Supergirl: Quest for Peace

The Quest for Peace

Lex in a place of power, Eve in an amazingly ugly dress

The writers on Supergirl made a really bold choice for the finale. Actually, they make several, but the one I’m talking about at the moment is the title. “Quest for Peace” was the title of the fourth, and pretty much universally agreed-on worst, of the Christopher Reeve Superman movies. In addition to nuclear weapons playing a part in the story, Quest for Peace was also when John Cryer, this show’s Lex Luthor, played Lennie Luthor, Lex’s nephew. It’s an interesting choice for a finale. Speaking of, since it’s a finale, there will be spoilers in this review.

While they don’t do a lot of back and forth time jumps, which I appreciate, there are several time sequences set in the past to give some background on what happens. The first of these is 24 hours ago, in Washington DC, Red Daughter watches Kara escape and flies to Lex to report her failure. He takes this in stride, rare for Luthor, and praises her loyalty. He then sends her off to deal with Eliza, and boasts about America being his soon. There’s a scene of Lex at the AmerTek refinery, which mostly just shows how utterly sociopathic Lex is. The scene also shows Lex shrugging off Otis’ death, which should be a red flag for Eve.

One hour ago at the White House, Lex and the President are drinking together. We get the background on why the President is so deep in Lex’s pocket. Lex goes on about the bright future awaiting both of them, then takes a moment to order the Kaznians to attack. It’s an impressive amount of gall, ordering an enemy attack from the Oval Office. I was also surprised to see the Kaznians had their own aircraft carrier. That seems unlikely, considering how the country has been portrayed so far. With bizarre musical accompaniment, Supergirl fights Red Daughter, and Lex unfolds the next step in his treachery-filled campaign. Red Daughter confronts Lex, who, as you might guess, doesn’t care that she’s upset.

Back at the family home in Midvale, Supergirl is appalled by what she’s seeing on the news, and her family is almost as appalled at her planning on just rushing back in to the fight. Lex deals with Red Daughter, mocking her for believing in him. I hate to agree with a psycho-supervillain, but he makes a good point on this front. Lockwood gets to his old base of operations, stabilizes his medical issues for a little bit, and then has a run in with a gang of would-be assassins with a familiar face.

J’Onn and Dreamer are herded in with more prisoners at the facility that is housing some of Lex’s operations. They find out where they are and why their powers won’t work, and Dreamer takes a moment to express her displeasure with Brainy. They start forming a plan to escape, and get some fairly pathetic offers of help. Brainy and Lena meet up with Alex and Kara and they do some catching up on recent events. Brainy surprises Kara by having restored her lost evidence about Lex already, and then surprises them all with his new, cold persona as he explains his plan. Lena gets a surprising invitation and goes to get some intel for the team. There’s a Luthor family reunion in a surprising place.

Lex boasts to his family, with Lena being sickened and Lillian supportive of his plans. She does offer some advice on who Lex shouldn’t quote in public, and again, it’s good advice. More details about his plan come out, and Eve joins Lena is not being happy about them. Eve gets Lex in the hallway for an aside, but he’s not in the mood to listen to advice. J’Onn and Dreamer start their escape plan and get their powers back. Brainy has done some fine calculations and manages to get some information about where to go. Brainy goes to get some help while Kara dramatically whips off her glasses, which is something Alex has apparently missed.

Lex continues boasting to his family about what he’s doing, and Lena keeps trying to talk some sense into him. You’d think she’d know better by now. As Lex goes on (and on and on), Kara manages to get her article out to the people, and the tide of opinion shifts against Lex. The team gets to the facility and splits up to deal with Lex’s gadgets. Brainy delivers some surprising news before he goes to shut something down. Supergirl, Alex, and James get interrupted when Lockwood and several empowered Children of Liberty turn up. There’s a lot of fighting while J’Onn and Dreamer race to get to the energy core. Brainy joins them there, and gets a more pointed demonstration of how Dreamer feels. J’Onn comes up with a desperate plan to sabotage the newest weapon when Brainy can’t hack into it because… reasons.

Eve gets yelled at when Lex’s new toy doesn’t perform as designed. She tells him where the problem is, and Lex suits up and flies off. Eve tries to hold the others at gunpoint, but falls to the rage of Lena, while the guards learn not to underestimate Lillian, either. Alex and James tell Supergirl they will handle Lockwood and company when Lex shows up, freeing her up to deal with the main problem.

A shocked Lex demands to know how she’s alive, and Supergirl falls back on some trite lines. J’Onn and Dreamer continue their attempt to shut down the power and save another hero’s life from a danger he doesn’t even know about. Brainy comes back to himself and cheers them on. Lockwood and James sort of cancel each other out with a conveniently appearing second important gadget. Lex and Supergirl have a gadget duel, but he starts winning. Just when it looks like it’s all over for Supergirl, one of the freed aliens makes a dramatic appearance and saves the Girl of Steel. Supergirl pulls another strange energy absorbing trick along the lines of the one from last episode, gets herself together, and goes after Lex. His suit finally fails, and he crashes to his apparent doom after refusing to be saved by Supergirl.

Needless to say, this doesn’t kill Lex. What happens next is a surprising showdown between Lex and Lena, where she manages to get the drop on him and then keep him off-balance for the rest of the scene. There are two big shocks, one for Lex from Lena, one for Lena about something she likely should have figured out on her own. There’s a general wrap up scene at CatCo, where loose ends are dealt with and James sports a Furious new look. Colonel Haley even says a few nice things in public. Alex and Kelly get a scene with something I saw coming a while back that feels horribly artificial and forced. Brainy and Nia pass by, apparently a couple now.

Game night at J’Onn’s office is where most of the story ends. Everyone except James gathers, and Lena is apparently not acting on her new knowledge, at least not yet. Alex and Kara talk about something Kara keeps putting off, and Alex convinces her to put it off again.

There are a few more wrap up scenes. George Lockwood is speaking in public, preaching against everything his hateful father stood for. In prison, Ben Lockwood doesn’t seem happy about this. We’re still not done with Eve, as we learn she’s linked to another mysterious organization that generally plagues Gotham, not Metropolis or National City. Then, more foreshadowing shows up in the form of the Monitor, making more rounds to close the season and prepare us for the next big crossover. He brings someone to Earth who is going to make life hell for one of our heroes, then goes to someone we thought we were done with. Lena, alone in her office, drinks and does a dramatic demonstration of her anger.

What I liked: I heard a lot of doubt expressed about Jon Cryer as Lex Luthor. Well, he was incredible. Just as Tyler Hoechlin has become one of the best Superman actors, Cryer did the same with Lex. It’s a shame they haven’t been in the same scene, or even episode, so far. Dreamer’s little temper outbursts at Brainy were fun, and made sense. I’m glad we got everyone pulling together, finally. Lena besting her brother was long-overdue and made me happy. I’m very much hoping we’re done with Lockwood.

What I didn’t: I’m hoping they don’t do with Lena what they made it look like at the end. I’m not wild about who the Monitor brought to Earth, or what he did after that. I don’t like the Alex/Kelly plot. I’d much rather see Maggie Sawyer come back. Considering the world-class manipulator and liar that he is, Lena believed Lex far too easily at the end. Supergirl’s weird new powers don’t make a lot of sense to me.

It was a decent ending to an uneven season. I hope the next one is better, and they have my attention and imagination for the big crossover. I hope they don’t exclude the Legends again, but it looks like they might.

 

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