If you’re a fan of Lena Luthor, (Guilty as charged, I love Katie McGrath and her flawless jawline), this episode was probably slightly painful to sit through. The episode opens with Lillian Luthor playing Chess with a young Lex. Lionel walks in with a four year old Lena, and introduces Lillian as her new mother. Lex takes to his new baby sister immediately, and invites her to play Chess with him. Fast forward to today. Kara is watching snippets of Lillian Luthor’s CADMUS trial on the television in the alien dive bar. She and Mon-El, who is still bartending (probably more so now that M’gann has left), have an awkward conversation about his new girlfriend Eve, before Kara orders a round of drinks and joins the gang. She, James, J’onn, and Winn have gathered to meet Alex’s new mystery boo. As Winn and James speculate over Alex’s new “boyfriend,” she and Maggie approach the table.
Alex introduces Detective Sawyer as her girlfriend, and while they’re surprised for a moment, James and Winn are more overjoyed to see that the older Danvers sister is happy. Mon-El approaches, and accepted the relationship without hesitation. The Daxamite did question why it was a big deal, because unlike Earth, Daxam had no opposition to ladies liking ladies. J’onn attributes his knowledge – and therefore lack of surprise – of Alex’s relationship to his psychic abilities, and when Winn and Maggie run off to play pool, the Martian tells Alex that his “money is on her girl.” While the SuperSquad is enjoying themselves, Kara can’t let go of the Luthor trial being discussed, and she expresses her heartfelt sympathies for Lena. James voices his disdain and mistrust of the CEO, but before he and Kara can truly exchange words, Winn accidentally sends the cue-ball from he and Maggie’s game flying past their heads.
Kara resolves to visit Lena to make sure she’s doing okay, considering she’d just testified against her own mother. She brings the CEO a bag of donuts, and ironically, Lena accepts it with a snarky comment about “only being human.” As the two sit and eat, Kara asks how she’s doing, And Lena confesses that despite everything happening, she still loves her mother. The reporter tells her that she wishes she could speak to people who are now gone, and that Lillian is still here. She convinces Lena to go talk to her mother at the prison, and the two part ways for the day. Lena takes Kara’s advice, and visits her mother in the prison. Lillian convinces Lena to give her a second chance by telling her the truth. While she is technically adopted, Lena is biologically a Luthor. Lionel had had an affair with another woman – Lena’s mother. A few years had passed and they got word that her mother had passed away, so Lionel took him in, and Lillian just couldn’t really bear to be around her. She asks Lena to give her another chance to be the mother she deserved, and after some obvious hesitation, Lena accepts the offer. Meanwhile, a prison guard delivers a package to Metallo, Lillian’s right-hand man. He opens it and smiles, a green glow reflecting off of his face.
The next day, Kara and Alex attend the CADMUS trial, where Metallo is on the stand voicing his complete hatred for aliens. He calls Lillian a hero, and gets increasingly aggressive. The lawyer questioning him requests permission to treat him as hostile, and he responds by standing and shooting her with a stream of Kryptonite from his chest. The entire court-room scatters, while Alex and Kara remain crouched and hidden among the benches. He frees Lillian and they make their break for freedom, but as they hit the streets, Supergirl drops in to stop them. Lillian gives her an ultimatum: The Girl Of Steel can stop them from escaping, or she could save the lives of the civilians behind her. On that note, Metallo damages a large crane overhead, and of course Supergirl chooses the lives of the people around her. They cheer for her, but she looks on in defeat, knowing that Lillian and her minion got away.
Following a thorough investigation, the police manage to find a video that shows Lena Luthor producing synthetic kryptonite from a safe. Kara refuses to believe that Lena is guilty, even as Maggie arrests her. At Catco, Kara comes to blows with Snapper and James, who both believe that Lena is as guilty as the rest of her family. That night, while she sits in a jail cell, listening to guards insult her and compare her to her brother, Lena starts to hear commotion elsewhere in the prison. Metallo had arrived to break her free, though Guardian tried in futile to stop him. He ends up with a nasty burn on his shoulder from the synthetic kryptonite, but also takes note of the fact that the syn-K (I’m shortening it because I’m lazy, sue me) is starting to hurt the villain.
