Young Justice "Summit" Review: Best Laid Plans

By Noel Kirkpatrick

Mar 09, 2013

Young Justice S02E19: "Summit"

Anyone else feel like "Summit" was the conclusion of a big mystery plot where the detective lays everything out there and then dramatically identifies the killer (or in this case, explains the whole plot through a holographic message)? It’s not a perfect analogy by any means, but the arc certainly had that vibe for me as the episode brought together the Reach and the Light for a little finger-pointing and the revelation of all of the plans.

Except, of course, for whatever exactly the Light had in mind.

The episode was a narrative necessity, as the series needed to show how the Light was betraying the Reach, and it needed to resolve the Kaldur-and-Artemis-as-double-agents plot before the finale. That's the problem with these sorts of plots that rely on double-dealing, secret-keeping, and backstabbing: Eventually you have to knock down all those dominoes, and sometimes the process just isn't as exciting as you think it might be. Perhaps that lack of thrill is just a result of us having plenty of time to guess and map out the course of things for ourselves. 

Some of the ways the episode went about accomplishing its to-do list were good, though. I liked that Ra’s was the one who recognized Artemis’s charm (it would’ve been him or Klarion) and that that’s what set the whole thing off. The charm that made the back half of the scheme work was the one that allowed them to undo it as well, which gave the whole thing a nice symmetry. And then it functioned as a recorder of all the events, so they can use it to clear the Justice League’s name on Rimbor and reveal the Reach as conquerors on Earth! That is one handy necklace, but I have to wonder how the team intended to play the Light and the Reach against each other without that moment. Or were they counting on someone to recognize it?

One aspect of the episode that I wish had had more space was Kaldur and Black Manta. This was a major showdown for them as heroes and villains, but also as father and son, and I would’ve liked for it to have had a bigger impact. This isn’t "Summit"’s fault, as the emotional moment had to rely largely on Manta’s actions during Kaldur’s psychic coma more than anything else. It made me long for a less-crowded show that would’ve given us more time to see how Kaldur had coped with the trials and tribulations of being a double agent. What we did get was adequate enough, as it was clear that Kaldur felt pity—if not some responsibility—for his father, but the moments lacked oomph.

I made an observation about possible tensions between the Black Beetle and the Ambassador last week, so I’m going to take full credit for Black Beetle’s decision to strip the Ambassador of command for all his failures during the Reach’s campaign on Earth as being consistent with those tensions. It may’ve been my favorite moment of the episode, actually, since it allowed Black Beetle to finally become the Big Bad he's always been capable of being, and I doubly loved how he just left the Ambassador scarab-stapled to the cave wall.

And now there’s only one episode left. The Reach have to leave Earth but Black Beetle’s going to try and destroy it first, while the Light have absconded with Warworld. Not sure what the finale’s going to look like, but I certainly hope it’s interesting and sort of crazy.

Notes & Quotes

DC Nation Short: All right. This was the final installment of the Amethyst shorts. She returned to the village at the start of the shorts, restored Prince Topaz to his rightful appearance (he looked better as a skeleton), and then went back to her own world. Overall, I enjoyed the series’ humor and art style, even if all the installments didn’t completely land for me. I did find it interesting that it ended with Amethyst deciding to go outside to play. Enough video-gaming and TV, kids!

– “No agreement exists that makes a slave of Black Manta.” “No agreement exists that guarantees the life of Manta.”

– “Hey there, Vandy. You missed me?”

– “No more faking anyone’s death for at least a year.”

– It was odd seeing Kaldur back in his red shirt after seeing him armored up all season.

– I had a nice chuckle that Vandal had the decency to return the defeated Justice League members to the Watchtower, and in the most unceremonious way possible.

– Speaking of odd, take a gander at the little icon on Black Beetle’s chest there. Looks a bit like Brainiac’s symbol, doesn’t it? It just has a line connecting the top two circles. A nice little Easter egg, maybe?

What'd you think of "Summit"?

