"Event Horizon" – Supergirl S05E01 Review

And we're back with a new season of Supergirl. And... it's a lot like the old season. There are some changes: Supergirl (Melissa Benoist) gets a new costume with pants, a few new series stars are introduced. But so far, it gives us what season 4 gave us last year: social justice, a continuation of the Lena/Kara split, a subplot for John (David Harewood) that looks to become something bigger down the road, and James Olsen (Mehcad Brooks) still looking for a subplot to call his own.

So if you liked the last few seasons of Supergirl, there's nothing here that's going to change your mind. Ditto for if you disliked the past few seasons of Supergirl, in which case... why are you still watching it? Or reading a review of it?.

Katie McGrath, Supergirl S05E01

"Event Horizon" starts with playing catch-up on the last... month that has happened for the characters. Kelly is working for Obsidian North, a tech company run by Andrea Rojas (new series star Julie Gonzalo). Andrea also bought CatCo after making a deal with Lena Luthor (Katie McGrath). And as regular viewers should remember, Lena found out late last season that her best friend, Kara, is Supergirl.

On other fronts, Alex (Chyler Leigh) and Kelly Olsen (promoted-to-series-star Azie Tesfai) are an item. Querl (Jesse Rath) and Nia (Nicole Amber Maines) are sort of an item. Eve (promoted-to-series-star Andrea Brooks) only shows up in the closing tag when she gets abducted. William Day (Staz Nair), a snooty big-name reporter also shows up.

First, we get a scene where Supergirl stops a school bus from plowing into school children. Lena shows up and punches Supergirl into next Wednesday, and we find out it’s a virtual simulation. She has a virtual assistant, Hope, (voice of Kari Wahlgren) working for her, and the virtual simulation is created via a pair of Obsidian North contact lenses.

Melissa Benoist, David Harewood, Supergirl S05E01

Cut to Kara meeting with her friends at Noonan's, and the customers wandering around wearing the same contact lenses. There's a lot of awkward catch-up exposition: Kelly has a job with Obsidian, Kara is getting a Pulitzer, John is teaching tai chi. The upswing of the scene is that Kara is worried she hasn't told Lena her secret. Alex advises her to do it.

At a museum, a young girl checks out the Krypton exhibit, which includes Superman's pod that he traveled to Earth in. Rather confusingly, a T-Rex shows up and starts rampaging. Supergirl gets called in and is swatted aside, and J'onn arrives and hits it some kind of psychic force field. The "dinosaur" changes into the pod and flies off. Or rather the dinosaur is a shapeshifter, and the shapeshifter got into the pod and flew it off. So why go on a T-Rex-sized rampage in the first place?

The DEO figures out the pod's antimatter engine can be used to make a really big bomb. They track it down, and realize it's a trap. A new villainess, Midnight (Jennifer Cheon Garcia), emerges from the Phantom Zone, and John explains how he banished her there. She unleashes some cool-looking "energy voids", fights John, and flees when Supergirl tries to send her back to the Phantom Zone.

Melissa Benoist, Supergirl S05E01

During all of this Brainiac-5 (aka Querl Dox) and Nia are having trouble figuring out where their relationship is going. And Querl makes Supergirl a new miniaturized suit that appears when she takes off her glasses. At the Pulitzer party, Kara takes off her glasses (which should cause the suit to materialize, but doesn't) and reveals her identity to Lena. Midnight attacks the party and in a confusing sequence, John lures her into an auditorium... somewhere.

The rest of the gang show up, including Guardian, who I thought was no longer a thing, but oh well. Midnight creates a black hole, and there's a confusing sequence where Supergirl has to choose whether to use her "gravitational powers" to stop the black hole, or rescue John who has been sucked into the black hole. Supergirl does both, because she's Supergirl, and Midnight escapes.

Querl tells Nia that he is afraid to get close to her because he betrayed her last season. She tells him that she's okay with that and they kiss.

Katie McGrath, Supergirl S05E01

Lena is apparently okay with Kara having lied to her for a few years. However, at the end, she tells Hope now that she has Supergirl's trust, she can use that to complete her own world-altering, not-a-villain, honest goals. All while sounding like a villain.

The shapeshifter reveals himself to John as Malefic (Phil LaMarr), says that they're brothers, and says that John and his father are evil so he plans to get revenge. They fight briefly and another of those psychic force fields blasts John unconscious.

Eve is working at a diner, and someone tosses a bag over her head and abducts her.

What's going on CatCo? Andrea has decided to make the news conglomerate more "click-friendly". This involves having the aforementioned William rewrite Kara's stories, and telling everyone that it's either her way or the non-compete "You'll never work again" way. Also, Lena promises to give Andrea the scoop on Supergirl's secret identities, but then backtracks after Kara tells her that she's Supergirl.

Mehcad Brooks, Julie Gonzalo, Supergirl S05E01

James has a brother-sister chat with Kelly, and then tells Andrea that he's quitting because the news organization he built doesn't do news the click-worthy way. And he's off to have some great "adventure"... and look for something else to do on the show. Again.

Everything that we got in Supergirl in season 4 is apparent here. Kara goes on about social justice. We get Andrea as a news media type obsessed with ratings and clicks and it's apparently intended as some kind of real-world commentary. I've never bought Kara's reporter work as that believable, maybe it's that they go for tell, not show. Which, granted, is a problem with a lot of portrayals of reporters in comic books and TV shows. Aside from the occasional voiceover of Kara reading her pieces, have we ever actually seen her do a good news story?

Jesse Rath as Querl is funny as always. There's a running gag of Querl and Nia discussing the most famous movie villains, and the others chipping in occasionally. They make a cute couple.

Midnight and Malefic make decent villains. Whether they can support a full season between them, along with whatever Lena is planning and the Leviathan organization that is presumably involved with Eve's abduction, we'll see.

Overall, "Event Horizon" is a decent episode of a decent show. There's nothing particularly earth-shattering here. Like I said, if you liked season 4, season 5 doesn't promise to do anything different. I doubt that's going to change down the road: Supergirl has found its niche in the CWverse, and it doesn't appear to want to move out of its comfort zone. Maybe the creative team will surprise us. We'll see.

But that's just my opinion, I could be wrong. What do you think?

Written by Gislef on Oct 7, 2019

Comments

JuanArango posted 8 days ago

Also hoping the political agenda will not be that prominent this year. Supergirl has a new dress and a new haircut :)

gmpugs posted 10 days ago

For me, I guess I fall into the category of rather disliking the last season and a half category. I guess I keep watching, hoping that the writing won't go so far left leaning that it's really "ugh" worthy and part I've been watching so long that it's kinda habit. So far for the season premiere, it was alright. Kinda like last season for me, I'll see how I feel about continuing to watch the show when the crossover happens and then decide if I want to continue to tune in. And as for Lena, I'm hoping the writers don't turn her into a villain just because she's a Luthor.

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