is back. After taking a long break, with an episode that didn't feel like it was wrapping up much of anything, season 3 resumes. This episode, titled "Schott Through the Heart," proves how oddly timed the break is. It has nothing do with the whole Reign saga (at all).
Yet, thankfully, "Schott Through the Heart," as the name suggests, manages to be very gratifying, all by focusing on one of Supergirl's best (and most underrated) characters, Winn Schott. It's not the most natural return, but the episode is at least a showcase of what Supergirl does best: its characters.
Ghosts of the Past
Supergirl jumps almost immediately into the dramatic thrust of the episode when Winn (and the rest of the gang) discovers that his father has been found dead ... through the TV news. The last time Winn's dad was seen was back in season 1, so it's quite easy to forget about him. However, Winn Schott, Sr. was the villain, Toyman. He was a total sociopath and made Winn's life a living hell. Yet it turns out that the Toyman's villainy went farther than Winn realized.
At Toyman's funeral, Winn runs into his mother, Mary. Mary abandoned Winn right around the time that Toyman decided to go full supervillain. She explains that she had a very good reason to run. Toyman threatened to kill Winn if Mary didn't abandon the family because he didn't want her influence impacting Winn at all.
Mary's excuse sounds like nonsense, even though she is telling the truth, and Winn lets her have it accordingly. Supergirl has often kept Winn in the comedic relief role, and any time they have gone "deeper" with him it's been for some romantic subplot. Here, though, it's all raw and heartbreaking emotion. Jeremy Jordan does a superb job. Winn's pain and anger at his mother is just palpable, and it's something that runs throughout the episode, giving "Schott Through the Heart" an emotional core. Winn needs more things to do with some emotional heft!
It's also worth pointing out that Mary is played by Laurie Metcalf, and as always, she's excellent. Through Mary's mannerisms and speech patterns, it becomes obvious where much of Winn's personality comes from; Winn is much more his mother than his father. It's such a smart and natural way of linking them.
After James, who in a rare occurrence is useful, tells Winn that he should give his mother a chance, the two begin to open up to one another. Mary clearly cares for Winn a great deal, despite leaving him. In a very short amount of time, the two become one of the most compelling parent/child relationships on Supergirl. They're right up there with Lena and Lillian Luthor, although they are much more heartwarming.
The New Toy(wo)man
Supergirl needs Winn and Mary's re-connection to sustain the episode because the actual villain of the piece isn't strong. Although Toyman is dead, several of his machines keep attacking the DEO and Winn. It turns out that they're coming from a maintenance worker at the prison whom Toyman took under his wing. This maintenance worker is a psychopath straight out of central casting. She's utterly exhausting. She's nothing more than a plot device, and she needs to go as soon as she appears.
Ms. Toyman explains that she's fulfilling Toyman's final wishes. He wants Mary dead because she contacted Winn. Even with that chilling degree, this villain couldn't be more boring. It would've been very predictable (and equally as eye-roll worthy), but Supergirl really should've just had Toyman fake his death and be the real mastermind of the whole scheme, as this blue-collar Harley Quinn just gets tacked onto the episode for some action scenes, and Winn uses her smarts to save his mother's life.
Winn's heroic moment is great. It just rings a little hollow because his adversary couldn't be less appealing.
The Depressive Denouement
Interestingly, though, Winn and Mary aren't the only parent-child relationship focused on in this episode. A big spotlight is finally put on J'onn and his father, M'yrnn. Supergirl is giving all the supporting characters screen time, and it's glorious. However, the story between J'onn and M'yrnn is not nearly as uplifting as Winn and Mary's eventual reunion.
Alex has dinner with J'onn and M'yrnn, and after it's randomly (but interestingly) discussed why J'onn has taken the appearance of a black man, Alex notices something odd. M'yrnn appears to have real problems with his memory. He even forgets the existence of his Martian granddaughters.
Alex correctly deduces that M'yrnn is in the throws of dementia. Though he resists at first, eventually M'yrnn comes clean about his disease to J'onn. It's not immediately evident where this story is going, but Supergirl does pull at the heartstrings effectively in having Alex and J'onn find out about M'yrnn's condition.
In all the family drama, though, Supergirl does find a small way to kick ahead the Reign issue. After trying to talk to Kara all episode, Mon-El eventually tracks Kara down. Mon-El informs Kara of the real reason the Legion is in 2018. They want to find the third and final Worldkiller, as she will evolve to become Blight, the entity that destroys the world in the Legion's future.
If the mysterious boots of the third Worldkiller weren't big enough, this reveal definitely raises the stakes. Hopefully, this potential new villain will be the focus of Kara and Mon-El's future interactions, not their obvious (and nauseating) sexual tension.
What did you make of this Winn-centric installment? Does Winn need more to do? How did you feel about the villain? What do you make of M'yrnn's disease and how will it factor into the season? What are your theories on the third Wordkiller and where Mon-El and Kara's relationship is heading? Let us know your thoughts in the comments section below.
(Image courtesy of The CW)