TV Review: Supergirl - Season 1 Episode 10 "Childish Things"
EPISODE 10: "Childish Things"
SYNOPSIS: When "Toyman" breaks out of prison, it stirs up some major trouble for his son, Winn. Meanwhile Alex (with the help of J'onn J'onzz) works to bring down Maxwell Lord. And Lucy Lane further encroaches on Kara's territory when she gets a job at CatCo.
After a random week off, we are back with a new SUPERGIRL episode, and thankfully this is one of the better episodes of the entire season. There were big revelations, including Lord finding out Supergirl and Alex are sisters, as well as an interesting villain, who may not have been too scary, but caused a major shakeup in the character dynamics of the show. Hopefully, SUPERGIRL will build off of the strength of this episode and not walk back the drama (:ahem: like they did during the last episode when Cat stopped believing Kara was Supergirl).
In tonight's episode, we were shown the benefits of a team-up (Alex and Henshaw aka J'onn J'onzz aka Martian Manhunter vs Maxwell Lord) and the sadness that comes from an estrangement (Winn and his father). Even though Astra might be out of the picture (for now) this new familial villain has really shaken things up, and not just physically.
"Like father, like son." While this phrase usually is meant as a compliment, to Winn this is the worst thing you could possibly say. Ever since his toy-maker father was arrested for sending a bomb to his former boss, which ended up killing five other employees (that weren't the boss), Winn has worried that he will succumb to the same mental illness that overtook his father. Before the bombing, his father was a nice, meek man; then, all of a sudden, he was a mass murderer. Growing up, Winn was always told how much he was like his father. Will he snap one day too?
This fear is escalated after Winn's father breaks out of Van Kull Maximum Security Prison using a deadly... yo-yo. Anyone care to tell me how he got the parts for that? Anyway, in order to bring him back into custody, the FBI sends Agent Chase (played by BUFFY THE VAMPIRE SLAYER's Emma Caulfield) to interview Winn. Earlier that day, Winn received a mysterious toy in the mail, showing father wants to reconnect with son. Chase tries to use this as a way to recapture Toyman. She sets Winn up with a wire and has him meet his father at a derelict arcade. But Toyman saw this coming and wasn't there in the flesh (it was a sort of glass representation instead). When the feds close in, they realize their error just as poison gas is expelled into the room. Thankfully, Kara was on-hand and uses her super lungs to inhale all of the toxic fumes and exhale them away from the FBI agents.
Even though his father is dangerous, Winn doesn't want the FBI to kill him. So he and Kara decide to go after him themselves. After all, Kara can relate to her friend's problem since she also has a dangerous family member who she didn't want to see killed. Not to mention, Winn has done so much for her since becoming Supergirl, it's time she does something to help him.
This episode had some really cool new super power techniques that Kara used for problem solving; both involved her freeze breath. The first occurs when Kara attempts to bring Toyman back to jail. Following Winn's intel about his father's location, Kara shows up at a toy-filled warehouse. But soon, she is in over her head (literally) when she is caught in quick sand. The harder she fights, the deeper she sinks. However, using her freeze breath, Kara is able to freeze the sand and punch her way through, escaping from imminent death.
Following that dangerous episode, Winn is no longer worried about his dad making it out alive. He just wants Kara to be safe, and in an emotional scene, tells her so with a kiss. Unfortunately, Kara rebuffs his advances and a devastated Winn leaves her apartment. But as soon as he steps into the hallway, his father abducts him. Quickly it becomes clear that Toyman is even more sinister than originally thought. In order to be with his son forever, he makes Winn participate in a terrible scheme. Toyman has placed bombs at a Toy Convention in the city. In order for Winn to save the attendees, he has to shoot the keynote speaker, Toyman's former boss. Then, father and son will either escape the facility together, die together, or be imprisoned together.
