Supergirl Season 2 Blu-ray and Special Features REVIEW
Staring: Melissa Benoist, Mehcad Brooks, Chyler Leigh, Jeremy Jordan, Floriana Lima
Created by: Greg Berlanti
When we met Kara back in season 1, she was very much a fish out of water. An alien that looks like us, but does not see this world in the same way we do. Thus a hero was born. She looks up the mantle of Supergirl and dawned the House of El emblem. Her life was not without trials and mishaps. During the CBS run series, Kara had many ups and downs. It was eventually a 20 episode origin story, for better or worse. After the last episode, a lot of us fans wondered if we would see our new favorite heroine return for another season. CBS said no, thankfully, one of their other arms, The CW, said yes. So Kara Danvers and the rest of the cast returned for Supergirl Season 2, which is now available in full HD on Blu-ray!
The first couple of episodes reintroduces us to the world of National City and our main characters. There are a lot of changes going on both within the city, and Kara’s life that will have lasting effects throughout the season. Not the least of these being the introduction on Mon-El. The addition of another super powered character normally hinders a show like this, but Chris Wood brings a lot to the Mon-El character. He makes you run the gambit of emotions for and against him. Is he on Supergirl’s side, or is he working against her? The writers keep you guessing, which makes the show that much more fun. On the human side, we get to meet Maggie Sawyer, and Lena Luthor (Floriana Lima and Katie McGrath respectively). Maggie gives us deeper insight into Alex’s character, and Lena, like Mon-El, keeps us wondering whose side she is on. They all bring something great to the show.
Not only is this season of Supergirl packed full of character development and action, there is also a bigger message they are trying to get across. Or should I say, messages? Just looking at the titles of the episodes lets you know they are trying to say something. The writers let us know that “We Can Be Heroes,” sometimes it is okay to “Resist,” and of course, that people can come at Supergirl, but “Nevertheless, She Persisted.” They also take the opportunity to discuss racism, gender equality, and the LGBT community. I, for one, take my hat off to a company with the guts to do this. This is all done within the Supergirl universe, so there are still plenty of alien battles with super, sci-fi gadgets and some amazing special effects. This show keeps getting better and I cannot wait to see what season 3 has in store.
To read my spoiler-full review, continue below!
The first couple of episodes are centered around getting to know our characters and what everybody can do. We not only get to see Supergirl again, but Superman also shows his face. If you are already familiar with the show, then this intro runs pretty slowly. When I first saw it, I was worried that they were going to just try and do another season 1. Thankfully that was not the case! They also use this time to bring in Mon-El, get rid of Cat Grant, and turn the DEO upside down. By taking the time to do all of this up front, the writers could move through the rest of the season with more purpose.
As mentioned above, this series does not hold back any punches on social commentary. Not to mention that no character is safe from having vices now. While season 1 was full of “rainbows and puppies,” season 2 shows the underside of National City and of our heroes. Who would have thought that our lovely Kara is a racist against Daxamites? And the way she shows it is not pretty! The way Melissa Benoist plays it is scary good, it makes you not like Supergirl for a while. Of course, we come back to her side when we learn Mon-El’s parents are even worse, to the degree that Rhea, Mon-El’s mother is willing to kill her own husband. Rhea is the villain that we have needed for a hero like Supergirl.
Along with the main plot going on, season 2 is chock full of side stories. Everything from J’onn having to come to terms with his past, and Winn trying to make a future for himself. One thing that The CW is great at doing is letting the world outside the lens of the camera live. That is to say, just because your name is not in the title, does not mean things are not going on in your life. And each story affects the other, sometimes in a major way, sometimes almost not noticeable. That is, except for the episode titled “Alex,” where Alex Danvers gets kidnapped and it is never spoken of again and has no major consequences.
In the end, we get to see awesome battles between Rhea’s henchmen and the DEO team. Being that at the time of the finale being shown, we did not know if we would get a season 3, there was a lot of tension in the last couple episodes. It was not guaranteed who would survive and if Supergirl could defeat her strongest villain yet. Of course, it is no big surprise that she won, and with the help of Cat Grant, Mon-El and Lena Luthor. Even rewatching the last episode, I admit that I feel a little emotional. This season gave us Mon-El, played by Chris Wood. At first, we did not know if we should like him or not. Then we all fell in love with him and even hashtagged KarMel throughout social media. So what do the writers do? They take him away from us! But it was a sacrifice that made him even more awesome. And he did not die, so there is no telling what the future holds. In true comic book show fashion, though, that was not the end. We learn that another is being sent to Earth, but who is it? There is a lot of speculation, but I guess we have to wait until October to find out!
