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Stargirl - Summer School: Chapter One - Review

Stargirl is finally back, and if this episode is any indication, we're in for an exciting season! While this episode served more as a setup, there were definitely enough hints and teases for things to come to make it an above-average season opener! 

The episode opens up with a flashback from the 1950s centered on The Shade, who we know to be one of the season's main villains. We didn't get much info surrounding the character, only that he was a kid at the time, and he murdered a friend of his for seemingly no reason (though there was a creepy doll involved). While this opening scene didn't really do anything to establish what The Shade's current MO is, it definitely establishes him as a terrifying adversary. We know he eventually joins the Injustice Society Of America and at some point disappears for reasons unknown. I'm definitely looking forward to finding out more about his character and what he's been up to all this time.

We then flash forward to the current day, where we see the current Justice Society patrolling the streets of Blue Valley. Patrolling as it turns out, for no reason whatsoever. Courtney has fallen into the typical new-hero trap of becoming obsessed with "superheroing", to the point of trying to find trouble where there is none. This comes much to the dismay of fellow teammates Beth, Rick, and Yolanda. It might be a cliche at this point, but I think it fits the character of Courtney well. She feels like she's found her purpose, and she wants to fulfill it to the best of her ability. Of course, an obstacle soon befalls Courtney as she's informed of her family's planned summer vacation, which means she won't be able to be operating as Stargirl as much she'd like (or so we think). 

Like I eluded to before, most of the episode was dedicated to catching up with the team and setting up what is to come. I think the episode did an excellent job in this regard and has used the setup to add interesting layers to the team. We find out the Beth is having a more troubled home life than we previously expected, as she discovers her parents are planning to divorce (while she also deals with losing Chuck). Yolanda is dealing with serious trauma surrounding her killing Brainwave, a development that makes a lot of sense and that I appreciate. Hopefully, she'll be able to find closure before the season's end. Rick has been apparently feeding Solomon Grundy, in what looks like, call me crazy, a potential attempt to befriend him?! (I mean, it could be that he's trying to bait him, but it doesn't really look that way to me) It's also revealed at the end of the episode that he's been doing better in school (though his teacher thinks otherwise), which is a positive development. It's good to see the writers giving depth to these characters instead of solely focusing on action and plot. 

Speaking on the summer vacation plans of the Whitmore/Dugan household, those are put on definite hold when the family finds out Court has failed a few of her classes and now will have to go to summer school. Soon after this development, however, none other than Green Lantern's daughter shows up at Court's house and steals the actual Green Lantern. An impressive fight ensues between Court and the intruder, that ends with the house a wreck and the rest of the family stumbling upon them. Pat actually looks almost happy to see the Green Lantern in use again, and by the trailer's indication, that sentiment will likely continue in the next episode.

The last two big developments I want to touch on surround what are likely to be the two biggest mysteries of the season. The first one surrounds the OG Starman, Sylvester Pemberton. He apparently is attempting to track down Pat, but we're not sure why at this point. Could it be to reform the OG Justice Society, or perhaps to warn of an incoming threat? The other main development surrounds the return of Shiv, who is apparently going to be attempting to recruit children of the previous Injustice Society. The big surprise though, is that she'll be trying to recruit Mike?! What does this mean?! I guess we'll have to wait and find out!

Overall, an excellent opening episode that catches us up with our heroes while also setting up the rest of the season excellently! 


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