“Stay Whelmed”: 4 Questions Before “Young Justice: Outsiders”
Written by Brandon C. Kesselly (@bckesso)
After six long years, Young Justice has finally returned! Dubbed Young Justice: Outsiders, the critically-acclaimed series’ third season will adapt elements of Batman and the Outsiders (1983–87), while continuing its trend of remixing DC Comics history. With this in mind, here are my top 4 questions before season 3!
Note: This list contains spoilers for the first two seasons, as well as currently released promotional material for season three. Please read at your own risk!
Which Characters Haven’t Been Announced?
Young Justice has a tradition of taking obscure characters and making them into series staples. When folks would have expected Deathstroke the Terminator and his daughter Ravager to be mainstays, we were instead given Sportsmaster and his daughter Cheshire as antagonists (though Deathstroke would debut in season two). Outsiders looks to add comic characters like Geo-Force, Halo, and Forager as well as Spoiler, Arrowette, and Thirteen.
Due to previous plot elements, I’m personally hoping for Starfire or Supergirl. Since Young Justice: Invasion (season two) introduced extraterrestrial characters, and there’s an impending conflict with Darkseid and Apokolips, I think it would be the perfect time. I’m also hoping for Ravager, if only to witness a father-daughter tag team match against Sportsmaster and Cheshire. Seriously, who wouldn’t want to see that?
However, due to Talia al Ghul’s inclusion in the previous comics, we could also get the surprise of Damian Wayne.
Who’s Running The Team?
In the season one episode “Drop-Zone”, Robin attempts to assume command of the Team, arguing his wealth of experience compared to the rest of the young heroes. However, he was also the youngest, and prone to acting without informing the rest of the team of his plans. Kaldur’ahm, the Aqualad of the YJ continuity and a soldier in the Atlantean army, was elected The Team’s first leader.
In Invasion, Kaldur leaves Nightwing (season one’s Robin) in charge while he infiltrates his father Black Manta’s ranks to dismantle The Light — Young Justice’s version of the Legion of Doom. Nightwing leaves in the season finale, and Kaldur re-assumes command with Batgirl as his presumptive lieutenant.
Recent news has revealed that Kaldur has taken up the role of Aquaman in Outsiders while Orin has retired to lead Atlantis and raise his child full time. As such, Kaldur has also joined the Justice League — and is rumored to be its new chairman as well. Who will be leading the Team in his absence?
What is The Light’s Objective?
Through the first two seasons, Vandal Savage and The Light have worked together to mind control the Justice League, send them on a rampage in outer space, and get them arrested while also securing the Warworld from Mongul. Their shenanigans have been the main threat to The Team, who have disrupted their operations in Asia, the Middle East, and South America, as well as their smuggling of Apokoliptan weapons and their hand in the Reach invasion (including the eventual double-cross).
All of this has led to apparent metahuman trafficking — both on Earth and across the galaxy. It has also been a part of some long-term scheme with Darkseid, who briefly appeared with Savage in “Endgame”. With all of this in mind: What the flying duck does The Light want? What is their goal?
In “Summit”, Kaldur seems to suggest that they want to rule the Milky Way. But even that seems too small a goal for someone like Savage — or Darkseid’s involvement, for that matter.
Wally West: Dead or Alive?
During “Endgame”, the season two finale, Black Beetle activated a series of magnetic field disruptors (MFDs) in order to destroy the Earth. While the Team, the League, and a group of rescued Reach abductees worked with Lex Luthor to disable the devices, one went off in the North Pole. At Luthor’s advice, Flash and Impulse used their combined speed to neutralize the attack. But when the two proved insufficient, Wally West, a founding member of the Team and the retired Kid Flash, jumped into action to aid them. But he didn’t walk away in the aftermath.
Wally presumably gave his life to save the world, leaving everyone in mourning. Artemis, his long-term girlfriend, was in tears. Dick Grayson, his best friend, took a leave of absence. But the biggest question I have is whether his death will be permanent, or if he’ll be resurrected by the end.
If you ask me, I think it is better for him to stay dead. Let the characters learn how to cope with his death, and show the consequences of death in this universe. Ted Kord, Aquagirl, and Jason Todd have also died as of Invasion, as well as Kent Nelson — the original Doctor Fate. Having a cast member die is not only impactful to the audience, but to the rest of the cast. Keeping them dead respects everyone involved while maintaining a semblance of realism in this world of magic, alien invaders, and children who can “break the sound barrier in [their] sneakers”. The writers have done their absolute best not to pull victories out of thin air for the characters, and resurrection has not been explicitly done. Besides, Invasion revolved around a fake out death. Letting one die for real means it can still happen in the series.
However, Wally may have also just been transported to another dimension (please, no Speed Force). This is still a comic book show, after all.
Young Justice: Outsiders debuts January 4th on DC Universe!
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