Powerless season 1 episode 9 was the strongest episode so far thanks to the simple premise. It made the strong choice to bring the whole cast together. The team was trapped together after Dr. Psycho released poisonous gas. This allowed tensions and conflicts to build. All the dialogue during the “Desert Island Partner” discussion was sharp. It showed just how effective the basic idea of “get everyone drunk and talking about each other” can be. As Ron said, “Thanks, alcohol.” The fight between Ron and Teddy was perfect, especially the tangent about Wilson in Castaway and the expression on his face. And, Wendy has really been killing it with great lines lately. The whole scene felt refreshingly natural in a way that Powerless season 1 usually doesn’t. It made me wish these characters had more scenes where they’re all talking together for an extended amount of time.
The reveal that the gas was truth gas brought the main plot home. I think this reveal could’ve happened earlier and that more characters could’ve been affected. For instance, it would’ve been great to see the team attempting to retrieve Emily Locke while continually getting distracted by their own petty fights thanks to the truth gas. But, Emily unloading on everyone worked well. Telling Ron that he uses his cuteness as a crutch was especially great.
The runner about Van Wayne hiring comedy writers to write jokes for him consistently added to the episode, both for comedy and plot. The simple pay off of everyone singing karaoke to get Emily back to safety also worked. Overall, the episode felt much more tightly written than previous episodes. After a couple of episodes focused on recurring superhero Green Fury, it was great seeing an episode that was driven so much by the core relationships.