Howdy all. Listen . . . much as it pains me, I’m not going to be able to write up a full review for this week’s Arrowverse shows. With the hours my job’s been asking of me this week, I just cannot find the time to do it. So instead of a proper review, this week I’ll just be doing a Stray Observations list for each show. I’m very sorry about that.
Supergirl 3×15: “In Search of Lost Time”
- Taking a real world experience (grappling with dementia) and using a sci-fi/fantasy concept to make it play out in an exciting and visually interesting way (said dementia causes uncontrolled psychic attacks) is one of my favorite things speculative fiction can do, and I wish it was something the Arrowverse did more often.
- That said, I wish more was done with Myrnn’s anger infecting everyone else. It was used well to make Kara confront the less pleasant side of her feelings towards Mon-El, but it would have been nice to see the rest of the cast explore something similar.
- Overall, though, that big brawl in the DEO was just awesome.
- Isn’t focusing on your footwork kind of irrelevant when you can, y’know, fly?
- All the scenes between Lena and Sam were amazing. The horror on Sam’s face when she sees the footage of herself becoming Reign, that was just a stellar performance.
- At the end of the episode, Lena tells James that she’s going to have to keep some secrets from him, and he says that he’s cool with that. And I’m just like, “What!?! You cut that out right now! If characters stop getting upset when their romantic partners keep secrets from them, the whole fabric of your universe could fall apart!”
- Every episode of Supergirl should open with the characters just hanging out and playing some game, whether it’s charades, karaoke, or . . . I don’t know . . . Monopoly?
The Flash 4×19: “Fury Rogue”
- I just hate the core concept of this episode. I mean, yes, refusing to deal with your grief can be a serious problem. But just because you don’t see someone grieving a lost friend doesn’t mean they aren’t doing so privately. Yet everyone Barry talks to seems to feel that, unless they personally witness the tears rolling down his face, he must be repressing. I can kind of get that coming from Team Flash, since they’ve seen Barry grieve before and can tell he’s acting different this time, but Leo? He barely knows Barry, yet he repeatedly, insistently lectures him about not grieving Ralph in an obvious enough way.
- It’s kind of amazing how, in retrospect, the Legends of Tomorrow episode where Leo tries to act as a grief counselor for the Legends, complete with puppet therapy, now looks like a parody of Leo’s role in this episode. If Leo had pulled out a Ralph puppet, I would have liked “Fury Rogue” about a billion times more.
- All that said, when Barry does start grieving Ralph in the therapist’s office . . . damn, Grant Gustin is good at doing sad scenes.
- I’m not even that big a fan of Fury Road, but I could have used a lot more of the dangerous convoy part of the episode. Our heroes, including Snart’s Earth-X doppelganger, trying to transfer an unstable metahuman nuclear bomb down a deserted stretch of road, while two unrelated supervillains try to ambush them and take the metahuman for themselves? There was so much potential for action and suspense, but that part of the episode is over almost as soon as it begins.
- As the Thinker becomes crueler and more abusive towards Marlize, I have to wonder how much of this is due to the changes made to his brain, and how much of this darkness was always inside him, just waiting until he had the power to indulge in it without fear of repercussions.
- Another point in the “Ralph is totally coming back” column: this episode makes it clear that Clifford and Marlize have not been together “as husband and wife” since he took control of Ralph’s body. While used here to show how their relationship is disintegrating, I’m thinking the writers may have also been thinking ahead to Ralph getting his body back, and wanted to make it clear that, no, the DeVoes did not rape him.
- Though the Thinker saying “Right, rookie?” in a Ralph-like voice was still plenty creepy.
- Whatever happened to Siren X? Did she get taken back to Earth-X? Stashed in the pipeline? Sent to regular metahuman prison? If the latter, will Black Siren ever break her out and go on crime spree together?
- Do you suppose the skies over Earth-X have always been red, or did they only get like that after the Nazis took over?
- For all my griping about Leo, I did get a good laugh out of his line, “There’s no outrunning grief. … That was a pun; I’m sorry.”
Arrow 6×20: “Shifting Allegiances”
- So much for course correcting: we’re right back to the Diaz-is-the-biggest-and-most-terrifying-villain-ever show, and it is just . . . ugh. Especially coming from Laurel, who (as Quentin rightly points out) should really not be so scared of a common gangster. I mean, she used to work for frickin’ Zoom. I get they’re going for a let’s-bad-men-control-and-walk-all-over-her thing for this Laurel, but it’s just getting insulting now.
- Laurel’s character arc overall is a mess. The writers seem to think that “Which side will she choose?” is what viewers are interested in, when what’s really important is “What’s going on in her head to make her choose one side or the other?”, a question they only show a cursory interest in exploring.
- Rene’s back this week. The episode largely brushes aside the Team Arrow civil war stuff, so he’s not quite as annoying as he was previously, but he’s still built up a bit too much ill will to get me emotionally invested in him.
- Now that John’s working for Argus, he’s leading a team of agents to bring down Diaz. Why is this only happening now? Did he never to ask Lyla for some Argus help earlier in the season? Or is a local crime lord considered too small potatoes for Argus, and John’s only able to get his team assigned to it ‘cause he’s banging the boss?
- Why isn’t Anatoly the Big Bad of this season? Seriously? Every scene he has with Oliver this episode is amazing. The actor is great, and the history and uneasy friendship between the two characters, built up over the last five years, is just fantastic. So make Anatoly the crime boss who crawls his way up into the big leagues, and you could do the story they’re doing with Diaz now, only with a character people actually like and who has a personal connection to our hero.
- Oliver’s utterly silent, off-screen takedown of Anatoly’s gang, and his brutal, music-free, blood-aplenty fist fight with Diaz were both amazing.
- The Oliver storyline this episode was just solid all around. I know the show will inevitably go, “No, he needs other people in his life and on his team”, but so far what I’m seeing is that, at least under the current writing staff, Oliver going solo really does make for better stories than having him on a big vigilante team.
- I wonder: has Oliver told his lawyer, Jean Loring, that he actually is the Green Arrow? If so, I kind of want to see the scene where she demands full disclosure, and he has to list every single law he’s broken over the course of the series. And closing it with, “Also, I’m technically a member of the Russian mafia.”
- Maybe I’m remembering Season 5 wrong, but I thought “kapiushon” was just Oliver’s rank within the Bratva, equivalent to “captain”. But here, Bratva dudes were calling him “Kapiushon” like it’s a title specific to him.
- According to Laurel, there’s a Damien Darhk on her Earth, too, and that one’s also a notorious supervillain. I was kinda hoping Darhk’s Earth-2 doppelganger would turn out to be a hippy-dippy, friend-to-all-living-things type, just with an incongruously sinister name.
Question of the Week: Which Earth in the multiverse would you like to see explored more?