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  1. SuperTweety
  2. Supergirl General Discussion
  3. Tuesday, 15 October 2019
I watched the latest episode of SG and sadly I think Lena has gone bad. It's hard to kidnap someone, do stuff to them without their permission and not be seen as a baddie!

I'm actually quite upset by this turn of events for Lena and subsequently for the relationship between her and Kara. First, Lena has crossed a line that it will be difficult if not outright impossible for her to go back from. Kidnapping is a serious crime, not to mention what she did to Eve. Second, I find Lena's reaction to Kara keeping her identity a secret a bit hypocritical at best. Lena has had multiple secrets from Kara, including the harun-el, which is a big one! For her to be this upset is completely the pot calling the kettle black. If Lena values integrity and honesty so much perhaps she should be practising what she preaches and stop being two-faced with Kara. Just a thought....

This shift in character dynamics has begun to sour me for the show. There are lots of ways they could tackle the issues between Kara and Lena without having Lena cross so big a boundary as kidnapping, among other things.

Thought?
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Well, as I stated in my post on another thread, I did want Lena and Kara to be adversaries, but I wasn’t quite expecting this direction. I have mixed feelings about the whole situation chiefly because what this says about deflection and lack of any variety of consent.

I do not like the kidnapping of Teschmacher, mostly because Eve has gone through much of the same things Lena has, which shows a schism in Lena’s ability to recognize her own flaws, however, kidnappings is a bit par for the course in superhero land, so passable. What I dislike the most is the fact the A.I. Hope was then put into Eve without informed consent. Eve did say she wanted to help Lena out, however, Lena took the opportunity to rewrite another person without them realizing the implication of what assisting her meant. No bueno. It reminds me to much of a phrase I strongly dislike, “Better to beg forgiveness then ask for permission.” So better to push your agenda of what you want forward then to ask for consent? I don’t think so.

What I do like about this is it does accomplish initiating the conversation. How far is to far? When do we draw the line at human “improvement”? What constitutes human “improvement”? How do we make ourselves better, stronger, and become the “best version of ourselves”?

To be honest, this is a common trope in sci-fi/fantasy as it is, so the premise is not new. Movies/TV has been trying to find ways of eliminating the human “problem” to make “better” people/soldiers for ages based on things we have perpetuated in our own society. Most of that is based on people’s misinterpretation that having feelings, emotions, etc. makes them more vulnerable or weak in some way. Lena designs Hope in her version of “perfection” emphasizing morality, empathy, and logic attributing the flaws of humanity and aliens based on their emotions echoing this concept. Almost any movie where there is an A.I. involved touches on the “improvement” of efficiency where the computer has no emotional attachment to the situation and can make rational choices. However, most of the movies/shows end realizing that it is our emotional center, our human vulnerabilities, and our power to choose that makes us who we are. The human equation as it were. Lena will most likely come to their own conclusions somewhere down the line, probably with help from Supergirl, that emotion is not a weakness but what helps to make us stronger. That emotions do not need to be eliminated from human kind but to recognize how we react and respond to them instead.

My hope is that the show writers take the opportunity to utilize this platform in normalizing the conversation about mental health. In Black Lightning, Lynn (Adams) talks to Jefferson (Williams) about getting their daughter Jennifer/Lightning (McClain) therapy after going through the whole ordeal of gang violence, watching her boy friend get shot, etc. Supergirl touched on the PTSD with James Olson previously last season in regarding the memories of his father’s funeral. They are moving forward with creating a memory framework with J’onn J’onzz to restore his past. Brainy helped Kara out in creating a Mind Palace in a previous episode after her battle with Reign. All these things are pieces moving forward, however, I’d like to see a little more.

Our society has attached so many unhealthy stigmas to mental health, getting therapy and developing healthy coping skills I would love ANY of the CW shows to not just touch on, but expand the conversation about mental health. And since Kelly Olson is a Psychologist specializing in Trauma, I think it would be a hugely missed opportunity if they didn’t attempt to move forward with it. I do like how they are reinforcing the importance of communication in a relationship, however, in running the side by side comparisons of Alex/Kelly and Nia/Brainy. I think they are executing that in a wonderful way.

