Nothing says fun like the arrival of yet another powerful alien itching for a fight.
What They Say:
Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers)
With the Reach having managed to sneak ahead of the League by revealing themselves to the world, there’s an uncertainty to about what needs to be done now. They had intended to reveal what it was the Reach was up to with all their secret experiments in order to make sure that people weren’t taken in by what the Reach had to offer, but they were beaten to the punch. And that’s left the League off balanced since now they have to publicly play nice since they aliens landed at the United Nations and there are those that are pointing to the Reach as the real way that aliens should interact with humanity, as opposed to the other ones that they’re aware of. Suffice to say, G. Gordon Godfrey is milking it for all its worth and running with it in a big and nasty way.
While the show has plenty to work with in this area, it also throws an additional focus into play as an alien of a different type has arrived on Earth and is looking for a challenge. With his robot L-ron that helps to find suitable opponents, Despero has closed off the Hall of Justice with a select few members in there to fight, from Captain Marvel to Connor. It’s an all out drag down kind of fight that goes on as Despero wants to go the physical route in proving himself, which is why Zatanna is taken out quickly since magic is a no-no. There’s some good back and forth that goes on with it all, especially with the way Captain Marvel goes at it and ends up taken out of the game. But one of the main focsues of it that comes into play is how Megan can’t bring herself to use her big weapon with her telepathic powers to attack Despero’s mind after what had happened in the previous episode.
While the fight dominates the episode, and there’s some good stuff as we see a new Guardian being born through it, we also get some good information time elsewhere in the middle of this. With Black Canary debriefing the kids that were captured, she gets to go through the normal ones that survived as well as Impulse, Lagoon Boy and Blue Beetle. We do get a neat reveal with one of the boys turning out to be the first blush view of Static Shock, but mostly what we get is seeing how Blue Beetle is trying to figure out just how much to reveal about what they learned there. With the scarab being far more than anyone imagined, it’s interesting to see just how much Beetle does reveal, and what he holds back.
With so much going on with the series and the invasion overall, it feels odd that they’d take a turn in this direction for an episode to introduce L-ron and Despero. But there is a reason for it as we see how the Reach is working and massaging the situation for their own advantage. The main draw of the action definitely works here, even though it feels less impressive than the whole rescue operation in the previous episode, but it’s the layer of subplots that are the most interesting as we get the reveals about what the Reach is up to. The balance between the adults and the younger members is handled well and I love that we get some of the second stringers really well utilized here. The show continues to move through some good motions and deals with a season sized storyline with a lot of layers.