Stargirl season 1, episode 8 review: Shiv Part Two

Brec Bassinger as Courtney Whitmore in Stargirl -- "Shiv Part Two" -- Photo: Annette Brown/The CW -- © 2020 The CW Network, LLC. All Rights Reserved.
Brec Bassinger as Courtney Whitmore in Stargirl -- "Shiv Part Two" -- Photo: Annette Brown/The CW -- © 2020 The CW Network, LLC. All Rights Reserved. /

“Court, nothing’s worth you getting hurt like this.” Minor spoilers for Stargirl season 1, episode 8 follow.

After getting attacked by, and losing to, Shiv, Courtney must put her life as Stargirl on hold in the latest episode of the DC Universe series until she recovers from her injuries. Or at least, hopefully she will be able to do so.

While Courtney lies in bed though, the rest of the JSA is out searching for any new leads on Cindy Burman and her ties to the Injustice Society.

Pat, Courtney’s real dad

A good portion of the beginning of this episode revolves mainly around Pat trying to come up with a reason why Courtney is a hurt, which doesn’t sound all that interesting. However, every moment with Pat in this episode is a wonderful character moment for him and it proves the thing that’s been true all along, he’s Courtney’s dad. Not biologically obviously, but absolutely in nature.

Everything he does early on this episode is about keeping Courtney safe. Not just her identity though, but her life as well. It’s clear that he would do anything for Courtney, because he does in this episode. From taking the blame for her injuries to destroying his car to make sure her identity stays a secret, it’s made clear with how much Pat loves Courtney in this episode.

Beyond just Pat though, Mike and Courtney also have a really sweet moment in this episode. It’s in stark contrast, but absolutely a continuation of, their conversation last episode that highlights how much a family these four are becoming. It hasn’t been easy for any of them, but the love and care that everyone in the Whitmore/Dugan household is very obvious in this episode.

Shiv and the Dragon King

On the other side of the spectrum though there’s Cindy and the Dragon King and well, love really should never be used in the same sentence as those two. To put it mildly, Dragon King is not a good father, which really shouldn’t be all that shocking. Beyond their obvious familial issues, this episode does a really solid job of building both characters, albeit in different ways.

For Cindy, this episode highlights just how cunning she is. Sure, she’s prone to not thinking things through to their complete end, but she’s a teenager so it makes sense that she wouldn’t. Most adults don’t, so why would a teenager desperate to prove herself do so? However, this lack of foresight doesn’t take anything away from her intelligence. Until last episode, she’s been shown as just the “Queen Bee” of Blue Valley High, but now she’s so much more than that, which is absolutely for the best.

As for her father, we learn more about his backstory in this episode and, probably for most every viewer, this will create more questions than answers. Within context and what we know about Dragon King, everything makes complete sense. No spoilers, but the dots all connect when one begins to think about it.

The ISA and the JSA

As everything is going on with Courtney, Pat, Cindy, and Dragon King in this episode, other members of the JSA and ISA could have easily been forgotten about. However, this absolutely isn’t the case as every member of the JSA gets their time to shine in this episode and more of Icicle’s backstory is detailed.

While both Rick and Yolanda get some fun moments in this episode, the true star of the JSA here is Beth. She brings the perfect amount of humor that this episode needs, but she isn’t just that in this episode, she’s also the voice of reason. She finally gets some great dramatic moments that work perfectly for the character and the situation that the JSA is currently in. Any episode, it feels like Beth could just become an annoying caricature and, luckily, it has never happened and, seemingly, never will.

As for Icicle though, we get to learn a bit more about his motivations for what he’s doing with the “American Dream Foundation” and, honestly, the more that we learn about his motivations, the harder it is to disagree with his goals. However, the episode quickly reminds you that he’s a murderer so you don’t completely go over to his side. It’s often said that the best villains are the heroes of their own story, which is absolutely the framework that Icicle is fitting right now.

A-. <em>Stargirl</em> crams a lot into one episode, but each piece works in tandem with the rest to create another fantastic episode.. Stargirl. S1E8. Shiv Part Two

All 6 DC Universe original shows ranked from worst to best. dark. Next

Stargirl returns to DC Universe and The CW next Monday and Tuesday respectively. Did you enjoy this week’s episode? Let us know in the comments below!