TV Review: Supergirl - Season 1 Episode 18 "Worlds Finest"
EPISODE 18: "Worlds Finest"
SYNOPSIS: After Barry Allen mistakenly finds his way to National City, he teams up with Supergirl to defeat the villainous duo of Silver Banshee and Livewire.
It finally happened. Barry Allen made a splash...errrrr... flash... in the SUPERGIRL/FLASH crossover event and it was just as entertaining and adorable as I expected! Tonight's episode was easily the best crossover we have seen yet in the DC Universe, mostly because the tone of both shows perfectly meld together to create a fun, light-hearted experience. As opposed to the dark and brooding atmosphere of ARROW, both Kara and Barry have similar personalities and when the two characters come together, their chemistry is off the charts. It should also be mentioned that while ARROW has been struggling to keep my attention over the past couple of seasons, both THE FLASH and SUPERGIRL continue to be at the top of their game; it's no surprise that the end product is unstoppable. And you better believe I got teary-eyed when I heard THE FLASH theme play during the episode. It always comes in at the perfect moment
Grant Gustin is one of those actors that can have chemistry with a potted plant. He fully embodies his character, and elevates every scene he is in. So when you mix his Barry Allen with the equally adorable and talented Melissa Benoist/Kara Danvers (who also starred opposite him on GLEE), it truly makes magic. I only wish he could star in every single episode of SUPERGIRL. Maybe we can find an Earth 2 Grant Gustin to be National City's Barry Allen? I'll work on it.
Tonight's episode picks up from where we left off last week. After Siobhan's screams cushioned her fall from a tall building, she goes to the DEO for testing. However, doctors can't figure out what's wrong with her. Siobhan herself starts to get worried about her new powers when she begins having painful visions of herself screaming as Silver Banshee. These visions encourage her to once again go to CatCo to seek revenge on Kara. She uses her scream to throw Kara out of the skyscraper's window, causing her to plummet to the ground below. Barry Allen arrives just in time to catch her and jettisons her to the countryside, unaware that she is actually Supergirl and probably didn't need the saving.
As it turns out, in his quest to get faster and faster to battle Zoom, Barry accidentally ran to another Earth in the multiverse. Apparently CBS is one Earth, and the CW is another - very clever. Kara tells Barry her real identity and informs him she has no idea who The Flash, the Green Arrow, etc. are, nor does she know Caitlin or Cisco. Unfortunately, even with that new piece of hardware on his chest, Barry can't build up the speed necessary to get back to his Earth so he is stuck. But as Barry comes to find out, there are worse things than being stuck on another Earth... the first of which being that he is now known as "The Blur".
After hurling Kara out of the window, Siobhan goes to see her Aunt to find out what is wrong with her. She discovers that many years ago, the women in her family were cursed, which is activated whenever they are wronged. As part of the curse, Siobhan has to kill the object of her anger, or else it will destroy her soul. But in order to kill Kara, Siobhan realizes she needs to take out Cat Grant and Supergirl as well. So she frees Livewire from her cell at the DEO and the two set out to cause major destruction.
Barry agrees to help Kara defeat Livewire and the Siobhan (now the Silver Banshee) in exchange for her helping him get home. But unfortunately, their first run-in with the villainous duo doesn't go as expected. Barry is used to devising a plan to defeat his enemy, but without Alex and Henshaw around for guidance, Kara rushes into the fight, fists blazing. Livewire is able to absorb Barry's blasts of power and Silver Banshee's screams are damaging to Kara's super hearing, so she and Barry are forced to retreat.
One of the main issues Kara has been dealing with since her run-in with red Kryptonite is that the people of National City don't trust Supergirl any more. Even after numerous good deeds, including rescues and the unthinkable... helping a family put together furniture from IKEA, Supergirl still can't catch a break. I really appreciate that the writers have continued this storyline over the last couple of episodes, as it realistically shows the ramifications of a superhero gone rogue. It is going to take time to gain back the trust Supergirl once took for granted. With a little reassurance from Cat and Barry, Kara finally starts to realize she doesn't need to rush to prove herself. She just needs to keep doing good work and the people of National City will eventually come around.
Luckily for Kara, this change in public perception comes sooner rather than later after she and Barry have another (public) showdown with Livewire and Silver Banshee, who are using Cat Grant as bait. Tonight truly was a crossover episode in that Barry used lessons learned from past villains he faced to defeat the two villains. To combat Silver Banshee's screams, for example, he utilizes the same technology (sonic ear plugs) that he used against the Pied Piper ("The Sound and the Fury"). Now Banshee's screams don't affect our heroes and the fight is more equal.
But Livewire doesn't fight fair. When she sees a news helicopter flying over the scene of the big fight, she tries to take it down with her electric powers. As we saw in SUPERGIRL episode 4 ("Livewire"), Livewire isn't a fan of helicopters since the one she was sitting in was struck by lightning, which passed through Supergirl into her and created her current form (pun not intended). But Kara throws herself in front of the electric pulse to save the helicopter. This sacrifice proves her dedication to the people of National City, endearing her to them once again. So much so, that when Supergirl is on the ground recovering from the electric shock, the people of National City gather around to protect her from Livewire's additional blows.
That brings me to my one gripe of the night. The bad girls in tonight's episode were strong... until they weren't. How do you have such interesting villains defeated by... a water hose? I get it, the writers wanted to show National City rallying around Supergirl and coming to HER aid in HER time of need. But seriously? Livewire and Silver Banshee gave Barry and Kara quite a good fight, only to be defeated by a fire hose. Seems like the writers could have thought of something a little more worthy of bringing about their defeat. And then Barry apparently went to National City and convinced the officials to make a jail to house metahumans? Weird. At least Cat once again proved she can sniff out secret identities, telling Kara she knows Barry is The Flash/The Blur. This HAS to mean she knows Kara is Supergirl, right?
The B plot for the episode was Kara again trying to make things work with James, whose relationship is hard to root for after Kara and Barry had such amazing chemistry. Although I ship Barry and Kara, I know competing shows mean their relationship will never work, so James it is. Cat tells Kara to make a power move, making herself look unavailable and in turn James will be jealous. She uses advice from her self-help book, "The Lighthouse Technique", which tells Kara to shine her light and make James come to her. This plan works perfectly, especially now that Barry is in the picture. James pouts the entire episode and even gets a kick in the butt from Lucy, who gives him permission to finally go after Kara. After Kara helps Barry build speed to get back to his Earth, she meets up with James and the two finally kiss. But of course, nothing is easy and at that same moment Non turns on the Myriad device, which induces James and everyone else in National City into a trance-like state. Bet Kara wishes Barry didn't leave so early.
With only two episodes of SUPERGIRL left, and the Myriad device powered on, it seems we still have a lot yet to come. Barry filled the gap left from Alex and Henshaw's departure, but I imagine news of a zombie army in National City will quickly bring them back with Jeremiah Danvers in tow.
What did everyone else think of the crossover episode? Were you as entertained as I was? How do you think this stacked up against THE FLASH/ARROW crossovers?