Supergirl Recap: Kara, Sam, and J’onn All Need to “Wake Up”
"Shame on me for having a human heart." -Kara
The title of this week’s Supergirl couldn’t be more apt, as there’s a lot of waking up going on. Mon-El returns, after having woken up on the ship that was trapped underwater near the waterfront. Kara wakes up to the fact that just because Mon-El is back doesn’t mean things can go back to the way they were. J’onn wakes up to the ways in which he’s isolated himself on Earth, and Sam wakes up in her true identity, which makes me really, really worried for Ruby. Welcome to Season 3, Episode 7, “Wake Up.”
**THIS IS A RECAP – SPOILERS ARE PART OF THE TERRITORY.**
S3, EP. 7 – THE RECAP
- Sooo … remember that random spaceship that we saw trapped underwater after Lena’s press event at the waterfront? Well, it’s not only still there, but when DEO agents were scoping out damage from the recent troubles at the waterfront and found it, the ship knocked them back pretty hard.
- Sam is making breakfast for Ruby and asks her to set the table so that she can sneakily stick her hand in boiling water to see if she’ll get hurt. Shocker of shockers, she doesn’t. (She really needs to accept the powers thing at this point) She snippily tells Ruby that she has a “work thing” to do tonight, so she Ruby needs to have dinner at her friend, Tess’.
- J’onn’s father, Myr’nn is hunting around the DEO when Winn finds him. Myr’nn has had trouble finding the bathroom for the past few days, and really needs to go. Winn directs him to it, and Myr’nn gratefully asks if he may go. Winn gives him permission to go, which he thinks is weird to have to do.
- Winn finds J’onn and tells him what happened, concerned that being cooped up in the DEO isn’t letting Myr’nn feel like any less of a prisoner than he was on Mars. He suggests that J’onn take his father out and about. J’onn, however, seems very preoccupied with work. Supergirl arrives, responding to Winn’s call, and Winn tells them both about the underwater ship being found. What’s more? It’s apparently been there for 12,000 years and is made of an alien metal.
- Winn, Supergirl, and J’onn track the spaceship and just as Supergirl is about to try and spin really fast to drill into the ground to get to the spaceship like Superman might (which Winn gets really excited about), J’onn is all don’t ruin public property. He takes Supergirl and Winn around the corner to where they’re out of sight, puts his arms around them, and phases them all underground, much to Winn’s geeky delight.
- The three of them explore the ship and find the chambers containing people … then see that one is empty, which “isn’t creepy at all” according to Winn. Suddenly, a figure emerges. IT’S MON-EL. Supergirl is overcome with emotion as she hugs him.
- How is Mon-El breathing when Earth’s air should be toxic to him? Why was he on this ship? Who are the others found on the ship (passengers)? What language was he speaking when he first encountered them (Saturnian)? How did he wake up? These are all questions J’onn, Alex, and Winn have, but Kara insists that Mon-El should rest, and they can interrogate him later. She tells him that it’s been a “tough seven months” not knowing where he was and if he was okay, and he starts acting really squirrelly. He tells her that he tried to get in touch for a long time, but couldn’t. Kara says it’s okay, but it’s clear that something’s up.
- Sam goes to see her adoptive mother Patricia (Betty Buckley), who let Sam leave when she was pregnant with Ruby as a teenager, rather than helping her through it. This is clearly something they’re both bitter about, and it’s left their relationship strained. However, Sam is here to ask Patricia about her powers. Did Sam ever do anything weird and inexplicable when she was young? Patricia insists no, but when Sam gets emotional and is clearly desperate for the truth, Patricia leads her outside.
- They go to a barn out back (seriously, did Kryptonian stuff only land in places with barns?) where Patricia shows Sam the pod that she found Sam in when she was a baby. Sam is an alien. A Kryptonian, “like Supergirl!” Sam touches the pod, and it recognizes her, turning on and revealing a long black crystal. Sam removes it.
