Spoiler: Everyone is the Traitor

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Young Justice Season 1, Episode 25

“Usual Suspects”

SUMMARY: While tracking down Cheshire, the secrets that Artemis, Miss Martian, and Superboy had been keeping from the Team come out. More importantly, the audience finally finds out the identity of the mole(s).


 

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Margaret: The episode opens on a speech by Superman inducting five new members into the Justice League. We see that those five are Dr. Fate, Atom, Icon, Red Arrow and Plastic Man. Superman even makes a dad joke about “Truth, Liberty and Justice” with Justice being in the name.

Syd: I kind of like that they excluded “The American Way” from Superman’s motto without any fanfare, considering the unfortunate implications of it being added in the first place. We discussed that back when this was a Supergirl blog, didn’t we?

Margaret: Honestly, I’m not sure if we actually did. I know how much you hated the S being a symbol of hope, though.

Syd: Right, the S on his chest stands for “Superman” and he fights for Truth, Tolerance, and Justice. I’m kind of an originalist like that. However, I’m fine if he isn’t actually as fast as a speeding bullet, as I am convinced that nobody involved in creating the character fully considered how fast bullets actually are.

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Swings and Roustabouts

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Young Justice Season 1, Episode 24

“Performance”

SUMMARY: A string of robberies seems to be linked to the circus where Robin used to work. Robin sets out to save the circus’ reputation and find the real thief, while Red Arrow tries to determine which member of the Team is the mole.


 

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Syd: We start at the circus in Bruges, with our heroes posing as a family of acrobats – the Dangers. All of their names are alliterative, because their parents thought they were clever.

Margaret: They always knew they were going to be a circus act and had the foresight to name them appropriately! Robin, who grew up in a circus, should be in his element. However, he caught a 24-hour flu and therefore misses his catch and almost falls. Superboy and Megan subtly use their powers to save him.

Syd: Robin chastises Megan for using her powers publicly, potentially compromising their cover. Frankly, I think that telekinesis would make a way better circus act than acrobatics, but then I don’t call the shots.

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An Arrowing Ordeal

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Young Justice Season 1, Episode 23

“Insecurity”

SUMMARY: When Red Arrow joins the Team in tracking down Sportsmaster, Artemis is eager to prove her worth to the Team. However, her eagerness to complete the mission on her own leads to the mission’s failure.


Syd: Our episode starts with a shot of a spider web, and then a shot of The Black Spider – as voiced by Josh Keaton, who has experience playing spider themed superheroes.

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Margaret: This is the DC evil version of Spider-Man, right?

Syd: I guess? Honestly, I’ve only seen this character in Young Justice comics and cartoons. I think the reference is that Greg Weisman, Peter David, and Josh Keaton have all done extensive Spider-Man work and this is a shout-out for the fans. Who knows? Maybe this Black Spider character has deep resonance for the themes of this episode.

Margaret: As I have assumed this is a Spider-Man allusion, I’m assuming him attacking a ‘crusading’ journalist is a bit of jab at the photojournalist Peter Parker.

Syd: That’s kind of an oblique reference. That seems as unlikely as including Bernell Jones as a character in a cameo in the first season of a series to have something pay off in the third. Probably just a coincidence.

Margaret: A coincidence. Uh huh.

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A Match Made in Heaven

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Young Justice Season 1, Episode 22

“Agendas”

SUMMARY: When Superboy is called to Project Cadmus to see a new Superman clone, he learns shocking truths about his own origin.  Meanwhile, the Justice League discusses inducting new members.


Syd: The episode starts with Wonder Woman’s first spoken line. Then, we get the full Justice League meeting to vote on new members.

Margaret: And adding to that, I like that Diana wants more women in the league.

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Syd: Yeah, especially since before this episode only one had spoken. We still haven’t heard from Hawkwoman.

