Supergirl season 6 episode 7 review: Fear Knot

"Fear Knot" takes its time breaking down what would happen if every member of the Super Friends found themselves facing down with a Phantom.

Nicole Maines as Nia Nal in Supergirl's "Fear Knot."
(Image: © The CW)

What to Watch Verdict

"Fear Knot" is an anticlimactic end to a story that took us half a season to wrap up.


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    💥 Nia and Lena have a nice moment.

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    💥 J'onn goes full poppa bear.


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    💥 "Fear Knot" is more redundant than interesting.

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    💥 We've spent half of a season trying to get Kara back and the moment they finally do is as anticlimactic as possible.

This post contains spoilers for Supergirl season 6 episode 7 "Fear Knot."
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review of Supergirl season 6 episode

It's always rough when one of your favorite shows puts out weak episodes, but it's much worse when one of those chapters falls on a milestone like the midseason finale. "Fear Knot" takes its time breaking down what would happen if every member of the Super Friends found themselves facing down with a Phantom and the fear that they inspire. And, while it's not The CW network's first forray into the Groundhog Day-esque episodes, it's certainly one of the most boring.

Brainy (Jesse Rath) and Dreamer (Nicole Maines) return to the tower three days after the original departure to a team very ready to get the show on the road. With the last piece of the puzzle — Kara's blood — in hand, they quickly get to work on taking off and heading to the Phantom Zone. They're prepared for a whole host of issues to unfold as they set off on their rescue mission, but they didn't anticipate the Phantom trapped in containment breaking free after a power surge. Once he does, he wreaks havoc on the team in a series of largely boring and no-stakes scenes that lack any kind of emotional impact despite the best effort of Supergirl's cast. 

The one thing that got me through the episode was the hope that there would be a strong emotional payoff as the Super Friends finally rescue Kara (Melissa Benoist) and the title character would get the opportunity to return to her own show. It's funny that Supergirl has a monologue about the sillyness of hope while she's dealing with her Phantom wound, because my hope that the rough episode would stick the landing was completely unfounded.

There are a couple shining moments in "Fear Knot," with the first featuring Nia and Lena (Katie McGrath) bonding over their lost mothers and the little ways they hold onto them. It's a brief scene, but it was a powerful moment between the actresses (and it's slim pickins here). It's J'onn (David Harewood) who takes the moment of the night, though. The moment poppa bear realizes what's going on, he marches into the chamber and basically "not today, Satans" the Phantom back into its cage. It's a powerful scene that is immediately undercut by the lackluster reunion between Supergirl and her team.

"Fear Knot" is an entry in a half of season that was filled with a lot of "eh, ok," stuff. There was a powerful moment sprinkled in here and there, but overall Season 6 has presented some of the weakest Supergirl fare to date. At first, I had assumed that Melissa Benoist's absence was due to her wanting to spend more time with her family (and who can begrudge her that?) but now that we're seeing Legends of Tomorrow head down the same road with Sara Lance, I wonder if that was ever the case at all. There are ways to tell tales of your heroes being separated from their teams, but neither series has had much success. Here's to a much stronger season of Supergirl when the series returns from hiatus. (And a speedy wrap-up to an already rough storyline on Legends!

Amelia Emberwing

Amelia is an entertainment Streaming Editor at IGN, which means she spends a lot of time analyzing and editing stories on things like Loki, Peacemaker, and The Witcher. In addition to her features and editorial work, she’s also a member of both the Television Critics Association and Critics Choice. A deep love of film and television has kept her happily in the entertainment industry for 7 years.