Lena Luthor Would Never Write This Storyline

Because Lena Luthor is a smart, intelligent, thoughtful woman who probably wouldn’t underestimate the audience of a show about a female superhero.

And I’m not mad, Supergirl. I’m just disappointed, because I know you can do better. And this isn’t some delusional “Kara Danvers was her best in season one” rant. It’s “hey, remember two episodes ago when my girls traipsed around in the Reignforest and saved the day? Me too.” Let’s do that again.  Continue reading

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Lena Luthor is a Good Person

Sigh.

Remember last week, when I was riding my high from 3×17, and the joy and excitement was practically bursting out of me? I was so happy and joyous. The writers listened. They took the most powerful part of the show, and they centered an episode around it. We had great things to come.

And then…they aired 3×18.

I am sad, tired, angry, and disappointed, among other things. It’s a sad state of affairs that in an episode with Domestic!GuardianCorp and Mon-el going back to save Kara with his apparently fucking magical cape tricks, the worst part of it was a SuperCorp scene.

We open with Lena sharing a “tender” morning after with James, and I use the quotes because the soundtrack music tells me that it’s supposed to be sweet and romantic, but honestly, she just seems bored. Like, it was an okay night, but it was nothing to write home about. Something to pass the time.

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This is the face of someone who’s mentally writing their grocery list. Wait, it’s Lena Luthor. Mentally tweaking her recipe for Kryptonite.

I didn’t absolutely hate this scene, though I don’t buy the chemistry between James and Lena as lovers. They seem more like workplace proximity associates who are bordering on friends, despite the actors’ valiant attempts at levity. And also…we’re supposed to believe that James trusts Lena so much that he’s willing to betray Kara/Supergirl? Like, I always assumed that sex with Lena Luthor was a life-changing experience, but damn.

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Lena Luthor has a magical vagina dot org

Oh, except when Lena says “I’m really glad I can tell you my secrets now” and James LOOKS TO THE SIDE. Because he’s still keeping secrets from her. Granted, it’s not his place to out Kara, but that really has to be weighing on him. Kara refusing to tell HER BEST FRIEND about her secret identity is fucking up all of the lives of the people she loves.

And that’s not the Kara we have come to know and love over these three seasons.

But it seems like she’s in short supply these days.

Even when Supergirl asks Lena if she’s okay, they say volumes with just a few little words. Because I think while Supergirl is genuinely concerned for her friend, Lena still feels betrayed. Which is understandable, because that’s not how BFFs treat each other. And the look on Supergirl’s face? That’s of a person who knows they betrayed their best friend. Not of a Super worrying about a Luthor.

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No more cuddles?

Literally everyone else on this show gives Lena Luthor more respect than her best friend. J’onn, Alex, James, Brainiac, Winn, probably Crouton-el.

This is not the Supergirl you gave us.

These are not the relationships you made us love.

Alex doesn’t go after Ruby because she doesn’t trust Lena. She goes after Ruby because she doesn’t want her to be scared. And sure, if Alex hadn’t gone after her, Reign wouldn’t have found her, but pssh. Details. And the Alex Danvers we know wouldn’t want Ruby to be scared.

In case you didn’t know, I ship it. 

I’ve been pondering this for over 12 hours, and I still can’t figure it out. Why is James there to tell Lena about Patricia Arias? I guess so he can reason with her about the Kryptonite and Supergirl. But…why?

Why do Kara and Lena need a man to moderate their feelings?

Spoiler alert — they don’t.

They’re strong, powerful women — superheroes in their own right. Heroes in their own right. Two women with a history of mutual trust and respect, and it’s ridiculous to expect us to think that Kryptonite is more powerful than their relationship.

Because Supergirl created a world where powerful women are friends. Support each other through the good and the bad. And at its helm, they put a literal superhero. The Girl of Steel would go out of her way to save her friends, her friends’ partners, and their animals. And now you’re telling us she can’t see through the Kryptonite to see her trusted best friend and confidant on the other side.

