In Review: Supergirl, Episode 50 “Triggers”

The direction, story, and villain aren't great. This show is 0 for 2 in being super this season.

Supergirl, Episode 50 “Triggers” Broadcast on October 16, 2017

Written by Gabriel Llanas & Anna Musky-Goldwyn

Directed by David McWhirter

Previously on Supergirl: Kara sends Mon-El away, Lena Luther buys Catco to prevent Morgan Edge from buying it, and Samantha Arias suddenly exhibits super strength to lift a heavy piece of debris off her daughter Ruby.

Now: Maggie and Alex wake up, Samantha and Ruby wake up, while Kara wakes up by herself. All of their morning routines are shown, with Kara’s being rather sad. Lifting her bed to search for something, Kara discovers Mon-El’s copy of Romeo and Juliet. She finds a line he underlined, “The brightness of her cheek would shame those stars,” along with some annotations that cause her to become flustered and toss the book to the floor, which winds up in the same spot under her bed. Cue opening title card sequence.

There’s no joy in this episode, like last week’s season premiere. The lack of joy and optimism in these two episodes is crippling this series. Kara continues to sulk from the loss of Mon-El, which should be justifiable since he was her first love, but the way she’s coping is snuffing out all that’s good about this show. Yes, she should be dealing with it, but not to the point where viewers are screaming at their televisions for her to move on.

Lena decides to move into Catco full time, rubbing Jimmy the wrong way. Ms. Luther wants to talk to BFF Kara, who blows her off constantly due to calls from the DEO to stop Psi, a metahuman telepath robbing banks. Meanwhile, Ruby thinks mom Samantha has super powers and is doing all she can to get her to use them.

There’s a lot of conflict and consternation in this episode and when some opportunities arrive for something being uplifting it comes off as hollow. Lena gives Kara a long overdue take down and it feels incredibly overdue. One wishes Cher would arrive on the scene to slap Supergirl and tell her to “Snap out of it!” The scene where Supergirl reveals her fear to Winn is out of left field, as is “Kryptonian meditation.” When the heroine overcomes her fears the moment is so quick it lessens the reveal of the pain from earlier.

Psi, portrayed by Yael Grobglas, is not written well. There’s no reason given for her crimes, so she’s just a thief with powers; justification for her actions would have given some meat to her character. Instead, her lines are cliché, especially with her first encounter with Supergirl, as is her slow gait to and from a crime scene. And shouldn’t her head have been splattered open in that final encounter? Maggie and Alex are focused on their wedding, causing a stir at the DEO. This is so different from the professionalism of both characters from the previous seasons it hurts them as strong characters. The highlight of the episode is Katie McGrath’s Lena Luthor who commands every scene she’s in. Samantha and Ruby’s scenes are designed to build up mom, but there were flat out boring. Based on her reasoning skills, Ruby should be dead before the end of the month.

When Psi’s attacks are shown from Kara’s point of view, the direction delves into the style of the original Evil Dead movie. Those camera angles and reactions from Melissa Benoist are just awful. The elevator scene is unintentionally humorous.

Redemption comes with a teaser for J’onn J’onzz in next week’s episode. That was the high point of the episode.

The final line: The direction, story, and villain aren’t great. I didn’t think an episode could be as cringe worthy as the Season 3 premiere, and then I saw “Triggers.” This show is 0 for 2 in being super. Overall grade: D+

 

Patrick Hayes was a contributor to the Comic Buyer’s Guide for several years with “It’s Bound to Happen!” and he’s reviewed comics for TrekWeb and TrekCore. He’s taught 8th graders English for 20 years and has taught high school English for five years and counting. He reads everything as often as he can, when not grading papers or looking up Star Trek, Star Wars, or Indiana Jones items online.

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