The Life & Times of an Auteur.

Commentary on Pop Culture, and maybe creating some of my own.

Saturday, March 9, 2013

Summit


The penultimate episode of "Young Justice" has aired, and it tied a lot up while leaving a lot open... as it should, with next week's episode being the climax. Overall, it was a satisfying episode, about 90% of it depicted in real time, and in one location. All hands on deck!

It was a long time coming, and while I don't know if the Light's defeat was crippling, but they were hurt this time. Badly. While the Light were grand chess masters and magnificent bastards all around (as they should be considering who their members are), Aqualad was right that their greatest weakness was their arrogance. With all of their resources, they were always able to set the stage in their favor... but even one wild card can alter the game for the most skilled card sharp. Aqualad and Artemis were those wild cards, and Nightwing learned from the Batman. So Black Manta and the Brain have been captured; Ra's al Ghul is dead... again; Vandal Savage and Klarion are playing one final card; Queen Bee and Lex Luthor did not attend the summit because of their public works. Savage didn't outright say their names, but it's a safe bet that the world now knows of the Light's existence even if Luthor and Bee can't be officially tied to the organization at this point.

Oh, and "Summit" was set on June 19th which is Fathers Day in 2016 also known as the year this season is set in. Black Manta was betrayed by Kaldur on Father's Day. Which is not something you need to know, given how well the confrontation between Manta and Kaldur worked on an emotional level, but damn does that tidbit add to it. And knowing Greg Weisman, the choice of the date had to be intentional. Even betrayed, Manta did not want the Reach killing his son... but he was more than willing to "beat a lesson into his skull"; likewise, as Kaldur himself said, he had seen Manta's honorable side and shown his own ruthless side in defeating him. Even after discovering his son betrayed him and was shot by "Deathstroke" for it, he still ran to his side. I thought the confrontation was fantastic. I doubt it was easy for Kaldur either.

So the Light were outplayed as the Team infiltrated the summit with Miss Martian disguised as Deathstroke and the rest hiding among the ninjas of the League of Shadows. I enjoyed all the reveals... and it was cool to see all the current members of the Team come together to take out the enemy they stumbled across in the pilot. I was glad to see Wally suit up again as Kid Flash, and an official passing of the torch to Impulse. Had we gotten a third season, I suspect that Wally would have become the Flash. Yeah, I know Wally said he and Artemis were going to go back into retirement once this was all over, but sometimes life gets in the way of such plans. Especially with what's coming next week.

And while the Light were defeated, true to form, Savage did play his final hand when he and Klarion teleported to the War World with the crystal key, took out the League members guarding it, and stole the War World. Considering that Black Beetle was at the summit, a play for the War World was inevitable, but I think this sped things up. I'm not sure if Savage would have gone for the War World immediately, though. He had no choice in timing after everything was outted. He knew the summit would have been recorded, and the League would be cleared as a result. Corrupt or not, there's only so blatant you can be, and with the heavy hitters coming back.... yeah, hew as out of options. Which, like he said, is pretty much as desperate as he's ever been in fifty-thousand years. Although, at this point, I fear we'll never see Savage and Klarion again... but I could be wrong.

It was deeply satisfying to watch Aqualad's recording play, shattering their partnership with the Reach, just as it was satisfying to watch the Ambassador get what was coming to him. Black Beetle removing that smug and pompous ass from command while keeping the more ruthless scientist at his side was beautiful. The ambassador better home he has intergalactic diplomatic immunity, because he's about to get thrown into a cage.

So what's next, what's missing? Well, the Reach Conquest has been stopped, but it was stopped the moment Impulse went back in time. What am I missing?


Ah yes, just the apocalypse. And with Black Beetle threatening to destroy Earth to cover up the Reach's crimes, the Team and the League will have their work cut out for them next week. I will admit that I can't help but be reminded of the penultimate episode of "W.I.T.C.H." at this point, where the guardians outplayed Nerissa and Phobos, or for Phobos' lieutenant, Lord Cedric, to pull a fast one and become the main villain in the series finale. Only this time Black Beetle is in Lord Cedric's role and is, at least in my opinion, a much cooler and more intimidating villain than Lord Cedric ever was. I don't mean to imply that these are the same plots, because they are not. But I couldn't help but see the similarities. In any event, we're down to the wire. This is it. One more to go.

* Will the Team and the Justice League save the world?
* Will the apocalypse be stopped?
* Will Black Beetle be defeated?
* Will we ever see Vandal Savage and Klarion ever again?
* What about the New Gods?
* If Vandal Savage must cannibalize his direct descendants in the comics as fuel for his immortality, what really happened to Roy Harper's arm?
* If Lucifer means "light bringer" does this mean the Light was allied with Lucifer Morningstar? Will we see Lucifer and Mazikeen animated? What about the Endless? ..... Yeah, probably not.

Tune in one last time, same Young Justice Time, same Young Justice Channel.

