Nia Faces Down Some Very Real Life Trans Issues In “Reality Bytes” On Supergirl

Credit: The CW

Welcome back, Supergirl fans.

Last week, Kara had to play bodyguard to Andrea as she geared up to release Obsidian Platinum, which takes VR to even greater heights. It turns out that the villain was a woman whose husband worked for Obsidian Tech, got addicted to VR, and committed suicide. Progress is, after all, a double-edged sword. Lex, however, got what he wanted, which was a seat at the table with Gemma in order to infect Leviathan with his mortality code.

Alex, meanwhile, struggles to adjust to her post-DEO life and J’onn gives her a shape-shifting weapon. Brainy also feels torn about trying to handle Lex. While Lena begins human testing on Non Nocere with the prison population.

Supergirl’s going back to what made season four so strong by focusing in on the real-life violence that the trans community faces in this episode. If you want to help, then consider donating to the National Center for Transgender Equality, the Transgender Legal Defense and Education Fund, and Trans Life Line.

Let’s see what happens this week, shall we?

Snowy:  Two months ago, a guy, Bates, watches a couple at an Obsidian simultation, but he’s stuck in the simulation. Kelly has to bring him out, but he said that the failsafe button failed. Old Lady Leviathan takes the guy’s exit interview. In the present, Kara and Nia take out a Dominator. Nia sends Kara off to get ready for her date when Brainy arrives. Things are still awkward between them. Alex arrives to talk Kara down from a date induced freakout and Kara is so proud. Watching a news story about Lex, Alex admits she misses the DEO and shows off her new weapon. Yvette, Nia’s roommate, declares that Nia is not going to mope over Brainy and takes her out to meet her boyfriend, who she’s never met in person. (On the profile, she put the Dreamer is her BFF saying everyone embellishes on them.) William and Kara play pool on their date and seem to have a nice time together. Nia has a vision at the club and goes to the bathroom while Yvette heads outside to meet with “Angus”. A guy who chatted with Yvette follows her outside. It turns out that he’s Angus and he attacks Yvette. The guy targeted Yvette so she could get a message to Dreamer. NCPD interviews Yvette and get a sketch of the suspect. Kara arrives having heard about the attack, but tries to talk Nia down. Nia says that there is no hope speech, getting real about the violence that plagues the trans community. Nia asks Kara to trust her when she is the one protecting her community, saying that this guy is over. Kara asks Nia to give the cops and Supergirl a chance, and Nia agrees to a few hours before she takes things into her own hands.

Case: J’onn and Alex are still working on getting the Hand of the Soldier to trust her. J’onn tries to talk Alex down, but they are called into a client meaning. Al’s brother Trevor is missing. The cops think that Trevor is on a VR party binge. J’onn goes to Al’s house while Alex heads to talk with Kelly. Brainy watches footage of Nia when Kara contacts Brainy, asking for an assist. Alex asks Kelly for help who agrees, giving Alex some Obsidian Platinum lenses and promising to be in communication. Alex goes into virtual Vegas, which is very retro. Al tells J’onn that all Trevor does is spend time in VR. J’onn finds the names of two of Trevor’s VR friends and Al gives J’onn a watch that belongs to Trevor. Alex is pointed to the Escape Palace, which is a DLC added on by an advanced user. Alex heads into the Escape Palace and is surrounded by people in water tanks, remembering when she was kidnapped and placed into a similar scenario.

Fears: Kelly says that the person who made the simulation is tapping into the worst fears of a person.  The players trapped in there are Trevor’s friends and have been there for days. They can’t end the simulation. Apparently, they like solving puzzles and escape rooms. It looks like this Richard, who joined the group, is exploiting a glitch that won’t trigger a failsafe. Nia watches as Yvette sleeps and calls the detective, who is still reviewing the footage and evidence. Nia launches a profile on the dating site in order to lure out “Angus”, wanting to handle things her way.

Alias: It turns out the woman’s last name is Bates, who was the man that had trouble with the failsafe months ago. J’onn tells her that he needs to find Trevor and Richard ASAP or else. Trevor was having an affair with Richard’s wife. Brainy finds Nia’s profile while searching for Dreamer online. Kelly gives Alex the update and tells her that she can override Richard’s program. Alex uses the Hand of the Soldier to make a key and get through the door. She cannot contact Kelly anymore. William and Kara are working on an article about trans hate crimes. Brainy calls Kara, telling her about the profile. Nia hooks “Angus”.

Pain: Alex finds Trevor who keeps on exploding randomly. Richard appears to take out Alex, declaring that this is his house. Alex knocks him out of the simulation when J’onn arrives and knocks Richard out. Alex tells Trevor that he makes the rules now and he can stop the explosions. Trevor tells Alex his location. J’onn promises to get Trevor, but Richard is brain damaged. Nia, in Dreamer, arrives to fight “Angus”. She kicks his worthless ass. Kara arrives to talk Nia down, saying that she has her family and promises that they will all have their eyes open for people like “Angus”. Nia tells “Angus” that if he ever attacks a member of her community again then she will give him a nightmare that he will never wake up from.

Breathe: Kara finds Nia crying on the balcony, giving her a hug. Nia doesn’t want to be a killer, but she’s not okay. Nia feels so mixed up with her powers, guilt, and her break-up with Brainy. Kara hugs Nia close, who went after “Angus” so hard because she could control the situation. Kara offers reassurances and apologies to Nia, comforting her. Alex and Kelly talk about the Trevor and Richard situation. Alex thinks that there should be regulations with Obsidian Platinum and Kelly agrees, angry that the glitch wasn’t fixed. Trevor meets Alex and Kelly and thanks them for their help. Nia goes home to Yvette, who is deleting all her social media accounts. Nia comforts Yvette. Brainy gives the Detective evidence to handle things. Alex is feeling frustrated over her weapon, but J’onn wants to train tomorrow. Alex gets a call from Eliza. Jeremiah’s been found. He’s dead. Old Lady Leviathan looks over Richard Bates who is taken to a room without brain damaged Obsidian patients.

Bec Heim
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