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.

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The Blue and the Gray

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Young Justice Season 2, Episode 10

“Before the Dawn”

SUMMARY: The Team breaks aboard a ship where the Light’s alien partners – The Reach – are keeping Blue Beetle, Lagoon Boy, Impulse, and Beast Boy. There, they meet the Reach’s heavy Black Beetle, who is like Blue Beetle but bigger. Miss Martian encounters Aqualad and mindwipes him. Impulse tells Jaime about his dystopian future.


Margaret: To start the episode, we finally see the origin of Jaime’s attachment to the Blue Beetle. He’s skateboarding home when something explodes and tosses the beetle implant onto the street. When he picks it up, it bonds to him.

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Syd: We know that Jaime is a rad to the max teen, because he skateboards. Unfortunately, he wakes up in the tube where he was left last episode. The flashback was all just a dream. So is he not really as tubular as his subconscious pictures him?

Margaret: Please stop talking like that.

Syd: Fine. Be square. Anyway, the aliens who have them kidnapped start talking about how the scarab is damaged and they can only access data from the past eight months. That means they know all of Jaime’s secrets – which I think includes the Konami code and the lyrics to Pink Floyd songs, if my memories of high school are accurate.

Margaret: Syd, this takes place in 2016, so there is no way he knows the Konami code unless he’s a hipster. And he probably listens to The National ironically.

Syd: The code was in a Moldy Peaches song, so he definitely knows it. Also, it was probably in Ready Player One, but I’ll never know because I’ll never read it.

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Earth-Shattering Kaboom

 

screenshot.pngYoung Justice Season 2, Episode 9

“Darkest”

SUMMARY: Kaldur’ahm and his team infiltrate and explodify Mt. Justice, taking Impulse, Beast Boy, and Blue Beetle captive.


Syd: The episode begins with the defiant, rebellious Lagoon Boy imprisoned on the Manta Ship’s brig and chewing out Aqualad for betraying their King.

Margaret: It’s not just the King he’s upset about, but also the Team. He even calls Kaldur your favorite term: “Chum”.

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Syd: Of course, we the audience know that Kaldur is still working with Nightwing, but he is totally willing to drug Lagoon Boy to shut him up, which is pretty sucky.

Margaret: Well, it’s more than to simply shut him up. As Black Manta quickly points out, though he has his father’s utmost approval other of the Light are more wary of him. He has to play the perfect son to gain the innermost Circle’s trust.

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A Swift Kick in the Arsenal

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Young Justice Season 2, Episode 8

“Satisfaction”

SUMMARY: The 15 year-old Roy Harper seeks revenge against Lex Luthor for kidnapping him and amputating his arm. Meanwhile, Rocket has her bridal shower and Wendy uses the occasion of Superboy’s birthday to flirt with him.


Syd: This episode starts in the hospital where Li’l Roy has been for the last month. He sums up what has happened in the eight years he has been missing, including the alien invasion, the Young Justice team, and Oliver’s goatee, leading to my favorite line of the series – “You don’t like the goatee?” Ollie has his priorities in order.

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Margaret: One of the best and worst things about Ollie is that he’ll always go for the joke. That’s great to break the tension, but at a time like this it’s just sort of tone deaf.

Syd: He really doesn’t know how to apologize for taking in the clone, and then, when he found out that he’d been tricked, not going to look for his original partner. I’m not sure to what extent Green Arrow’s actions were at fault, and to what extent Red Arrow went above and beyond what was expected – to his own detriment.

Margaret: I can see it from both points of view. To Oliver, he did try looking for Speedy for awhile, but already believed him dead. Why would Luthor keep alive the original Speedy after getting what he wanted? To Roy, he needed to assuage his immense guilt at knowing he took over someone else’s life and then also was only created to betray the people to which he felt closest. For Speedy? He was kidnapped, experimented on and mutilated, only to be told that everyone except the person who took over his life gave up looking for him. The whole thing is messy.

