…or she returns, at least, with a Kevin Smith-directed episode, heavy on the Silver Age Sci-Fi.

Title: “Supergirl Lives”

Cast and Crew
Director: Kevin Smith
Writers: Andrew Kreisberg, Eric Carrasco, and Jess Kardos

Melissa Benoist as Kara Danvers / Supergirl
Mehcad Brooks as James Olsen / The Guardian
Chyler Leigh as Alex Danvers
Jeremy Jordan as Winn Schott
David Harewood as J’onn J’onzz / Martian Manhunter
Floriana Lima as Maggie Sawyer
Chris Wood as Mon-El
Dichen Lachman as Veronica Sinclair/Roulette
James Urbaniak as Maaldorian Doctor
Harley Quinn Smith (Yep, that’s Kevin Smith’s daughter) as Izzy
Nikolai Witschl as Jo
Ian Gomez as Snapper Carr
Robert Zen Humpage as Fish Head

Premise

After making some really stupid decisions during the tracking of missing persons, Kara and Mon-El head through the Stargate to a red sun desert moon run by Jem’Hadar slavers who, despite their advanced technology, can be taken out by a good right hook and a few guns. Along the way, our heroes befriend a Drac-like creature.

Meanwhile, Guardian does street-level heroics on Earth and Maggie sleeps over.

High Point

I have to wonder about the instant depowering/repowering effect of yellow and red suns in this version of a DCU (no drain/charge time?), but the idea of Supergirl and Mon-El showing their heroism despite the lack of powers creates interesting challenges. The concept of the episode also makes Mon-El’s inevitable hero turn rewarding.

Low Point

They missed a golden opportunity to have the Guardian team up with Supergirl and help save the day. This fact would not be a low point if his actual subplot had been better integrated or realized, or if it hadn’t used time that could have been better-spent on the central conflict.

The Scores:

Originality: 1/6 The plot also recalls an ep of Buffy, although most of the shows I’ve referenced under “Premise” did not originate the borrowed concepts, and the ep both acknowledges the obvious similarity to Stargate, and does a shout-out to Star Trek.

Effects: 5/6 After the long hiatus, they really bring out the visual effects the week. These vary, from some decent alien skies to a rather clumsy Guardian shield effect.

Acting: 5/6 We see chemistry between Benoist and Wood, and Leigh and Lima have been well-matched.

Story: 3/6 Once again, the story is predicated on heroes acting without thinking. The results are fine, I suppose, but entirely predictable. “Roulette” isn’t much of a Big Bad, and Supergirl and Mon-El overcome their difficulties a little too easily. The show might benefit from having only one major subplot each week, as it would allow the main conflict time to develop.

Emotional Response: 4/6

Production: 5/6

Overall: 4/6 Despite the flaws, the show retains its comic-book charm and entertainment value. Just don’t think too hard while watching.

In total, “Supergirl Lives” receives 27/42