Crosspost: Supergirl’s Martian Healing Arc

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“Buried beneath the page long Tumblr rants and angry tweets over the current ship war, one will find a small but devoted group of fans gushing over the recent Martian arc on Supergirl. I am one of those fans, if you can’t tell from my and Elizabeth’s reviews. I could talk about my Martian babies for hours, and since I happen to write for a living, I can share my love with you. So excuse me while I happily word vomit a bit about J’onn J’onzz and M’gann M’orzz, because they’re everything and this subplot is one of the most compelling stories to grace my screen in a long while.

The Martian Story

Before I dive in, let’s talk backstories and Martian history. According to show canon, Mars was home to two sentient races, the war-like, aggressive White Martians and the peaceful Green Martians. Both races are shape-shifters with remarkable psychic powers including mind reading and the ability to telepathically link to each other. Several centuries prior to the start of the show, the subterranean White Martians surfaced and set about systematically wiping out the entire Green Martian race for no reason other than bigoted hatred and a belief in White Martian superiority. They rounded up the Greens in internment camps, brutalized them, and killed them. Many were burned in ovens. If it sounds like the Holocaust, it should. I’ll come back to this later when I talk about J’onn, but the Semitic coding underscores much of this arc, so it’s worth pointing out now.

J’onn, therefore, is the sole survivor of a genocide perpetrated by the White Martians that wiped out every other member of his race. M’gann, on the other hand, is a member of the very race that killed J’onn’s. Both fled for the lives and found refuge on Earth, but on opposite sides of the conflict. He fled being a victim of the massacre; she broke ranks by refusing a kill order. And this is the context within which these two characters exist. Perfect recipe for a revenge arc, right?

Wrong. It’s not even really a redemption arc. This, my friends, is a healing arc that stubbornly defies the temptation to oversimplify or justify any of its aspects.”

This is just the beginning of the feels.

To read the rest, head on over to The Fandomentals. I have a lot of things to say about my favorite Martians!