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Prequ-El

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Krypton Season 1, Episode 1

“Pilot”

SUMMARY: After thwarting a terrorist attack, Seg-El is granted a rank and house that had been denied him since his family was disgraced over his grandfather’s treasonous scientific research. He is also given a wife, which may cause friction with his secret lover, Lyta-Zod. Then his parents are killed. Then Adam Strange shows up to warn Seg about Brainiac, because those are characters whose names we know.


Syd: With Margaret in Chicago for C2E2, I decided instead of missing a week of our strictly maintained schedule, I would do something a little different. So we’re taking a break from Young Justice to watch the pilot for SYFY’s new Smallville prequel, Krypton. Now, you may think that I can’t write anything coherent about a TV show on my own and you’re probably right. So I brought in a special guest. You may know him as my cohost from Dr. Sketchy’s Anti-Art School or from various bars around New York City. Say hello to the people, Foley.

Foley: Very excited to be here, especially right now before the show even starts. At this moment Krypton has the highest potential for greatness. Until we hit play I cannot be disappointed. That said, I for one hope to be pleasantly surprised by this interstellar period piece with no “known” DC characters to mess it up… Until like episode 3 when they bring in Hawkgirl for no reason (The reason is a love triangle).

Syd: Now, before we watch this, I have to say, this is a bad idea, right? Like, Krypton as a concept only exists to be destroyed. Right off the bat, there is the burden of creating an entire lived-in world while they are also weighed down by the established continuity of all of cosmic DC. Also, they’re going with the version of Krypton where they don’t have superpowers on Krypton. The entire time I’ll be thinking about how much better it would be if they went with the more interesting original version of Krypton where everyone was Superman.

Foley: Thanks to you I watched a LOT of Supergirl… Powers can really mess up a show.

Syd: That was the least of Supergirl’s problems. Here, if the main character is a cryptofascist, I can chalk it up to cultural differences.

Foley: …Until they do the slow cutaway to the Kryptonian Holocaust. I still can’t believe Supergirl went there.

Syd: Let’s start this up, then, and see if it’s actually offensive or just regular dumb.

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What the Hell Just Happened?!

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Young Justice Season 2, Episode 7

“Depths”

SUMMARY: The Team is onhand to protect the communication satellite being launched between Earth and Mars. The launch is disrupted when Black Manta’s troops attack. Then Kaldur stabs Artemis, seemingly killing her.


Margaret: The episode opens with Godfrey talking his general shit about aliens and the fact that a satellite is being launched between Earth and Mars. To him, it’s bad enough that aliens are on the planet, but now they’re going out to contact more. It pulls back to show Wally watching the program, who does not seem to like it.

Syd: Artemis is on her way out, going to join the Young Justice team for a mission, and Wally disapproves. Artemis says that it’s no different than him helping out the Flash when Neutron attacked. Wally doesn’t think it’s the same at all, while being careful not to mention exactly what the mission is and give away anything to the audience. Artemis says, “What could go wrong?” leading to a cut to 10 hours later and Nightwing pronouncing Artemis dead.

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Margaret: Geez Artemis, you should know by now in the superhero business that you never ask what can go wrong! That’s practically just asking for terrible luck.

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Do the Bartman

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Young Justice Season 2, Episode 6

“Bloodlines”

SUMMARY: Impulse, a tourist from 40 years in the future, visits Mt. Justice and helps fight Neutron alongside his grandfather, The Flash.


Syd: This episode starts with Nightwing recapping what we know of the Kroloteans’ plan – that they are kidnapping humans to use as experiments.

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Margaret: They are looking for something that there is no English word for: the metagene. Aha! So they’re trying to do DC mutants. Got it. I can’t blame them. Mutants are popular.

Syd: Fox has been hogging the all-purpose origin story for too long. It’s a good idea for Warner Brothers to jump on their own. They were kind of running out of non-ridiculous origin stories anyway. What I think is interesting is that Dick says there is no English word. So is “metagene” French or something?

Margaret: If anything, I’d think it would be German. They tend to shove different words into each other to get a new descriptive one. Like der Kühlschrank, which literally means ‘cool cupboard’, which is a fridge.

Syd: Enough linguistics! Bart is here!

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