Supergirl Episode 9 ‘Blood Bonds’ Recap
I keep forgetting that Supergirl is a program on CBS. I guess because the main character is a young adult, and most of the core characters seem to be young adult near-hipsters, I keep thinking of it as a CW show. I was going to write, though, that even though “on paper” this looks like a “chick show” (sorry ladies), it’s really very watchable, and I find that it holds my attention, and is even interesting.
Supergirl Season 1, Episode 9 picks up right where Episode 8 left off. Kara is about to engage in a Kryptonian beat-down against Non, her Aunt Astra’s husband (and seemingly, thug). Non scores a knock-down, and manages to get away with Hank Henshaw, who we know (in this storyline) is really J’onn J’onzz, the Martian Manhunter. Non, though, does not know this, and when Non flies off with him, we expect Hank to resist and escape (I’m assuming he has the same powers “as usual” – shapeshifting, flight, super-strength, telepathy, control over his density). He doesn’t, though, and he manages to stay ‘human’ until he’s rescued, even when Non tries to get some weirdo with eyes on his forehead to read Hank’s mind (no, I don’t know who that dude was either). But yeah, this keeps it interesting.
While Hank Henshaw is out of commission, Kara’s adoptive sister Alex Danvers takes over as Director of the DEO. It’s not long, though, until General Sam Lane shows up with a presidential mandate that he take over the DEO to recover Henshaw. Rather than trying to make a hostage exchange as Non demands, General Lane doesn’t hesitate to torture Astra with Kryptonite and needles in order to learn the location where Henshaw is being held. Kara protests, but with Kryptonite involved, she’s powerless to stop this. Now, I don’t mean to be an armchair director here, but obviously the General is vilified here, and he represents the evil that a lot of folks see in the military operations of what may be a very corrupt government. I just wonder if they’d consider having some “suit” do the real dirty work, and not a soldier. Sure, this guy is a high-ranking General, but at least in all the scenes here, he’s in combat fatigues. I may be naive, but I think most soldiers, and police for that matter, are more like the guy in this hidden-camera “what would you do video”, a soldier who calmly but bravely and quickly stand’s up for the rights of a total stranger.
Astra is an interesting villian because she works in that gray area between good and evil. She and her cronies are portrayed as Kryptonian terrorists, as we’re shown through another flashback in this episode. But at least Astra was acting not in her own self interest – rather, she was trying to save Krypton, and felt she needed to take more radical steps against a government that wasn’t taking sufficient action. Astra reveals, eventually, to Kara that her mother Alura (Astra’s sister) did banish her, but not before Alura expressed that it wasn’t due to Astra’s cause, but her actions. Alura was staying true to ideals and principles, but promised that she would fight for Astra’s cause “not through fear and manipulation but through compassion and reason”. Kara and Alex end up taking Astra to exchange for Henshaw. When Astra and Non’s Kryptonian henchmen show up, Kara and the DEO narrowly escape when they trust Astra and she calls off her dogs at the last minute in an uncomfortable but decided truce.
Cat Grant spends the bulk of the episode trying to get Kara to admit she’s Supergirl. This goes on about as long as it can until Supergirl and Kara both show up in the same place at the same time, thanks to the shape-shifting abilities of the Martian Manhunter J’onn J’onzz, who Kara now knows is Hank. Hank tells Kara he’d just as soon have her come work full-time for the DEO. She tells him that it’s her job and her friends that “keep her human”, suggesting that it’s her secret identity that she really identifies most as her true self.
At the end of the episode we see Maxwell Lord looking in on a comatose patient, a young woman wearing a bracelet labeled “Jane Doe, brain trauma”. She opens her eyes and they’re completely blacked out. And there’s some sort of holographic projection in the room of what appears to be one of Red Tornado’s torn-off arms. That’s all we know, though, at this point. Who will this young lady turn out to be? Some sort of Bizarro Supergirl? Galatea? What do you think? Share your thoughts in the comments, and thanks for reading.