And Kara? Where the FUCK do you get off telling Lena what she’s going to do with anything? Lena’s right. Kara does have a God complex. You’re not the decider, Supergirl. Lena makes a good, rational point that humans face danger every single fucking day, but they don’t let that stop them from living. How many buildings has Supergirl destroyed, putting hundreds of humans’ lives in danger? Their lives aren’t worth less than yours, Kara.

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This is her “I’m not mad; I’m just disappointed face.” I am Lena, and Lena is me, writers.

And I’m sorry, but since when does Kara have to be the only one in charge of anything? Is one of the side effects of Kryptonite that it instantly flips a switch in her from do-gooder to control freak? Guess you better check that lead-lined case for holes, Lena.

Despite all of this negativity from Supergirl (and the woman she knows is Kara Danvers, don’t fight me), Lena stands firm, which is completely in line with who she is. And I’m digging this. Supergirl could literally squash her like a bug, and she’s sassing her right back. She acknowledges they need each other right now, and this is how it’s going to have to be.

Pro tip — good apologies don’t include “you have to understand that…” Just apologize. This is your best fucking friend! Er, adjective. Not verb. You know what I mean.

Lena’s voice shaking when she explains that making the Kryptonite was personal to her, too, shows us again how GOOD she is. She knew what she was risking, but her friendship with Sam was all that mattered. These are not the actions of a villain.

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The only danger I see here is Lena’s cheekbones.

This is the look of a woman who was just betrayed by her best friend again, when said best friend brought up Lena helping Supergirl, as if Supergirl isn’t standing two feet away from her. And then Lena…lets loose.

All of that frustration she has that her best friend has been lying to her for months about being Supergirl, the disagreement with the Kryptonite, and maybe even that she’s been pushing her to be with James is just too much. And Lena tells Kara what we’ve all been shouting. Supergirl is being a hypocrite when it comes to Lena, and she’s done with it, going so far as to compare her to Lillian.

Oh, and she says Supergirl had James search her vault, telling Kara two things — one, she assumes Kara knows James is Guardian; two, Lena knows James is Guardian. There’s a lot to unpack in those two statements.

She reasons through a problem with Space Granddad. But Lena? She shouts and accuses her of being evil.

And Mon-el, who has fucked up dozens of times, who has betrayed Kara countless times, and who is just now on the road to being a “good person,” even though that apparently means leaving your wife — Kara looks at him like he’s a hero. And she looks at Lena like she’s a villain.

And that’s unfair. That’s unfair to Lena, to Kara, and even to Mon-el. And it’s unfair to us.

And that is not the Kara Danvers that existed in this universe prior to this.

You can’t create dynamic, unique female characters who we cheer for, we love, we connect to, and who we both want to BE and BE WITH and then suddenly try to insist that they need the men to get through this wacky thing called life. Because it’s unbelievable, it’s out of character, and it’s insulting.

You can’t create a fucking superhero who believes in the inherent good of people, who befriends Lena Luthor because she knows that people shouldn’t be judged on the actions of their families or last names, and then expect us to suddenly believe Kryptonite is enough to ruin this relationship. Because let’s suspend disbelief for one minute and say Lena doesn’t know Kara is Supergirl. Okay, fine. Supergirl knows Lena is Kara Danvers’ best friend. And Kara Danvers knows that Lena Luthor is one of the best people she knows. I don’t buy it.

You created this wonderful relationship and then are seemingly trying to turn it against each other. Lena versus Kara is lazy writing. A Super and a Luthor as enemies? It’s been done. A Super and a Luthor as gal pals, taking on the world and making it a better place? Now, that’s compelling.

And, I mean, I say “you can’t,” but really, you can. It’s not my show. I’m just a fan, and the writers owe me nothing. I know that. Do your thing, writers. But…don’t expect me to follow you blindly. You’re not the Lena to my Kara. You haven’t given me enough reason to trust you.

And I won’t. Trust you, blindly, that is. Because while you don’t owe me anything, I don’t owe you anything either. I’m not saying this as a threat, because I’m self-aware enough to realize that my voice is a tiny one in the deep well of this fandom. But if you ruin a show and the characters I love, I’m not going to watch it. I’m not going to use the hashtag. I’m not going to DVR it or buy it or rewatch it or live-tweet it. I’m not going to support its advertisers, and I’m not going to spend my Tuesday mornings writing about it.

