Big city girl relocates to small town where she discovers a powerful artifact that turns her into Stargirl. She rebuilds the Justice Society of America while thwarting an evil plot to control the minds of millions of Americans.
Spoiler Level: High
During the Holiday season, most of Justice Society of America (JSA) is killed by the Injustice Society (ISA). Starman is rescued by his sidekick Pat Dugan and with his dying breath gives him the Cosmic Staff to hold until it chooses a worthy owner. That same night, a young Courtney Whitmore awaits her fathers visit. He never arrives. Ten years later, her mother has married Pat Dugan and are moving from California, to Blue Valley, Nebraska, with Pat’s son Mike.
After her first day at Blue Valley High School, Courtney discovers Starmans cosmic staff and comes to think that she is the daughter of Starman. The staff takes her to a drive in where she accidentally destroys Henry King jr’s father’s car. Henry is a schoolmate and unbeknownst to him, his father is Brainwave, a member of the JSA. Brainwave attacks Courtney who is saved by Pat in his mechanical Armor.
Pat tried to convince Courtney not to go down the path of becoming a superhero. It is too dangerous. But Courtney believes that it is her duty as the daughter of Starman to carry on and to try to defeat the ISA. Courtney takes Starman’s old costume and alters it to fit her and calls herself Stargirl. Brainwave has discovered Stargirl’s secret identity and has threatened to kill her mother. In their second battle, with Pat’s help, Stargirl short circuits Brainwaves powers leaving him in a coma.
Realizing she cannot fight the ISA alone; Courtney decides she needs to rebuild the JSA. After the death of a schoolmate at the hands of Icicle, Jordan Mahkent (a.k.a. Icicle) the leader of the ISA, Courtney steals the deceased JSA members power artifacts and starts to search for suitable team members.
The first new team member is Yolanda Montez, who puts on the super powered “Wildcat” suit. Yolanda is an outcast at school and shunned by her family because three months earlier, her then boyfriend (Henry King Jr.) allows Cindy Burman (the mean girl) to send a topless photo of Yolanda around school. At first Yolanda declines becoming Wildcat but changes her mind when she decides this is how she can feel pride in herself again.
Beth Chapel, an overzealous extremely talkative schoolmate, overhears Courtney call Wildcat by “Yolanda” and figures out who they are. Beth finds Doctor Mid-Nite’s goggles that still have an AI version of Charles McNider the original Doctor Mid-Nite. The goggles allow Beth to access computer systems and gives her a vast library of knowledge. Courtney discovers that another schoolmate, Rick Tyler, is the son of Rex Tyler, the original Hourman. Courtney tries to convince Rick to join the JSA and gives him his fathers hourglass that allows him to become super strong for one hour. Rick agrees but only so he can get revenge on Solomon Grundy for killing his parents.
Over the course of the season, we discover that the whole ISA are in Blue Valley and they have some master plan called “Project: New America” and they need either Brainwave or his son for the plan to work. The ISA all have kids, but none of them are aware that their parents are super villains except for Cindy who goes by the name “Shiv” and is the daughter of the Dragon King, Dr. Ito. Henry Jr. does discover his heritage when he starts manifesting Brainwave’s powers, but after his father awakens from his coma, they fight and Henry Jr. does not survive.
After Courtney is injured during a fight with Shiv, her mother discovers what has been happening and is heartbroken not being able to trust if her marriage to Pat was all some sort of lie. Barbara tried to convince Courtney that her father was not Starman, and it isn’t until her real father shows up that Courtney believes her and finally realizes that she was chosen by the Cosmic Staff because of her spirit and energy and not because of her DNA.
The JSA discover that “Project: New America” is a giant machine that will enhance Brainwave’s powers and allow him to reprogram a large portion of the adults throughout the country. Whereas the reprogramming has some good intentions, stop global warming and all discrimination, it will also kill 25 million people.
During the final battle to destroy the machine, Hourman confronts Solomon Grundy and is able to defeat him, but at the last minute sees the humanity in his eyes and is unable to kill him. Yolanda, gets revenge for Henry Jr’s death by killing his father, Brainwave. Icicle destroys Doctor Mid-Nite’s goggles and kidnaps Barbara and tries to convince her to join him in his plan to “fix” America. Barbara refuses and is rescued by an armor-less Pat. Icicle’s last ditch effort is thwarted by Mike as he smashes him to pieces by hitting him with a truck.
As a wrap up, we get a hint of the villains for season 2. Shiv, who survived and escaped, Shade, an immortal Victorian era man who can control shadows and Eclipso the incarnation of the wrath of God.
My Thoughts: At first, I wasn’t sure what to think about the series. The first episode seemed very clichéd. Big city girl moves to small town, meets the mean girl, sits at the “nerd” table in the lunch room and tries to fit in. But as the episodes progressed, the series came to be one of my favorites. It is much more than just a show about “Stargirl”, it is a team show. And this team rejoices in wearing their costumes and calling each other by their code names. Something many of the other team shows of late have moved away from. This show is clearly written to fill the void of a family friendly superhero show. The show does hit on some heavy issues, but the one thing that never seems to disappear was optimism and hope. Much of the DC universes’ other shows became very dark and gritty. Showing a more “real world” view with loads of swearing and violence. Stargirl remains entertaining while still giving us humor, drama and real world issues and without a single “F” bomb or expletive. (not that I am opposed to swearing, but I think it has become overdone as of late in certain shows like Doom Patrol). There is some violence, but it is well placed and tempered, the couple of deaths that happen are heartbreaking. And I applaud the show for allowing one of the teenagers to kill their foe in battle. This, I am sure, will have an affect on the character moving forward.
On the downside, the show is still a bit predictable and there is a lot of room for character development. I would like to see Beth become more than just a voice to the team, but really contribute and Rick to learn to control his impulses. Yolanda will need to deal with the fact that she killed someone, no matter how bad that person was and Courtney still needs to learn to be a good leader and to have patience.
I am really looking forward to season 2, which will see the series movie to The CW (as opposed to this season where they are rerunning a DCEU show).
Stargirl's soft opening has evolved through the first season to standout as probably the best of the current crop of CW comic based series. While the season finale wraps up a lot of the plot lines seeds are planted that makes us wait in excitement for the already renewed season 2 which can't come soon enough!
Twinkle Twinkle Little Stargirl
Writing - 8/108/10
Storyline - 9/109/10
Acting - 7/107/10
Music - 9/109/10
Production - 8/108/10
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