Midseason Report Card: Is ‘Supergirl’ season 2 with Melissa Benoist flying high?

Last week, we saw the end of the road for the first half of “Supergirl” season 2, and it ended in about as grand of fashion as humanly possible: With a battle involving Cyborg Superman, and also the beginning of the crossover event.

Now, we’re sure that there are going to be some out there who are disappointed in how there wasn’t really much of a crossover in the winter finale, but it seems unfair to dock the show as a result of something that was a part of large-scale planning. For the sake of this article, we want to focus a little bit more on the show’s individual successes and failures — and there were quite a few of them to report.

What worked – Let’s start with the fantastic performances from the two leads. While Melissa Benoist and Chyler Leigh were both great when the show was on CBS, at the same time we do think that we’ve seen them take the next step this time. Kara’s handling her responsibilities as a hero and a normal person better, and the romantic subplot with Mon-El feels a little more natural than it did with James last season. For Leigh, she’s injected so much heart and humanity into the Alex – Maggie romance, which is such a contrast from the person we see kicking butt and taking names while out in the field.

Also, kudos to the show for casting Chris Wood — who’s been a lot of fun as Mon-El, and for bringing in a character in Lena Luthor who’s proved already to be very entertaining. Given that we don’t quite know where her allegiances lie all of the time, there’s some great ambiguity here that you don’t often get with anyone else. Also, kudos to David Harewood for taking on two different roles, and really doing it effectively. He’s so warm and welcoming as J’onn, and so cold and terrible as the real-life Hank.

What didn’t – Unfortunately, we only had Cyborg Superman for two episodes, which was a shame given that he was easily the best part of the entire second season from a villain standpoint. Elsewhere, it’s still very much clear that there is a lot of work to be done when it comes to crafting interesting villains: Project CADMUS right now comes across more or less as a creepy cult without a lot of interesting characters, other than Lillian Luthor — and it took a little bit of time for that twist to come to life.

Also, we do think that the show has a little bit of work to do when it comes to including Winn beyond just him assisting people out in the field from afar. While the Guardian storyline was a nice start, at the same exact time we know that Jeremy Jordan is amazing and capable of so much more.

Overall – We do think that “Supergirl” brought a lot to the table in the first part of season 2, and it’s much-improved over the show that we got during the first go-around. There’s still more work to be done, but we look forward to seeing what Kara and her adventures hold week in and week out. Grade: B.

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