“Who are you?”
Those are the first words we hear in tonight’s episode, and Cat Grant directs them at Supergirl, who is floating above her. However, the question actually drives tonight’s episode, which is all about Kara figuring out what kind of hero she wants to be. Is she someone who fights her own battles or gives up when the going gets tough?
“Fight or Flight” picks up right where last week’s installment left off, with Supergirl giving Cat Grant that exclusive interview. Kara’s response to the question is her origin story, which bores Cat since she’s heard it before. Cat has more presisng questions: Why did she wait so long to come out? What does she do during the day? Does she have plans to start a family? That last question annoys Supergirl, and she wonders out loud why no on ever asks her cousin that, thus revealing she and Superman are related. Clearly, Kara needs to add a publicist to Team Supergirl to teach her how to handle the press.
The next morning, Alex tracks Kara down at her usual breakfast spot. It becomes fairly obvious that Kara still hasn’t told her about the interview. Eventually, James shows up, and Alex quickly realizes Kara is crushing on him because she gets super dorky. But, there’s no time to discuss Kara’s infatuation once James leaves because Cat breaks the news that Superman and Supergirl are related. You can guess Alex’s reaction.
Kara heads to the office where Cat is getting ready to write her big exposé on Supergirl. It’s been awhile since she’s written an article, but she’s not worried. “I’m a writer. It’s like riding a bike or severe childhood trauma. You never really lose it,” Cat says, declaring that her new cover story will blow Vanity Fair’s Caitlyn Jenner cover out of the water.
This definitely shouldn’t come as a surprise, but Hank isn’t happy about the interview. He’s worried Kara is now on a slippery slope that could lead to a Keeping Up With the Kryptonians TV show (Fact: I would watch that show. Wouldn’t you?). Kara flies off midway through his lecture because the DEO’s computer alerts them to multiple car collision.
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Kara effortlessly saves a trapped bus driver. Reactron, one of Superman’s villains, shows up and attacks Kara because she’s related to Superman. Which is exactly why Alex and Hank didn’t want the world to find out about their relationship in the first place. Reactron is basically Iron Man, if Iron Man were made from scrap metal found in a junk yard. We find this out later, but he blames Superman for the death of his family, and now he’s out for a revenge because he’s a cliché. (Revenge plots are so boring!) Kara manages to hold her own against him and actually damages his suit, causing Reactron to flee like a rare Pokémon you encounter in the Safari Zone.
Kara returns to the DEO where she’s briefed on Reactron’s powers. She expects Hank and his team to help her fight him, but Reactron is actually human and thus falls out of the DEO’s purview.
When Kara returns to CatCo, Winn takes her and James to an abandoned office several floors below where he’s set up their own little, high-tech secret lair. It looks like Felicity’s office in the first season of Arrow. And, yes, Kara now has two lairs (three if you count her living room). Is that too many lairs? Definitely, maybe. Anyway, Winn starts working on a way to track Reactron, but James objects because he’s worried Kara might not be able to handle him on her own since Clark could barely do it. Yes, he accidentally reveals Superman’s secret identity to Winn, who starts freaking out. Kara refuses to call Clark for help because she doesn’t want to just be “Superman’s cousin.” Calling Clark for help so early in her career would send the wrong message to other supervillains.
Every week, Supergirl seems intent on addressing its critics and naysayers. This scene here is it’s explanation for why Superman isn’t a stronger presence on the show. Supergirl, like Kara, is intent on proving that it can stand on its own and doesn’t need Superman to make people interested in it.
NEXT: Party time