All I’ve ever wanted was for this show to be good. To live up to its potential that I have seen with my own eyes. Give me a reason to trust you, Supergirl. Get your shit together. Be the Lena to my Kara.

Bonus content that didn’t fit anywhere else:

  • I genuinely like Mehcad Brooks as an actor. I enjoyed him on Necessary Roughness, and I think he’s handsome, charming, and engaging. But this show doesn’t know what to do with him, and they’re doing him a disservice by shoving him in this unbelievable relationship. He’s better than this.
  • James, if you fling your arm like that, does that shield just come out? That must be awkward at meetings.
  • “New from Ulta, Kryptonite spray. Let it Reign down on you.”
  • If Patricia has never met her granddaughter, why does she have a picture?
  • Alex Danvers made me even gayer dot org
  • ALEX DANVERS ON A MOTORCYCLE
  • Okay, but seriously, Alex Danvers’ arc in this episode is 100% true to her character. So the writers know their own characters. They just choose to ignore them sometimes.
  • Also, that Luthor Mansion reveal was super cool.
  • Shout-out to Cynthia Stevenson as the mansion caretaker, who starred in Hope and Gloria, a sitcom that aired from 1995-1996 that took place in Pittsburgh.
  • James says “Pestilence” oddly.
  • Supergirl’s muscles are very distracting in this episode. I blame all of the fanfic I’ve been reading. Why don’t we ever see Kara in short sleeves?
  • If Mon-el hadn’t interrupted them, I wonder if Supergirl would have come out to Lena as Kara.
  • Two Lillian Luthor references in this episode. Does this mean we’ll see Brenda Strong again soon?
  • Consider this an official request for Imra to join the Waverider.
  • Lena bought all of that ice cream because she hoped Kara would be there. You can’t convince me otherwise.

Special thanks:

I just wanted to say a quick thank-you to Melissa Hernández, whose Lena-only YouTube videos have made these LenaCaps so much easier.

Thanks for reading, friends. I’d say I hope you enjoyed this, but I don’t think it was very enjoyable. It was a frustrating episode to watch and a frustrating episode to write about. I’ll see you here next week, maybe, and until then, stay sexy and don’t betray your characters.

Lena Luthor, You’re My Hero

Supergirl 3×17 fucked me up.

This is a true fact. So is my next statement.

Lena Luthor is a hero.

I’m not saying that because I’m thirsty, because I’m blinded by her smirk. I’m not fooled into thinking she’s a Mother Teresa in a world full of Ed Geins. But Lena Luthor is amazing, and she’s my hero.

This episode has shown her devotion to her friends, her strong moral compass, and the worth of the absolute sexiest part of her body –her brain.

Oh, and don’t forget the sass.

“And you didn’t think to bring this to our attention?”

“The attention of a clandestine organization, that’s never formally acknowledged its existence to me? No.”

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Continue reading

#DragonCon Panels — Smashing the Patriarchy One Panel at a Time

So, I originally intended to include these “comments’ in our initial DragonCon post, but they…kind of took on a life of their own. So if you were interested in two of the panels Michelle and I attended about Person of Interest and Supergirl, well, look no further.

On Sunday morning, we decided to hit up a couple of non-Wynonna Earp panels. First up was Person of Interest, and let me tell you, the two guys running this panel had no idea what was about to hit them. It was sparsely attended — maybe 10-15 people — and most of the audience was female, with two male moderators. Little did they know that in our group of five, three of us had very strong opinions about the show, two were obsessed with it while it was on, and one even had a POI tattoo.

First of all, it took 13 minutes for Root to even be mentioned, and though I realize that she wasn’t an original character, that seems…a bit long for what some say is the most pivotal character in the entire series. Then, one of them referred to award-winning actress Camryn Mannheim as “that heavy woman with the ponytail,” and I. Fucking. Lost it. I get not being able to remember someone’s name, but that’s an unacceptable, patriarchal way to describe somebody. Control was an amazing character, and Camryn Mannheim is the shit. Fuck you and your brain that that’s how you describe her, by reducing an amazing actress to your perception of her body type. And let me tell you, moderator-on-the-right, to quote my mother, you’re no Raquel Welch. (Yes, that is a direct quote from Maggie Lesbiyinzer, about one of my exes. Stay classy and current, Mom.)

