This week, Supergirl faced off with notable android Red Tornado. Now, Red Tornado is typically a hero, but he has been taken over/gone bad on multiple occasions. In this incarnation, our favorite wind android has still been created by Dr. T.O. Morrow, but T.O. Morrow is working in the service of the U.S. government. Specifically, he works for General Sam Lane.
Lane’s presence here provides us with the solid vehicle of examining Supergirl’s anger. While I’m not sure how long her history of some pent-up rage goes back, I know that it has existed enough for them to justify a comic arc of her becoming a Red Lantern. Anyway, anger was the key theme of the episode here, whether Kara’s, Cat’s, or Jimmy’s.
Jimmy’s anger was directed primarily at the ever-so judgmental, disapproving, and tough General Lane. Lane strongly, and openly, disapproves of the relationship between Jimmy and Lucy. Lane’s similar disapproval of aliens and superheroes in general leads to a fun scene of both Kara and Jimmy working out their anger by punching. Jimmy punches a punching bag, while Kara punches a car. Cat is in quite an angry mood meanwhile which she takes out on Kara. Kara shouts at Cat, which leads to a lesson on anger and the previously mentioned car punching.
Meanwhile, Supergirl is on the hunt for Red Tornado. An initial outburst of anger sends the android running and they learn it was designed to be able to take her down. The hunt for Red makes for some interesting scenes, like him generating a tornado as a distraction and the final fight where he apparently gained some sentience.
Red Tornado himself provides for some fun fight scenes and makes for a generally formidable foe. His powers look solid for what you might expect here. He himself is a bit overly bulky in design, which I hope they might remedy if he comes back (which is possible even though he was totally vaporized). No matter how reminiscent Supergirl stopping a tornado was of The Flash, it was still cool.
The anger storyline was easily the most enjoyable. Cat’s mother was just horrible to watch (in a good way) which really got the whole idea of so much anger rolling really well. The punching scene was easily a highlight of the entire episode, as was drunk Cat lecturing Kara on women being angry in the workplace.
Another easy highlight here is that things moved forward. We got an actual cliffhanger at the end (which hints at more ongoing storylines) with Kara bleeding after being cut. In addition, we got some development on the death of Dr. Danvers plot after Winn was convinced to hack the DEO. Speaking of, I really loved the fact that he didn’t just say yes. That stuff is a big deal (treason as he points out) and it was nice to see the “hacker” character actually a little reserved about willy-nilly committing felonies and treason.
A few things just didn’t mesh with the story at hand this week. Maxwell Lord’s story just felt terribly out of place. Why did we need to bring him in and why do we need to fake romantic tension between him and Alex? Also, Henshaw stepping up to defend Supergirl from Lane was weird. Didn’t really fit with this idea of people sticking up for themselves when made angry. Seems every week seems to have that one moment that just doesn’t fit the episode’s core focus.
“Red Faced” delivered one of the best episodes of Supergirl yet. Still far from perfect, this show is quickly finding its footing.