Supergirl Season 3 Episode 17 Review – ‘Trinity’

Martin Carr reviews the seventeenth episode of Supergirl season 3…

Beyond the dictionary definitions of Trinity which touch on both religious symbolism and more specifically Christian scripture there is an inference of unity. A state of being where three individual parts make a whole and therefore create balance. Pestilence, Purity and Reign represent that twisted interpretation within the confines of Supergirl. A place where parallel dimensions, fractured friendships and clandestine organisations must heal and merge if blight is to be overcome.

 

For my money Supergirl becomes more interesting when comic book leanings are cast aside in favour of something more realistic. World ending events, total eclipses and dimensional rifts may sound like the stuff of fantasy, but these are smartly counterbalanced by emotional character beats. Varied motivations are also thrown into the mix which keep audiences guessing, while bromances and female empowerment moments are ticked off. Elsewhere standing front and centre is the evolution of Reign as an essential darkness keeping saccharine at a minimum.

In terms of World Killer storylines Supergirl has brought something to the table which demonstrates a level of maturity and audience awareness. A tactic which has consistently paid off as these writers are able to focus on the broader narrative picture and an important long game approach. Arcs are now stretched out over whole seasons, peppered with ambiguity and come loaded with consequence. Even if episodes are tied off there is less of an easy win mentality at play, as back story, character history and comic book lore conspire to make things dramatic. Benoist, Leigh, Harewood and Brooks work hard to convince, remain committed to dramatic realism over narrative neatness and make audiences focus. Jordan, McGrath, Annable and Wood come from the other direction harbouring uncertainty, subtle distrust and much needed friction allowing Supergirl to work as a cohesive whole.

 

This may sound like a load of contrived and wordy waffle but essentially it means that Supergirl has more than earned that fourth season greenlight. Mining both storylines and adversaries of worth from the annals of DC lore to create an engaging piece of superhero television. Relevant, entertaining, thought provoking and above all contemporary, it outshines the current glut of network output by some margin.