After Michelle spoke the first time, a moderator cut her off — well, he tried to. When he interrupted her, we both shouted back — some combo of “Let me/her finish!” And they did. They didn’t want to call on her again after that, and when a dude behind her left, he pointed at her, like, “Let the lady speak.” After she finished speaking, I will say that the women in the room mobilized and all began talking, and no one was interrupted again. But I’ve said too much — I’ll turn things over to her and let her shout about her favorite show.

[ Michelle’s opus begins ]

It’s no secret that Person of Interest is my all-time favorite show. When I saw that there was a Person of Interest fan panel at DragonCon, I kind of lost my shit. I love Wynonna Earp and I attended DragonCon for it, but holy shitballs, I was unhealthily excited to discuss POI.

When we arrived at the room and saw who the panel consisted of, I had a bad feeling about what the next hour would entail…and, damn, was I right. The two white guys who were “the panel” didn’t understand Person of Interest on a fundamental level, and it hurt to listen to them talk about a show that means so much to me in such shitty terms. It’s a small miracle I didn’t Lucado all over the room (which I think my friends were expecting, based on their constant worried glances). [ Editor’s note — we were. ] I’ll admit that much of the panel is a blur because the thirty minutes I gave the panelists to prove themselves was thirty minutes I spent trying to control myself and not jump up shouting. Eventually, they said the one thing I couldn’t keep quiet about and thus started my evisceration of the two panelists, who were nowhere near prepared for me.

I’m going to break down every point they made that is false, but I’ll start with the thing that had me forgetting my fear of talking to any crowd bigger than five and raising my hand. They claimed that Carter and Root dying was good for the development of Harold (and his fucking glasses) and John. 

While I agree that both Carter and Root’s storylines had to end in their death (but Root is totally alive), them both dying as a plot device to further John/Harold’s story is a fucking abomination. In my opinion, those two deaths being portrayed as they were ended up being two of the biggest missteps the show made. The Carter and John romance was the brain child of Jim Caviezel (I don’t care enough to look up spelling) [ Editor’s note — I did, and it’s right. ] and the show laid zero groundwork for it. Yes, they used the sudden romance well in furthering John’s development, BUT a woman of color had to die for John to grow? Hello, damaging trope! Carter’s storyline needed to end in her death because that was the natural conclusion to her going rogue to take down HQ. Making her death about John did a massive disservice to Carter and everything Taraji P. Henson brought to the character.

Now let’s talk about Root. These guys running the panel liked that Root died to give Harold the push he needed to give The Machine freedom to destroy Samaritan, but here’s the thing — I STRONGLY DISAGREE. First off, 2016 was a flaming trash heap of a year for female queer characters on TV and having Root die to further the development of a straight white dude was NOT OKAY. As much as it pains me to say, Root dying was an inevitability of the show. She grew from the young girl who lost her best friend to the patriarchy, Samantha Groves, to a hacker assassin who believed that humanity was a lost cause, that we were all “bad code”. Through her work with The Machine and Team Machine, Root learned that while humans are flawed, every life matters. Her sacrificing herself for The Machine makes perfect sense because of course she’d sacrifice herself for her god who was out to save humanity from the oppression Samaritan represented. But was it necessary for her to die to save Harold? No. The show introduced the idea of simulations in “If-Then-Else,” which is quite possibly the best episode of the series. We see The Machine run hundreds of thousands of simulations in a matter of seconds to determine the best strategy to optimize success while minimizing losses. In “The Day the World Went Away,” Root takes a bullet meant for Harold while fleeing from Samaritan. I find it hard to believe that in the time we saw the sniper preparing to when he fired that The Machine wouldn’t have found a way to save both its Primary Asset and Harold. It doesn’t make sense and demonstrates that the show killed Root to further Harold’s development. Had Harold gotten over his PTSD from the 400+ iterations of The Machine he created that failed, listened to everyone telling him to set The Machine free to save humanity, and stopped being a self-righteous idiot, Root wouldn’t have had to die that way. Yes, she would have had to die in service of her god, but not for anyone other than herself.