Now onto the SPECIAL FEATURES…
The special features are always the highlight of any Blu-ray release as it is often the only place you can find unique perspectives on the project and its process. The special features on Supergirl dive especially deep into the thought process of the show’s creators and we get to learn a little bit more about the actors and their characters. The special features on Supergirl Season 2 are not as meaty or varied as I would like but what is there is insightful and will offer some new stuff for fans, plus the addition of Kevin Smith really helps to up the enthusiasm and comedy of these special features as his inclusion really helps sell the product.
Supergirl: 2016 Comic Con Panel
This special feature isn’t exactly special and is actually easily available via YouTube, but none the less its always fun to see the cast including Melissa Benoist, Tyler Hoechlin, Mechad Brooks, David Harewood, Chyler Leigh, and Jeremy Jordan all get together and have fun discussing the show. Even though this panel is over a year old at this point and most of the things they discuss have come to fruition, it’s well worth watching just to see the cast in all their glory, expressing their joy and excitement for the show and the direction it will take in its second season.
Supergirl: Alien Fight Night
Supergirl’s special features are a lot of commentaries and deep looks into some of our favorite episodes. Supergirl: Alien Fight Night, takes us on a journey through the creative process of Supergirl’s “Survivors” episode in which Alien residents of Earth are forced to compete in an underground fight club run by the villainous Roulette. Andrew Kreisberg and his team of writers discuss the thought process behind the episode, including the allegories it displays as well as the need to have Supergirl fight someone as powerful as her. Most of the focus of the discussion though was spent on how the writing team would use the episode to bring to light our own issues with immigration. The featurette offers some interesting insight into the thought process of creators and how they build and episode and attempt to comment on current events. Unfortunately, this isn’t the only feature that takes this approach (see Aliens Among Us) and the time spent on the allegories overshadows everything else, often making Kreisberg and crew sound a bit preachy.
Aliens Among Us
While Arrow is about vigilantes and The Flash takes on Meta-humans, Supergirl is all about the alien aspect of the DC universe. In Aliens Among Us Andrew Kreisberg and his team discuss why those choose to focus on Aliens and why that topic relates so well to Supergirl. They really go in depth into this subject and once again make comparisons to real world situations. It’s a lot of the same discussion we heard in Supergirl: Alien Fight Night, except this time, they included sci-fiction authors to really drive home the idea of Alien integration into a human society. It’s another fascinating look into the process and how writers use the real world to create fantastical stories, but it again spends a little too much time hitting the political angle and not enough time talking about the Behind the Scenes aspects of having to create a universe of alien creatures and what that entails. Both this feature and Supergirl: Alien Fight Night will want the viewer to know the deeper meaning behind these episodes and Supergirl as a whole, which is great, but we also want to know the technical aspects, not just the political influences.
A Conversation with Andrew Kreisberg and Kevin Smith
As I mentioned before Kevin Smith makes a few appearances in these special features and every time you hear his voice and unapparelled excitement you can’t help but smile. In this conversation between Andrew and Kevin, we don’t learn much, but we do get to hear a little history about Kevin’s involvement, and how he handled working on multiple Supergirl and Flash episodes. It’s always fun to hear Smith talk about projects whether he is involved or not, and this is no exception.
Supergirl Lives Audio Commentary with Andrew Kreisberg and Kevin Smith
By far my favorite part of the special features were the commentary tracks featuring Andrew Kreisberg and Kevin Smith. Listening to these two talk about the “Supergirl Lives” episode and Kevin’s excitement for the project is so enjoyable. Even if you aren’t a fan of the show you will be hard pressed to subdue you enthusiasm as Smith and Kreisberg break down the episode and can’t help but ooze passion for this project. Hearing Smith’s voice throughout the episode never feels distracting or disjointed but instead becomes a welcome edition. I do see where after 22 episodes of his unbridled enthusiasm, could feel over bearing but luckily we just get a taste of Smith and Kreisberg and it’s just enough to have you begging for more next season.
Did You Know Facts for Fans
This feature is especially geared towards the hardcore Supergirl Fanbase, as actors and creators answer your questions and give us a little behind the scenes peek at the movie magic that goes into creating Supergirl. My only gripe with this feature is that you couldn’t watch them all in one go, and instead had to constantly go back to the menu to select the next clip. So even though these snippets were fun, they can be a bit of a pain to view.
Supergirl Season 2 offers a lot for fans but is missing some crucial special features eliminates to put it over the top and make it something really spectacular. I would have liked to have seen a gag reel or bloopers as these are always enjoyable and I can’t image with 22 episodes they have a shortage of these types of clips. I also missed the Behind the Scenes aspect that most special features included and while we do it a lot of commentary from our cast and crew, we don’t get to see a lot of the movie magic and technical aspects that go into creating such an effects heavy show like Supergirl. If you are a fan of the series and want to learn more about the creative process behind bringing this character to life, this Blu-ray is for you, if you are just a casual viewer of the show, I may recommend saving some cash and just catching the episodes on your favorite streaming service.
*Special Features Reviewed by: Casey Walsh (EIC)