There is a really impressive quality to Young Justice, and this season, Outsiders, has been no exception. Between deep cuts from DC’s past, nice little nods to characters that shouldn’t have the same lives in this world, and some great ongoing subplots, I’m really enjoying this show and season. So far, most of this season has focused on events in Markovia, with a variation of the comic book version of the Outsiders origin. In “Eminent Threat,” we see the various stories move forward.
The show opens with Gar Logan being interviewed on an Entertainment Tonight kind of show. He continues his role as spokesman for the anti-metahuman trafficking movement, and reveals he’s retired from being a superhero. Interestingly, he’s being interviewed by Courtney Whitmore, who in the main comic book universe (and a recent live action show on DC Universe and the CW) is Stargirl. This world’s history, from what we’ve seen, is so very different that Stargirl’s origin couldn’t have happened here. I’m also very amused that the role of Courtney Whitmore was played by Whitney Moore. You can’t make this stuff up.
The main action kicks off in Markovia, with things looking bad for Prince Brion, Dick Grayson, and the entire small infiltration team. There’s also a quick ominous scene with the new metahuman girl, who is fairly clearly a variant of Halo, a character created for the original Outsiders run. Oracle continues her implied presence with some amusing interplay with Nightwing as he infiltrates the headquarters, or at least the lab, of the Bedlam group, the ones behind the metahuman abductions. Nightwing observes the tensions between Dr. Ecks, Dr. Jace, and Count Vertigo. While the team hesitates in the shadows, they learn more about what’s going on and who is behind the group. Dick did miss a pretty obvious clue.
Plasmus gets sent after the still depowered Black Lightning and non-powered Artemis. They get some unexpected backup from the Super-Cycle and, as Artemis dubs her, “Halo Girl.” Nightwing manages to rescue Superboy and Brion, finds out where Dr. Jace’s loyalties lie, and causes some serious setbacks for the Bedlam group. At the big reception that Artemis and Dick snuck in to, Baron DeLamb goes into some fairly impressive story-spinning, although Prince Gregor isn’t buying it. Black Lightning isn’t at all happy about losing some of the kids being experimented on, which really wasn’t anyone on the team’s fault. Brion displays some powers, although not the classic ones he has in the comics, and sets out for revenge. The team gets confronted by Vertigo and Ecks. I knew I knew the name Simon Ecks, but I admit, I had to look him up to see the very deep cut they did of an obscure Batman foe, who has also been changed for this show.
DeLamb’s attempt to con Gregor get seriously derailed when Brion shows up in all his meta-powered rage. This, in turn, leads to a surprise about DeLamb. DeLamb has a few other surprises up his sleeve as well. Down on the beach, the other fight rages on with some unexpected developments on both sides. Gregor shows some signs that he’s a lot more than just someone born into a fortunate family, and has the strength to do the right, if very hard, thing. The other fight also winds down with a tragic ending that there was no way to see coming. The team has some difficult choices to make in terms of what they do next.
What I liked: Damn near everything. The revised origins of two Outsiders, the Courtney Whitmore cameo, Gar’s surprising decision about his career. All were nicely done. The Black Lightning story also echoes his early days with the Outsiders, which is a nice touch. I’m impressed they dug up Simon Ecks from the vaults of obscurity. They did some great stuff with Gregor as well.
What I didn’t: It’s too bad that Gar quit being a hero, another major divergence from the Teen Titans. I guess this world won’t have a Stargirl, either, but that makes sense given the different history.
This show is really impressing me. I’m giving this a high 4.5 out of 5.