ALSO, these guys tried to rebuff my statement by explaining that Root had to decide to save the people she cared about because Shaw and Harold were in the car. FALSE! Anyone who loves the show knows that Shaw forced Root to leave her behind again to save Harold from his own stupidity. Root told Shaw she was a shape tracing a line through the infinite, then she fled with Harold because he decided to go back to a coffee shop he frequented with Grace.

I made quite a few other comments that led the panelists to try and pretend I don’t exist but I don’t remember them, so I’m just going to break down everything they got wrong.

  1. POI was a story about horrible people doing horrible things

This is the most nonsensical idea about POI one could have. Yes, POI is a story about people doing “horrible” things. And yes you could classify them as horrible people. BUT “horrible” is a completely subjective term. Yes, Team Machine did some horrible things in the name of The Machine BUT are they horrible? Each and every person in POI was fighting for what they deemed was right; yes, each of them did something that could be classified as “horrible” but when in the name of what they believed was the right thing how horrible can it be? As Harold once said, “I suppose that everyone feels that he is the hero of his story. But there are no heroes; no villains. Just people doing the best they can.” Every single individual on POI was a person doing everything in their power for what they believed was right.

  1. The Machine represented and “old” style of thought while Samaritan represented a “new” style.

ARE YOU KIDDING ME?! If you don’t get that they represent the extreme sides of surveillance culture, I don’t know that to tell you.

  1. John’s romances

After the masterful job the show did in portraying John and Jessica’s relationship early in the series, I have no idea why they felt the need to try and shove John into other relationships. His no-strings-attached relationship with Zoe was everything we needed for his character. The ridiculous relationship with his therapist was the writers not understanding the story they were telling.

  1. The shows that POI is in syndication with.

WHO THE FUCK CARES?!?!?!

  1. John & Harold being the most important characters.

*chokes on bullshit*
I’m sorry, if you believe the show hit its stride before Root and Shaw were introduced, you must have irreparable brain damage. I could rant for thousands of words on why this is fact, but will refrain until asked. (Ask me, I dare you.)

[Thus endeth Michelle’s portion]

Thank you for that, Michelle. Does anyone else think she feels pretty strongly about that subject?

Buoyed with a dislike for the patriarchy and a passion for seeing our favorite female characters represented accurately, we headed over to the Supergirl panel, where none other than the amazing Bridget Liszewski was a panelist. We sat ourselves near the front, where a group of similarly minded panel attendees had brought a loaf of white bread. Anytime they said “Mon-el,” we were to all take a bite of the bland, bland square of “nourishment.”

It was so hard, guys. Much like it is impossible to stomach that bland piece of crap who’s been forced down our throats under the guise of “loving Kara,” with each bite, I had to force my jaws to chew the tasteless cube, trying to push it down my throat with an increasing nausea.

Unfortunately, the panel was similar. Bridget started things off with the right tone. When asked what her favorite relationship on the show was, she answered, “Kara and Lena.” One of her co-panelists said that their relationship never even struck him as romantic and that it was much like Lex and Clark on Smallville. Counterpoints to that argument:

  1. Lip bite, or lack thereof, between Clark and Lex.
  2. Lex never filled Clark’s apartment with flowers.
  3. I love both Michael Rosenbaum and Tom Welling’s performances as Lex and Clark, and they had good “frenemy” chemistry. You know what they didn’t have? Romantic chemisty. You know who does? Lena and Kara.
  4. Lex and Clark didn’t have more chemistry together than Lois and Clark OR Lana and Clark. Lena and Kara have more chemistry together than Jimmy and Kara, Mon-el and Kara, and Adam and Kara COMBINED.

Some people in the audience (men, I believe) had all kind of Bread-splaining ready to go about why Mon-el wasn’t the actual worst, and let me tell you, I (and many others) were having none of it. At one point, I got so incensed (I think it was to the “point” that Mon-el had no good examples of how to be a good partner and he was acting that way because he cared about Kara) that I did the unthinkable. I RAISED MY HAND TO COMMENT.