- At the DEO, James has arrived and talks to Kara about Mon-El. She says that he seems distant and different somehow, but James reminds her that she doesn’t yet know what Mon-El has been through, and that he’ll tell her when he’s ready.
- Sam tells Ruby that she’ll be leaving her with a sitter and money for take-out because she needs to handle some mysterious business. This time, however, it’s different. She tells Ruby that when she returns, she should have answers to a lot of Ruby’s questions. Ruby, of course, wants to go with her, but Sam asks for her trust and promises that she’ll reveal everything once she returns.
- Alex and Winn convince J’onn to take Myr’nn out and spend time with him, because they (well, Alex) have everything under control. J’onn agrees, reluctantly.
- J’onn takes his father out to a nearby coffee cart, introducing him to the beverage for the first time. Myr’nn loves it, and J’onn tells him that now that he knows where it is, he can come here on his own whenever he wants. Myr’nn is fascinated by just about everything they pass, including people they see in the park playing chess. It reminds him of a Martian game they used to play, and he says that they should play sometime, but J’onn deflects, saying that he can come here to the park whenever he wants to play chess … on his own. Myr’nn seems insulted, and recognizes that J’onn has completely buried himself in his work, making no time for anything outside the DEO. J’onn pulls the I’ve Been Living on This Planet Longer Than You So I Know Things card, but Myr’nn isn’t having it. He storms off.
- Back at the DEO, Mon-El wakes up and is immediately super-shady. He sneaks into a storage room, knocks out two guards and attempts to steal an alien artifact he finds in there before Supergirl arrives and knocks him out.
- Mon-El wakes up in the brig. Kara tries to get him to tell her what the hell is going on, but he’s mostly silent, which is frustrating and painful for Kara. She cries, sad and confused that he’s so different all of a sudden. All he can say is, “I’m sorry.” Before walking away, Kara says, “Shame on me for having a human heart.”
- Sam is on the road with the black crystal on her dashboard as she follows the strength of its glow. Eventually, she’s driven so far for so long that her car overheats.
- Winn goes to Mon-El on behalf of a very hurt Kara and hopes that maybe Mon-El will tell him something he couldn’t tell her. Instead, Mon-El asks for Winn’s help in getting him to the ship, because “people will get hurt” unless he can fix a problem on the ship.
- Winn takes Mon-El to the alien ship, and as Mon-El is seemingly trying to bring the chambers with people in them back online, Supergirl arrives to stop them, angry that both Winn and Mon-El keep doing thing “to protect” her. She desperately wants to know how Mon-El can be so different when he’s only been gone seven months. That’s when Mon-El reveals the truth. It hasn’t been seven months for him. It’s been seven years. When he was launched into space, he traveled through a wormhole into the 31st Century, where he lived for seven years, still wearing the necklace Kara gave him. Suddenly, the chambers begin to fail, and Mon-El seems worried about one in particular, whom he desperately tries to save. Though he can’t break that chamber open, Supergirl can and out falls a beautiful woman who Mon-El calls Imra (Amy Jackson) immediately rushes to. Supergirl has this look on her face as she watches them like, maybe I should’ve just left her in there …
- Sam is walking in the desert, continuing to follow the crystal’s glow. Eventually she stops in a spot where the glow is the strongest. Suddenly, the ground erupts and a huge rock structure emerges.
- At the DEO, Mon-El tells the team about Imra, who is from Titan, one of Saturn’s moons. She is unconscious now, and Mon-El asks to be kept apprised of her condition. Alex comforts Kara. They did not see time-travel coming.
- J’onn takes Myr’nn to an empty apartment, and admits that he has been really isolating himself and burying himself in work for much of his time on Earth, which is contrary to the way his father taught him to live. J’onn has gotten this new apartment for the both of them, so that they can both live together outside the DEO. Myr’nn is thrilled.