Margaret: That is a bummer! I really like Hawkwoman on the Justice League cartoon and the fact that she’s not represented here at all is – I guess – understandable as there is no hawk protege. But, the only female adult mentor, really, is Black Canary. Black Canary is amazing, but you need more than one female mentor to round out a team. Especially when there are no less than four dudes and a robot that round out the mentorships of the Team.

Syd: Well, Superman wants a more diverse League, nominating Icon, who is both a black man and an alien.

Margaret: That’s because he thinks he’s a Kryptonian!

Syd: And there’s only one of them on the League!

Margaret: I feel like that’s heroic false equivalency, honestly!

Continue reading “A Match Made in Heaven”

The White Martian’s Burden

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Young Justice Season 1 Episode 21

“Image”

SUMMARY: While the vaguely Middle Eastern nation of Qurac is being overtaken by Bialya, possibly under sinister circumstances, Miss Martian is confronted with the secret she had been keeping from her teammates and would go to any lengths to protect.


Syd: So, there is a lot to dissect in this episode. It starts with Batman showing Ollie and Dinah a video of Black Canary training with Superboy. The video takes an unexpected twist when the two start making out. Black Canary then shapeshifts to reveal she was Miss Martian the whole time. Ollie thinks this is hilarious – Dinah much less so.

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Margaret: There are a lot of things to say about this scene. It’s hard to come down on one side or another on this. I get Megan’s side where she is training Conner in the visage that he generally trains with and then kisses her boyfriend. At the same time, Dinah is incredibly disturbed by the fact that it is her visage making out with Conner. This is completely understandable on both points of view.

Syd: So, this is totally normal for Conner and Megan who are comfortable with each other’s bodies – as malleable as Megan is – but why did Batman feel the need to present this to Ollie and Dinah – a couple whose relationship might be tested by their reaction to this footage – without any context? What the hell is wrong with Batman?

Margaret: Batman is always an odd man out in a lot of ways. Even if he knows that this is the way that Megan and Conner interact there is no reason to bring it up with Oliver and Dinah unless he is attempting to do some weird personal investigation into their relationship.

Syd: Oh, God, this is Batman’s fetish, isn’t it?

Margaret: Yes, he has a detective fetish.

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The Worst Birthday Ever

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Young Justice Season 1, Episode 20

“Coldhearted”

SUMMARY: While the Justice League is occupied fighting a team of ice-powered villains, it is up to Kid Flash to deliver a heart to an ailing Queen. However, Vandal Savage and Count Vertigo are trying to stop the organ transplant from happening.


Syd: Those of you who have been reading this blog and know what we think of Wally will know how much we were looking forward to this – a whole episode of his own.

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Margaret: UUUUGHHHHHH!! Not to mention, who the hell sets an alarm for 7:16 on their 16th birthday unless they are a total jerk?

Syd: My theory: His clock is set 15 minutes fast so that he isn’t late for school. Then he sets the alarm 16 minutes late because he’s an idiot.

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It’s 10 PM. Do You Know Where Your Children Are?

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Young Justice Season 1, Episode 19

“Misplaced”

SUMMARY: When everyone above the age of 18 (or whatever the magical criterion is) disappears, it’s up to the Young Justicers to defeat Klarion and break the spell. But can they do it without calling upon the unpredictable and possibly malign power of Dr. Fate?


Syd: This episode is an adaptation of the JLA comic “World Without Grown-Ups,” which was a backdoor pilot for Young Justice. Basically the premise was that a child with godlike powers throws a tantrum and banishes all adults to another world. This premise was already adapted into a cartoon in the Justice League Unlimited episode “Kid Stuff.” The comic had more material than would fit in a twenty minute cartoon, but most of it was justifying a Young Justice solo series, which was unnecessary at this point. The villain in the comic was Bedlam – a villain created for this story – and the one thing I missed from the comic was the Team fighting the kind of monsters a magical child would conjure, including a Nazi dinosaur:

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It was refreshing that Robin and Superboy don’t debate whether it is ethical to punch Nazi dinosaurs, because they’re good guys. Of COURSE they punch Nazis.

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BOO-yah!

