Synopsis: Courtney’s seemingly perfect life in Los Angeles gets upended with a move to Nebraska.
This episode begins the story at Christmas of 2010, which sees The Justice Society of American in a fight with The Unjustice Society. Stripsey is speeding to a mansion where he is hoping to help out Starman and the others in a fight, which sees Brainwave, Icicle, Tigress, Sportsmaster enjoying the upper hand. Stripsey arrives just in time to pull a severely injured Starman out of there. As they narrowly escape Starman refuses Stripsey’s offer of taking him to a hospital and just dies, which marks the end of the Golden Age Justice Society. As Starman dies the action flips to Los Angeles where his Daughter Courtney is waiting for her father to come home so she can give him his present. He doesn’t come.
Ten years later and Courtney and her mother along with stepfather Pat aka Stripsey or S.T.R.I.P.E. are upending their lives in California to move to Blue Valley, Nebraska. It is apparent right away that Courtney resents the move and is not a fan of Pat, but she goes along with it anyhow for the sake of her mother’s happiness.
We follow Courtney through her first day at school, which is not a great day for her as she manages to pretty much tick off just about most people she meets. Things get interesting a bit later on when she is back at the new house going through some boxes and finds a lot of old photos and newspaper clippings about the JSA and Starman. As she continues to look around she comes into contact with The Cosmic Staff, which her father Starman used to wield. It turns out that the staff has a mind of its own, but somehow Courtney learns to communicate with it but does struggle to control it. Especially when it comes to the staff’s impulse to want to whack bad people. She gets into a spot of bother when she and the staff take down some bullies. One of which just happens to be the son of Brainwave.
Brec Bassinger makes an immediate impression as Courtney and comes across well. I loved the way in which Courtney’s first day at a new school is played out and especially enjoyed her discovery of Pat’s involvement in the JSA and the conversations she begins to have with Pat (Luke Wilson) who she previously didn’t particularly like. Amy Smart is well cast as Courtney’s mother and the few mother-daughter scenes we got in the episode played out pretty well. Particularly the scene where Courtney asks if her dad was Starman.
Overall. The cast chemistry is pretty solid. I’m looking forward to learning more about these characters.
This has to be the strongest pilot episode that the DC Streaming service has done to date and fans who will get to watch later tonight on The CW are in for a real treat.
I loved how the hour starts by giving us a glimpse of the classic Justice Society in action and then moves forward to the present day. That really helped set the tone and we even got a brief bit of humor between a dying Starman and Stripsey.
The story is kept relatively simple and rightly puts most of the focus on Courtney as she learns about the Staff and begins to form her relationship with it as well as getting to know Pat Dugan. The chemistry between Bassinger and Luke Wilson worked out pretty well and I can definitely see the potential for Pat to be a great mentor figure for her as she forms the new JSA, which this series will definitely build toward.
Overall. A great start with lots of potential to be a great show as things move forward.
- CGI & Stunts9.6
- Incidental Music9.2