Combating prejudice is draining enough without such movements gaining support and momentum in direct opposition to cultural foundations. It’s even worse when such events play out right before your eyes. Supergirl learned this special kind of emotional distress during her latest go-round with Agent Liberty. In Supergirl season 4 episode 8, everyone was due for one last punch to the gut before barreling headfirst into the Elseworlds event.
Such a dour intro shouldn’t mask the gleeful bits of narrative, most notably Nia’s journey to understand her dream-linked powers. What begins as an attempt to clarify a nightmare depicting Agent Liberty threatening an unknown woman turns formative very quickly. Kara enlists Brainy to help Nia after he says that he knows who she actually is. Nia reveals that she is an alien whose race’s females develop the ability to see the future in their dreams. Brainy helps her channel and control the dream, bringing its location and the threatened woman into focus. The woman isn’t recognizable to her, but the Collinwood neighborhood is, which gives the trio a lead.
Unfortunately for the alien heroes, Collinwood is a hotbed of pro-human sentiment. They are immediately tailed by the Children of Liberty. Kara sees opportunity within the threat, though. She attempts to get herself purposely kidnapped in order to get to Agent Liberty but Nia intervenes, leading to all three being abducted. Their stay at the Lockwood Steel factory is short-lived though. A murder attempt by their captors is thwarted by a mix of Nia’s future sight and quick reflexes. The bullet meant for Nia is deflected into a chemical tank, filling the room with smoke and allowing Kara to to don her suit and take down the assailants. She informs Alex of Lockwood’s secret identity, allowing her to get a detained Child of Liberty to flip on Lockwood.
Eye For An Eye
Supergirl isn’t the only one who has figured out who is behind that metal mask. Manchester Black pays Ben a visit at his home, posing as an old friend of Ben’s so as to not alarm Ben’s wife, Lydia. Black threatens retribution for Fiona despite Ben’s expressed desire to put Agent Liberty on the backburner in favor of his public persona as a TV personality. The veil drops suddenly when Black reveals Ben’s alter-ego to his wife, forcing him to show her his body armor and mask. J’onn continually tries to intervene and stop Black telepathically, but the desire for vengeance is too strong within the Brit. It does, however, give Ben enough of an opening to stab Black with a bayonet (a Lockwood family heirloom) and escape his home with Black hot on his heels.
Supergirl arrives at the Lockwood home as J’onn fills her in on the situation with Black. All parties convene at the NTH metal factory across from Lockwood Steel. Nia and Brainy follow Ben and Black into the building. Nia quickly realizes the building as the location from her original dream. Black is all set to kill Ben when Supergirl flies in to stop him. Her former ally came prepared though, unleashing a moonstone grenade to weaken the Kryptonian before trapping her in hardened NTH metal. She pleads with Black to not stoop to Ben’s violent level, but her words fall on deaf ears. He points out that humans won’t care if Ben is exposed. She’ll remain only an alien to them. A roach.
Nia realizes that Lydia is the woman in her dream when she arrives and pulls a gun on Black. Nia prevents Black from killing Lydia with a hook. That action also leaves Black open for an attack from Ben. He has the Brit at gunpoint, Lydia pleads with him to not pull the trigger, when a still trapped Supergirl begins to stir. She lifts the building off the ground with her flying ability before crashing it back into the ground, shattering her NTH bindings. The shock sends Lydia over a balcony rail, but Supergirl saves her. Police take Black and Ben into custody.
National City’s most prominent anti-alien terrorist is finally behind bars, but his message continues unrestrained beyond his cell walls. Ben is labelled a “Human Rights Activist” in the press following his arrest. Black’s premonition rings all too true. Multiple pro-Agent Liberty protests spark up within the city, much to the dismay of Kara and her allies. Things go from bad to worse when President Baker demands that Supergirl reveal her secret identity to the public as part of his poll-motivated “Country First” strategy. Baker appears to expose his own anti-alien feelings by inferring that the nation’s alien population aren’t people. Those feelings along with the obvious risk to family and friends won’t allow Supergirl from revealing her identity. Baker immediately dismisses her from the DEO.
The shaken hero flies away to watch over Ben’s transport to jail. The two lock eyes as Lydia joins the frontline of the pro-human protest outside the jail. A chant of “Liberty” breaks out as Ben promises Supergirl that she will see him soon.
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