This Young Justice: Outsiders review contains spoilers.
Young Justice Season 3 Episode 8
“Triptych” is exactly what the title implies: three adjacent stories that tell one bigger tale. It plays a little loose with the passage of time, but it also moves the ball further down the field than any episode yet this season and looks at the overarching story of Young Justice: Outsiders from a different angle, expanding the world in interesting ways.
The three stories are fairly straightforward: Nightwing and his Outsiders get a lead on where to find more information about Brion’s sister and the League, so they head for a Detroit airport hangar where Shade, Live Wire, and Mist are waiting for their teammate, Cheshire, to get sewn up after taking a bullet at Star Labs, where they were stealing something Reach-related. The Outsiders handle them pretty easily, but it’s a great example of their newfound team combat dynamic. They’re tight and well structured, and the episode pairs each Outsider off with a solid foil – Black Lightning and Live Wire is an obvious one that will pay off later this season; Nightwing and Mist get some cool fights in against each other; and Halo develops a new aura that lights Shade on fire. Meanwhile, Tigress confronts her sister and gets a little intel before yelling at her for being a terrible mom. It’s poignant and not a little frustrating to see Cheshire, someone who’s otherwise so competent and fearless, turn into a coward at the thought of seeing her child.
We then jump to the Bat Fam in Gotham – Tim Drake Robin, Spoiler, Arrowette and Orphan (!) are on patrol tailing the Mad Hatter. They turn away for a second, and when they turn back, Cassandra is cutting Tetch in half to reveal Clayface. A fight ensues and ends up back wth the real Hatter, where they find Tetch switching his M.O. from mind control hats to mind control nanites, which he’s shooting into captured metahumans. They can’t really do much before the building is blown.
Then we cut to a prisoner transport in Star City. Brick and someone else are being transferred to Belle Reve, but Sportsmaster and Abra Kadabra show up to break him out. Unfortunately for them, the drivers are Shazam and Flash in disguise. Sportsmaster gets away with the mysterious prisoner, while Kadabra and Brick are captured by the Justice League.
Then all three stories come together. It turns out all three teams – Nightwing’s Outsiders, Batman‘s ex Leaguers, and the Justice League – are working together to tackle the meta trafficking problem from different angles, and that all three villain events were linked together, just time flipped. The mysterious prisoner Sportsmaster freed was Shade, who was being injected with Hatter’s nanites and stealing the Reach artifact in Detroit. They were all employed by shell companies of Stagg Industries, and the Reach artifact is some kind of “metahuman failsafe.” There’s a bit of arguing about what they’ll have to do if somebody catches on that they’re working together, but this argument is a little bit silly in light of the fact that three of the people in it are one person whose death was faked so that the other could be more deeply embedded in the supervillain organization while the third almost blew the whole thing with her telepathy.
Regardless, we’re almost halfway there now, and Young Justice: Outsiders started things rolling downhill with this episode. It’s fun, fast, and full of action, and it made me even more excited for what’s next.
Outsider Trading Tips
– Shade and Live Wire are here for the first time, but I think Mist was in Season 1, and I’m pretty sure she’s actually Secret from the Young Justice comic. Peter David co-created her in the comic, so him writing the episode makes it more likely to be the case.
– If you’re watching this, it means you have DC Universe so go read James Robinson’s Starman right now. Even if you didn’t like Shade, who’s a main-ish characater in that comic. It’s amazing.
– Silas Stone is researching the Reach failsafe, so don’t be surprised when Cyborg shows up filthy with Reach tech later this season.
– Doctor Moon, who works on Cheshire, is an expert brain surgeon and torturer in the comics. He first appeared in a Denny O’Neil Batman book.
– A Tim Drake/Arrowette/Spoiler/Cassandra Cain team is pretty much my ideal Bat-adjacent comic. What a time to be alive.
– Tim’s Robin outfit here is one of my favorites. It’s like a cross between his RIP era costume and Damian’s Robin look, filtered through Young Justice’s design sensibility. It’s great.
– In case this is your first experience with him, Abra Kadabra’s “Magic” is actualy just 64th century science. He’s a time traveller who wants to use the greatest superpower of all to make himself rich: compound interest. He was created by Broome and Infantino as a Flash villain in 1962.
– Simon Stagg is typically a Metamorpho foil, but he’s offed pretty quickly here. I bet Metamorpho shows up down the road though. He does have some history with the Outsiders in the comics. He was created alongside Metamorpho in 1965 by Bob Haney and Ramona Fradon.
Keep up with all our Young Justice: Outsiders news and reviews right here.