TV Review: Supergirl – Season 2, Episode 11 – “The Martian Chronicles”

Last Updated on October 5, 2021


SYNOPSIS: Armek arrives in National City intent on taking M’gann back to Mars to face her punishment as a traitor. Thinking she’ll be safe at the DEO, Hank and Supergirl are in for a startling surprise when shapeshifter Armek is in the building and under disguise.


When I’m watching an awkward film or television show with my wife, she does this funny thing that I like to call “The Three Pillow System”. Here’s how it works: For every awkward moment that occurs during the program, there’s a pillow reserved for holding, hugging, and hiding behind. As the awkwardness increases, so do the amount of pillows. On a scale of one to three, I’d say that tonight’s episode of SUPERGIRL was at least two pillows worth of awkward.

Why? Because sakes alive was Kara dripping with bumbling paranoia, self pity, and doubt, this episode. If there’s one thing that’s very consistent about Kara/Supergirl’s character, it’s that she bears the weight of the world on her shoulders at all times. It’s a burden that keeps Kara from healthily cutting loose, and hinders her from embracing her true feelings with the people she cares about most. Of all the things that Supergirl is amazing at, being honest with herself is not one of them.

My ambivalence about Kara’s ability to cope with her emotions aside, I thought tonight’s episode was decent, and really enjoyed the moments of close-quarters-disorder that came with the White Martians looking for M’Gann. Hold up though, I don’t want to go for the jugular of this episode just yet. Let’s talk for a moment about how matters of the heart are a big theme of SUPERGIRL Season 2, first. During the first half of the season, we spent a great deal of time watching Alex and Maggie grow into their relationship with one another, then the seed for Kara and Mon-El to become romantically entwined was sewn, and now, we have Hank professing his admiration for M’Gann.

In my estimation, this was a huge moment for Hank’s character. If you’ve been paying attention to The Martian Manhunter’s backstory, you already know that it was members of the White Martian race who were responsible for the death of his family. So, for him to not only forgive, but learn to love M’Gann, is a very big deal indeed. I had a sneaking suspicion that she would reject his advances, but also that M’Gann would not only do so with good reason, but would have the maturity to let him down easily. While I can definitely see the comfort in having comrades to join you in a fight for your life, I have to give respect to M’Gann for owning up to her past, and ultimately sacrificing her earthly station as a way of answering for her transgressions.

Okay, let’s dial things back a little and get to the heart of tonight’s events. The bulk of the episode takes place while the group is under lockdown in the DEO building. Why? Well it’s because a White Martian is on the loose and it’s decided to do a bit of shape-shifting a la John Carpenter’s THE THING. I thought the scenario and its claustrophobic setting played very well in creating a horror-like vibe throughout the ordeal, and I really enjoyed the moments of mystery surrounding the White Martian’s true identity. Once the martian (or martians as things would turn out) were revealed, things got even crazier as the hunt for the hostages was on and the consequences of M’Gann remaining on Earth were brought to light.

I think I’m in the mood for a bit of a shorter review this week, as I feel the main focus of tonight’s episode rests heavily upon the notion that “The Martian Chronicles” looks to be removing M’Gann from the program – at least for the foreseeable future. If I’m being honest, I’m a tad disheartened by this development. My concern stems not only from losing who I feel is a great character on the show, but for how M’Gann’s absence will ultimately affect Hank. In the time that he and Ms. Martian had been interacting with one another (for better or worse), that dude has grown by leaps and bounds, emotionally speaking. My fear is that while respecting M;Gann’s choice to return to her people, he’ll regress, and struggle to hold on to the progress he’s made while in her good company. Maybe I’m digging a bit too deep here, but isn’t a goal of this show to have its audience invested in the lives of its characters? Seriously, sometimes I feel like everyone on this show needs a hug.

All in all, I think SUPERGIRL is knocking it out of the park, this season. I really do wish that M’Gann was sticking around, but I can accept that her time and purpose on the show has come to a close. She’s allowed Hank to heal, and that’s no small contribution both to The Martian Manhunter’s heart as well his sense of judgement. And honestly, I think that if M’Gann had stuck around much longer perhaps a bit of her intensity would have begun to wear off. Maybe it’s best that she go out on a high note, before her character becomes too schlocky, you know?

Anyhow, I’m sure that by next week we’ll be getting back to the shady dealings of Cadmus, and I for one am looking forward to that. It’s been a successful mid-season return for SUPERGIRL, I’d say. We’ve had heated arguments, romance, and even a little bit of good old fashioned horror. That being said, I think it’s about time we find out what manner of destruction that Lena Luthor’s mother is really capable of. This should be fun.


STINGER: LUTHORS – Lena is arrested for helping break Metallo and Lillian Luthor out of prison. While the evidence seems stacked against her, Kara refuses to believe her friend is guilty and fights to clear Lena’s name. Meanwhile, Alex and Maggie celebrate Valentine’s Day.




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About the Author

Born and raised in New York, then immigrated to Canada, Steve Seigh has been a editor, columnist, and critic since 2012. He started with Ink & Pixel, a column celebrating the magic and evolution of animation, before launching the companion YouTube series Animation Movies Revisited. He's also the host of the Talking Comics Podcast, a personality-driven audio show focusing on comic books, film, music, and more. You'll rarely catch him without headphones on his head and pancakes on his breath.