Supergirl Ep. 217 Recap & Review – ‘Distant Sun’
I think we’re at a far enough point to ask, “Where the hell is Supergirl going this season?” I’ve said in previous recaps that this season of Supergirl is less focused than last season. By episode 17 in Season 1, we already knew the endgame for our hero. We knew our enemy. We (kinda sorta) knew what they were up to. Season 2 can’t seem to decide which big bad they want to ruin everyone’s day: Cadmus, the Daxamites, or a certain alien element that has been reintroduced into the show?
Some of my complaints have to do with Mon-El. If there was an award for “biggest charm monster” in a television series or movie, Chris Wood would win it instantly. He has a way of taking the simplest and most innocuous sentences and turn them into priceless, giggle worthy one-liners. But I can’t shake the feeling that he’s been a huge distraction this season. When Superman was first announced to make a few appearances on the show, people thought he would overshadow Supergirl throughout the series. Those concerns may have come true, but with Mon-El instead.
But is Mon-El a good character? I want to like him. I really do. But “Distant Sun” ultimately proves to me that he’s kind of pointless. At least in a sense that, for all the time Supergirl has been giving him this season, hardly any substantial development been done to the character. And he has gotten a lot of screen time compared to a certain former love interest who’s been set aside.
That said, there’s still time to justify Mon-El’s existence. It looks as though we were on the verge of a major character development when Queen Rhea (Mon El’s mother played by Teri Hatcher) put a bounty on Supergirl. Rhea is determined to get her son back. If it means taking the Kryptonian out of the picture permanently, then so be it. Ironically, this move pushes Mon-El father away from his family. She ultimately resorts to taking Supergirl out herself with a pair of sais made with Kryptonite.
With the threat of Kara’s life on the line, Mon-El gives himself up, choosing to go back to Daxam with his parents.
The interesting part comes when Mon-El tells his father, Lar Gand (Kevin Sorbo), that he wants to reform how Daxam is ruled. It’s a sign that he’s managed to absorb Kara’s sense of justice and hope. He still needs to work on his diplomatic assertiveness, however. Rhea scoffs at the idea and imprisons her son.
Supergirl and J’onn do get to save him and bring him back to Earth, but there are certain consequences that follow. First of all, Supergirl and J’onn acted against the president’s orders to engage with the Daxam ship in any way for fear of reprisals. Let’s just say that the president wasn’t all too pleased when she found out about Supergirl’s rescue attempt.
As for the Daxamites, this episode has revealed Queen Rhea to be on cold and spiteful woman. Part of the reason why Mon-El is able to leave the ship after the fight is because Lar Gand concedes. He sees that Mon-El found a new family on Earth and is happy for it. Rhea takes Lar Gand’s sliver of compassion towards their son as an act of betrayal and kills him for it. She then declares that she’s not yet done with Earth, implying that she intends to start a war to get her son back.
- I really wish Supergirl had stuck to one big enemy this season. Cadmus has proved to be a legitimate threat throughout the season. Teaming up Lena Luthor and intrepid reporter Kara Danvers against Cadmus would have been compelling enough. The Daxam royal family just seemed slapped on this season as an after thought EVEN THOUGH the writers knew Mon-El was the prince since his introduction. (Or did they?) And now we’re reminded that the president (played by Lynda Carter) is actually a shape-shifting alien disguised as a human. JUST PICK ONE!
- The Maggie/Alex storylines continue to be the most grown-up aspect of Supergirl when it comes to dealing with relationships.
- I thought this would have been Mon-El’s swan song as he left to reunite the people of Daxam, but it looks like he’s here to stay. For now. And that’s fine! He’s a pretty good fit. Just…not as a co-lead.
- Please do something about Jimmy Olsen. For the love of Rao. I miss the original Scooby Gang/Super Friends.