"Supergirl's like a folk tale. In theory, comforting, noble. In reality, oof, ill-equipped and clinging to ideals of a time long past. When they go low, she goes high. We put them six feet lower. We're through giving these devils the benefit of the law. Supergirl's done. This is the era of the Elite."
Manchester Black
"What's So Funny About Truth, Justice, and the American Way?" is the thirteenth episode of the fourth season of Supergirl, and the seventy-eighth episode overall. It aired on March 3, 2019.


Manchester Black breaks out of prison with the help of his new team, the Elite, who are set on punishing the anti-alien forces. Supergirl pulls double duty as she tries to apprehend Manchester Black and his team as well as deal with a shocking new development with Ben Lockwood.[src]


  • The episode's title is a reference to the 2001 Superman story of the same name that features the debut of Manchester Black and the Elite.
  • Supergirl calls Hat "Clockwork Orange", a reference to the 1971 film of the same name.
  • Brainy mentions his friend "Val", a reference to Val Armorr, aka the Karate Kid, a member of the Legion of Super-Heroes. He is a master of every form of martial arts to have been developed by the 31st century. The extent of Karate Kid's skill is so great that he can severely damage various types of hard material with a single blow, and was briefly able to hold his own against Superboy through use of what he called "Super Karate".
  • Manchester Black slightly breaks the fourth wall when, at the end of a broadcast aimed at Supergirl, he says "Now, for a commercial break". The act then ends, going into an actual commercial break.
  • As she comes into a diner for a meeting with Manchester Black, Supergirl asks him if he expects them to re-enact the diner scene from the 1995 film Heat.
  • A couple of Easter eggs from two films starring Richard Dreyfuss are featured in this episode.
    • The scene at the end of the episode, having the base for the satellite being at a base in Devils Tower, Wyoming, is a homage to the 1977 film Close Encounters of The Third Kind, where the final scene is the meeting of aliens and humans at Devils Tower.
    • Brainy wears a "Don't Hassle Me I'm Local" shirt that Dreyfuss' co-star Bill Murray famously wore in the film What About Bob?.
  • Manchester Black quotes several famous people including Mark Twain's "No man is a failure who has friends", Michelle Obama's "When they go low, we go high", and Isaac Newton's third law "Every reaction has an equal and opposite reaction".


  • Manchester Black would not have been able to keep up with Supergirl, and even if he can fly, his body wouldn't be conscious any higher than 6 - 10 thousand feet.
  • Baker is revealed to have pardoned Ben. However, Baker had previously concluded that Ben could not be charged and he was released without trial, so no pardon is necessary.
  • Ben says his father was a union man. As a factory owner, it's unlikely Peter Lockwood would also be in a union.


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