Supergirl Episode 503 Recap: The Girl with the Spider Tattoo – Autostraddle

Posted in Tattoo Nightmares on Oct 26, 2019

Previously on Supergirl, Jonns brother attacked, Kelly helped Jonn explore his missing memories, Lena put her AI into Eves body, Andrea and William were turning CatCo on its head, and Brainy was bugging the heck out of Nia.

We open this episode with a very lovely, very tattooed lady at a bar.

Id like to get tangled in her web if you know what i mean.

William is in this same bar, fighting with a man who ultimately decides to blow William off to go hook up with the Spider Woman. Unfortunately they dont get very far before one of Spider Womans tattoos COMES TO LIFE and crawls INSIDE HIM and kills him dead.

Outside Catco, Kelly is therapizing her barista while she gets her morning coffee, which honestly is relatable, and this leaves Alex concerned about her girlfriends openness, what with a shapeshifter running around.

Strangers tell me their life story ALL. THE. TIME. I once helped a cab driver pick a school district for his son.

Kelly waves off her concern, kisses her goodbye, and heads into work.

When shes gone, its Karas turn to worry, because shes having lunch with Lena today, their first time since Karas coming out. Alex reassures her that it will be fine and that theyll get their relationship back on track; Kara just has to let go and let Lena love her.

Using donuts to cope with stress is a mood. Superheroes, theyre just like us!

In her secret lab of secrets, Lena is getting frustrated because she can only figure out how to use the Q Waves to map the brain, not to change it. Or at least, not to change it without obliterating willpower. But Hope knows Lena doesnt want a world of robots, just better people. This prompts Hope to hug Lena, maybe acting in instincts taken from Eve, but either way, Lena is taken aback.

Kara is the only person who has ever hugged me and meant it. I dont know what to do with this.

Hope suggests that Lexs research could help Lena, and Lena knows just the person to help her get his journals.

Are we 100% sure that Lena isnt an AI that the Luthors built? Because shes impossibly attractive.

At Nias apartment, Brainy is still shouting poetry (and villanelles!) at his girlfriend, and not getting her hints when she asks him to tone it down a bit.

Honestly I cant blame Brainy, if I was dating the cutest girl on the planet Id be overdoing it too.

At the CatCo morning meeting, the death of that man in the club comes up, and turns out its Dr. Niles Jarrett, the man Andrea was fighting with in the photos on Williams computer last week. Andrea and William shut down Karas request to look into his death, since she had interviewed him about gene manipulation once, which makes her a bit suspicious.

Kara tells James about this mysterious behavior, and James offers to help by talking to the M.E. about it. He still hasnt made his career path choices yet, so hes down to Superfriend the case with Kara as a little distraction.

Across town, Jonns brother, as a Martian fly, goes into Kellys apartment and inspects her pictures and becomes one of the men he sees. Which is risky but a bold move. And my question is can Jonn do this? Can he shapeshift into anything he wants? Weve seen him be people but can he also be animals? Can he be a cactus? Or a trash can? I feel like hes been holding out on us.

Anyway, the Martian goes to see Kelly, who seems excited to see her old pal Pete Andrews. He asks for her help, and of course she offers to help him, because she has a big heart.

Your past acting roles have lulled me into a false sense of security about your character.

And if there was supposed to be some kind of parallel there between her helping the barista and her helping her old friend, Id like to call foul.


If, before I watched this episode, you told me that Kara Danvers flew all around the world to get Lena her favorite foods, I would assume you were talking about a fanfic. But guess what? I did watch this episode and Kara did fly around the world to get Lena her favorite foods and it was NOT a fanfic. It was real life. And Lena is delighted.

Lena looks like shes going to devour Kara alongside those scones.

They talk a little about work and how Lenas old boarding school buddy is low-key ruining Karas life, but Kara wants to talk about how Lena is doing. And Lena, oh Lena. Lena lies. Lena lies BIG. And Lena lies WELL. She tells Kara shes been having nightmares about Lex and that she thinks the only cure would be reading Lexs journal. Like how I listen to true crime podcasts to quell my fear of being murdered. Knowledge is power. She knows Kara is feeling guilty and like their relationship is fragile, and she knows Kara will do just about anything, now more than ever, to make Lena happy, and Lena takes advantage of that.


And Lena is brilliant about how she does it, too. She never asks Kara to do anything. She lays out the bait and Kara predictable eats it up. Offers to help. Lena even insists she could never ask Kara to do such a thing, knowing full well that it would make Kara double down on helping.

To her credit, when it works, she does appear to have a flash of regret, or questioning. Like maybe this win didnt feel as satisfying as she might have liked.

This poor woman is STRUGGLING and shes ALONE and it HURTS.

When Kara and James get to the morgue, Kara scans Niles and sees a spider tattoo on his heart. Which is disconcerting to say the least, but proves her point that this death was suspicious and worth looking into.

Meanwhile, Jonn is still having some brain issues so he asks Nia to use her dream powers to help.

Even her powers are pretty.

Jonn unlocks a memory of his little brother being teased for not being able to connect to the hive mind aka cheat at hide-and-seek. When they realize he can also control peoples minds, hes also locked away by Jonns dad. But soon White Martians come and take him away, causing Jonns dad so much grief that young Jonn panics and erases the memory of his brother from the entire hive mind, which to Martians is a fate worse than death.