Back at the DEO, Kara pleads with her friends to help prove the CEO’s innocence, but no one, not even J’onn, fully believes her to be innocent. She and James again butt heads over Lena’s innocence, and James tries to get her to understand that she’s a Luthor. Kara takes to beating the crap out of a few blocks of concrete, and when Mon-El approaches, he and Kara start discussing their feelings. Kara tells him that she spoke with Eve, who mentioned that they weren’t together, something he confirms himself. She claims to have been mad that they were dating, and he tells her he doesn’t understand why, considering she doesn’t like him. Kara panics and storms away, using the need to find Lena as an excuse not to discuss it further. Somewhere along the roads, Lena fumes over being broken out of prison. She tells Lillian that she looks even more guilty, though she’d done nothing wrong. Lillian tells her to accept the fact that they can never go back, and the trio of kind-of-sort-of-villains arrive at one of Lex’s warehouses, built into a mountain. (Do all supervillains have bases built into mountains? I want a mountain-based lair.) Lillian tells her daughter about how Lex kept vaults of ways to take down Superman – and other various aliens, but there was one vault in particular that got her interest.
Meanwhile, at the DEO, Kara has Winn looking into the incriminating video of Lena for any signs of tamper. Winn notices a code that Cyborg Superman had used at one point, and after removing it from the corrupted film, it reveals that HE was the one retrieving Syn-K, not Lena. But this poses the question…what was the CEO even doing with synthetic Kryptonite? Why did she have it? Or Did the real Hank Henshaw simply bring it along and make it LOOK like he was removing it from her safe? Regardless, Kara was right, and as she celebrates, one of the monitors behind them starts beeping, alerting them of Metallo’s Syn-K, which has becoming increasingly unstable. At the warehouse, Lillian admits that in order to open this safe, she needs the biological DNA of a Luthor, and considering she’s only a Luthor by marriage, well. Lena pinpoints this as the real reason Lillian and Metallo set her free, and refuses to open the vault. Her mother has Cyborg Superman step in and he forces Lena to open the vault, revealing a load of nasty toys for them to use against The Girl Of Steel. Everything from Lex’s suit of armor to another black mercy lies within the vault, but a metal box catches Lillian’s eye most of all.
Supergirl drops in to save the day, ensuring that Lena knows Kara Danvers believed in her and doesn’t think her a criminal. Lillian temporarily incapacitates the hero, while Cyborg Superman simply tosses Lena aside. She hits her head on the concrete, which knocks her unconscious. Kara pleads with Lillian to see reason, that the Syn-K in Metallo is going to cause a nuclear explosion, but Lillian is too wrapped up in wanting to destroy a super to care. When Kara starts attacking Metallo, and Lillian sees the truth to her words, she and Hank Henshaw decide to split. J’onn comes to the rescue all Green Martian style, and they manage to escape the compound with Lena before Metallo goes all kablooey.
Following the events, Kara gets to do the whole…”I told you so,” thing toward Snapper and James. James admits he was wrong, and he and Kara decide that instead of trying to protect each other, they could simply go back to being friends. At Lena’s office, Kara mentions that miraculously…her office is very full of flowers. Lena tells her that she heard what Supergirl said, and despite The Girl Of Steel saving her…Kara Danvers was her hero. As the reporter heads home, Lena toys with the white knight of her chess set, before dropping it next to the black queen. We see a quick flashback of a young Lena overtaking Lex with the same white knight-to-black-queen move, before claiming “checkmate.” A lot of people are claiming that this might be a nod to DC’s Checkmate, a heroic task-force that uses the hierarchy of chess pieces. I think it might have some symbolism to it, however. We know Lillian is the black queen, but…who’s the white knight? Is she just that confident that Kara will find the Luthor, or…perhaps Lena is planning on going after her mother herself? I’m excited to see. The episode concludes with Mon-El visiting Kara. After a confession of feelings, and the thought that maybe she’s allowed to have what she wants, she moves in to kiss the Daxamite. However, their romantic moment comes to an abrupt end when they’re interrupted by a 5th dimensional being called Mr.
Mxyzptlk, who materializes in her apartment and claims to love the Kryptonian.
Next week is Valentine’s day episode, and I am more than excited to see how it goes! Watch it with us next week, on The CW!