Superman on Television

Supergirl: Episode Reviews

Season 1 - Episode 16: "Falling"

Reviewed by: T.A. Ewart (aka liheibao)

Season 1, Episode 16 'Falling' Originally Aired: March 14, 2016
WRITTEN BY: Robert Rovner & Jessica Queller

Melissa Benoist (Kara Danvers/Supergirl)
Calista Flockhart (Cat Grant)
Chyler Leigh (Alex Danvers)
Mehcad Brooks (James Olsen)
David Harewood (Hank Henshaw)
Jeremy Jordan (Winslow "Winn" Schott)

Jenna Dewan-Tatum (Lucy Lane)
Peter Facinelli (Maxwell Lord)
Italia Ricci (Siobhan Smythe)
Briana Venskus (Agent Vasquez)
Tawny Cypress (Senator Miranda Crane)

Aisha Tyler (Herself)
Julie Chen (Herself)
Sara Gilbert (Herself)
Sharon Osbourne (Herself)
Sheryl Underwood (Herself)
Kitana Turnbull (Costumed Girl)
Kylierae Condon (Mean Girl)
Dan Warner (Fire Captain)

5Rating - 5 (out of 5): "Good girl goes bad" is a television trope that just had to happen on Supergirl. However, "Falling" not only made excellent use of what can be a hackneyed premise, the aforesaid use produced a superb episode; one that was singular to..., and the dynamics that have been presented. "Falling" also allows for Melissa Benoist to display her range and for other barely there characters to step up... if only for the nonce. The assumption that people like Kara do not have bad thoughts or even evil ones is the foisting of transference from those who lack what those superlative people have: control. The ability to act internally and allow thoughts to be just that, and not permit emotions to sway one towards a path that is a rush in reward, but roughshod in its repercussion. Many have had the virulent thought to do the unspeakable, unthinkable, and withheld, but was it out of fear for punishment, or the ethical core that reminds us what is right and what's wrong, is the question. Supergirl is set on the latter course, but a chance meeting with synthetic Kryptonite, Red Kryptonite, pushes her hard to the former and the result is both comical and unethical, only to return to a status quo that is anything but that. Nothing is certain any longer, let alone stable.

Kara has denied herself certain actions out of her better nature, and not merely riding on Cat Grant's lift, but the misuse of her powers or their use for her own personal gain. Once exposed to Red Kryptonite, we see a Supergirl who can easily contend with a K'Hund/Khund, but could care less about doing so. She exacts revenge against Siobhan Smythe, with no concern over having ruined her prospective career, and flings Cat Grant to her near death. She doesn't save Cat from falling because of any ethical inclination, but rather, to see and witness the fear that she's wrought within her. The question of why these impulses and drives exist within her are slowly explained. First with Jimmy Olsen, who does a great turn of playing off a charged, aggressive Kara. Red Kryptonite allows Kara to not be uninhibited, but to be unhinged. She can take what she wants, when she wants, and no one can stop her. When the DEO arrive to cease Supergirl's rampage, she quickly displays how futile their efforts are. If not for the sacrifice of the Martian Manhunter, Supergirl may have done irreparable damage to the people of National City, rather than disillusioning damage to her once sterling reputation. Supergirl's reaction to what she's done is the show's best moment: genuine sorrow and not for herself, but for the pain she has caused to those around her.

Superman's absence is yet again a groan moment, as Cat makes a televised announcement as to what is going on with Supergirl. There's letting Supergirl solve her own problems, and all that rut, but when Supergirl is the problem, DILLIGAF isn't the best response. Kara and Jimmy's moment in the club was nice, though fleeting, even if it had to be forced by evil. There is genuine chemistry there, and it all but been extirpated by indecisiveness on the shows part. It's hard to build romantic interest when all of the crucial moments are with Alex. It's funny that Chyler Leigh stated that she feels neither Jimmy nor Winn is good enough for Kara. Why would they be? Alex consumes all of the playable time, and has no life of her own outside of the DEO. She shows no interest in anyone but Kara, making Kara's speech about Alex wanting to control her really strike home. You could remove most of the supporting cast at this point and not lose any speed, as Alex fills or doubles for all their roles. Sibling rivalry is one thing, but it's strange that Alex has no interest in anyone else, not anyone else in her. It's uncertain if that's how it's meant to be shown, but there it is.

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