Okay, first of all, Oh my god. There is so much to talk about with this show in terms of nuanced philosophical and political discussion, and I cannot possibly get into all of it in a single short blog post, so I’m going to just go with the three things that give me the most feelings: 1) Adam Strange in general, 2) Brainiac as the Voice of Rao, and 3) the moral quandary that Adam has placed everyone in by bringing Superman into the mix.
1) Adam Strange in General
I just. I love this man. I didn’t expect to love this man, but I do, and I would apologize for that, but I don’t think I should have to.
He’s clearly obsessed with the concept of Superman, that’s something that Seg definitely has right about him, but it’s not 100% clear why he’s so fixated. Like, sure, Superman has saved the universe a non-zero number of times, but there is an emotion hanging behind the idealism and I want to know what it is.
Also, I’m like 85% sure he’s at least bi, and I would just like someone to actively confirm that or have him just…make out with some dudes. And maybe fall in love with Seg or Dev or Kem. Probably Seg, honestly, because that can only end in tears.
I really love that Adam has no idea what he’s doing, went in half-cocked and too sure of himself, and now everyone has to pay the price.
2) Brainiac as the Voice of Rao
Can I just say that I already loved the Evil Space Pope before he got Brainiac’d? Because I did. I always love weird religious bullshit in space, and the Voice of Rao hit all my buttons in that regard.
But Brainiac’d Voice of Rao, talking almost earnestly with a small child about religion and purpose and service to a higher power, that was my shit. Because I’ll be real here, seeing a science-fiction monster obsessed with collecting knowledge — in modern times, something considered a secular pursuit — is speaking through a symbol of intense religious fervor, that was good shit.
And Ona discussing her definition of faith was beautiful and I swear, if that tiny space nun dies, I will fucking riot.
3) Ah, Time Travel
The morality of time travel is honestly something that I don’t think gets dealt with enough. Usually, in mainstream time travel stories I’ve seen anyway, it’s the sanctity of the timeline that must be protected at all costs, and it’s never taken into consideration whether or not that’s morally the correct thing to do.
Of course, the general moral code among time travelers is that sanctity. But General Zod isn’t a time traveler the way Adam Strange or the Legends of Tomorrow are. He doesn’t have that moral or ethical framework to consider.
But you could argue that his moral imperative — save Kandor from Brainiac — is equally compelling. If saving Kandor saves Krypton, that’s billions of lives, and if you have the power to save that many lives, are you not morally obligated to do so?
It’s an interesting question to pose. And honestly, divorced from the emotional importance that Superman has to the future Adam comes from, I think the answer might be ‘yes.’
Do we have a responsibility to the future, if the future is known to us? Does that hypothetical responsibility outweigh our responsibility to those around us now? Is there a meeting ground in between? I don’t know the answers to those questions, but I’m very glad Krypton is asking them.
Overall, this episode was great and I’m very excited to see where things lead with Brainiac and the coup and whether General Zod can be trusted. Also, is his first name Dru? I sure hope so.
See y’all next week for another Krypton reaction, probably, and sooner for some other stuff!