In this endless summer of hell, DC Universe’s “Stargirl” has been a blessed surprise, with a superb cast telling a heartfelt story about young heroes coming into their own against a monstrous evil that has been plotting in their town for years.
With the two-part season finale right around the corner, now’s a chance to look back at a few of the moments that stuck out and spotlight just a bit of what made this debut season of “Stargirl” so epic.
The Injustice Society’s murder spree, “Pilot”:
We get here late to this battle, but it’s brutal. With his dying breath, Starman (Joel McHale) tells his onetime sidekick Pat Dugan (Luke Wilson) – Stripesy – to care for the cosmic staff and reminds him that the Justice Society must live on. Thus “Stargirl” gets its mission statement.
Pat’s new armored alias revealed, “S.T.R.I.P.E”:
Courtney (Brec Bassinger) would not have survived her first battle with Brainwave (Christopher James Baker) were it not for Pat showing up in his 15-foot-tall armored suit as S.T.R.I.P.E.
“I forgot how much fun this is,” Pat says later in the episode as he blasts Brainwave.
More, please. You just know Pat has been tinkering on that suit all season long.
Courtney steals from the JSA brownstone, “Icicle”:
Pat takes Courtney to the JSA headquarters in an attempt to dissuade her from her war with the Injustice Society. For viewers, it’s a chance to gawk at the marvelous mansion and its treasures. For Courtney, it’s an opportunity.
Later that night, she robs the place of items she doesn’t even comprehend – such as Green Lantern’s lantern and That Pink Pen.
“Let’s do some recruiting,” she tells herself.
Were it not for this moment, we would not have Wildcat, Dr. Midnite, and Hourman.
Legacies united, “Hourman and Dr. Midnite”:
It’s undeniably thrilling when Rick (Cameron Gellman) flips over his hourglass and is granted the strength of the Hourman. Beth (Anjelika Washington) uses the Charles McNider AI in her Dr. Midnite goggles to re-create the accident that took the lives of Rick’s parents – except it was no accident. Solomon Grundy murdered them.
The new Justice Society’s first battle, “The Justice Society”:
They thought they could take down the Gambler, not realizing he had his guard dogs – Sportsmaster (Neil Hopkins) and Tigress (Joy Osmanski). Hourman rushes Sporty and almost gets his clock cleaned. Tigress bats around Wildcat (Yvette Monreal), but Dr. Midnite’s timely use of a fire extinguisher saves her. This is arguably “Stargirl’s” best action sequence to date, one that convinces Pat to see the potential in these new heroes and to train them.
Slay ya later, “Shiv Part Two”:
After almost killing Courtney, what does Cindy (Meg DeLacy) do next? She shows up at Courtney’s with balloons and candy and all sorts of back-handed compliments.
“I owe you an apology – for what happened yesterday. It was just one of those days, you know. You probably have them all the time.”
Did she know Courtney’s secret identity?
“We’re not that different, you and me. In fact, we’re kind of similar.”
Just when Courtney – and viewers – thought Courtney was off the hook, Cindy – forever our murderous Shiv – dropped this bomb: “I forgot to mention. I really like your staff, Stargirl.”
Brainwave kills his son, “Brainwave Jr.”:
After a season in which it sure seemed as if Henry Jr. (Jake Austin Walker) would follow in dear old Dad’s psycho footsteps, Henry Jr. instead begged his father to come to the light side.
Brainwave counter-offered: “Stand by my side or not at all.”
“I will never stand by your side.”
After Henry made a heartfelt apology to Yolanda for the way he treated her and encouraging Courtney to continue to see the best in others, Brainwave brought down the tunnel on him. And everyone at home needed a hug.
With the two-part season finale set to bring this war between the Justice Society and the Injustice Society to a head, it’s certain this list will grow.
The way this season has been going, maybe even doubling.