SUPERGIRL RECAP “DARK SIDE OF THE MOON”
BY CYNTHIA VINNEY
When we last left Supergirl, she and Mon-El were hurtling into the Cosmos in J’onn’s spaceship in search of more of the Rock of Yuda Kal, a substance they believe can cure Sam and get rid of Reign. But they need to find more quickly—Reign is becoming immune to the Kryptonite that Lena’s been using to keep her trapped and subdued in her lab.
As this episode begins, Supergirl and Mon-El are approaching the meteoroid where Winn located the Rock they need to retrieve. Suddenly, their ship is caught in a tractor beam and is pulled in. Luckily, they are able to alter the ship’s appearance to trick the tractor beam into releasing them and manage to land stealthily on what turns out to be a cloaked city. However, as they land, someone starts shooting at them. They lose the shooters and go into the city, where they discover the inhabitants look human.
Meanwhile, on Earth, Winn is at the DEO monitoring for Supergirl and Mon-El’s return and Alex is still at home on Ruby-sitting duty. Alex takes Ruby to the park for ice cream. They stop at a sunglass kiosk. As Alex tries on some glasses, she spots a suspicious man in the mirror. She sends Ruby away as the man starts to fire a gun. He throws a grenade at Alex and she throws it into a hot coal disposal unit as it explodes.
Alex takes Ruby to the DEO. She tells J’onn and Winn that the shooter in the park was targeting her. She believes the man responsible is Ronald Collins, the first person she arrested when she was just 17. Collins was recently released from jail and moved in near her.
At Lena’s lab, Reign taunts Lena, telling her the only way to end her is to kill her….and Sam.
Back on mystery space city, Mon-el and Kara realize they stick out like sore thumbs. They steal a couple of cloaks to hide their colorful super-suits. Then they track the location of the rock they need to a small structure, which Kara recognizes as a Kryptonian memorial. They’re surrounded by defense drones when someone calls them off—it’s Kara’s mother, Alura! She and Kara have the most low-key reunion ever.
It turns out Alura survived the explosion of Krypton because Kara’s father created a shield to protect their city, Argo. Kara’s parents weren’t sure the shield would work, which is why they sent Kara away separately. Kara’s mom thought she had been lost in the Phantom Zone and was dead.
Alura realizes that if Kara didn’t know she was alive, something else brought her to Argo. Kara explains that Earth is in trouble, that Kryptonian Worldkillers are terrorizing the planet, and they need the Rock of Yuda Kal to stop Reign. Alura shows Kara and Mon-El the Rock. Kara’s father gave his life to use it to make Argo City’s atmosphere breathable and keep the city hidden and safe.
As every ounce of the Rock is used towards keeping the city alive, they don’t have any to spare. But Alura says she can call a meeting of the High Council where Kara can plead her case and see if the members will let her take a small amount.
On Earth, Alex has left Ruby with Winn. Winn’s cranky. He’s been awake and monitoring space for any sign of Supergirl and Mon-El for 36 hours, and snaps at Ruby.
Alex goes to a bar and confronts Collins, but he’s clearly not the one going after her. He’s remorseful about the crime Alex arrested him for and feels he deserved his punishment. When Alex leaves the bar, she has trouble starting her motorcycle. As she runs away, the bike explodes. She tells J’onn she wants to draw out and trap her would-be killer.
In Argo City, Kara spends time with her mother. Alura feels guilty for assuming Kara was dead. Kara forgives her and enthusiastically tells Alura about her life on Earth.
Meanwhile, Mon-El returns the cloaks he stole for him and Kara. He apologizes to the shopkeeper. He notices she has a sick son who has trouble breathing. Mon-El gives him a vaccine developed by Brainy that allows the child to breathe normally again.
On Earth, Lena confesses to James that if Supergirl doesn’t get back with the rock quickly Reign will break out of her prison. To prevent that from happening, Lena could flood Reign’s system with Kryptonite, but that would kill her. James asks Lena what Sam would have wanted in the situation. Lena says Sam would have wanted to protect Ruby more than anything. This gives Lena her answer: if it’s a choice between Reign’s life and the safety of the planet and Ruby, she will sacrifice Reign.
At the DEO, Winn apologizes to Ruby. He bonds with her over the fact that he had a parent who became evil too. Like Ruby, he fears that the darkness in his parent also lurks in him.
Alex and J’onn—who’s shape-shifted to look like Alex—have set up a trap in the park. J’onn-as-Alex goes for a run, while real-Alex waits from a rooftop for her attacker to make an appearance. The killer shoots at Alex from another rooftop. Alex chases after him. She almost dies when she falls short jumping to another rooftop and the man aims a gun at her as she dangles off the side of the building. He’s an alien, the twin of an escapee from Fort Rozz that Alex arrested. In a burst of strength, Alex launches herself at the alien and apprehends him.
Afterwards, Alex sits alone deep in thought. She confesses to J’onn that she’s concerned that her ability to risk her life without hesitation is a detriment to Ruby and her desire to eventually be a mother. She worries about what her willingness to endanger her life in the line of duty means for her future and the future of anyone she’s responsible for.
At the Argo City High Council meeting, Kara presents her case for taking a small piece of the rock to protect Earth. Alura assists by arguing that because the Worldkillers were made on Krypton, the residents of Argo City are partially responsible and should help. But the Council says their only concern is survival.
Kara argues more forcefully for Earth and its people and eventually a majority of the Council agrees. The deciding vote is cast by a woman who looks… familiar. Wait, is that the Dark Kryptonian who advised the Worldkillers on Earth?!
The Dark Kryptonian, a woman named Selena, seems benevolent in Argo City. And Kara and Mon-El leave with the rock they need. But when Selena goes home, she dons the cape she wore when communicating with the Worldkillers in their Fortress and calls on Reign.
Just as Reign breaks out of her cell at Lena’s lab, Supergirl and Mon-El arrive with the rock.
This episode contained some big revelations. The fact that Alura is still alive and Argo City still exists is huge. This could give Kara a place where she can just be herself without the need for alter-egos or disguises. Yet, her reunion with her mother is oddly muted and unemotional. Perhaps it’s the shock of them both seeing someone they loved and thought was dead, but they both act as if Kara is just coming home from college, not that they’ve found each other after decades of believing they were lost to one another. It’s a lost opportunity for a potentially moving emotional moment.
At the same time, J’onn and Alex continue to be stuck in a B plot that has little to do with the main story line. As a result, their scenes feel crammed in and contrived. Both actors are fantastic and bring a lot to their roles, so it’s unfortunate that they’ve been sidelined from the central plot. Hopefully that’ll change soon.
Finally, the reveal that the Dark Kryptonian is alive and well on Argo City suggests that there’s a deeper connection between Earth and the previously-hidden leftovers of Krypton than it initially appears. This brings up a lot of burning questions about what this could mean for both places. Perhaps we’ll find out more on next week’s Supergirl!