That night, at Karas loft, Alex asks Kara about her Lena lunch, and Kara tells her about the favor she agreed to do. Alex has concerns, to say the least.

Chyler is SO good at making the Big Sister Face.

Kara insists its a victimless crime and it would be worth it to help ease her gal pals mind.

And besides, Alex doesnt really have a leg to stand on re: we cant do that, because its wrong considering they break the law all the time. This very moment, Kara is reviewing security footage from the bar that Brainy hacked to get her. Alex huffs a little about that, but they have more important things to worry about, like the Spider Woman in the video who definitely killed Niles.

Hold on let me minimize Impulse real quick

Alex takes this info back to the DEO and explains that the tattoos are actually an alien, and the woman is a host. So Supergirl flies off to this womans apartment and finds a flash drive, but she gets Spider Pinned to the wall and Guardian has to swoop in to help. Supergirl eventually gets herself unstuck, but not before the woman flings a spider at/into James.

Supergirl takes him back to the DEO, where Alex shoots him with science and collects the spiders for them to study. James putting himself in danger to help her inspires Kara, and she decides to do the thing for Lena after all, getting Lexs journals and also swiping a watch while shes at it.

She gets back just in time to kill a spider thrown by the Spider Woman, with Alex none the wiser about her side quest.

At Obsidian North, Kelly starts to scan Petes memories with Q Waves but quickly realizes its Jonns brother, not her old friend. His mind-control powers are back and the first thing he decides to do with it is try to force Kelly to kill herself.

Kelly must be strong of mind because she fought this off long enough to be saved.

But Nia gets a dream-blast warning that Kelly is in danger, so Jonn gets there just in time. And as Jonns brother tries to get away by shapeshifting, Kelly realizes that she can tell who the Martian is, even when hes shifted into human form.

Back at the DEO, Alex uses her science gun to get the spider alien out of the host woman, but while shes interrogating her, a shadow swoops in and kills the woman without warning. When she hears about the attack on Kelly, she of course goes to check on her girl.

There will be no burying of gays on our watch. Chyler and Azie, probably

They figure out that apparently the explosion at the Obsidian lab somehow linked Kelly and Jonns brother. Jonn feels horrible that he got all of his friends into this mess, but the Superfriends have his back no matter what. Alex inexplicably wants Kelly to go somewhere far away from Supergirl to be safer which makes no sense at all but okay. I would personally have handcuffed her to Kara but whatever helps her sleep at night. James offers to go with Kelly, which is the only reason Kelly agrees to go in the first place, because if James is willing to back down from a fight for her, it must be serious.

Kelly better not be actually gone for even one single episode.

Nia, seeing that Jonn learning the truth about his brother hurt him but ultimately was for the best, decides to go home and tell Brainy that hes being a little too over the top for her, but instead of being grateful to know the truth, Brainy explains that he operates at 100% so if she doesnt want his excess of love, she doesnt want him at all.

Making Nia Nal sad should be considered a felony.

While all this is happening, William is being shady with a man in the park, who gives him money and tells him to keep on keeping on, so I guess William is going to be more than just a foil for our Pulitzer-Prize-winning reporter.

Since the fighting all seems to have settled down for now, Kara suits up and flies over to Lenas to give her the journals, but not before gazing down into the window at her for a minute. Lena is delighted to see Kara in the moonlight.

Also someone on Twitter pointed out that this scene was YET ANOTHER Superman/Lois Lane parallel. WHAT DO THEY WANT FROM ME?

Then there are intercut scenes that are both taking things too far in opposite directions.

Kelly says shes too open and trusting, which is unfair to her because of course she was open and trusting with a man she thought was her friend, and I dont think its a bad thing that she was running around being terrified that everyone she talked to was the Martian who wanted to kill her friends.

And on the other hand, Kara is telling Lena that there should be no boundaries between them, which is just a bad idea for any kind of relationship. Romantic relationships, friendships, coworkerships, twitter mutualships, they all need boundaries.

You can tell Lenas deepest instincts are setting off alarm bells but she cant hear it over the roaring of her pain and IT IS STRESSING ME OUT.

After she leaves Lenas, Kara goes to meet up with Alex, where the Danvers sisters see the Olsen twins siblings off. Kara gives James one of Lexs portal watches, and they all say their goodbyes.

Feel free to leave James wherever you go when you come back.

Alex is still worried about Kelly, because shes so open, which is also technically something she worried about for Kara becoming Supergirl back in the day, and now shes encouraging Kara to come out to people and Kara is giving her identity away to random bakery cashiers in other countries. So maybe Alex will come to trust that Kelly knows what her own boundaries are, too.

Boundaries be bangin.

In her lab, Lena is reading Lexs journal.


She gives Hope Lexs journal and tells her what kind of cipher it is, and Hope immediately gets to work decoding it. As the screen starts scrawling out notes about Q Waves and mind control, Lena gets ready to get to work.

Lena, bb, even if your intentions are better, if your plans and Lexs plans overlap at all, it might be time to reconsider.

Which cant be good. Lena should have learned from the last time she made some awesome science and the military tried to weaponize it that just because her intentions are good doesnt mean this is a good idea. Its the age old mad-scientist conundrum: just because you CAN doesnt mean you should.

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Supergirl Episode 503 Recap: The Girl with the Spider Tattoo - Autostraddle

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