Supergirl, Season 3, Episode 11, “Fort Rozz”
For all of its occasional progressive storytelling, Supergirl does love a good comic book trope. This week, we get a twofer: Kara is going to a place where she’ll be powerless AND she’s bringing a couple of enemies with her as backup. Fun times, fun times. Here’s everything you need to know about the latest episode of Supergirl:
What’s the scoop: After getting beaten into a coma, Kara knows that punching isn’t a solution to her Reign problem. Since both Kara and Reign are seeking justice in their own ways, Kara believes she can reach Reign through that common ground. However, with knowledge being power, Kara decides she needs to do a little homework first. This leads her back to the old Kryptonian prison, Fort Rozz, where the prison’s namesake, a priestess of Rao who wears the same symbol as Reign, resides. Of course, it’s not as easy as just dropping by Iron Heights on visiting day: Fort Rozz now orbits a blue star that emits a rather specific form of radiation that is toxic to males. This means Kara will be walking powerless into a place where ninety percent of the occupants were put there by Kara’s mother. With Kara’s normal backup off the board, she turns to Livewire and Psi, who agree to come, more out of self-preservation (Reign is out to punish the wicked, and both ladies have wicked in spades) than any desire to help Kara.
Meanwhile in B-Plot Land: Samantha has a big meeting to attend for Lexcorp, and Ruby’s normal caretaker is not available. Thankfully, Alex is laid up with a broken leg, and she’s more than happy to hang out with Ruby for a while. They play board games, talk about Alex’s romantic drama with Maggie, and put a girl who’s been cyber-bullying Ruby in her place. It’s all a wonderful bonding experience that reinforces the Alex-Ruby connection, and shows Alex has a squishy center inside her tough agent exterior.
Calling Human Resources: There were no Lena-Jimmy shenanigans this week, but Lena’s lingering goodbye/good luck hug with Samantha edged into the inappropriately long, given the professional context. Of course, Samantha has bigger problems by episode’s end because she didn’t go to the meeting like she was supposed to (which is bad) and she realizes she has been losing large blocks of time, lately (which is worse). She asks Alex for help.
What about the action: After rounding up her squad (Saturn Girl tags along, too), Kara enters the prison. Of course, there are people out to kill Kara, but she acquits herself well and gets some actual assistance from Livewire and Psi. When Kara finally finds Rozz (played in a meta nod by Superman II villainess Sara Douglas), she catches Kara up on what we learned last week: There are others like Reign out there and they will gather soon. Reign shows up to spoil the gab session and burn a hole through Rozz, which means her powers don’t come from the yellow sun. Kara is pretty useless in this situation, but Livewire jumps in without hesitation, and battles Reign long enough for Psi to do her thing and cause Samantha to bubble to the surface just long enough to force Reign to retreat. Unfortunately, Livewire sacrifices herself, which really bums Kara out.
What’s next: Psi gets an upgraded cell for her efforts because her powers may come in handy again. We get a glimpse of another worldkiller awakening after she gets hit by an out-of-control car.
Last impressions: Any time Kara is unable to use her powers, you know this is an episode where the series is trying to save a buck or two. They backdoored another “Kara’s greatest power is her humanity” lesson in the form of Mon-El’s pep talk about how it was Kara’s honorable nature that got Livewire to ultimately do the right thing, not a yellow sun. The episode made the most of the hand it was dealt and, most importantly, bridged the Samanta-Reign divide, which should make for some interesting storytelling in the episodes to come.