21 comments:

  1. I'm thinking that "apocalypse" was Happy Harbor merely being destroyed, and it will happen in the finale, and as for the gray sky? It's February.

    It was great to see Wally again (and Jason Spisak's twitter promises that it gets better next week) And satisfying to see The Light played by the team. Also enjoyable to see The Reach Ambassador get dethroned by his own tech. Also I did like La'gann saving M'gann. Yes he's been portrayed like a jerk, and after last week, he could've continued to be one. But he didn't.

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    1. I'm not sure about that. If the apocalypse in Bart's era had been truly averted, I'm sure that Happy Harbor would still be standing (or at least rebuilt). As for the gray sky, it doesn't get that dark in February. Unless that scene at the end of "Bloodlines" gets addressed by the half-point of the finale, we shouldn't assume anything more than what has been shown and stated by Neutron. Which means that things are likely not gonna end well for the heroes this season and that this episode was likely a way of getting our hopes up so that the writers could crush those hopes in the next episode.

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  2. If YJ wasn't cancelled:
    - The Light's storyline finishing up
    - potential new team led by Roy Harper, called the Outsiders.
    - UN making their own super-team (inspired by Stormwatch, an Wildstorm(now part of DC) government super-team).
    - The Light still making their own version of the team.

    On Topic:
    Might have to agree with PRgirl.

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  3. I'm going to guess that at the end of next week's ep, after the Reach have been beaten, we'll get another shot of the future apocalypse and see what caused it. They may have stopped the Reach apocalypse but something bigger came along and caused the same result, and I'm sure it had something to do with Savage taking off in the War World.

    I'm reminded of the 90s X-Men cartoon and the end of the Days of Future Past eps, "something else must have happened afterwards. Something that made the future still turn out like this."

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  4. This is an episode that really makes me sad about the show getting cancelled. As much as I hated seeing the heroes actions prove pointless time and time again, it made them ultimately outplaying the villains all the more fun, though I admit I did find poor writing in otherwise good show the The Light in the 1st season went back and forth between seeing The Team as a threat. Plus, it looks like we were going to get out of that phase with Vandal being forced to take desperate measures with the War World, and it was oh so much fun to see Kaldor beat down Black Manta.
    Also, I'm glad the Klarian didn't talk this episode, I never liked him.

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  5. I think Greg Weisman confirmed on Ask Greg that Roy's arm was taken as a source of cell samples and that's all, when asked if there was anything more to it. I think the asker may even have inquired whether Vandal "ate" it.

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    1. Ahem..

      http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/Joke?s=t

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    2. Since you referenced comic canon and seemed to be using cannibalize in the sense of organ transplants, you sounded serious.

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    3. In the same section where I referenced Lucifer and Mazikeen, and then said "tune in same YJ time, same YJ channel"

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  6. That was the last bit, it's supposed to be funny.

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    1. Well, what do I know? I only wrote the review.

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    2. That statement was supposed to be funny itself. I wasn't trying to argue, just to explain why I thought it was a real question.

      The preceding questions were things we're actually wondering about (it's of great interest to me whether we see more of Apokolips's involvement with the Light in the finale), and it was a fairly reasonable question I've heard before. I do understand that this list was in the style of old serial TV announcers.

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  7. Yo greg I was wondering if you ever had the time you could do a match between spec spidey and young justice in the same vain that you did gargoyls vs avatar. I know you love gargoyles but you gotta spread the love. Which is the superior greg weisman show (sans gargoyles). As always love the reviews. Goodbye young justice.

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  8. Had the show gone on, I wonder if Ra's' resurrection would have worked out. I would have been interested in seeing Talia take his place in the Light.

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    1. It sounds like the anonymous poster thinks it would've been cool for the pit to fail for some reason, so Talia could take over from Ra's.

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    2. That's an interesting idea. The Lazarus Pit is supposedly not an exact science, but I'm not sure censors would allow them to directly show a death onscreen (as opposed to implying it or making it part of the time jump) and have it stick. I think Ra's can be killed a lot before the audience precisely because it doesn't last.

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    3. It would be nice to see Talia in the show, though, after her appearance in the tie-in comics.

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    4. Then it's poorly thought out. Can't just pull something like that will nilly when the Lazarus Pit is canon to this universe (it was in the comic) just because it would be "cool."

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  9. Yeah, I know. Although it's been implied that the mechanics of the pit are unpredictable, it seems unlikely. I don't think the censors would be happy about a death shown directly actually sticking anyway (as opposed to one that's implied or in backstory). Ra's can be killed onscreen precisely because we know he'll come back. Although seeing Talia in the show would be nice, since the characterization in her comic appearance was intriguing. So many interesting characters, too little space available for it to be possible to develop them all completely.

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  10. Only thing that would justify it, really, is interception or sabotage by Reach agents, and they have bigger things on their minds.

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