Oh, I get nervous just thinking about it now, days later.

Of course, the panelist calling on people channeled Michelle’s BFF from the POI panel and tried to move on to a different topic (I guess he was tired of being shouted at?), but my pal Nic was like, “WE HAVE ANOTHER ONE OVER HERE,” pointing at me. Problem is, I get really nervous talking in front of people, so my face instantly turned red as I spoke (and was maybe still red for our 12:20 photo op), but I persisted. I pointed out that Mon-el doesn’t treat Kara like he cares about her; rather, he treats her as someone he wants to control. But, hey, what do I know?

Unfortunately (or fortunately, maybe, to be honest), we only could stick around for half of that panel because of said photo op, but I did get one takeaway from what we saw. Bridget Liszewski is a true ally of the LGBTQ community and is willing to call out queer-baiting when she sees it. Bridget is one of the good ones, and we’re lucky to have her.


#Liszewbian

Persisting

The season finale of Supergirl  was last night, and to no one’s surprise, I have a lot of feelings about it. Also to no one’s surprise, I do not have a lot of time. So I’m just going to touch on two sets of women very, very briefly. 

Obviously, spoilers are ahead

Alex & Maggie

I have loved this relationship since the beginning. I know some people feel their story was rushed, but I am not one of them. Please keep in mind, though, that I technically moved in with my now-wife after our fifth date. There was a year of long-distance dating and ten years of friendship before that, but still. Date five was a cross-country road trip moving her back to the Burgh.

A lot of people feel that the marriage proposal feels rushed, and if it felt like an actual proposal to me, I’d agree. But it wasn’t. Everyone almost died, Kara lost the man she loved (barf, but whatever), and it had been an intense, action-packed couple of…days? Weeks? Hours? Seasons? Whatever. Shit was crazy. And baby gay Alex looks at her girlfriend and is filled with this euphoria of finally being happy and this terror of almost losing the person who helped her realize said happiness. So she, in true queer-lady fashion, jumps ahead 17 steps and says “marry me.” But. ..it’s one of those things you blurt out in the moment, like when my first girlfriend did the same thing…a fact which my wife had no idea about and led to a great morning conversation. 

Anyway, it didn’t feel real to me. I think Maggie will set her “straight,” so to speak, maybe they’ll move in together, we will see a fight or breakup towards the end of next season, and then this topic will get revisited. So, yes, it would have been too soon if it had been “real.” But I don’t see season 3 opening with Winn at Kleinfelds helping our girls say yes to some dresses. 

Also, eternally hopeful Monica refuses to believe the writers would build up this love story and them have a proposal less romantic than gay prom Valentine’s Day. 

Cat & Lena

Oh, Cat Grant. How I’ve missed you. You stepped in where Eliza couldn’t and mothered the ever-loving fuck out of sweet Kira. Most touching may have been where you admitted you had read all of her articles from your yurt (with or without Rob Lowe) and that her prose was…decent. And then you gave a speech that I want to tattoo on my body so I can reference it at all times. Not as “so say we all” as the previous episode’s, but more “you spoke directly to my heart and I love you.”

 It just feels like this pain isn’t gonna go away. 

Ah, well, that’s what I said about childbirth. But it did. And it will. Now , see, the thing that makes women strong, is that we have the guts to be vulnerable. We have the ability to feel the depths of our emotion, and we know that we will walk through it to the other side. And by the way, you have accomplished great things this year…

But you, my dear, are on a hero’s journey. Like Joseph Campbell would say. And yes, you have hit a bit of an obstacle, but you will soar right over it. Just like I would. Except, of course, you won’t be wearing Louboutins.

Cat telling Kara exactly what she needed to hear, giving her the strength to fight another day — That’s what strong women so. We build each other up. 

What we don’t do is take credit for saving the world when it was actually our genius scientist/CEO daughter who did it. And it’s because of things like that that Lena looks towards evil old-school Lois Lane — ahem, I mean Rhea — for validation. 

Kara is a strong, amazeballs woman because of the women who helped shape her; Lena, in spite of them.

I’m looking forward to what the writers have in store for us next season. Be a Cat, guys. Not a Lillian. Build us up, not make us sad.