The name says it all. There are a million problems in this episode. First and foremost, the league was way too underplayed. Most of their screen-time dealt with infighting and the team's attempts at flirting and ego-building. The second problem was the league itself. When I first saw that this episode was being produced, I thought that it would be special and cool. I was wrong. The real JL was for the most part removed in favor of the use of stupid, underachieving, C-list hacks who could hardly pull their junk together even to save the planet from the largest invasion that the earth has ever seen. I had a small spark of hope when Martian Manhunter was introduced, but it was quickly extinguished. Martian Manhunter's screen time was minimal and mostly furnished comic relief. A few questions that I walked away with were, 'Where the HECK are the real league and why couldn't THEY have stopped this catastrophe? Even if they were away on business, wouldn't this qualify as a large enough catastrophe for them to come back and help? If this catastrophe really meant so much, why did Batman choose these stupid misfits to help rather than other powerful heroes? Why did Manhunter stay in Watchtower if he is the smartest and most experienced (they could have left Booster back in his place)?' While we're on that subject, I didn't like the way that Manhunter was characterized either. This more modern twist on him has nothing on the aged, curious, philosophical wise man direction that the original JL/JLU took with the character. Third, the action was sparse. I really shouldn't have said 'action.' t was more like dialogue and lights. The fight scene in which the heroes get captured wasn't even pictured. They went down without a televised fight. What the HECK was that stupid Batman/Darkseid fight about. Darksed is Superman's enemy and deserved a better defeat scene and fight scene than he got. Finally, this episode left too many questions open-ended. What happened to question when he jumped into that fire on Apokolips? How did he magically appear on that ship if all Apokolips was on the lookout for him? Where was the real league (this episode and comments made by Manhunter make it seem that they had disbanded and no longer meet at the Watchtower)? The Boom Tube that was supposed to allow a massive invasion of earth seemed only as large as the ones that the Parademons came through. So what was the point? Couldn't Darkseid have just come ALONE through a Parademon portal in order to speed up the invasion (that ship that he was in took too much time to materialize and did NOTHING to help him)? And the list goes on. The producers of this show made a big mistake. They (perhaps in their haste to have an incarnation of Darkseid in their show) compressed what should have been (and in many other traditional DC franchises is) a two or three-part episode into a prologue and an episode. In order for scale 10 catastrophes such as Darkseid to get the development that they deserve, time is required. The crisis is usually built up to and resolved over the course of several episodes (and once again, some A-List fights- I mean, Darkseid is SUPERMAN'S title villain; he could have at least APPEARED for a moment to rouse the heroes) in the more successful DC franchises (Batman TAS, Superman TAS, Legion of Superheroes).
So how do you do an darkseid episode without the man of steel; simple you invite batman along instead
there are many parraells/ references to justice league final episode: batman avoids the omegabeams, darkseids gigantic ship, boom tubes appearing everywhere; the world in peril.
there are several great things about this episode: we see Martian Manhunter in a small comedic role; Fire and Ice; Billy West as Skeets (again). Batman kicking ass against Darkseid; The Question kicking ass against Darkseid.
but the best thing about this episode is Darkseid himself. He is animated excellent; he speaks in excellent tones and there is a real threat of impending doom. No offence to Michael ironside in the DCAU, but I feel this Darkseid Version is portrayed in a much better way!
Darkseid finally appears, they didn't have a lot of build-up unlike the Starro invasion. The opening features Firestorm and Killer Frost, not a very good opening, completely disposable, the main episode, I have mixed feelings towards it. Ice appears, which is awesome even though she's presented as a bit of a moron, still, the norwegian bombshell have always been one of my favorite DC heroes and I'm really glad she appeared on the show, awesome design and cute accent. Fire has a new costume, I liked the old one, but this one is good as well. The action is pretty good, not the best I've seen on the show, the previous episode had awesome action, this one has decent action in it. The Darkseid fight is brief, thankfully Batman loses, if Batman had won in a fight against Darkseid...I mean, I know the show wants to present Batman as the most awesome hero ever, but that would've just been unacceptable. Just like in the Starro invasion, Batman recruits a team of C-list heroes, this team consists of Batman, Booster Gold, Blue Beetle, Aquaman, Guy Gardner, Ice and Fire, I thought the previous rag-tag team had a better chemistry, Gardner, Aquaman and Booster spend considerable time of the episode fighting.
While the action wasn't spectacular, I thought there were some very funny moments, Ice in particular was hilarious, those evil greeks, the scene where the characters get ready for battle only to be shown captured a second later got a laugh as well. Martian Manhunter shows up, looks a bit weird, I guess the ears distracted me a bit, he does....nothing, he eats cookies and tries to fix the air-conditioning with Skeets, I don't know what was up with that. I know some people didn't like this episode, and I do agree with some of the criticisms, they spend a lot of time doing very little only to get a very rushed confrontation with Darkseid, but I enjoyed it, mostly because of Ice, who I hope appears more in this series, and it looks like I was wrong about Question's death, how he survived diving into lava I'd love to know.
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