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Supergirl - Magical Thinking - Review: Too Many Loopholes

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The latest episode of Supergirl Magical Thinking suffers from the same problems as most of the episodes since the show returned earlier this summer, inconsistent writing, and questionable storytelling decisions. The result is an uneven outing filled with too many loopholes.

The quest for the totems presented an intriguing premise for Supergirl's finale, however recent episodes have failed in their execution. The show's final season should be building a sense of urgency and concern about the danger of the remaining totems. Instead, recent episodes seem to creep along at an almost lackadaisical pace with characters uncharacteristically taking time for a game night instead of being concerned about a threat that could potentially end their existence. There has been no build-up to any big event and little hints of what's to come. There was a greater sense of urgency in the first seven episodes of the season focused on rescuing Supergirl (Melissa Benoist) from the Phantom Zone than there has been in episodes that are supposed to be building to a dramatic conclusion.
Magical Thinking should have focused on Supergirl's unusual connection to Nyxly (Peta Sergeant) and how that affects their battles for the totems. What viewers got was a hodgepodge of stories at times so disjointed and riddled with loopholes it felt as though there were multiple separate episodes airing. The focus was not as it should have been on Supergirl, but instead, for the third consecutive episode, on Lena Luthor (Katie McGrath) accepting her magical abilities.
The illogical move of allowing reporter William Day (Staz Nair) to embed with the team in the Tower was just another odd storytelling choice, in this episode in particular, that made no sense whatsoever. The most head-scratching aspect being Lena telling William he was the reason she changed her mind about Supergirl's bad idea. Sadly, this is yet another example of uninspired, even lazy writing, in having a character the writers don't know what to do with, shoehorned into the Tower. It's a shame that the writers couldn't find a way to give William an interesting story before now. Magical Thinking allowed Nair to do his best work of the series and he was particularly good in an insightful scene with McGrath's Lena, with whom he shared strong on-screen chemistry.
Another example of the weakness in the writing involved how they have written Lena and Supergirl rebuilding their friendship. Like William, the writers have taken a lazy way of addressing the friendship. What could have been a thoughtful exploration of rebuilding a broken friendship has become the writers shoving Lena into the Alex (Chyler Leigh) role in Supergirl's life by having her take Alex's place in everyday events such as couch scene confessionals and discussing the day's events over pot stickers, traditionally reserved for those special Danvers Sisters moments. It should also be noted that there has not been a significant Danvers Sisters' scene since Welcome Back, Kara.
While there may be those that argue that this is because Alex is moving forward with her own life, that does not mean since her life is moving forward means she should be moving away from her sister. Truthfully, the Alex and Kelly (Azie Tesfai) story with the young alien orphan Esme (the adorable Mila Jones), was the best part of Magical Thinking, however, even that story had loopholes. As cool as it was to see Sentinel and Guardian rescue Esme from the armed mob, the bigger question would be how did they know she was in danger? That big loophole aside, that final heart-touching scene, beautifully, written, directed, and performed by Leigh and Tesfai who expertly communicated their desire to protect this child wordlessly with their facial expressions will quickly become one of if not the best scenes in the show's history. Leigh's quick wink, outstretched hand, and quiet, "C'mere kiddo" will become iconic. This was great storytelling, with subtle foreshadowing into Alex, Kelly, and Esme's ultimate transition into a family.
Another standout in Magical Thinking was the outstanding work of Peta Sergeant as Nyxly. Hers was a tour-de-force performance this episode as Nyxly became overwhelmed by the humanity she had stolen by using the Humanity Totem. Not exploring Nyxly’s connection with Supergirl deprives fans of the opportunity of seeing two talented actresses becoming increasingly like the other's character.
With just four episodes left Supergirl faces a monumental task of upping the stakes for an intense and worthy conclusion. There are too many loopholes and storylines dangling out there that need to be addressed before the show ends. For the show to bring things to a logical conclusion one can only hope that the writing improves and becomes more cohesive than it was in Magical Thinking.

What did you think of Magical Thinking? How adorable is Esme, the newest future member of the Alex/Kelly family? Share your thoughts in the comments below.

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