I know that’s a lot to ask from a Superhero show. We want Superhero story lines, obviously, and see our characters develop and grow. We do want them challenged, but, especially for Lena’s sake, I hope some healing can happen here soon. I still want Lena and Kara to challenge each other, to make them question their ideals and traverse the grey areas of their concepts of justice, but, I want to enforce there are healthy ways of going about this too and bring them to the forefront. We are only two episodes in, however, so there’s lots of time yet and a lot more story to see where this runs.
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What surprises me the most in the responses so far is that there is sweeping forgiveness for kidnapping as long as she's sorry for it basically. Yes, redemption happens but there should be serious consequences for doing what she's done to Eve.

Just a thought...

If you inferred sweeping forgiveness from my reply, I must have said it wrong. In no way do I mean to say Lena gets a free pass for her actions. Quite the opposite in fact.

I was primarilly addressing this:
First, Lena has crossed a line that it will be difficult if not outright impossible for her to go back from.

Difficult yes. Not impossible, to my mind anyway.

Brierrose's criteria for redemption very closely align with my own, and taking responsibility/paying for wrongdoing is essential to it.

And Lena has definitely wronged people. Even if it turns out to be temporary, appropriating Eve's body to serve as a host for Hope is monstrous. I absolutely think there has to be a price for that. Absent that price, any redemption arc for her would ring hollow for me.

But can Lena find her way back? My answer is, sure she can.
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What surprises me the most in the responses so far is that there is sweeping forgiveness for kidnapping as long as she's sorry for it basically. Yes, redemption happens but there should be serious consequences for doing what she's done to Eve.

Just a thought...
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This is TV and a comic book based show to boot nobody is irredeemable provided they truly want to change. For me full redemption requires three things.
1) Acknowledgement of bad choices
2) If possible fixing or in some way paying for the bad choices
3) Making good choices moving forward

By this standard some characters get mostly redeemed and that's enough, nobody's perfect. Lena may not achieve all three, my gut says the first one will be the hardest for her. IMO all the characters LP mentioned except Col. Haley did all three. I want to add Lillian to the list of the partially redeemed and I can envision a scenario where she works with Kara to get through to Lena.

What Kara did was never malicious or physically harmful right now Lena can't claim the same. I really don't want to see Kara apologize again, the one already given said it all. If Lena wants back into the fold I don't want the others to just blindly trust her right away, she's going to have to earn that trust back. I can think of a couple of concrete things Lena can do to show the group she's going to make better choices. She should give the Kryptonite formula to Alex like Supergirl wanted her to in season three and promise not to make it again without consulting Kara and/or Alex first. She must agree not to work with alien substances or technology without consulting Kara and/or Alex first. There's a reason scientist's don't usually work alone, science requires moral choices. Lena doesn't have to work side by side with anyone but more discussions like the one in the last Thanksgiving episode are a good idea.
Hope, Help and Compassion for all
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[I believe...]

No one is so far gone as to be irredeemable. Humans are beings of free will, capable of change, for good or ill. The core of Kara's character and maybe that of the series is her hope and her capacity to inspire people to be their best selves.

We have seen this demonstrated in the series time and again. Not everyone answers the proverbial call to virtue and nobility, but many do--the nameless gunman in the earthquake episode, Mon-El, Colonel Haley, Cat Grant by her own admission, even Livewire--all made the choice to change for the better because of the Girl of Steel's impact on their lives.

So it would be no surprise to me if Lena, as far gone as she is now, turns around in the end. And it would not bother me in the least if she does. I think Kara, being Kara, would rejoice to have her best friend back. By "back," I mean more than just "not liable to turn people into robots," but that would be a good start. ;)

What price Lena ends up paying for her crimes, however, is another matter.
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