SPOILER WARNING: This article contains major spoilers for "The Fanatical," the latest episode of Supergirl.
James Olsen has decided to out himself as Guardian -- eventually. In "The Fanatical," the latest episode of Supergirl, he decided he will reveal himself to the world someday in order to inspire a new generation.
In an effort to save a former member of Coville's cult, Guardian pursued her would-be kidnappers. However, during the fight, one of them shot him point-blank in the face with an armor-piercing bullet. This caused his helmet to split in half, revealing his face. Just at that moment, several cops entered the warehouse and aimed their guns at him. Despite his protestations, they believed him to be the aggressor and would have shot him if he had not used a smoke bomb to escape.
Unfortunately for James, a camera in the warehouse caught this moment -- and Coville's cult got their hands on the footage. So, when they demanded to get their ex-member back, they threatened to out him to the world. This led him to think long and hard about his secret identity and what it means to the world at large.
Initially, James planned to circumvent Coville's cult and hold a press conference to reveal his identity before they could. This decision stemmed from an incident from his youth: the first time a cop put him in handcuffs at the age of seven. He told Lena that, at a hotel on their vacation, he and his cousins decided to play hide-and-seek. Suddenly, a cop arrived and pulled them out of their hiding spots. Although they explained they were staying at the hotel, he put them in handcuffs and marched them into the hotel, until James' mother screamed to let them go.
As James explained to Lena, he has enjoyed the anonymity provided by the mask. For once, people judged him by his deeds and the good in his heart rather than the color of his skin. However, he realized how important it would be for him to out himself as a black vigilante; if he did so, he could inspire young boys like himself.
Ultimately, Supergirl and the DEO came up with a plan, which allowed them to prevent a Worldkiller from being created and stop the cult without revealing his identity. Nevertheless, James told Kara he would reveal his identity someday, when the time was right. In doing so, he hopes to give young black boys hope for the future. For now, though, his secret is safe.
Airing Mondays at 8 p.m. on The CW, Supergirl stars Melissa Benoist as the Girl of Steel, David Harewood as Martian Manhunter, Mehcad Brooks as Jimmy Olsen, Chyler Leigh as Alex Danvers and Jeremy Jordan as Winn Schott, with appearances by Calista Flockhart as Cat Grant and Tyler Hoechlin as Superman.