Tuesday, December 11, 2018

REVIEW: 'Supergirl' - Kara, Barry and Oliver are Willing to Make Major Sacrifices to Save the World in 'Elseworlds, Part 3'

The CW's Supergirl - Episode 4.09 "Elseworlds, Part 3"

Supergirl, The Flash, Green Arrow and Superman engage in the battle of their lives.

In 2018, it has become very difficult to keep up with every television show out there. It's even more difficult to provide adequate coverage on this site about the episodes that air every week. Not every show can get full coverage because of my busy and hectic viewing schedule. As such, some reviews will now be condensed to give only some summary thoughts. But it also affords a space for me to jot down my thoughts on the various episodes. And so, here are my thoughts on this week's episode of The CW's Supergirl.

"Elseworlds, Part 3" was directed by Jesse Warn with story by Marc Guggenheim and teleplay by Derek Simon & Robert Rovner

The "Elseworlds" three-show crossover comes to its conclusion here. The second part ended with reality once again being rewritten with Barry and Oliver losing their powers and being targeted as petty criminals. They were also being hunted by a new, evil version of Superman. Here, it immediately becomes clear that this version of Superman is actually Dr. John Deegan. However, this is also an episode of Supergirl and there wasn't an immediate presentation of how Supergirl and her friends factor into all of this. Sure, Superman is a major component of the story here. Lois Lane is given more to do since her brief introduction in The Flash episode of the crossover. However, those two characters are just guest stars for Supergirl. As such, the creative teams have to find a way to bring the heart of Kara and Alex's dynamic into this story even though it's happening on a completely different Earth. And yet, the scenes that they share together continue to be the strongest element of the episode. It doesn't matter that this version of Alex has had no interactions with Kara even prior to reality being rewritten. However, there appears to be core aspects of the character that transcend the multiverse. That's something that the audience just has to accept. Even though this Alex has no way to see through the charade and understand that Kara is her sister, it still means something when Kara reaches out to her humanity and can reveal so much about who she is as person. The two worlds that comprise most of the characters in this crossover only have slight differences between them. That has already been made clear in previous encounters. In fact, the only difference is that Barry and Oliver's Earth hasn't been visited by aliens who have made their presence known. Of course, they accept that aliens are out there and can have incredible abilities. They just happen to be friends with Kara and Clark who come from a different universe. That's the reason why they aren't effected by the changes to reality. Deegan can't see their lives in this universe. As such, he has to imprison and mimic them because he sees them as the most heroic individuals in this world. He's not wrong to have that understanding either. The Supers really do stand for everything that a hero should be. The story also suggests that Barry's heart also makes him the hero necessary for whatever threat is coming that the Monitor is so worried about. That's a little more difficult to believe. Again, it's all because of the creative choices that have been done with that character over on The Flash. But it still produces a ton of memorable action throughout this concluding hour. It's a battle that eventually brings J'onn and Brainy into the fight as well. Even Lois Lane gets to wield a magical hammer at one point. That means she becomes more than just the damsel in distress who needs to be rescued by Superman. Of course, that beat still happens. And yet, she functions with the confidence that Clark will always be there to catch her. It's actually nice to see how mature they are as a couple already. Even though this is their first time being seen in this universe, it's still rewarding to learn that they are getting engaged and expecting a baby. That just means that Superman will be away on Argo City for quite awhile leaving Kara to defend the planet by herself. But again, that's a task she is more than willing to handle even if she is no longer working for the DEO. All of this also proves that these heroes are such an effective team who will stand strong against whatever threat to the multiverse is coming.

That's what makes it so intriguing when the creative team offers a tease of what's to come in next year's crossover. They are making that announcement now even though none of these shows have actually been renewed for another season. They are also confirming that Batwoman will still be involved in this ongoing story. Of course, it seems inevitable that The CW will order additional seasons of all of these shows involved in the crossover this year. Legends of Tomorrow and Black Lightning are the only shows sitting things out for now. It's still amusing to see Gary pop up as a bartender who idolizes Barry and Oliver as criminals though. Perhaps this threat to the entire multiverse will be the moment that introduces the characters of Black Lightning into this extended world as well. Anything is possible at this moment in time. It means that the creative team is already seeing the pickup of a Batwoman series as a lock too. It would be lackluster if she only made appearances during these large-scale crossovers. Of course, she was strong and capable in the Arrow portion of the story. It's clear that the larger threat will come from Gotham as well. That's intriguing. So much of this story in these three episodes came from the Monitor acting as a god and trying to plot out reality. He was capable of so much but said that he paled in comparison to the threat that was coming. That inferred that it was another creature like himself that would try to destroy the multiverse. But now, it seems like that threat will be festering inside Arkham Asylum with Deegan teaming up with his cellmate. He got this taste of power which left him permanently scared and locked up in an asylum. And yet, that may be the perfect place for him to be in order to continue his experiments which are bound to have lethal consequences.