Winn is faced with an incredibly difficult decision. And just as he is about to pull the trigger to kill the keynote speaker, the FBI rushes in. They try to shoot Winn, but Kara (as Supergirl) flies in and shields him with her body. At that second, Toyman starts the timer on the bombs. Knowing she won't have enough time to disarm them, Kara has the crowd gather on one side of the room and uses her heat vision to set off the water sprinklers. Then, using her freeze breath, she flash freezes the water, which creates an ice barrier between the people and the explosion. Pretty sure this wouldn't have protected people very well, potentially causing lots of shrapnel to fly through the air. But regardless, it was a pretty creative idea.
The effect Toyman had on SUPERGIRL wasn't in the danger he created, but how he affected the dynamic between Winn and Kara. Since Winn is scared that bottling his emotions will create an explosion (literally) just like his father, he tells Kara he will no longer hide his emotions from her. He loves her, and is going to embrace the fact that they kissed instead of acting like it didn't happen. This is obviously going to have a huge impact on the show, and will potentially (read: hopefully) make Kara see the great guy that is in front of her instead of pining for someone she can't have.
While all the drama with Toyman is happening, Alex and Henshaw have their own mission. That is, to break into Lord Technologies and figure out what Lord is hiding behind door number 52. Alex distracts Lord with a dinner date, taking him away from the office in order for Henshaw to break in. At first, Henshaw doesn't want to go full J'onn J'onzz and shapeshift his way into the facility. He is scared transforming too much is a big risk. J'onzz tried to live as himself at one point and it didn't go well. And since the DEO needs their fearless leader Henshaw, it may be better for him to stay as he is.
However, Kara wants him to be able to live his life in the open and embrace his powers. And with Alex's insistence, he realizes that his powers are needed for the betterment of the mission. Transforming is the only way he can break into Lord Technologies undetected, so he has to make the tough decision. Taking the form of Lord, Henshaw infiltrates the facility and uses his power to go through Room 52's door. Inside, he finds Jane Doe, who we were introduced to last week. Apparently her blood is made of hydrochloric acid, which sounds like another ALIEN we know. But when he tries to move the girl to a hospital, a guard comes in and stops him. Henshaw is forced to use his memory erasing power, leaving the guard clueless about what happened that night (and about his entire life in general). This is exactly what he was trying to avoid.
Nevertheless, Henshaw gets pictures of the facility (and Jane Doe) back to DEO headquarters for analysis. But not so fast. Lord doesn't get tricked that easily. In the most interesting scene of the night, it's revealed that Alex is underestimating her buddy Maxwell Lord. During their date, he placed a bug on her bag, which records video and sends it back to him. In the last shot of the episode, we see that he is able to tap into Alex and Kara's girls' night. Since Kara was still in her Supergirl uniform, he knows Alex and the superhero are sisters, which is going to have serious consequences in the future. Way to go, Alex!
Poor Kara, Lucy Lane just can't stop encroaching on her territory - first James, now CatCo. Cat decides to offer Lois' younger sister a job as General Counsel at CatCo. After all, she wants Lucy's time in National City to be meaningful; moving there for a man is one thing, but Cat wants to make sure she doesn't lose her self-identity and self-worth in the process. At first, Lucy isn't sure she wants to take the job, especially after James doesn't seem too thrilled about it. But eventually she decides this is the best career move for her and, since she will be on another floor, it shouldn't affect her relationship... especially now that she can convince Cat to let James do more on-the-ground work with his camera again.
Blah blah blah. This B (more like C) storyline is starting to really grate my nerves. The show doesn't really give us a reason to care about Lucy and James. In fact, it seems to just work solely as a way to fill time and remind us that James exists instead of contribute anything meaningful to the show. I was hoping the powers that be at DC would learn their lesson from the boring storyline between Iris and Eddie on THE FLASH. Guess not.
If previews for the next episode and teases about Bizarro Supergirl are any indication, things are going to continue getting good in the SUPERGIRL universe. What other villains would you like to see make their mark in National City?