Stargirl: Brainwave review S1 E9

Stargirl keeps finding new ways to impress and this was its most layered episode that showed the consequences of Courtney’s rush to build a new JSA as she tries to recruit Brainwave.

Henry Jr. goes through his father’s archives detailing his powers emerging. Jr. finding a VCR that doesn’t immediately chew up the tapes is impressive. Also Henry Sr. was pretty wasteful with his experiment tapes. Did he buy in bulk? Henry could probably really do his father a favor and convert those tapes to digital.

Courtney asks Pat about recruiting Henry. She’s being teen naive and assuming one good heart to heart will bring them over to the JSA. Pat’s skeptical and tells her about the other group he ran with back in the day…

Yoooo they put the Seven Soldiers of Victory on my TV screen? How cool is this? And there’s even eight members to not include Wing in the count. We desperately need an all flashback episode now and at this rate, I would not be shocked to get a reference of the All-Star Squadron. Once again these costumes are amazing.

Stargirl - brainwave review -Seven soldiers of victory

Also, did Justin just channel the star staff from his mop? Maybe Courtney is considering the wrong SSOV as her father?

Cindy’s “withdrawn” from school, but she’s in an extended time out in Dragon King’s sewer dungeon. Then she threatens to kill her father like she did her mother. And like he did when she was a child, Dr. Ito gases her. Tough parenting.

Dragon King is my favorite of the Injustice Society thanks to how uncomfortable he makes the others save Jordan. DK’s got great news! With Henry Jr. revealing powers, the ISA can kick off their plan and mind control everyone within the US heartland. This is a nice far reaching, but not ridiculous plan even if a ton of it relied on Brainwave.

I like the subtle visual cue of Rick’s yellow hoodie channeling his father, Hourman. Not shockingly Yolanda doesn’t want Henry anywhere near the Justice Society. Courtney is gonna have to learn that she’s not the ruler of the team and can randomly make a decision and expect everyone to agree with it. That’s a smart dynamic.

Stargirl - brainwave review -Courtney,Beth, Yolanda and rick

Courtney reaches out to Henry, who is already experiencing the evil within people’s minds. While she doesn’t convince him to join she does make him think about it.

At least until Wildcat attacks him in his father’s hospital room and threatens him. And after reading her thoughts she really does mean it. This probably could have used a bit of context that it’s not just a mad ex, but how Henry’s actions affected Yolanda’s relationship with her family. When a shady lawyer tries to cash in on Henry Sr. being comatose, Jr. realizes he’s lying and kills him. That’s enough to snap Sr. out and now it looks like double Brainwave trouble for the Justice Society.

But first it’s time for dinner with the Dugans! Barbara invited Jordan and his family over to get better acquainted. I loved the restrained way Courtney deduced Jordan was Icicle when he no-sold the scalding hot dish. That didn’t feel like a stretch since Courtney is suspicious of a lot of adults at this point. And it threatens her growing relationship with Cameron since she’s not sure he’s being groomed like Cindy. Nice touch.

Neil Jackson does such a great job of making Jordan warm and charismatic. It’d be easy to see the writers teasing a Jordan/Barb near miss of an affair.

Stargirl - brainwave review -Courtney and Pat

The ending was a real surprise with Barb catching Pat and Courtney — staff in hand — discussing the ISA. Looks like next episode is going to be very interesting.

This was another exceptional episode for Stargirl that further blurred the lines of entanglement with the Justice and Injustice societies.

Rating: 9.5 out of 10

Photo Credit: The CW

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