- Mon-El apologizes to Kara on the DEO balcony for being so shady. Mon-El insists that he could never forget Kara, and Kara seems relieved to know that. As they start reminiscing, Mon-El is about to tell Kara something really important when they are interrupted by a figure in the doorway. Imra is up and about … and an overjoyed Mon-El runs to her and kisses her passionately. Kara shatters, but tries not to show it. Mon-El introduces Imra as his wife. Oof. Sorry, Kara.
- Sam explores the rock structure and finds a console where she can insert the black crystal. When she does so, the console lights up and activates a hologram of the robed woman she’s been seeing in her head, a woman made of science and magic. The woman calls this place Sam’s “Fortress of Sanctuary,” and confirms that not only does Sam have powers, but she’s meant to use them. At first, Sam is excited to be like Supergirl and be a hero, but the hologram has different plans. Sam was created and designed for one purpose: to “exercise justice,” no matter what the cost. She tells Sam that people will not think her a hero, and that she will be known as “Worldkiller” because of the way she will bring about justice with her powers. Sam refuses, insisting that she’s a nice person, and has Ruby. The hologram tells her that Ruby was “an error” that delayed the manifestation of Sam’s powers, which should’ve made themselves apparent when she was 18, but didn’t.
- Sam is about to argue when she’s struck with seeming AGONY, collapsing on the floor screaming. Suddenly, the screaming stops, and Sam stands, calm, with red glowing eyes. She says, “I have awoken.”
S3, EP. 7 – THE REVIEW
This episode was sooooo satisfying, because it provided a lot of much-needed resolution to long-standing conflicts, as well as introduced new characters and dynamics that should make for some interesting future storytelling.
I LOVE that time travel, and Mon-El’s connection to the 31st Century has been established, and that this has been supplemented by the introduction of Imra, A.K.A. Saturn Girl! She probably won’t be called that for a while, but I’m glad there’s another, seemingly good and kind female alien in National City. And as painful as it was for Kara to see Mon-El kiss her, I’m also glad for Kara, because this is providing her some much-needed closure. This whole time, she’s been sad about Mon-El precisely because so much was left hanging. She wasn’t sure if he was safe or not, and it was eating away at her. Now, she knows he’s okay. Not only that, but she’s forced to realize that his being alive and safe does not mean they’ll be together again. Closure doesn’t always mean getting what you want, and I think that’s an important lesson for Kara to remember.
J’onn’s relationship to his father was handled beautifully in this episode, and I’m glad that the show was realistic and nuanced about it. This is a huge change for J’onn, and as much as he loves his father, he’s not had family around to care for in a long time. I’m glad they didn’t have these two instantly bonding. Instead, they will have to get to know each other all over again, and I’m so glad they’ll be living together now and will have the chance to do that.
I’m also so grateful that Sam has, at long last, taken action with regard to her powers and has discovered her identity. Though, if I were gonna nit-pick, I’d say that I wonder how Sam even knew to follow the light of the crystal to the location of the Fortress of Sanctuary (love the name, and it’s a bit less off-putting than ‘Solitude.’). If she was being guided by her programming, that wasn’t really clear. That said, I loved how she finally spoke honestly with Ruby, even though she couldn’t tell her everything. This was the best we’ve ever seen their relationship on-screen. It just sucks that Sam isn’t Sam anymore. WHAT’S GOING TO HAPPEN TO RUBY? Also, DOES RUBY ALSO HAVE LATENT POWERS? WILL SHE EVENTUALLY HAVE TO FIGHT HER MOM?
These are only some of the fascinating questions I’m interested in, and I’m looking forward to seeing how the show will incorporate the Saturnians and the Worldkillers into the narrative.
How did you feel about the return of Mon-El and the reveal of Reign? Were you into “Wake Up?” Let’s chat about it in the comments below!
Supergirl airs Mondays at 8PM ET/PT on The CW.
(image: Michael Courtney/The CW)
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