This week’s episodes of Young Justice: Outsiders added more characters to their already impressive roster and had the villains make big steps in their scheming plans. While the first two episodes set up what was to come and explained pertinent information for both the villains and the heroes, the third episode this week not only brought together the Big Bad council of villains for the first time this season — it also tapped into some next generation of DC heroes.
[Ed. note: This post contains spoilers for episodes 7-9 of Young Justice: Outsiders.]
Episode 7 gave an in-depth look at Vandal Savage’s ties to Darkseid juxtaposed with a fun training sequence for Halo, Geo-Force, and Forager. Episode 8 revealed that Batman, Nightwing, Aquaman (Kaldur) and Robin (Tim Drake) are operating separate teams to carry out corresponding missions. The kicker is that the teams themselves aren’t aware that they’re working as part of a grand plan. Though the end result paid off, Wonder Woman is appalled that they would lie to their teams.
“Home Fires,” the ninth episode, begins with villainous group the Light, currently made up of Vandal Savage, Lex Luthor, Queen Bee, Klarion, Deathstroke and Ultra-Humanite. It’s the first time this season that the Light has come together, though we’ve seen some of the individual members putting their plans into place. The Light discusses two concurrent and delicate missions. The first is bounty hunter Lobo, sent to kill Forager during another training session. The second, however, is more discreet and involves a mysterious figure waiting for a gathering of utmost importance.
Namely, the big Justice League playdate.
Yup — all the current (known) children of League heroes, brought either by their super-powered parent or their civilian one, congregate at Iris West-Allen’s place. That means 18 Justice League-adjacent people under one roof.
Let’s count all of them off:
Iris West-Allen, star reporter and wife of the Flash, hosts the gathering at her place, juggling the eventual Tornado Twins Don and Dawn with the help of grandson from the future, Bart Allen, a.k.a. Kid Flash.
First to arrive is the queen of Atlantis herself, Mera, with young Arthur Curry.
Will Harper shows up with daughter Lian (whose mother the assassin Cheshire appeared in the previous episode) and talks briefly to Lynn Stewart, ex-wife of Black Lightning and sister of Green Lantern, there with daughters Anissa and Jennifer Pierce.
The doorbell rings and Iris is busy corralling the children, so Rocket (Raquel Erwin) and her son, Amistad, answer to greet a pregnant Bumblebee (Karen Beecher).
Red Tornado — in his John Smith alter ego — and his adopted daughter Traya Sutton, a Bialyan refuge, also arrive and Red Tornado delights the excited children with his powers.
Last to the gathering is the one and only Lois Lane, carrying her son Jonathan (who is clad in a wee little Superman hoodie), who thanks Iris for hosting. It’s nice to be with the only other people who understand the life and their numbers are only growing. Counting Damian Wayne from the show’s sixth episode, that makes ten superhero kiddos, with Karen Beecher’s baby on the way.
With the house full, the mysterious figure across the street readies to take action. The identity of the would-be assassin is revealed to be Orm (it’s a big year for Orm), who wants to wipe out the most important people to the Justice League in one fell swoop. Before he can, Lady Shiva confronts him, saying that this line of action has been previously considered by the Big Bads, but they’ve dubbed it the “nuclear option” — if they chose to enact it, they must be prepared for an equal or greater retaliation. Orm doesn’t care, so Lady Shiva cleanly slices off his head.
Turns out, it wasn’t Orm, but Lady Shiva being tested by the Light. She fulfilled the mission and can now join the Light’s ranks as their new enforcer.
The other mission — bounty hunter Lobo sent to kill Forager — technically failed; though Lobo assumes he succeeded, he’s unaware that Forager faked his own death. But the Light reveals that Forager’s death was not the point of that particular mission: they wanted confirmation that Nightwing assembled a covert ops team.
Two villain missions completed, but the biggest reveal is that Granny Goodness is the newest member of the Light. The founder of the Goode Googles, shown talking about her charitable efforts on television earlier this episode, is actually a super-villain working with Darkseid. While the heroes are pretty on top of the inner workings of the meta-human trafficking ring, considering Nightwing bought Oracle a pair of googles just for funsies in an earlier episode, they might not know the full extent of the Light’s plans.
New episodes — along with the midseason finale — of Young Justice: Outsiders air on DC Universe on Jan. 25.