Criminal Entente

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Young Justice Season 2, Episode 19

“Summit”

SUMMARY: The Reach and the Light meet to discuss their plans, but their meeting is cut short when they discover that they have two traitors in their midst – Tigress and Aqualad.


Syd: We start off in a cave in Santa Prisca – home of Bane. Black Beetle enters, then Slade Wilson enters. They both nod, then their respective teams – the Reach and the Light – enter. It’s unusual setting for this meeting. It does house some Light controlled facilities, but it isn’t the home base for anyone present. I guess it has some mysterious caves that provide some secrecy?

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Margaret: It’s also quite an interesting place to set this considering the rest of the episode. This is the island where the Team first became a Team. It’s where they all started to work together after all their disagreements and squabbles. To set the Summit here, I think, is really a masterful point on the creator’s part as it is really bringing everything full circle.

We also start off with a bit of a misdirect with the Reach appearing and then Deathstroke being the only Light representative. It’s only for a moment before the rest of the Light contingency arrives, but I found it a very interesting fake out to think that either Deathstroke faked out the Light or has been cornered by the Reach.

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The Beetle Generation

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Young Justice Season 2, Episode 18

“Intervention”

SUMMARY: Zatanna and Rocket abduct Blue Beetle and whisk him off to Bialya to free him from the Reach’s control.


Syd: The episode starts back on Warworld, where Black Beetle is fighting Mongul, and when Green Beetle shows up, tells him that he is disappointed he only has one opponent, which is clearly just bluster, because the two beetles working together don’t even quite overpower Mongul, they just get him into position to freeze him. So, that’s taken care of and we can reflect on what a jerk Black Beetle is. Or should we mention how Despero is still in his pod, so apparently the Justice League is fine with him staying there?

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Margaret: As I must update every episode since Warworld showed up, it is still right outside of Earth and messing things up. This time, at least, it’s because we know the key is taken by Deathstroke.

Syd: It hasn’t even been a day yet, so I don’t think Warworld has done that much damage.

Margaret: Extreme weather patterns cause a lot of damage! Aquaman can only be in one place at a time! And we’ve seen that La’gaan is doing nothing! For all we know huge swaths of beachfront land is totally gone.

Syd: Are you forgetting the great hero of the seas, Orm, who is not a villain in this series? Hey, we haven’t seen him in a while. I’m sure off-camera, he’s saving so many days.

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Syd: Seriously, in the season finale, Orm is going to show up and make everything right and you will regret your sass-mouth.

Anyway, now that the Reach has lost the key, they need to focus on standing guard to make sure no one USES the key, despite the fact that the Justice League is already doing that. Of course, neither the Reach nor the League trusts the other to do what they both want.

 

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Royfriends

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Young Justice Season 2, Episode 17

“The Hunt”

SUMMARY: Trapped on Warworld where he is being pursued by the Reach, Arsenal makes a desperate attempt to rescue the Team. Meanwhile, Virgil, Ed, Sam, and Tye have been sent by Lex Luthor to rescue the Team. Also, Nightwing and Miss Martian have come to Warworld to rescue the Team. Look, if someone doesn’t rescue the Team, I’m going to be pretty disappointed.


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Margaret: Okay, I have to start this off with one main question. WTF is Warworld still doing there?! It is a huge problem for Earth and I get that it is randomly parked there and they can’t find the keys, but surely Dr. Fate can Ankh his way into a parking brake or something.

Syd: I don’t know, for me after the Warworld episode, I kind of thought, “What are they going to do with the new moon orbiting Earth?” And now that I see the answer is, “What can they do?” I think, “That makes sense.” I feel like, left long enough, the Justice League has enough firepower to destroy Warworld, but as it is right now, I can understand not wanting to do anything rash. It was a problem when it showed up, but now that it’s in stable orbit, they have a bit of time to figure out what they’re going to do, especially since they’re on uneasy terms with the Reach and don’t want to jump into an incident with half the League gone (on trial for murder).

Margaret: I am just imagining Aquaman in a constant stream of saving dolphins. “This is finally my time to shine! Where is everyone?!”

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Syd: Poor Aquaman. Too bad the important members of the Justice League are on Warworld standing guard – most notably Plastic Man, with his goofy stretch head. Does that help him watch things better, or is that to remind onlookers what his powers are, or does he just like creeping people out? It’s the last one, isn’t it?

Margaret: If anyone is a creeper, it would be Plastic Man.

Syd: Or The Creeper. It’s in his name.

