After directing two episodes of The Flash, Kevin Smith (Clerks, Dogma) made his directorial debut on this week’s Supergirl. Next to the upcoming musical crossover, this is the episode I’ve been looking forward to the most. The last couple of episodes have been mediocre, so I was really hoping that the mid-season premiere would get the show back on track. Did Kevin Smith deliver the awesome factor that has been sadly missing from the last few episodes?
The answer is a resounding yes! As with his two contributions to the world of the Scarlet Speedster, it is easy to see that Kevin Smith loves directing for Supergirl. His understanding of what makes our hero tick is clear, and the interesting shots taken in ‘Supergirl Lives’ are nothing short of breathtaking. In fact, I enjoyed this episode so much that I’m making this post a spoiler-free review rather than a scene-by-scene recap. Alright, there may actually be some slight spoilers so I can get some points across, but I promise to keep them minimal. The best way to enjoy this episode is to see it for yourself in glorious shot-by-shot detail.
“As with his two contributions to the world of the Scarlet Speedster, it is easy to see that Kevin Smith loves directing for Supergirl.”
Taking it to the Next Level
‘Supergirl Lives’ has a very epic feel to it, a difficult task considering the time and budget restraints of television. However, Smith’s direction in addition to the CGI work gives this episode a “huge” feel to it. The opening scene of our hero chasing down and stopping a group of jewel thieves was well-choreographed. Although I’m still not on “Team Guardian” yet, I will say those fight scenes were nicely done, too. The closeness of the shots during the fight scenes made this look like a completely different show to me.
Obviously, there are limits to what one can do on television in regards to showing off an alien world. I thought the alien planet was handled well, and despite many interior scenes, I still thought this part of the story felt very off-world. The exterior shots were handled well in order to make this seem like another planet. For those that disagree with me, please bear in mind I grew up on classic Doctor Who, so it’s fairly easy to please me in this area. Immediately, Supergirl and Mon-El are devoid of their powers, so the danger factor is heightened here. This plot point comes into play with my upcoming final point regarding Smith’s understanding of the character of Supergirl.
One quality to Kevin Smith’s directing that I’ve loved since Clerks was his ability to capture character moments extremely well. There are some outstanding moments for each of our main supporting characters, particularly for Winn. I thought this was his best episode to date as he struggles with continuing to work with James after an incident that occurs in the opening. It was fun to actually have Winn as part of the action, as he is definitely not a red shirt. This episode also gave us some of the best Mon-El moments to date. Events in this episode help both Winn and Mon-El figure out their places in the fight against evil. Fans of the Daxamite superhero will also see his mystery deepen tonight.