It’s off to the chapel of love, whether Supergirl likes it or not.
When Mr. Mxyzptlk, a magical imp from the Fifth Dimension, shows up on Earth and declares his love for Kara, her rejection causes him to wreak havoc on National City.
Peter Gadiot is no stranger to fantastic romances — fantastic as in imaginative or fanciful; remote from reality. The last time many of us were likely to see him on TV was when he played Cyrus, a genie who fell in love with Once Upon a Time’s version of Alice (in Wonderland). So yes, Gadiot is no stranger to playing a character who literally has the power to move mountains just to be with the one he loves. As Mr. Mxyzptlk in Supergirl, he’s willing to do all sorts of things just to get Kara’s attention. Even if it means going all Magneto and turning a few guns on the bad guys, or summoning a big bad just so he can impress her. He’ll even drop a Hamilton reference or two. May’s that serious about wanting to marry Kara. And while Mxy’s level of comedic timing and charm equals that of other annoyingly all-powerful characters such as Q from Star Trek: The Next Generation and the Great Gazoo from The Flintstones, it was unfortunately foiled with Mon-El and his manly insecurities.
When Mxy crashes Kara and Mon-El’s real first kiss with an over-the-top presentation (and an Aladdin song that is surely a callback to his Once Upon a Time in Wonderland days), Mon-El panics and falls into a downward spiral of jealousy. He doesn’t trust that Kara will not be wooed by Mxy’s all-powerfulness no matter how many times she tries to reassure him. He eventually regresses into his worst macho self and challenges Mxy to a duel to the death (this is where the Hamilton references kick in).
To be fair, the show knows that Mon-El is in the wrong here. His childishness forces Kara’s hand, and she calls him out on his childish behavior. She makes him believe that she doesn’t want to be with him after all, nor does she want to continue being partners. His ego bruised, he backs down and finally lets Kara deal with Mxy her own way.
I would have preferred it if Mon-El and Mxy’s rivalry stayed inside of its comedic bubble. Indeed it started out that way during the first five minutes or so, but then it transformed into an emotional beat for Mon-El. As sweet as it was in a way (because Chris Wood just sells it with those puppy dog eyes), he was still the equivalent of that guy who thinks his girlfriend will be whisked away by every male gaze or unsolicited dick pic. That’s insane behavior and should be treated as such. For crying out loud, Mon-El took his shot at Mxy without even a second thought! Just think what might have happened if he had decided to activate the alien artifact that cuts off Mxy from his fifth dimensional powers.
Furthermore, we’ve already explored the whole “Mon-El needs to learn to trust and respect Supergirl” bit in “We Can Be Heroes.” It’s fine for Mon-El to have flaws, but if he’s just going to repeat his mistakes over and over again, having learned nothing, then he doesn’t deserve Kara. On the plus side, we did get a great “first ridiculous couple fight.” That was fun to watch.
The writers may not know how to handle Mon-El/Kara right now, but they do know how to right a compelling relationship where Alex/Maggie is concerned. Alex is still exploring her sexual identity through her relationship with Maggie, but it’s the tough National City detective with a chink in her armor this time. She reveals that her coming out to her family didn’t go as smoothly as she claimed. On Valentine’s Day, young Maggie asked another girl to the school dance. The girl told her parents who then told Maggie’s parents, who then freaked and kicked her out of their house. For the next three years, Maggie had to live with her aunt.
Yeah…. If I had a Valentine’s Day like that, I’d despise the holiday too.
Alex, whose family love Valentine’s Day, was disappointed to learn of Maggie’s hatred for the holiday. At first, she didn’t know about Maggie’a backstory; Alex simply wanted to change it up by making the occasion mean something else between just the two of them. In the end Maggie and Alex learn the important lessons of compromising and listening, two major building blocks to creating a stable and long-lasting relationship. The sweetest thing to happen next is when Alex throws Maggie their own little Valentine’s Day dance — fancy dress, corsage, and all.
“Mr. & Mrs. Mxyzptlk” is a fun romp overall, and I hope to see Mxy again. TV shows that allow someone as quirky as Mxyzptlk to exist should never squander such a character. Q in the Star Trek series was an acquired taste, but he was always written pretty well for fans to tolerate recurring appearances across three different series.
- One of the persisting flaws of the Supergirl series is that it has trouble keeping focus. When you look at Season 1 as a whole, the overarching goals was to have Kara figure out her superhero life and her civilian life past the role of Cat Grant’s go-fer. And of course, it was sprinkled with a lot of not-so-subtle feminism. Looking at Season 2, the writers have definitely improved on some things, but at the expense of who Kara Danvers is as a person. Is she still trying to be an intrepid reporter? Is she more interested in mentoring Mon-El to be a superhero? What’s everyone doing about the obvious prejudices between humans and aliens? Is she not advocating for a calm transition of otherworldly aliens making Earth their new home?
- Mxy and Supergirl fighting inside the Fortress of Solitude is one of the coolest scenes of the season.
- Winn’s got a new love interest! An alien lady from Starhaven. Fun Fact: Starhaven is a planet from where Legion of Superheroes’ Dawnstar hails.