Supergirl: The Complete Fourth Season - Blu-ray Review

Michael Scott

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Supergirl: The Complete Fourth Season


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Movie: :3.5stars:
Video: :4stars:
Audio: :4.5stars:
Extras: :3stars:
Final Score: :3.5stars:



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Movie

Supergirl has always been the red headed step child of the Arrowverse. Originally a CBS show, CBS sold the rights to The CW who kind of tweaked it into their already established Arrowverse by using the multiverse theory that was first discovered in The Flash earlier. It wasn’t long before The CW took what CBS had started and thoroughly turned it into another CW show complete with a fleshed out “team Supergirl” and plenty of girl power themes that kind of beat people over the head with social justice and politics. Still, the show was plenty of fun to watch and Melissa Benoist was fantastic at making Supergirl both a powerful hero, and an “adorkable” girl that everyone just couldn’t help but love.

Season 4 kicks off after the events of last season ending with Reign. Kara’s sister Alex (Chyler Leigh) is now in charge of the DEO, and J’onn Jonzz (David Harewood) has gone on to form a support group for alien visitors trying to live life on Earth after his resignation. Now a man of peace trying to fulfill his father’s dying wish, J’onn is doing his best to distance himself from his violent past. But Kara is still trying to hold down the fort against a new and more insidious villain that a super villain. She’s facing home grown terrorism in the form of Agent Liberty and his group, the Agents of Liberty. A group who sees aliens as a threat and will stop at nothing to purge the world of these “immigrant invaders” (yeah, I kind of winced at that one as well).

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]Agent Liberty (Sam Witwer) is terrorizing National City, but he’s not the only one with a plan. A more insidious force is behind it all. A force who is one of the iconic villains of all Superman/girl history. Yes, you got it right, Lena Luthor’s (Katie McGrath) older brother Lex is out of prison and he’s been manipulating all of the events this season to make way for his triumphant return. He’s even gotten a clone of Kara (Melissa Benoist) from the events of last season and has been grooming her as a weapon against “herself”. All of this leading up to a shocking conclusion that really shakes up the series in a good way, and also shows us the path to next season’s villain (I’m guessing Leviathan) as well as giving us more hints about what will happen on the massive “Crisis on Infinite Earths” crossover that the CW is very obviously planning (I went more in depth on this in my review of The Flash: The Complete Fifth Season review).

Like much of my Supergirl reviews, I’m a bit conflicted on the show. It’s not been the rousing success (in my eyes) that Arrow, The Flash and DC’s Legends of Tomorrow has been, and is easily the weakest of the Arroverse shows. Supergirl: The Complete Fourth Season continues in the typical fashion of beating you over the head with socio-political issues and it gets rather annoying when it does that. HOWEVER, the last half of the season is actually the best the series has ever been. Including Lex Luthor was a breath of fresh air, and while I was a bit leery of casting Jon Cryer as Lex (he ironically played Lenny Luthor, Lex’s cousin in the fourth Christopher Reeves movie back in the day), but after he got a few episodes in, I was absolutely LOVING his variant on Lex. We got to hear the infamous “Miss Tessmacher!!!!” line that Gene Hackman made so famous (and Cryer does a hilariously spot on impression of him in that one line), and the final twist about him and his plan was jaw dropping. The series hasn’t been that gritty and dark since season one, and actually surpassed it in many ways. Another great addition to the team was Brainiac. With Winn gone from the picture the comedic side kick role was up for grabs, and Brainiac’s “fish out of water” super intelligence was just perfect for the role. I’m not going to say that the WHOLE season was better than season one, but with the weak first half and the incredible second act, it made for a season that was finally as good as the first season (which was always the best up until now) and makes way for some incredible new stuff for the next year.




Rating:

Rated TV-PG by the MPAA




Video: :4stars:
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I say this with pretty much all of The CW shows, but it must be said. Supergirl has maintained a very very steady look to the series over the last 4 years, and that means the encodes look just about the same as the years pass (outside of season 2, which was given a 3 disc set instead of a 4, and suffered from some compression artifacting as a result). Like usual, the crossover episodes have been included in this season from Arrow and Flash, but the inclusion of these episodes to the 4 disc set hasn't adversely affected the video quality to my eyes. There's some mild digital noise in darker scenes as well as a few bouts of banding during the credits, but other than those small issues the show is remarkably clear and pleasing to the eye. Being that Supergirl is the most CGI intensive of The CW shows it tends to be a bit softer than others in it's class, but the softness isn't that bad. Instead it just creates a smooth and glossy look to the show during many of the CGI intensive battles. Blacks are deep and inky, with bright greens (such as Lex's suit) and blues and reds dominating, while softer amber's and earth tones come into play for the Agents of Liberty moments.






Audio: :4.5stars:
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Much like last season, Supergirl's 5.1 DTS-HD MA track is a rousing and exciting mix that pulls no punches. The show has amped up its action a bit this year, and with the copious amount of battles between aliens and the Agents of Liberty, as well as Lex Luthor's super powered suit (which made me giddy with comic book joy) there is no shortage of booms, swooshs and even classic metal songs (it's super cheesy, but Motley Crue's "Jumpstart My Heart" actually worked really well during the final battle) to make for a wildly immersive sound experience. The quieter bits are still present throughout the show though, and it can calm down quite a bit and move towards the front of the room when those bits are under way. Bass is powerful and carries quite a wallop, amplifying fight sequences as well as accentuating things like slamming doors, giant hooks smashing into badguys and a few rumbles and roars from aircraft. The single best feature of Supergirl has always been the excellent audio quality from Warner, and they don't disappoint at all this season.







Extras: :3stars:
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• ALL 22 ONE-HOUR EPISODES
• TWO CROSSOVER EPISODES
• The Best of DC TV's Comic-Con Panel San Diego 2018
• Inside the Crossover: Elseworlds
• Villains: Modes of Persuasion
• Gag Reel
• Deleted Scenes







Final Score: :3.5stars:


Supergirl is the red headed stepchild of the Arrowverse shows as I said above, and as such it's kind of rockier than the others. The first half of the season is a bit weak, with the typical over preachiness with social justice issues cropping up, but once Agent Liberty is taken care of (for the most part) around the halfway point and the big plan with Lex Luthor comes into play, things get a whole lot better. It goes to show that when Supergirl stops trying to beat you over the head with social politics it can tell some really well done comic book stories. The 2nd half of the season was better than most every season before it as a whole, and sets up some massive changes for next year with hints of Leviathan coming as the next villain, and we might not be done with Lex Luthor yet either. The show maintains a very healthy set of technical specs and a moderate amount of cookie cutter extras to enjoy, and while I still think Supergirl goes a bit overboard at times, it's still a fun show to watch if you enjoy the rest of The CW shows. Solid Watch.


Technical Specifications:

Starring: Melissa Benoist, Mehcad Brooks, Chyler Leigh
Created by: Greg Berlanti, Ali Adler, Andrew Kreisberg
Aspect Ratio: 1.78:1 AVC
Audio: English: DTS-HD MA 5.1
Subtitles: English SDH
Studio: Warner
Rated: TV-PG
Runtime: 1015 Minutes
Blu-ray Release Date: Own on Blu-rayTM and DVD 9/17/19

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Recommendation: Solid Watch

 
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tripplej

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Thanks for the review. I haven't seen any of the seasons so will have to start with the first. :)
 
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