“Early Warning” is the first episode of Young Justice in a while that felt at all disappointing. It’s not bad and even the worst episodes of Young Justice are good superheroic television, but it feels like it tries to accomplish too much in its brief run-time, while giving all of its subplots short-shrift.
As the episode opens, the newly-dubbed Outsiders are trending throughout the United States and have begun endearing themselves to the public, just as Garfield Logan had planned when he proposed the publicly-operating team of teen superheroes. Yet because they are heroes, they aren’t enjoying their newfound celebrity status. They’re already planning their next mission – rescuing a group of metahuman teenagers from the clutches of Klarion The Witch Boy and his trafficking operation in Cuba.
Unfortunately the Outsiders are two people down due to their discovering the news as most of the superhero world is occupied with a funeral. Not that this matters much with their raid being too exposed to get help from the covert Team and the Justice League being forbidden to operate in Cuba. Not that this stops Zatanna from wanting to join in, due to her own long-standing grudge with Klarion.
Meanwhile, Halo receives some stunning news regarding her powers and how they are slowly causing her body to die. It seems that the human body was not meant to process the energies channeled by a Motherbox and her cells are degenerating a little bit, every time she uses her powers. This leads to Halo skipping a team training session and a wild afternoon hanging out (and acting out) with her friend Harper Row. We also see Terra and Tigress bonding while dueling, as Terra seems to feel conflicted over her status as a spy for Deathstroke and his League of Assassins.
The voice-acting for all of these segments is solid and the story covers a wide range of emotions, but the tone is all over the place. There’s action in the battle with Klarion, but there’s also a lot of dark comedy, as Klarion gets bored and starts merging all his captives into the form of something that looks similar to but legally distinct from a Huge-size gibbering mouther. The pathos of Halo’s story is touching but the whole thing ends like a parody of a Very Special Episode of a family sitcom, with Halo exploring the evils of drinking and playing with guns. One almost wonders if the show’s writers were intentionally trying to spark controversy with this scene.
As for Terra and Tigress, the scene is sweet but anti-climactic for anyone who has read Teen Titans: The Judas Contract or seen the animated adaptation from a few years ago. Honestly, the only way this storyline could be original is if they had Terra defy her conditioning and somehow find a way to remain true to her new friends. I’d like to think Young Justice‘s writers might be able to pull off a trick like that, but my hopes in that particular storyline are dwindling.
All in all, “Early Warning” is a good episode of Young Justice, but not a great one. It just has too much going on and none of it really meshes well together.
Early Warning will be available to stream on July 16th, 2019!
Written by The Critic The Internet Deserves, but not the one it needs right now…. Matt Morrison. He’s a smart-ass guardian. A sarcastic protector. A Snark Knight.