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  • zeddyp Mar 13, 2013

    "Perhaps that lack of thrill is just a result of us having plenty of time to guess and map out the course of things for ourselves." .....Lack of thrill? the episode was plenty thrilling.. finally an episode that you get to see the originals do most of the fighting instead of a bunch of little latino punk kids fighting and cramming one Spanish word in per sentence

  • JusticeLeaguer Mar 13, 2013

    I personally loved this episode. I was clinging to the edge of my seat excited to see what would happen next. I think people are WAY over-thinking the whole charm necklace thing. It wouldn't have mattered if Ra's hadn't noticed it because Kaldur would have still been able to make his big reveal. Artemis being revealed and then shot was just to build up tension as an audience member.

  • GoKuVeGeTaGoHaN Mar 11, 2013

    I hope the final episode doesn't end with a cliffhanger (since the idiots in charge of renewing/canceling shows on Cartoon Network apparently are as clueless as FOX's people).

  • TomWayne Mar 10, 2013

    I have to admit that, hackneyed stuff aside (which we predicted would be necessary to wrap the show a few eps earlier than most), this one did have a few priceless moments. M'gann posing as Deathstroke was a good one (especially given all the screen time Slade's gotten over on Arrow), and I just never tire of Babs, Dick, and Tim showing that you don't need powers to throw down with the baddest of the bad. These three btw are the ones I was referring to whose stories never got the Justice they deserved this season, in the midst of too many extras.

    Btw, was Bane really Ubu in this one (like in the Legacy storyline in Detective Comics 700ff), or was it just coincidence that they were on Santa Prisca yet no mention of him ever occurred?

  • roweantarts Mar 11, 2013

    Each member of the Light brought their top enforcers. Vandal brought Deathstroke and Klarion (a member of the Light himself, but brought as an enforcer), The Brain brought Monsieur Mallah, Black Manta bought Tigress and Kaldur, Ra's bought Ubu. Bane was not present here as wasn't exactly one of their top enforcers, it's possible that his capture back in Usual Suspects was permanent for him

  • MicahSmith3 Mar 10, 2013

    Best episode yet! I am so sad that the show was cancelled. I hope they make some DVD movies to continue the story line.

  • Watashii Mar 10, 2013

    I personally did not like the reveal in this episode? So Ra's simply sees Artemis wearing the charm necklace? What if he never saw it, would everything have happened as it did? Was the team hoping Ra's figure out Artemis? Sure the team was prepared, but it just doesn't make sense that their plan had to rely Artemis' cover being blown. Also why didn't she hide the necklace under her costume? That wouldn't be a useful disguise charm necklace if you always have to show it.

    I did like Artemis and Ra's master/student relationship. Artemis was still concerned for him after getting stabbed. As much as I know the last episode is going to be rushed, I don't mind. They rushed Justice League Unlimited's series finale so I'm used to it.

  • Loralee_jk Mar 11, 2013

    Trust me, as a female, I absolutely know how to get a male to look down a couple inches. All she did was puff out her chest, then to pretend he wasn't looking he looked @ her necklace, noticed it was a charm & took it. Also she touched it a couple times to grab attention to it.

  • kanniballl Mar 11, 2013

    That's true, between body language and tapping it constantly it purposely brought attention to it.

    Add to that, her referencing Ras like someone who had once worked / trained under him and him not knowing this person probably helped him put 2+2 together.

    Though it was still a risk, if they ever encountered each other elsewhere (such as a random meeting on Manta's boat) and if he saw it he might have blown the whole op weeks/months ago.

  • kanniballl Mar 11, 2013

    Yeh the logic is wacky. On one hand, Santana is linked strongly with the bat family so it's not beyond the realm that Nightwing KNEW Ras would recognize it. But then there's the risk of the two of them accidentally running into each other.

    I guess they could have had a contingency so that I'd Artemis didn't notice Ras's body language that it got cut off during the fight

  • DOHKO07 Mar 10, 2013

    Can't believe they canceled this. A-holes.

    This show is at least, equally good as Justice League.

  • iheartfrosty Mar 10, 2013

    Did Amethyst to outside? Cos I thought she went back into the closet. I like her going outside more so I'll go with that.

  • Knightshade03 Mar 10, 2013

    One of the best episodes to date, gonna miss this show. Also, nice touch with Amethyst and the unicorn doll.

  • MinaHaroun Mar 10, 2013

    No more faking anyone else's death for atleast a year

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