When does “Thou shalt not kill” become “Thou hast killed millions”? This debate drives the conflict between Kara and Imra this week while Alex and Winn fight for their lives.
Although last week’s dead birds don’t carry a communicable illness, Imra and Mon-El warn the DEO that this is Pestilence, and as she grows into her full powers as the Blight, the illness will become 100 percent fatal and extremely contagious until it ultimately wipes out worlds in Imra’s time.
In light of this, Imra wants to go after Pestilence with a vengeance, but Kara doesn’t want to push too hard and lose her, the way she did with Julia/Purity.
Then a semi-familiar man walks in, and the team is thrown to realize it’s Brainy, who looks human thanks to a personal image inducer after he nearly caused a riot trying to buy apple cider vinegar at the Piggly Wiggly with his authentic blueness showing. (Amusingly, Winn recognizes both him and the tech he’s using immediately.)
Less amusing? People are falling sick at City Hall. “It’s her. Let’s go,” Imra says.
The DEO soon realizes that everyone who’s sick with a bloody nose and fever has been scratched, although nobody remembers it happening. A crisp doctor at the scene isn’t amused by Winn joking during an outbreak, and she points out that if the illness is contracted through a scratch, there’s no reason to quarantine anybody.
The DEO hopes to transport the patients for medical care without causing a citywide panic … until Imra drops a huge blue dome around City Hall. Supergirl orders her to take it down, and she does, reluctantly. But she also warns Kara that she doesn’t know what she’s up against.
At least they can manufacture a cure courtesy of the coding in the Legion’s DNA, which requires Imra and Mon-El to spend some time hooked up to a transfusion machine while they bicker about how to deal with Pestilence.
Mon-El says Imra should’ve listened to Kara; after all, the Legion based their philosophy on Supergirl, so they need to trust that she’s doing the right thing. Imra doesn’t look convinced. Elsewhere, Kara reiterates “I don’t kill,” and Alex suggests that Imra might need some time to be convinced that Pestilence can be saved, just like Alex did with Julia.
Then Winn hustles up with the results of his security footage scan: City Hall employee Adelaide Swanson, who bakes lemon-poppyseed cookies, might be the Worldkiller-in-hiding that they’re looking for. Kara remembers seeing her at City Hall, not sick, so the team heads to her apartment.
But when Kara arrives, Adelaide’s dead on the floor, a scratch on her hand. And standing over her body is Imra, who was dispatched by Brainy after he reviewed the same footage Winn did but didn’t clue in the DEO.
Oh, you think that’s bad? Back at the DEO, Winn’s nose starts bleeding. Noooo! He may be tucked into sickbay, but he still has the strength to mess with Brainy by describing his attacker as a scary guy with gloves and knives and a burnt face. To be fair, though, wouldn’t you describe Freddy Kruger to the humorless alien who referred to you as a “slightly smarter-than-average human”?
When he realizes he’s being teased, Brainy muses, “Facetiousness. It’s my greatest weakness.”
Kara tracks down Imra to yell at her for going behind their backs, which … fair. Imra doesn’t apologize for her conviction that if it’s between Pestilence and the millions of people who die by the Blight in the future, she’ll kill Pestilence every day and twice on Sundays. Furthermore, since she’s from the future, she has it on good authority that whatever Supergirl does right now will fail.
It’s not a bad point, actually. It breaks my heart to side against Supergirl and everything she stands for, but I guess I’m more of a “needs of the many” person than a “needs of the few.”
However, Mon-El feels differently and again broaches the subject with Imra, reminding her of the Legion’s oath to never harm the innocent and bringing up the awkwardness of her not telling him about their secret mission.
After she storms out, Brainy explains that they didn’t tell him based on simulations he ran using data from Mon-El’s gray matter. Furthermore, if they kill Pestilence, there’s a 98.459 percent chance the Blight will never happen, but rescuing the human inside her reduces that to 52.744 percent. Mon-El rejects this math-based decision-making.
And alas, the Legion’s cure didn’t work because Pestilence isn’t the Blight yet, meaning they need a current sample of her DNA to save everyone’s lives. This includes Alex, who’s collapsed with a bloody nose, and Winn, who’s taken a turn for the worse.
James comes to the DEO to visit Winn, who weakly marvels that he was attacked by a Worldkiller just as he made up with his mother and banished his lifelong fears of abandonment and unworthiness. He and James are both in tears as Winn says he finally feels capable of achieving his potential as the next Steve Jobs or Elon Musk. “I’m ready, and I think it might be too late,” he cries.
