Tuesday, May 11, 2021

REVIEW: 'Supergirl' - The Super Friends Finally Mount Their Rescue Mission of Supergirl From the Phantom Zone in 'Fear Knot'

The CW's Supergirl - Episode 6.07 "Fear Knot"

As the Super Friends brave the Phantom Zone to bring Supergirl home, each member of the team is confronted by visions of their worst fears.

In 2020, the television industry aired 493 scripted shows across numerous outlets. The way people consume content now is different than it used to be. It happens according to one's own schedule. As such, it's less necessary to provide ample coverage of each episode in any given season from a show. Moreover, it is simply impossible to watch everything. As such, this site provides shorter episodic reviews in order to cover as many shows as possible. With all of that being said, here are my thoughts on the next episode of The CW's Supergirl.

"Fear Knot" was written by J. Holtham & Elle Lipson and directed by David Harewood

This episode follows a basic structure of examining the fears of the main characters. It initially presents itself as the long-anticipated rescue mission of Kara from the Phantom Zone. And yes, it eventually does that. The Super Friends succeed in bringing their beloved friend back home. Zor-El is along for the ride as well and so is Nyzly. It's not shocking that those characters from the Phantom Zone weren't solely kept in that space. They will have character developments back on Earth as well. However, that will be a focus for the future. One where the audience should absolutely be concerned because of the havoc Nyzly can wreck with her magic. But again, that's just a tease. The bulk of this hour is spent on the fears of the Super Friends. In some instances, it's all about defining what those are in the first place. For example, Lena has done a great job of breaking free of the dynamic that has always defined and plagued her life. She was also seen as a member of the Luthor family. She could never escape that name and its legacy no matter what she did. She ultimately decided to walk away. She no longer had to concern herself with playing her brother's games. She could be better served elsewhere. She has been accepted by the team. However, the structure of this episode has to give her something new to fear after she already addressed this issue. And so, she is relegated to a story of drowning by a mythical monster simply because that's how her mother died when she was young. It certainly reminds the audience of her past. Her life wasn't always connected with the Luthor family. As such, she may have freedom to explore that side of her world once more. But it's not some long known issue that she now must confront in a serious way in order to save the person she idolizes more than anyone else. Kelly operates in a similar way. She is best defined through her relationship with Alex. It's a great and loving dynamic. They are seen more as a pair than as individuals. Alex has the benefit of long-standing dynamics on the show. Meanwhile, it's still exciting when Kelly gets paired with Brainy in a scene to discuss healthy emotional coping mechanisms. Of course, Brainy's big fear is essentially treated as the comic relief necessary during this dour and intense hour. That's a little jarring given his turmoil with his emotions lately. That has defined so much for him but the show only has so much time to devote to these fear-based journeys. It's more important to suggest Kelly feeling powerless when she is surrounded by these incredible heroes. However, she too steps forward and confronts these threats just like the rest of them. That too seems likely to set her on a new path. One that further opens up her world. Again, that's a suggestion of story for the future. That's how this episode functions. It is still an exciting piece of action where the Super Friends are willing to risk everything to save Kara. Even Supergirl herself has to be reminded of the power of being hopeful. She never lost her way in the Phantom Zone. At the very end, she feels defeated because she had to stop Nyzly. She sacrificed her happiness to save her world. Her father is capable of giving her the inspiring speech to pull her back to reality. That connection is real between them. Alex and J'onn argue over who has the best possibility of connecting to Kara in that way when they eventually find her again. However, none of the Super Friends have to leave the Tower on this mission. They simply have to send up Lena's flare that restores Kryptonian powers for a little bit. That energy is enough for Kara and Zor-El to fly onboard. J'onn and Alex saying they are willing to make this sacrifice pales in comparison to seeing them find the resolve to actually make it a reality. Sure, that occurs as well. It's just a more complicated depiction of that note. Similarly, Nia is once more plagued with doubts about her powers. That is a well-defined fear of hers. It has been a central component of her story for a long time. At this point, it is starting to get repetitive. It's essentially the same beat of her not trusting herself because her mother wasn't able to teach her. It's an effective note. It's also time for the conflict to evolve so that Nia can find some peace at the end of this journey. She is deserving of that. Right now though, it's simply a worthy celebration for Supergirl to be back on Earth. That's a major victory. It was never quite in doubt. No one had to compromise themselves too much in order to make it happen though. That's a relief.