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[TV Review] ‘Supergirl’ Episode 1.06 – “Red Faced”

Hell hath no fury like a Supergirl who is pissed the hell off!  This week the Woman of Steel took on the anti-superman android, Red Tornado.  Created by Dr. T.O. Morrow (giggle-worthy name, that one) for the military, Red Tornado has just entered his testing phase.  In order to accomplish such a field test, the Army hits up the DEO and requests (aka demands) that Supergirl help them do so.  Problem is, the thing eventually goes rogue after being beat down by Kara.

Yeah, you knew it would.  I knew it would.  We always know super-robots will turn bad and yet we still keep pursuing that dream.  The Army, headed by General Sam Lane (Glen Morshower), is none too pleased with this turn of events and Lane tries his best to blame Supergirl and the DEO for it.  No such luck, jackass.  In turn, the DEO turns to Maxwell Lord (Peter Facinelli) to help them track the killbot down, which is also a mistake.  I mean, come on…mysterious, sketchy genius billionaire?  Do we really want him involved?  Especially when he evokes a sleazy Tom Cruise?

Of course, it wouldn’t be fun if our heroes never made mistakes and having Lord pop up regularly has been amping up the entertainment factor.  At least it has for me, anyway.  It ultimately proves that Dr. Morrow is still controlling the thing and Kara & Alex set up to put a stop to it.  The battle on two fronts is juxtaposed nicely, with Alex taking on Morrow as Kara tangles with Red Tornado.  At the end of the day, there is no longer a tomorrow for Red Tornado and T.O. Morrow (Iddo Goldberg, in a dual role as both).  No, I’m not sorry for that.

Speaking of Red Tornado, despite being mute, offered up the best super-powered adversary that Supergirl has faced so far.  He also looked great, being one of the better-designed comic book characters that Berlanti & Co. have brought to life on their DC Comics shows.  If we’ve seen the last of him (and it certainly looks like we have), I hope they at least put that much effort into further adversaries (and allies) moving forward.  I’m a bit tired of all the grungy, grimy-looking buff dudes we’ve repeatedly gotten so far.  As a friend pointed out, he does resemble a super-rusted Tin Man a bit, but I think it suits him.  Still, it’s hard not to hear the tune…

When a robot’s an alien killer/His red suit couldn’t look iller/And yet he’s cast aside/But now he’s gone whacko/And wants a Supergirl to smacko/For his creator’s pride…

Morshower’s Sam Lane was serviceable, but he appeared to be phoning his performance in.  The man has played military officials repeatedly throughout his acting career and could do so on autopilot, which is exactly how this felt.  If and when he arrives on the series again, I hope he puts forth a bit more effort.  On the flipside, David Harewood’s Hank Henshaw stood out this week.  Given the mystery surrounding his character and the fact that he’s tied to the death of Alex’s father, I’m glad he will be given more to work with as the season trucks on.

Overall this was a solid episode.  It didn’t reach the highs of “Fight or Flight” (Ep. 3) or “Livewire” (Ep. 4), but it was a step-up from last week’s lackluster entry.  We have two more episodes ahead of us before the winter break.  Next week appears to deal with some power loss for Kara, which could be interesting.  The week after that brings the mid-season finale.

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