Young Justice season 3, episode 8 review: Triptych


Three action-packed and interconnected stories comprise a major episode of Young Justice: Outsiders.

It took a few episodes for Young Justice to really turn up the heat, and now things have really ramped up. The previous episode, “Evolution,” took a slight detour to deliver a strong episode that focused on the villainous conqueror, Vandal Savage. Now, with “Triptych” the focus goes back to metahuman trafficking and the various efforts being made to combat it.

In Search of Intel

Dick Grayson/Nightwing  approaches Barbara Gordon/Oracle and recounts a recent situation involving a STAR Labs facility in Detroit. Three villains, Mist, Livewire, and Shade, infiltrate the facility to steal a device. They succeed, but not before the lab’s scientist activates the alarm. Chesire, the team’s leader, then arrives to save them. After taking a bullet to the shoulder, she and the others escape.

Sometime later, Grayson assembles Artemis, Brion/Geo-Force, Halo, Forager, and Jefferson Pierce/Black Lightning, who recently spent the night with Dr. Jace. Dick explains that they may finally have a lead on the League of Shadows. But, Artemis reveals the intel is coming from her sister, Chesire, who won’t be very cooperative. The group then sets out to intercept Chesire and her team in Detroit.

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Chesire is receiving medical attention for her wound on a plane sitting in a hangar when the team arrives. Nightwing takes on Mist, Black Lightning fights Livewire and the others handle Shade. After some nice fight sequences, the three are defeated. Halo, notably displays a new ability. On the plane, Artemis confronts Jade (Chesire), and she reveals the League is operating out of Santa Prisca. Artemis also chews into about neglecting her daughter Lian to which Jade asserts her young daughter is better off without her.

Overall, this segment was entertaining, particularly during the scenes with the team interacting. It’s also good to finally know what Chesire’s been up to. Halo is proving to be very powerful. Just last episode, she displayed the ability to make holograms. Let’s just hope they don’t keep piling on the powers. And finally, Connor was notably absent, as he’s “mending fences” with M’gann.

A Mad Time in Gotham City

Tim Drake/Robin approaches Batman, regarding a recent mission in Gotham City. Robin and his newly-formed team, consisting of Arrowette, Spoiler and Orphan, have been tracking Jervis Tetch/Mad Hatter. While tailing him, they notice he’s drinking a large amount of water, andfind clay residue on his bottle. This leads them to believe that this Tetch is actually Clayface, which Orphan proves after slicing through him.

The four young heroes soon track Clayface to a warehouse, where the real Jervis Tetch is experimenting with an unknown person, using a control device. The heroes quickly crash in, and Tetch escapes, even with Spoiler on his tail. During the ordeal, Robin discovers the place is rigged to explode. All leave the building, except for Clayface, who refuses to leave and is seemingly under some kind of trance.

This vignette provided us with our first real look at “Batman Incorporated,” since the Dark Knight and the other heroes left the League and the team. Seeing the dynamic duo again was nice. And Arrowette, Spoiler, and Orphan quickly proved to be cool and capable characters. Their inclusion just goes to show how deep the Young Justice creatives are diving into the comics.

The Breakout

Finally, Kaldur’ahm (Aquaman) and M’gann are waiting to talk to Wonder Woman via hologram to discuss yet another mission. This one takes place in Star City, and begins with two guards driving some kind of transport truck. The vehicle is soon intercepted by Sportsmaster with the help of Abracadabra. Suddenly, one of the guards reveals himself to be Barry Allen (The Flash).

The transport vehicle is revealed to be holding Brick, who was arrested back in episode four, and a bearded, unknown inmate. A knocked-out Flash is soon joined by Rocket, Aqualad and Captain Marvel. While they are able to capture Brick, Sportsmaster gets away with the other inmate.

While still very entertaining, this segment was pretty standard. The fight scenes were solid but somewhat standard. The true bright spot was honestly getting to see Rocket, Flash and Captain Marvel. With so much focus on Grayson and his team so far, we haven’t spent too much time with any League members.

A Surprising Trifecta

So, why were all of these stories told in this episode? Well, in a surprise twist, everyone discussing these three missions is shown to be in the same room together. This means the Justice League, Grayson’s team and Batman Incorporated are all working together. All have been pooling their resources to fight metahuman trafficking.

The team has been tracking a security company called Branchwater that is owned by several shell companies linked to Simon Stagg of Stagg Industries. Apparently, Stagg was using Branchwater as a covert espionage operation. This was achieved using three methods: acquisition, coercion and utilization. With acquisition, Stagg was taking existing metahumans like Clayface, Livewire and Mist.

Coercion was then achieved through the Mad Hatter, who would inject nanotech devices into the newly-acquired metahumans, so that they would follow orders. Finally, utilization happened with Chesire’s help, as she ran missions for Branchwater with the metas. Robin later explains that this control can be undone, which he did for Clayface, who survived the explosion. Batman did the same for Livewire and Mist.

M’gann then reveals that she and Connor were able to bust Stagg’s operation, explaining the former’s true reason for being absent in the beginning. From him, they also reacquire the device Shade teleported away, which is actually a Reach device. Not much is known about it, except for a lone phrase on it that reads “metahuman failsafe.” It is then sent back to STAR Labs in Detroit.

Shade is then revealed to be the metahuman Sportsmaster “liberated” and Mad Hatter was experimenting on. In a cutaway, Chesire seemingly frees him, but before he’s done, she appears to have him teleport to Stagg’s jail cell to presumably kill him.

Following this discussion, Wonder Woman expresses her discomfort with lying to the other heroes. She then questions the group about whether or not they are willing to lie under oath if needed. This leaves the room in silence. This twist was beautifully crafted, and each story was beautifully and clearly weaved together. But Wonder Woman makes a good point, and it’s sure to echo through the minds of the others.

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To say this was a major episode of Young Justice would be an understatement. Following two secret-filled seasons, heroes are still keeping big ones, which will likely have major ramifications later. This installment dropped some major bombs and will set the tone for the rest of the season. Let’s just hope things moving as they are.