Supergirl‘s third season has taken some notable departures from past seasons, most noticeably its darker tone with Kara’s grief after losing Mon-El. But perhaps its most interesting change is how its slowly building up the villain Reign by introducing her as a seemingly normal National City mom named Sam (Odette Annable) who realizes she may be something more. Over the first few episodes this season, we’ve seen Sam almost lose her daughter during an attack on National City, but in doing so discovered that she has powers of super-strength. But when she tried to use them while not in a state of distress, she couldn’t yet conjure them.
It’s been a very slow-burn way to introduce a major villain, and I really love it. It makes Sam / Reign (who is a Worldkiller) more than just a Big Bad or a meta who appears out of nowhere and has questionable or ultimately unimportant motivations. By making Sam a real character, it raises the stakes on her eventual heel turn.
For now, Sam is taking over L Corps while Lena Luthor dives into running CatCo, which will bring her into Kara’s orbit. It’ll be interesting to watch her discover her origins the way Kara also had to do, but end up in very different place with them.
Check out the costume below:
So as for the costume, well, it’s giving me very strong Black Siren vibes from Arrow. I would have liked to see some more color and a more interesting design than, basically, a “dark” version of Supergirl. The mask looks interesting, but since The CW shows have so often given us villains who mirror our heroes visually and narratively, this particularly costume doesn’t really jump out for me.
Annable’s debut as Reign is set to happen later this season (we’re not exactly sure when), but we should be seeing more of her in tonight’s episode, “The Faithful.”