Take, for example, James Olsen. Over the course of tonight’s installment, we saw Mehcad Brooks’ character pushed to the limit and forced in some ways to do something that he never wanted to do — take, for example, side with the Children of Liberty. After going through such extreme measures in order to speak with Agent Liberty he was played and set up to make a public declaration that he was on their side. If James didn’t do that, someone would have died and he can’t stand having any blood on his hands.
Luckily, it just so happened that Kara was encroaching on the same territory as him, mostly because of her work with Manchester Black. Yet, he ended up betraying her after the two arrived at the location, announcing that he struck a deal in order to ensure that he could meet Agent Liberty and get his revenge. Unfortunately for him, it just so turned out that Agent Liberty was an imposter; fortunately for Kara, he reversed course and that is the reason why she was able to escape her temporary prison.
So is Manchester Black a hero? Hardly. In the aftermath of his actions tonight J’onn J’onnz confronted him and made it clear that he wouldn’t tolerate him becoming a clearer. Yet, Manchester is making it clear that he is already there. He showed him some of what he’s done already, including some of the violence and the pain that he has endured. J’onn now is forced to carry his pain and suffering along with him. (That performance from David Harewood in the closing seconds? All sorts of outstanding.)
The story of Adam and “Dr. K”
One thing we wonder with Lena going by Dr. K in her conversations with her ne experimental patient Adam — was the nickname a This Is Us reference? Regardless, we do have to praise the series for giving us what is easily one of Katie McGrath’s best performances, something that was both emotional and also incredibly raw. Lena eventually used Adam almost as therapy, telling him about how she watched her biological mother drown when she was four years old and didn’t do anything to stop it. Because of that, she felt like she probably belonged with the Luthor family way more than she ever wanted to previously admit.
After getting to know Adam, Lena at first didn’t want to go forward with the experiment. Yet, he convinced her that she is a good person and the risks here are worth it … even if she didn’t want to admit to it at first. Unfortunately, Adam did end up dying mere minutes after showing off some superhuman qualities — he was everything Lena wanted, but unfortunately, her research just wasn’t where it needed to be just yet. She struggled with losing Adam and, at least for a night, she decided to be alone rather than spending time with James.
If only every episode of Supergirl gave us an opportunity to explore the Lena character like this, wouldn’t the series be in a much stronger place?
Tonight, we learned that Manchester Black is very much following the beat of his own drummer and beyond that, Lena Luthor has even more demons than we ever even realized. This was one of the best episodes of the year, mostly because it did put the focus more on relationships and emotional decisions than powers or anything else.
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