Supergirl was bit hit or miss when it first began. While the series was enjoyable from the start, it took a while to decide what type of show it wanted to be and what it had to add to the superhero landscape. As the first half of Supergirl‘s first season reached its end, though, the series got more and more confident. The streak of quality continues as Supergirl returns for its winter premiere, “Blood Bonds.” In fact, if “Blood Bonds” is anything to go on, Supergirl fans have a lot to look forward to in the new year.
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The Terrible Kryptonians
The fight at Lord Technologies concludes as Kara and Non beat the poop out of each other as only two Kryptonians can. Non holds Kara by the throat and J’onn (I’m straight-up refusing to call him Hank) shows up with a gun. Remember that awesome moment from the winter finale when J’onn revealed himself to be an alien and trounced one of Non’s troops? The exact opposite of that awesomeness happens here, with Non taking J’onn hostage and the latter doing a whole lot of nothing to stop it.
Kara goes to the imprisoned Astra looking for some kind of hint or help as to where Non has taken J’onn. Astra does her typical thing of flaring her nostrils, talking disparagingly about humanity and insisting that she cares about Kara.
There is also a flashback showing how Astra and Non were first banished to the prison in the Phantom Zone by Alura. I still don’t care; Astra is still the worst.
Trouble at CatCo
Going from the worst to the best, Kara goes to work, her day job. Kara sees Cat for the first time since Cat accused Kara of being Supergirl. Kara tries to lie about the whole situation. The whole thing is stupid and not just because Kara is a terrible liar. There’s really no reason to not tell Cat at this point. These scenes still include Cat in her scenery-chewing glory, though, so it’s forgivable.
In other news, James and Winn have a scene together, a scene that is not entirely about Kara and/or their respective feelings for her. Instead, James gets Winn to agree to help him look into Lord by some good old fashioned breaking and entering.
It ends miserably, however. James is quickly found and captured by Lord. Lord punches James a bit, threatens him and smashes his camera. Lord tells James to not look into him again or it will end much worse. He’s talking about murder, but for some reason, heavily implying murder is much more sinister than actually threatening it.
Kara’s Life Begins to Crumple
Back at the DEO, Non contacts Kara and Alex. Non proposes a trade. He’ll give them J’onn if he gets Astra. Before there’s any real time to absorb this offer, General Lane shows up. You can almost hear the collective groan of the audience.
Lane has been sent by the government to take over the DEO because they want someone less close to the hostage situation handling it. Naturally, Lane’s method of “handling it” is to hardcore torture Astra. He has this really indulgent speech beforehand justifying his actions, but the less said about that the better. He really just tortures her. No one, especially Kara, is happy about this development. I will admit, though, it’s a pretty shocking and emotionally effective scene for Supergirl.
The next day, Cat calls Kara into a meeting. Cat tells Kara that she has realized something. Kara’s CatCo job is much less important than her job as Supergirl. Cat won’t be responsible for Kara not saving people. So Cat tells Kara that if she can’t prove that she’s not Supergirl, Cat will fire her.
Kara then proceeds to prove Cat’s point when she runs out of the office after getting a call from Alex. Astra has apparently told Lane where J’onn is being held. The DEO is going to raid the location. Kara doesn’t believe that Astra would give up that easily. Kara is totally right too. It’s a trap. Kara’s presence at the raid is the only thing that saves everyone from being blown to hell by a bomb that Non has planted. General Lane is not only an awful, xenophobic person; he’s also incredibly incompetent.
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Kara Does the Impossible
Though Kara saves everyone from a literal bomb, a metaphorical one goes off in her life. Kara goes back into CatCo and tells Cat how much the job and Cat’s mentorship means to her. Kara has no choice, though, with the ultimatum; she quits. Cat has no reaction, but even this is kind of perfect.
Kara sulks and goes to James’ office. When Kara sees James’ injuries from Lord, she loses her mind. Kara is outraged at all that she has lost recently, and James being beaten up by Lord is the final straw. She wants to attack Lord right then and there, but Winn and James calm her down. The blow-up convinces Kara to go talk to Astra once again.
Kara walks into Astra’s chamber and this is when something really amazing happens: Astra becomes an actual human being. This scene doesn’t solve all the Astra problems, but it’s a good step in the right direction. Kara and Astra really begin to connect. Astra even tells Kara that Alura always believed in Astra. Alura just doesn’t believe in Astra’s methods. It was actually Astra’s belief that Krypton was dying that caused Alura to send Kara away and save her life.
Kara, like her mother, also believes that there is good still left in Astra. Kara decides to go through with the prisoner transfer. She chooses to have faith in her aunt and Non. It’s a trust that is quickly betrayed by Non.
When the prisoner transfer is complete, Non gathers all his troops and orders them to attack. Alex whispers to J’onn that he has to transform to protect them. I say ‘whisper,’ but she talks pretty loudly and Kara is supposed to be the one in the family who is bad at secrets. Anyway, Astra steps in and stops the attack. She commands everyone to stand down, and the two groups leave in peace (for now).
A New Plan for the Future
Once they are alone, Kara confronts Alex about the whole ‘her telling J’onn to transform’ thing. J’onn comes clean about his true name and Martian status. Kara is shocked but gets over it pretty quickly. Kara even uses it to her advantage. Kara uses J’onn’s shapeshifting to have him pose as Supergirl in front of Cat. J’onn, as Supergirl, and Kara stage a conversation for Cat to see them. This convinces Cat that Supergirl and Kara are two different people. Kat’s job at CatCo is safe.
Now that that is cleared up, Kara decides to commit to finding out what is going with Lord. On cue, Lord is shown at Lord Technologies. He goes into some room that couldn’t be creepier where an unconscious girl lies on a bed. Lord tells the girl that he is here to help. The girl’s eyes snap open, but they’re pitch black.
Supergirl airs Mondays at 8pm on CBS.
(Image courtesy of CBS)