Since Supergirl‘s return from winter break, season 3 has been on a hot streak of episodes. The deep dive into the Reign storyline has invigorated Supergirl like never before, giving some very tense and action-packed installment. Now that streak is coming to an end — or at least hitting the pause button.
This episode, titled “Both Sides Now,” is the last before a nine-week break for Supergirl, where Legends of Tomorrow will take over its timeslot. It is rather annoying that Supergirl is stopping just as the momentum is ramping up. Thankfully, “Both Sides Now” does do its job of leaving the audience wanting more and giving just enough to make the wait manageable.
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Nurture vs. Torture
Following directly on the heels of the previous episode, Team Supergirl invades the home of the second Worldkiller, Julia Freeman. This is in a literal sense too because when Kara, Mon-El and the full might of the DEO show up, Julia is the only one home, in a figurative and literal sense. It’s only after she’s threatened by Alex, who believes it’s all an act, that the Worldkiller Purity emerges. Luckily, the team has just enough warning to throw Purity into cuffs and into a DEO jail.
While Kara is convinced that there is a human behind Purity’s powers, Alex is unconvinced. In Alex’s mind, Julia is a lie that Purity maintains. Meanwhile, Kara (having the truth of it) thinks that Purity is a being that takes over Julia’s body. This is a great little character dynamic and argument for Supergirl to explore, even if it is a teeny bit forced. (Alex has been the one telling Kara to be more compassionate all season, only to be exasperated that she’s actually following through on it.)
Thankfully, the first episode before the big break isn’t all Kara and Alex debating morality (though that wouldn’t be the worst thing). Purity manages to be the exact same type of terrifying as Reign. This not only makes her fun to watch but also persuades Kara that Alex is right. Purity is a monster to be destroyed, and that impression is only enforced when Purity, of course, escapes her DEO prison to wreak havoc in National City.
Martian Moonshine Marriage Counseling
Before Supergirl can get into all that delicious alien-on-alien mayhem, they take a time-out to talk about Mon-El’s marriage with Imra. This, on paper, is probably most Supergirl fans’ worst nightmare, but the show finds a great way to make it work for Mon-El fans and non-fans alike. While trying to repair the Legion’s ship with Mon-El, J’onn witnesses a martial spat between Mon-El and Imra. This prompts J’onn to sit down with Mon-El and have a heart-to-heart with him over some Martian moonshine. Martian moonshine and Manhunter make everything infinitely better.
The scene is a reminder of how great J’onn is as a shoulder to cry upon and that Supergirl should’ve had this chat far, far sooner. Mon-El opens up that Imra and he first got married due to an arrangement to prevent a planetary war. While Mon-El grew to love her, it’s a lot different from the feelings he had and continues to have for Kara.
It’s a very transparent attempt to re-open the possibility of Kara and Mon-El getting back together, which is perhaps not the greatest idea. Regardless, it’s nice to have any insight into what is going on with Mon-El. There’s a happy medium between Supergirl spending all its time on Mon-El, like season 2, and spending none of it, like season 3.
Most important, though, the heart-to-heart inspires Mon-El to have a real discussion with Imra, another necessity of season 3. It’s during this talk that she reveals there’s a secret meaning behind the Legion’s arrival in this Earth and time. (The exact answer will be revealed, but it’s wise to put all the odds on it having to do with the Worldkillers.)
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However, whatever the Legion is planning, it’ll be a long time untill fans find out. So to kill time, Supergirl offers up another highlight of season 3, which is a big brawl between the team and a Worldkiller. All hands are on deck to go after Purity, and Supergirl hits just the right balance of CGI spectacle and tense intimate action, as they have done all season.
At one point in the battle, Purity manages to grab Kara by the neck. Purity informs Kara that she was right about her. Purity’s going to bring Julia out to watch her kill Kara. Alex, witnessing this, finally realizes she’s in the wrong and makes an impassioned plea to Julia to fight against Purity. It’s cheesy and completely cliche, but Chyler Leigh can do no wrong on Supergirl, so it doesn’t matter. The speech, no matter how trite, works because Julia manages to fight against the bonds of Purity.
Unfortunately, Reign shows up just at that moment. Reign proceeds to hold Alex hostage in exchange for Purity’s cooperation. In order to save Alex’s life, Julia agrees to go with Reign. Another Worldkiller has joined the ranks, but “Both Sides Now” isn’t entirely about the bad guys winning.
Lena discovers the news of Sam’s latest blackout when Regin takes over to scoop up Purity. Getting her information from Ruby, Lena seems to put the coincidences of Sam’s blackouts and Reign’s appearances in their proper place.
It all comes together when Lena talks to Sam and her eyes flash red, a la Reign. Lena calmly tells Sam that she knows what is wrong with her and she’ll fix her. This sounds great, but Supergirl has also made the audience believe that Lena can’t figure out that Kara and Supergirl are the same person, so who knows what she thinks she’s figured about Sam?
Do you think it’s obvious? Has the “mystery” of Sam’s blackouts been solved? What do you think the Legion is really planning? When we will meet the third Worldkiller? Will we ever meet them? Let us know your thoughts in the comments section below.
Supergirl season 3 returns Monday, April 16 at 8/7c on The CW. Want more news? Like our Supergirl Facebook page.
(Image courtesy of The CW)