Continue reading “Royfriends”

Sub Optimal

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Young Justice Season 2, Episode 16

“Complications”

SUMMARY: Cheshire and Sportsmaster break into Black Manta’s ship to kill basically everyone who works there and must be stopped by Artemis, the very person they are there to avenge. Meanwhile, Nightwing investigates the disappearance of almost his entire team.


Syd: This episode starts aboard Black Manta’s ship, with a quick recap to get everyone up to speed. Artemis is pretending to be a villain, guarding Kaldur, who is being mentally repaired by Megan, who Deathstroke has orders to kill. Everybody got all that?

Margaret: It’s a complicated situation, but I guess that’s why that’s the name of the episode. They manage to remind us of it all very quickly. I will admit I had forgotten that Megan was under the ocean and last episode had to wonder why she wasn’t with the rest of the Team.

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Syd: The plot starts moving forward when we find out that Kaldur is actually fine and Megan has been stalling to try to come up with a plan. They were just wondering how long they could stall when Black Manta enters and tells them that he’s run out of patience and he’s going to have Megan killed in 24 hours. So that answers that question. It’s funny to me that they never actually come up with a plan – they’re really saved completely unexpectedly.

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On My World, It Means “A New Hope”

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Young Justice Season 2, Episode 15

“War”

SUMMARY: Mongul comes to Earth in a moon-sized space station with an excessive amount of ordnance. While the Justice League holds off the big guns, the Team sneaks inside to shut down the station. Meanwhile, Mal is dissatisfied with his relationship with Karen and wants to end it.


Syd: This episode is notable in that, according to an interview, this story was the first one pitched for a Young Justice series. The idea was to show, even in a world where there is a Justice League to take on huge, world-threatening challenges, the smaller, subtler team of young heroes can have even more interesting adventures.

Margaret: That’s an interesting one to pitch, as it seems like there is quite a lot that has to go into it in order to make sense. Otherwise it’s just some large Death Star the team has to fight and once that’s taken care of, where do you go from there? To me, for this show, it doesn’t work as a one off that isn’t tied to the main story.

Syd: I think that’s why they saved it for the second season. They did tie it into the Reach’s plans for the season so it didn’t feel pointless.

Margaret: Right. I like how they handle it in the scheme of this season. There’s still the bigger threat of the Reach. Without those ties, once you fight a Death Star and without a plan for something afterwards things tend to devolve into needing BIGGER and MORE INTENSE villains until one day they’re going to Hell again to fight an even worse version of Lucifer. Sorry, that’s just Supernatural.

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Jaime Vs. The Volcano

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Young Justice Season 1, Episode 14

“Runaways”

SUMMARY: The Reach’s former abductees escape from STAR Labs where they are being held, but shortly must return there to save it from an attack by Red Volcano.


Margaret: We start the episode with the titular Runaways (or at least the DC versions, not the Marvel ones. You can tell because this team doesn’t have a dinosaur) that the Team rescued from the Reach earlier in the season. Their powers are being rigorously tested. To the point of slave labor, honestly.

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Syd: With the exception of Virgil Hawkins (on loan from the series Static Shock – but also a stand-in for Black Lightning, who is already an established Justice League member in this series) all of these characters are from Super Friends.

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What you may not know about the Super Friends original characters is that none of them were given real names in that series, so in this one, we’re treated to a series of joke names. There’s Asami, or Sam for short, or Sam-urai for short, but then the rest of her name added on. Then there’s Ed Dorado, Jr., who is the son of another character named Ed Dorado, just to make talking about them confusing. Finally, we have Longshadow who has giant powers, and that’s the least offensive name. I am not okay with any of this.

Margaret: Yeah, I don’t like any of that. I’m glad they don’t say any of their full names in the cartoon. Or, at least, they don’t address each other that way. Only Lex Luthor uses their full names and we already know he’s a villain.

Continue reading “Jaime Vs. The Volcano”

It’s All in the Mind

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Young Justice Season 2, Episode 13

“The Fix”

SUMMARY: Tigress “kidnaps” Miss Martian and “coerces” her to repair Aqualad’s mind. Green Beetle “disables” the Reach’s connection to Jaime’s scarab. Everything works out?


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Syd: We start in the Atlantic Ocean. Artemis’ narration is catching up first-time viewers on where the plot is. For her part, she regrets taking her mission. She was happy living a completely non-superhero life with Wally, but maybe she wasn’t as happy as she thought, considering how ready she was when Nightwing called on her.

