12:59 pm EST, January 27, 2020

‘Supergirl’ season 5, episode 11 review: The Toyman returns…

Supergirl season 5, episode 11 gives us the Toyman Jr. we've deserved since season 1.

On Supergirl season 5, episode 11, there’s a villain causing mischief around National City, and he looks a lot like… Winn? Meanwhile, our Winn returns from the future to fix the timeline before his life is ruined.

After a season and a half away, in the future, the return of Winn Schott Jr. on Supergirl season 5, episode 11 was long overdue, and I can say that I’m almost entirely pleased with his reintroduction, save for a few things that don’t pertain to him directly.

The cast of Supergirl has almost entirely changed since the beginning, so it’s always nice to get a reminder about where we started.

Meanwhile, Lena continues to work with Lex, who is already proving that he can’t even be relied upon to help her with Project Non Nocere, while Brainy also works with Lex and desperately tries to cover up his actions, lest the Super Friends find out what he’s been up to.

Supergirl season 5 episode 11

‘Supergirl’ season 5, episode 11 review

I mean, Supergirl season 5, episode 11 was better than I expected it to be. Seeing Jeremy Jordan finally get the chance to play Toyman was inspired, and it’s kind of showing us everything we could have had if the Arrow-verse wasn’t so hesitant to have their characters teeter on the line of good vs. evil, like with Killer Frost in recent seasons on The Flash.

It’s either good or evil, but rarely, rarely, do we see anything in between.

Following Supergirl season 5, episode 10, I’m still waiting for more aftershocks of “Crisis on Infinite Earths” that will probably never come. While it’s been great to see multiple versions of Brainy and Winn, just introducing other versions of our characters as the “aftershocks” is boring and literally could have been done before the collapse of the multi-verse. There’s absolutely no “risky” storytelling taking place, in my opinion.

Supergirl season 5 episode 11

Toyman Jr.

As the first part of a two-part episode that won’t be finished for three more weeks, this episode could have been much slower, but instead, it at least told an interesting story that gave an excellent reason for Winn to return and interact with his friends.

Aside from just revisiting Winn, it was nice to revisit Supergirl season 1 a little bit with the familiar Chester Dunholtz. Though, as it reminded me of the Toyman episode with Henry Czerny, I couldn’t help but miss Cat Grant and wait for one of her brilliant, snide remarks.

Learning more about Winn’s life in the future was also great, and it’s so nice to see someone we watched get a happy ending, of sorts. He’s married, has a daughter, and is a superhero. It’s literally the life Winn always wanted for himself, and it’s beautiful.

Side note: There are issues with the character chosen to be his wife, as an openly gay woman in the comics, but that’s an issue for the Supergirl writers to address.

Lex

Supergirl season 5, episode 11 takes Lex’s plan a step further, and I could not be more intrigued about the Luthor vs. Leviathan showdown that the writers seem to be teasing, especially if Lillian is returning to help out.

As two of the biggest threats in the world, I don’t understand why Supergirl is waiting so long to start exploring what they’re capable of. We need details about Lex’s plan, Leviathan’s plan, and how Obsidian North falls into this, and we need the writers to start exploring this now, especially if there are only nine episodes left this season. (Rumor has it there are 20, not 22.)

Additionally, I wish Lena was a little more involved in whatever’s going on, but I think it’s also a good sign that Lex doesn’t trust her with the majority of his plans. If he did, that would mean she was evil, and we know that’s not the case. I believe there’s a good chance that Lena will come back to the side of the super friends… eventually.

‘Supergirl’ season 5, episode 11 final thoughts

Overall, Supergirl season 5, episode 11 kept my interest with both the Toyman and the Lex stories and did a nice job of tying them into each other. However, the ending of the episode and the trailer for the next episode (seen below) was a major bummer.

It’s been clear that it was only a matter of time before a romance between William and Kara was explored, but not from the writing of the show. It’s history that indicated this was coming, and the writing did absolutely nothing to set up this turn of events.

I can’t even say I would have been completely opposed to Kara and William as a couple if, you know, the writers executed the story properly and didn’t introduce him as a piece of shit. He treated Kara like garbage, for literally no reason other than his cover, and never seriously apologized or worked to make it up to her, which is unacceptable.

Kara Danvers deserves better than the men the Supergirl writers put her with. She deserves love interests who respect her for everything that she is. Love interests who have figurative hearts in their eyes from the very first time they meet her. Love interests who show her the kindness and compassion that she shows to everyone else, no matter who they are. No one the show has had Kara have romantic feelings for has treated her right, and William is just the most recent example.

Not only that, but the other major problem with this story is how lazy the writing is. There’s been nothing romantic between Kara and William throughout the season, but suddenly, after standing too close together for five minutes and feeling the ~romantic tension~ in the air, he’s asking her out in the next episode?

It’s one thing for a character to come in and win Kara over right away, like James did, or for there to be lingering romantic undertones throughout their scenes before making a move, but the Supergirl writers always choose to have Kara’s relationships fall in the middle.

The reason why Kara’s romantic stories are so heavily criticized is because the writers put her with men who aren’t worthy of her and they just really do not know how to write a romance (probably the reason why we see two minutes of Kelly and Alex and Brainy and Nia on rare occasions).

Plus, there’s just nothing really going for William. He doesn’t have a personality, he’s not a key component to any part of the overarching story this season, and his only interesting scenes have been his feelings about losing his friend. He’s had more chemistry with a photo of Russell than with Kara.

Speaking of Kelly and Nia, it’s increasingly clear with every passing episode that the Supergirl cast is too full. Kelly barely gets a chance to grow as a character, while William and Andrea have been pushed into every story possible this season, when much of the time, it doesn’t work and it’s not necessary. Instead of Nia getting the chance to shine as a reporter, as a character we’ve barely gotten to know since her introduction last season, William is pushed to the forefront and takes every open story from the reporting side of the story.

Let’s face it, this is still better than Kelly’s two words per episode, but why are new characters taking focus away from the existing? Why is Nia’s main focus her relationship with Brainy, rather than her role as a superhero and a journalist, something that she could have numerous stories about with Kara, the one person on the show who understands, at her side? Why is Lex’s story overtaking the season already, after two episodes, when this is supposed to be the fight for Lena’s soul? Why is William even around? He’s the prime example of a character being forced into stories where he doesn’t need to be this season.

Let’s hope with Supergirl season 6 that the writers trim down their series regulars to make way for the development of the characters we actually enjoy, like Kelly and Nia.

Supergirl continues Sunday, Febuary 16 at 9 p.m. ET on The CW.

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