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Young Justice Season 1, Episode 18

“Secrets”

SUMMARY: Artemis and Zatanna spend their Halloween fighting the supervillain Harm. Then they meet a ghost. Meanwhile Happy Harbor High’s Halloween party is invaded by Martians – or at least one Martian.


Syd: So, if we’ve timed this correctly, this entry will be posted on October 31, 2016. We’re on schedule for that, right?

Margaret: Uuummm, yes. Totally on schedule. The episode starts at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York. The sword of Beowulf has been stolen. It can only be wielded by someone who is pure of heart and is supposed to hold great power. The police officer assigned to the case sounds incredibly skeptical.

Syd: It is here that we meet the episode’s villain – Harm, a character created for the Young Justice comic. Harm is kind of a weird name, though it is kind of in line with some other villains like Bane or Stryfe, from which Harm is not too far a cry. Also, he refers to himself in the third person, which is creepy and arrogant and perhaps fits in with the character, but let’s cut the crap, I have read tons of Peter David books and I know that puns are his lifeblood and he did this solely so that Harm could tell people to “stay out of Harm’s way.”

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Margaret: But he has yet to say it! Just “Mediocrity such as this is never far from Harm.”

Syd: But you KNOW it’s coming!

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Margaret: Let’s keep a ‘Harm watch!’ I think that definitely makes sense. If you name a bad guy Harm in a comic, you should use the full extent of his punny-ness.

Continue reading “BOO-yah!”

BFFP

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Young Justice Season 1, Episode 17

“Disordered”

SUMMARY: After the trauma of everybody dying last episode, the Team sits down for therapy sessions with Black Canary, except Superboy, who thwarts a gold heist with the Forever People.


Margaret: The episode opens with the Team still scarred from the simulation they went through. Batman comes into the Cave expecting everyone to have already healed and moved on from saying the simulation went ‘badly’. Badly? Everyone died, Bruce! Jeez, you are so emotionally stunted.

Syd: I don’t know what Batman’s reaction to traumatic situations is supposed to be. He tends to violently overreact, but that also always works out for the best. I’m not sure if we’re meant to see Batman as horribly maladapted or absolutely the BEST adapted.

Margaret: I’m sure we’re supposed to read him as maladapted, as J’onn chides him in his response to thinking everyone should be okay by now. In many ways J’onn acts like the show’s moral compass at times.

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Syd: Well, You would expect that J’onn would be wiser and more mature than Batman, as he has several decades on him (and come to think of it, it’s weird how many interpretations of J’onn are less mature). I expect that his life was much more normal before he left Mars, too, so he would have more experience dealing with people – albeit a different kind of people.

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Blue Beetlecrantz and Booster Goldenstern are Dead

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Young Justice Season 1, Episode 16

“Failsafe”

SUMMARY: When aliens attack, everyone dies! Or do they? Probably.


Syd: The episode starts with two Green Lanterns fighting a spaceship in space. I was just starting to think that there are too many Green Lanterns when they both get vaporized. Oh well, there are more where they came from.

Margaret: I was surprised the killed the Green Lanterns off so quickly. That surprise was quickly expounded upon as they kill not only random Green Lanterns, but all the recurring League characters. It was quite a shock.

Syd: This episode is hardcore. As soon as we get back from the theme song, we cut to Iris West-Allen’s report from the ground and people are being killed left and right. Like, you see their skeletons and everything.

Margaret: Yeah! It’s insane. Everyone is dying everywhere! Iris is in the middle of the action, as any good reporter on the ground would be. Flash and Zatara rescue her and put her on what they assume is a safe rooftop. A grateful Iris remains professional by thanking, “….The Flash” because she obviously was about to thank Barry.

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Syd: It seems like Cat Grant has been promoted to anchor. Last time we saw her, she was a field reporter. It looks like, despite Kaldur’s meddling, she’s well on her way to her own media empire, then leaving the show when shooting moves to Canada.

Continue reading “Blue Beetlecrantz and Booster Goldenstern are Dead”