“Supergirl” Episode Review – S02E20 “City of Lost Children”

Superman Homepage reviewer T.A. Ewart (aka liheibao) reviews episodes from the “Supergirl” TV series, airing on The CW.

Check out his review of the 20th episode of Season 2 in which, when an alien attacks National City, Supergirl (Melissa Benoist) and the DEO learn the alien is a Phorian, an otherwise peaceful race with telekinetic powers. Guardian (Mehcad Brooks) gets a lead on the Phorian’s address but instead of finding the culprit, he finds a very scared boy named Marcus (guest star Lonnie Chavis). Marcus will only trust James so it is up to Guardian to stop the attacks on the city. Rhea’s (Teri Hatcher) plan escalates.

City of Lost ChildrenOriginally Aired: May 8, 2017
STORY BY: Robert Rovner
TELEPLAY BY: Gabriel Llanas and Anna Musky-Goldwyn
DIRECTED BY: Ben Bray

REGULAR CAST:
Melissa Benoist (Kara Danvers/Supergirl)
Chyler Leigh (Alex Danvers)
Mehcad Brooks (James Olsen)
David Harewood (Hank Henshaw/J’onn J’onzz)
Jeremy Jordan (Winslow “Winn” Schott)

RECURRING CAST:
Chris Wood (Mon-El)
Floriana Lima (Maggie Sawyer)

GUEST CAST:
Teri Hatcher (Rhea)
Katie McGrath (Lena Luthor)
Lonnie Chavis (Marcus)
Andrea Brooks (Eve Teschmacher)
Curtis Lum (Demos)

3Rating – 3 (out of 5): “Why, because I’m black?” – James “Jimmy” Olsen

“City of Lost Children” is one of the season’s best episodes, and it’s still weighed down by a tone deaf approach to the elephant in the room, Jimmy Olsen. Mehcad Brooks really gets to show his range in this installment, displaying a compassionate and fatherly touch to all of James’ scenes with Marcus, and even with Martian Manhunter. It’s been no secret that we’ve seen less and less of Jimmy, that even his role as Guardian couldn’t buy him the screen time Winn gets for having a girlfriend and being in the DEO, which is unfortunate. While character heavy, Supergirl has a cast which blends well together and has excellent chemistry, when that chemistry is allowed. Even the recent addition of Rhea (Teri Hatcher) slips in seamlessly with the players already amassed. Still, Hatcher is allowed to play her character, where Jimmy was stripped of his. It’s probably a good estimate that we lose Jimmy after this season, it was alluded to that he would return to Metropolis, and more than likely join the latest addition to The CW superhero slate, but at the very least viewers were given an episode to see that there was nothing wrong with the character, but the approach.

There is more than a little dislike for Jimmy on Supergirl, as he was set on a losing track. Rather than use an established character who was black, the show decided to race-switch and not only replace Jimmy Olsen on a show without Superman, but have a Jimmy Olsen that was unrecognizable from what had been established in his comic book adventures. Ignore Jimmy’s race for a moment, and wonder what the reception might have been if the character was the impetuous youth, looking to make his mark known from Superman comics. Instead we were given Jimmy as beefcake, and in a relationship with Supergirl. The resistance to the pairing was palpable, until any hope of it was dissolved like a sugar cube on the high tide. Did it all happen because Jimmy is black? When I saw tonight’s show and saw more black people than usual, and for Jimmy’s episode, the answer is obvious. Jimmy’s problems stem from a lurch at diversity, instead of a desire to make a great character, as was done with John Diggle on Arrow. Still, he did save the day, though I doubt he’ll do it again… on Supergirl.

Check out the “Supergirl – Episode Reviews” Contents page.

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RobertAnthony
Member
I am in agreement with the review, though good an episode this was. “Even the recent addition of Rhea (Teri Hatcher) slips in seamlessly with the players already amassed. Still, Hatcher is allowed to play her character, where Jimmy was stripped of his.” I am in concurrence with this as well. The Guardian did NOT make James better at all. Rhea is PURE FEMINIST EVIL. “Rather than use an established character who was black, the show decided to race-switch and not only replace Jimmy Olsen on a show without Superman, but have a Jimmy Olsen that was unrecognizable from what… Read more »
Steve Wright
Editor
On the other hand, now that Black Lightning has been given the go ahead, perhaps James can be used and used properly Why? Because it’s about a Black Superhero? Jimmy didn’t fail as a character because his skin color was changed, he failed because of how he was written. My problem is that it was Mehcad. He is HUGE!!! I didn’t have a problem with them changing his color like some. I just would have cast a more normal sized guy then one that is bigger then almost every actor in the CW universe as someone who is historically kind… Read more »