some research on Eve’s computer about making more Metallos.
As if on cue, one busts through the wall, spewing kryptonite at Supergirl. Supergirl fends him off with her heat vision while Lena and Alex work together to make a grenade of science and badassery, and easily take him down. Together.
They bring the Metallo heart to Brainy, who confirms the gun was the one used to shoot James. They also realize Lex and Lockwood are probably connected, so Kara goes off to talk to James while Lena goes off to talk to her mother again. Before they part ways, Supergirl promises Lena they’ll find Eve.
When Kara goes to see James at Catco, she tells him about finding the gun, and he is shook by this news. He was working really hard on the “my attacker is already dead” denial and the fact that his attacker is now on the loose and is, indeed, his sworn enemy, things are different. Things are scarier. Their conversation is interrupted by the news that the Alien Amnesty Act was repealed. While they’re watching the screen, Kara notices Eve’s image inducer flicker and knows she has to get to Washington DC ASAP.
And then Lena does something brave: attempted murder in a prison. And by that I mean she attempted to murder all queer women in one go by wearing a fucking pinstripe vest and red lipstick with her hair all down and slicked back.
A fucking vest!!! How dare.
Anyway, in reality what she does is show her mother the blueprints she found with Lillian’s name scrawled in red. Lena knows Lillian is one of Lex’s targets, and she also knows that this means Lillian knows something Lex doesn’t want getting out. So Lena stares her mother down and tells Lillian to make her choice.
When Lillian doesn’t answer, Lena makes as if she’s going to leave her to think on it a while, but Lillian knows she has to make her move now. Lena smirks to herself, triumphant.
At the White House, even Ben Lockwood is confused about the level of manipulation going on, and isn’t sure he can celebrate the repeal of the Alien Amnesty Act even though it’s what he wanted; he’s not sure this was a win the way he wanted.
Outside the White House, Supergirl finds a too-protected car and thinks she outsmarted Eve Tessmacher, but evil and in love as she may be, she’s still learned a lot from Luthors and is extremely dangerous. The car is a trap and soon Supergirl finds herself in a kryptonite-laced supersuit that pins her to a wall.
While the real Supergirl is incapacitated, Kasnian Kara suits up and flies in. (To ease confusion, Kasnian Kara will be called NeSupergirl henceforth.) As NeSupergirl wreaks havoc, everyone starts shooting at her, despite them thinking it’s Supergirl and Supergirl being notoriously bulletproof. Since NeSupergirl is also bulletproof, she just keeps laser-beaming everyone with her eyes.
The sounds of the gunshots cause James to have a PTSD-related panic attack.
Supergirl eventually breaks out of her suit, but the damage is already done; NeSupergirl has already taken down countless people and set the roof of the White House on fire.
And a testament to Melissa’s acting, they’re both dressed the same now, but even if I only watched this last moment, I wouldn’t be confused. NeSupergirl has a darkness to her smile, less light in her eyes. Like her smile doesn’t reach her eyes at all. It’s subtle but impressive.
This is the first time Kara is learning there’s another her. We got a whole season of her, but Kara had no idea she had a doppelganger running around on this Earth with her. And she’s out here tarnishing her already-on-thin-ice reputation. My nightmares often share a theme of me trying to convince everyone of a truth and no one is listening to me or believing me or taking me seriously. This would be the kind of nightmare I had, “I know it looked like me and acted like me but I swear that wasn’t me.” Unable to prove it really but knowing the truth absolutely.
So I can imagine the crushing feeling inside Kara’s chest as she watches the President go on the news and say that this was Supergirl lashing out because of the repeal of the Alien Amnesty Act. That she has lashed out, and that she is now considered Public Enemy Number One.
Alex is watching the President’s address from the DEO and she doesn’t buy it.
Today alone Alex watched Supergirl gently soothe a panicked woman and get her to help them, admit she was wrong and apologize to Lena, and risk her life to fight a kryptonite-spewing baddie in the name of teamwork. She might not know Supergirl is her sister, but she knows Supergirl is good.
Even Col. Haley agrees.
Across town, James finds his sister and admits he was wrong and she was right and he needs help. He looks so scared and sad and he asks his sister to stay, and she says that of course she will.
It’s very sweet and I’m very glad and proud that he went for help in the course of this one episode instead of ignoring it for weeks and making it worse for himself.
Back home in her loft and unsure of who to even turn to at this point, Kara puts her hair in a ponytail Sandy Olsson would envy and calls J’onn. But J’onn has already taken off on his journey to find himself, so he doesn’t answer.
Kara gets the alert that means Alex pressed her Supergirl call button and flies off, and she finds Alex and Lena waiting for her. She trudges in and asks if they’re going to try to arrest her, but Alex and Lena immediately tell her that they know she didn’t do this. That she WOULDN’T do this. Supergirl breathes a sweet little sigh of relief and Lena assures her that they’re going to figure out what the hell is going on – together.
TOGETHER. THIS IS ALL I’VE EVER WANTED. Kara, Alex, and Lena working together (even if right now Alex and Lena supposedly don’t know Kara is Supergirl) is all I’ve ever wanted from this show. It’s why I fell in love with the show in the first place – strong, smart women working together and trusting each other. Alex and Lena both had outs. Alex doesn’t know Supergirl is Kara so right now she has no emotional or social obligation to her, and the DEO in fact doesn’t want her helping Supergirl at all. Lena’s whole life just got turned upside down when she found out her closest coworker was helping her evil brother, and she ALSO (supposedly) doesn’t know Supergirl is Kara and barely likes Supergirl at all, so SHE has every excuse to sit this one out. But Supergirl has earned enough trust by now. And Lena knows what it’s like to be accused of being something you’re not. So they’re willing to risk their jobs and their lives in the name of what’s true and what’s right. And they know that they’re stronger together.