Woof. Jeremy Jordan slays this scene, and I must admit, I did briefly worry that this might be his swan song. It was certainly powerful enough to be.
Next: The Worldkillers form a terrifying girl group
In his grief, James calls Lena and urges her to put her L-Corp people on finding a cure. She assures him she’s already on it but asks him not to tell Supergirl until she’s sure.
In fact, Lena has been making progress. She’s working to isolate and eliminate the enzyme that turns Samantha into Reign, although the only way she can study it is by causing Sam extreme pain through electrocution to prompt her transition.
When Sam describes what she sees during her spells, Lena hypothesizes it’s a parallel dimension where Sam’s mind goes when Reign takes control.
During her spells, Reign warns Sam that “They’re coming for us” and urges Sam to accept this powerful other life. “It’ll be so much better if you give in. There is bliss in surrender,” she croons. But when Sam continues to resist, Reign ups the stakes by threatening to do terrible things to Ruby. Not cool, evil lady. Not cool at all.
This horrifies Sam, who begs Lena to call Alex and Supergirl for help. But Lena says the powers that be will treat Sam the same as Reign, locking her away for dissection. Gotta say, if that’s what she thinks, then she doesn’t know Supergirl at all.
Back at the DEO, Brainy’s had no luck with the security footage, but after the team realizes he didn’t know to look through social media feeds, they find a shot of Adelaide and her cookies — with the mean no-quarantine doctor in the background.
So Pestilence is Dr. Grace Parker (Angela Zhou, a menacing addition to the cast), and when the DEO tracks her to a health insurance building, Kara vows not to make the same mistake she did with Julia.
At the insurance company, Grace enters a room, her eyes a sickly yellow and her nails elongating into dangerous points. She withers flowers as she goes by and promises to punish the insurance execs for denying coverage to people who bought their services. Ummm, is it wrong to be a tiny bit “I’ll allow it”?
But of course, Supergirl intervenes when Pestilence moves to strike. For a moment, it looks like her reminder of the Hippocratic oath to do no harm breaks through to Grace, but the good doctor’s already too far gone, boasting that these god powers are the greatest thing to ever happen to her because she gets to choose who dies.
Mon-El and Imra had hung back up to this point, but when Pestilence moves to scratch Supergirl, they both jump in. Mon-El uses his cape to restrain her arm, proving that the cape-fu isn’t a forgotten-by-the-next-episode event.
Pestilence scoffs at Supergirl’s childish desire to talk her into being good, and as they fight, Pestilence is able to scratch Supergirl, who immediately starts bleeding from the nose.
Imra contains Pestilence in a forcefield and shoots a dart into her chest. But as Grace starts to die, Purity slams through the ceiling and reminds us that in every corner of the DC universe is a woman with a sonic scream.
“Sister, I found you,” Purity says, lending Pestilence her strength and flying them both away. So that’s not great news, although Pestilence did leave the dart with her blood behind, meaning the DEO can manufacture an effective cure.
After Kara’s back on her feet, she and Imra have a meeting of minds. Kara beats herself up for following her instincts instead of listening to Imra’s future warnings, while Imra apologizes for making Kara doubt herself.
They get one more chance when Purity’s frequency tracker pings near L-Corp. Supergirl, J’onn, Mon-El, and Imra zap into building and are shocked to find that Lena has Sam in lockdown.
Lena assures Supergirl she was going to tell her, but before anybody can ask further questions, the two Worldkillers blow through the door to rescue their third sister.
“Finally,” Sam says, taking their hands and fully transforming into Reign. The three women immobilize our heroes and fly off, but not before Reign hisses, “el mayarah” — Krypton for “stronger together.”
Snaps of the cape
- Not gonna lie: Pestilence or no, I’m eating the heck out of those lemon-poppyseed cookies.
- J’onn confirms that his father is slipping away, although he keeps reaching out to help him find moments of clarity. And because that wasn’t heart-wrenching enough, he tells his quasi-surrogate daughter Alex that he can’t imagine handling Myr’nn’s fade without her.
- Bless her optimism, Kara’s still calling Purity “Julia.”
- So where do you fall on the “save Grace” versus “kill Pestilence” debate, Super-fans? Is Kara in the right to stand by her principles, or does Imra make a compelling point?
- More importantly, just how expensive is blue face paint? Because they sure stuck with the human Brainy face this week.