Crumbling Relationships in Supergirl’s “Blurred Lines”

Blurred Lines - Supergirl standing in an apartment

Supergirl 5.3: “Blurred Lines”

Robert Rovner, Jessica Queller, Sarah Schechter, Greg Berlanti (Executive Producers), Eric Dean Seaton (director), Daniel Beaty (co-producer), Joanie L. Whoehler, Jennifer Lence, Carl Ogawa, J. Holtham, Jay Faerber, Chris Pavoni (producers), Derek Simon (supervising producer), Jesse Warn, Dana Horgan, Lindsay Sturman, Rob Wright (co-executive producers), Lindsay Struman, J. Holtham (written by)
Melissa Benoist, Mehcad Brooks, David Harewood, Chyler Leigh, Nicole Maines, Katie McGrath, Jesse Rath, Staz Nier, Julie Gonzalo, Andrea Brooks, Azie Tesfai (cast)
Aired October 20, 2019 on the CW

After last week’s shocking cliffhanger of Lena (Katie McGrath) replacing Eve’s (Andrea Brooks) consciousness with the “Hope” artificial intelligence, we see more of that at play this week in “Blurred Lines.” Lena continues to straddle the line between heroism and villainy as she uses Eve’s body as nothing more than a glorified robot assistant. And while Lena dealt with one betrayal, of trust, she’s still playing the long game with what she considers Kara’s (Melissa Benoist) worst betrayal. Using Kara’s compassion against her to violate her broader principles is a dirty trick, but one that is very easy to spot now that the more morally ambiguous Lena is playing.The primary conflict of the episode is between Kara, William Day (Staz Nier), and an Orifacian alien. The Orifacians are a parasitic race that look like spider tattoos that burrow into a host body. The alien assassinated a geneticist, leading Team Supergirl to investigate. Day’s reluctance to investigate the death, and his ties to the victim, lead to more strife between him and Kara, in a relationship that’s already set to burst soon. However, before the team can find out who she works for after subduing her, the Orifacian is killed by a mysterious shadow creature who stabs her in the heart. My theory is that this is the first hint of the upcoming “Crisis” crossover event on this season of Supergirl, as the Anti-Monitor from the last event used Shadow Demons as his lackeys. I have no clue what Day’s connection to “Crisis” will be, but as both Arrow and Flash have already addressed the crossover this year, its time Supergirl should too.

The other major plot point of the episode is the conflict between J’onn (David Harewood) and Ma’alefa’ak (Phil LaMarr and special guest star Sean Astin). Ma’alefa’ak assumes the identity of Kelly’s (Azie Tesfai) friend Pete to get access to his hidden memories and powers. This results in both Kelly and James (Mehcad Brooks) going on the lam at the end of the episode.

Kara Danvers and Lena Luthor sharing a moment over an international lunch
Kara and Lena having an international lunch

We also get more of the Nia (Nicole Maines) and Brainy (Jesse Rath) romance, as Nia’s unspoken frustrations with Brainy’s smothering tendencies came to a head. I saw some criticism of how this relationship has been portrayed, this past week, and I want to address that. The criticism is that both of the characters are acting childishly in this relationship, and that’s certainly a viewpoint I can see. But I want to address it from a different angle. As a trans woman, our dating pools early in life are either non-existent or vastly different from our cisgender counterparts. I presented male for the first 26 years of my life, and thus for my first several relationships. The world is getting better about traditional gender roles in relationships, but they still exist, so this may well be the first time Nia has been treated this way in a relationship. I know my first dating experience as a woman was vastly different than any of the ones I had when I was still closeted. I don’t see Nia’s relationship as childish or immature, I see it through the lens as someone who has experienced similar.

It’s also of note that while he hasn’t been specifically described as such, Querl is still new to experiencing emotions. That is something else that should be taken into consideration when analyzing their relationship. Between him not having a great grasp on human emotions, and his inexperience with the customs of a time period that isn’t his own, it’s understandable to see him struggle in a new relationship. I hope these kids can salvage what they have, but we’ll see.

“Blurred Lines” plays at many different types of broken or breaking relationships, whether they be romantic, familial or friendships. All in all it was a solid episode, with the weakest parts being the main conflict of the story. I want more “Crisis” lead up, and soon.

Supergirl airs at 8 pm Sundays on the CW. And read our previous Supergirl Season 5 coverage here.

Cori McCreery

Cori McCreery

Cori is a life long comic nerd residing in Northern California. A life long Supergirl and DC Comics fan, she is the DC Comics Beat Reporter for Women Write About Comics.