Margaret: She feels like she’s losing herself and that the only time she’s reminded is when she looks in the mirror and sees her own reflection. I know they never really go into it, but it does make me wonder what exactly she’s had to do as Tigress. She’s obviously trusted by the group to a certain extent, so has she murdered people? That seems like it’d be the standard evil outfit initiation.

Syd: That does seem like an odd detail to leave out, if it did happen. But, then, that is also exactly the kind of plot detail that this show would spring on us as a surprise.

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Meanwhile, Back at the Ranch

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Young Justice Season 1, Episode 12

True Colors

SUMMARY: The Team investigates the Reach’s farm that they are running with Lex Luthor. There, they are ambushed by Black Beetle, but are saved by a Martian superhero called Green Beetle.


Syd: We start inside of Jaime Reyes, where Karen and Ray have shrunken down to try to extract the scarab. The scarab creates antibodies to fight them off, which is bad news. Also, the Atom and Bumblebee hold hands, which is REALLY bad news.

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Margaret: Poor Mal. While I like the Ray Palmer from Arrow, this one just sounds smarmy and boring. I guess without the charisma of Brandon Routh, Palmer is just someone who thinks the sentence, “You see? Most problems can be solved by reducing them to their smallest components” is a badass line.

Syd: He has worse one-liners than Barry, which is saying something.

Margaret: Poor Barry. He’s adorable as Grant Gustin.

Syd: So when they retreat and reembiggen, they meet Dr. Mid-Nite and Bart who are there for the operation. I had to look up who Dr. Mid-Nite was, and apparently he’s blind by day, but has perfect night vision, which is a WEIRD superpower, but the operating room is really well-lit, so what the hell?

Margaret: Wait wait wait. This isn’t just a dumb comic book name? That’s really his made up name? WHY? Why do you both hyphenate and misspell it at the same time?

Syd: Maybe it looks cool and badass in Braille.

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Despero Measures

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Young Justice Season 2, Episode 11

“Cornered”

SUMMARY: In a meeting with the United Nations, the ambassador for the Reach goes out of his way to make the Justice League look bad. Despero comes to Earth looking for a champion to take home as a trophy. The Team relocates to a warehouse in  Blüdhaven.


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Syd: The episode begins with L-Ron, the cutest non-Star Wars related robot in the world briefing his master Despero on Earth and which of its champions would make the best trophies for him. It’s a standard villain motivation when you want a fight scene but don’t want to waste time on a plot or anything frivolous like that.

It’s interesting that L-Ron notes that Despero can’t target Rimbor because it’s under Green Lantern protection, but Earth should be fine. See, this is what happens when you send both of your Green Lanterns into space.

Margaret: Shouldn’t Earth be under Green Lantern protection no matter if there’s one in residence or not? That’s like saying England isn’t currently under British Rule if the Queen visits the US.

Syd: I guess the Corps can’t protect the planet if there are no Lanterns present. It’s like how the next time the Queen is overseas, I’m going to try to take the throne and see what happens.

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Papa, Don’t Preach

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Preacher Season 1, Episode 0

“Pilot”

SUMMARY: Jesse Custer gets superpowers and meets a vampire.


Syd: We’ll return to Young Justice next week. After the trauma of what happened to Kaldur, Margaret needs a week off. In the meantime, Foley and I will check out my dad’s favorite DC Comics adaptation, Preacher. I hear that the first season takes place before the comic series starts, so I guess it’s about a reverend with no superpowers who has never met a vampire. I imagine it’s going to be like 7th Heaven.

Foley: But hopefully with less pedophilia than Stephen Collins is famous for

Syd: No, how Garth Ennis rolls is to have the pedophilia in the first half of the story, then have someone beat the shit out of / shoot the pedophile. It’s called a dramatic arc.

Foley: I think it’s called “Righteous Fury”, the go-to for every Rage-a-holic looking for an outlet to allow their hormonal imbalance to be allowed in Society… Supposedly concocting and following through with rage fantasies is a lot easier than “Working on your mental issues”.

Syd: But if he didn’t have his issues, then The Boys would have ended after the second issue, which actually would have been a lot better now that I think of it.

Foley: I’ll be honest, I actually re-read Preacher a year or two ago in prep for this show coming out.

Syd: I read it over ten years ago, so I remember just about nothing. So I guess you’ll be the Syd and I’ll be the Margaret for this one.

Continue reading “Papa, Don’t Preach”