In this episode of Supergirl, titled “Of Two Minds,” the third Worldlkiller, Pestilence, is finally revealed. Yet the headline news isn’t the arrival of a new character but rather the return of some old ones.
After their recent absences, Imra and Brainiac 5 (who mercifully figured out how to appear as a human) return to the show. The return of either character probably isn’t that exciting for most. While the two have promise, especially Brainy, Supergirl hasn’t done much with them. “Of Two Minds” is a step in the right direction, particularly for Imra, but it’s not nearly enough … yet.
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Sending the Pestilence and Plague
Supergirl picks up directly from the previous episode’s ending tease, with the pigeons dropping from the sky. Now it’s not just birds who are falling down but also people. Soon, all across the city people start becoming infected with a deadly disease. The first people to fall are those in city hall, which is important to the characters of Supergirl but literally no one else. Kara might be the only person who is invested in National City, and even then her concerns are even more worldwide.
Where Supergirl makes things interesting is by having Alex and Winn become infected. Supergirl obviously isn’t going to kill off either character — and not just because the Legion is working on a cure. Yet the show still manages to milk the desperation and fear that everyone feels for Alex and Winn when they fall ill, especially since no one can figure out how exactly people are being infected.
In a weird move, Supergirl does sort of brush over Alex’s sickness. Kara and J’onn are sad, but that’s about it. Really, though, it’s Winn (and James, of all people) who gets the spotlight. James doesn’t get sick, but he does visit a sick Winn. At Winn’s bedside, things gets very heavy, very quickly. Winn confesses to James that he does not want to die. Winn feels like he’s just started living his life, and his new friendships are the best things that ever happened to him. Jeremy Jordan acts his butt off (and so does Mehcad Brooks, for that matter).
The scene does come out of nowhere, but that doesn’t make it any less palpable. Winn and James have more chemistry with each other than they have had with any character of the opposite sex. Supergirl likely will never put them together romantically, but after this scene, we clearly need more of them all the time.
To Kill or Be Killed
The Winn and James scene, while great, is brief. The bulk of the episode is a moral showdown between Imra and Kara. The conflict is rather simple. Imra wants to locate Pestilence as soon as possible so she can kill her. Kara, being Kara, believes there’s another way and they shouldn’t resort to killing at all. Supergirl could take the easy route here and have Kara and Imra’s argument be couched in terms of the love triangle with Mon-El. While that annoyingly hangs over the heads of all the characters, the show does approach things in a mature way.
Imra (and Brainiac 5) is simply on one side of the conflict, with Kara (and Mon-El) on the other. Both characters do have their points; at least, it seems that way for most of the episode. Imra justifies killing Pestilence, as it will save many lives down the line. Kara, of course, wants to find another way. It’s the most interesting Imra has ever been, not just because she’s being reasonable but also because she’s having opinions and thoughts that are her own. It’s not related to Kara in any way or even to her marriage with Mon-El.
Unfortunately, as soon as the story gets going, it gets cut off at the metaphorical knees.
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Eventually, Kara and the gang learn the identity of Pestilence, and she’s a very bad piece of business. Pestilence’s human identity is Dr. Grace Parker, a surgeon who has been “helping” all the people who’ve fallen ill. Mon-El and Kara charge in and try to talk Grace off the edge and keep her from becoming her Worldkiller persona, like they attempted to do with Julia. Yet, unlike Julia, Grace doesn’t want to be changed. Grace enjoys her powers. She wants control over who lives and dies.
Supergirl is a little ambiguous on if Grace’s genocidal thoughts are completely of her own free will or if it’s Pestilence melding with Grace. Yet either way, it seems to prove Imra’s point — Pestilence doesn’t seem like someone who can be redeemed, and she needs to be neutralized. During the scuffle with Pestilence, Kara becomes infected and falls out of the battle.
This allows Imra to arrive and attempt to deliver the killing blow. She nearly manages it too. However, Purity shows up and annihilates everyone, allowing Pestilence to escape. The only good thing is that enough DNA is extracted from Pestilence to create a cure.
The two Worldkillers don’t stop there. They go to where Lena is keeping Sam. Joined together, the three Worldkillers become even stronger. Reign is broken out of her cell, as a horrified Lena and Team Supergirl watch, and the Worldkillers escape to, you know, kill the world. The image of the three villains is wonderfully effective. The Worldkillers are terrifying in the best way. This should make Imra double down on her “they must die” philosophy, but she doesn’t.
Imra tells Kara that she’s right. Death isn’t the answer, even though Kara admits that she might’ve made a mistake in trying to redeem Pestilence. Imra admits that she was being emotional because in the future, Pestilence kills her sister. She wants to do things Supergirl’s way from now on. This might be the right moral choice, but it would’ve more interesting to see a more ruthless “ends justify the means” Imra for a little bit. At the very least, we end up learning something new about Imra that has nothing to do with Mon-El — she has a dead sister. Hey, it’s a start.
What did you think of the episode? Did Imra have a point or was she just acting out of revenge? What did you make of Pestilence? Is Grace just as bad as Pestilence or is she as innocent as Sam and Julia? What do you think will be the first thing that the united Worldkillers do? Let us know your thoughts in the comments section below.
Supergirl season 3 airs Mondays at 8/7c on The CW. Want more news? Like our Supergirl Facebook page.
(Image courtesy of The CW)