After talking with Kylie, one of my fellow editors over at The Fandomentals, it seems more and more clear that Mon El takes after Mako from Legend of Korra, especially after the so-called 'bickering' we saw between Mon El and Kara on last night's episode. She's covered Mako's castration anxiety pretty well on her blog (go read the post, it's an excellent analysis), so I'll mostly just be drawing parallels.
Mon El's Protectiveness & Castration Anxiety
Despite being raised in a privileged position, Mon El seems to have the same need to act as Kara's protector and be useful to her that way as Mako does Korra. Last night wasn't the first time Mon El has asserted his need to protect her against her will. He chose to 'protect' her in "We Can Be Heroes", which put civilians at risk. Because unlike her, humans are squishy and can actually be hurt or killed by bullets and electricity. She calls him on his needless (and idiotic) protective urge, but it doesn't stop him from trying to take out Livewire for her later that same episode.
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What 'honor' of hers was in need of protecting?[/caption]
Last night was just more of the same. Mon El believes Kara is in need of his protection and guidance. She doesn't know what's good for her. He knows best how to take out Mr. Mxyzptlk (or, Mxy) and when Kara gives him a direct order to let her handle it, Mon El ignores it (much like he did in "We Can Be Heroes"). Just about all of his attempts to protect her end in utter failure. The times Mon El does succeed in being a useful partner are when he's just that, a partner. Not a protector. When he fights with
her, and follows her directions, they can do teamwork well.