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This Week in DCTV 12/8

Welcome to This Week in DCTV, where the Twisted Cape examines, breaks down, and gives a quick review of all the original shows that DC has released this week. This will run weekly and start on Sunday and end on Saturday, so we catch everything on the CW, Fox, and the DC Universe streaming service. We will eventually be incorporating all of it, including the content from other networks, like Syfy. We’ll also include an average on the week to help determine whether the week was a success. Keep in mind there will be spoilers on a regular basis so read on at your own risk.

Weekly Score (Out of 5) – 3.5/5

Good, strong week from DC this week, although it had potential to be stronger. Arrow and Titans were the standouts, but all the other shows managed to be above average this week. Twist of the week goes to Legends of Tomorrow for their creepy/hilarious doll sequences. Looking forward to a big week for Elseworlds next week!

The CW

Supergirl – 3.5/5 – “Bunker Hill”

Nia has a powerful dream about Agent Liberty but refuses to look at it as a prophetic dream. Kara and Brainy try to persuade Nia to embrace her destiny. Manchester Black pays Ben Lockwood a menacing visit. SPOILERS – This all was part of one big story, which this show hasn’t done much of. Nia becomes much more important as her backstory is further revealed and Brainy unveils her future importance. Wrapping it in to the main conflict, Manchester Black hunts the man behind the Agent Liberty mask, Ben Lockwood. As Brainy and Kara hunt to keep a woman, who turns out to be Lockwood’s wife, safe from a murder, it’s uncovered that Ben is Agent Liberty. After a chase and an incredible display of power by Kara (seriously, she flew while being tethered to a building and lifted the entire thing off the ground), Ben is taken into custody, but it doesn’t go as well as everyone thought. Finally, Supergirl is relieved of her position at the DEO when she won’t reveal her identity. Good episode with a lot of developments, meaning that Elseworlds takes place with this hero in a murky mental state, but she could probably use the break.

Arrow - 4/5 – “Unmasked”

Felicity stands by her recent decisions regarding her family. Diggle and Lyla continue to look into the Dante painting that Curtis found. SPOILERS – Wow, what a shift to the status quo. This was the episode I was most looking forward to because it reintroduced Ollie into society. We initially find out who the new Green Arrow is, but we don’t know exactly who she is. Ollie is home and readjusting. You can tell he’s gone through some trauma and is more withdrawn than he usually is. He gets drawn back in when someone seems to be framing the new Green Arrow for murder. He begins working with the police, much to the chagrin of the current mayor. He springs back into action against an old pre-Green Arrow adversary (he slept with the guy’s ex-wife while they were married), but this time with the backing of the police department. Ollie and Felicity have a heart to heart about her having the gun given to her by Anatoly and shooting the man who invaded their home. This lifestyle has clearly affected her and Ollie just tucks that right into his mental guilt box, as she acknowledges she’s not the same person anymore. The flash forwards position the future team to head into the Glades for assistance. Lyla and Diggle go to seek help from Diaz on the painting that has been causing them issues on the side this season. Finally, the new Green Arrow is revealed to be the daughter of Robert Queen. Another good episode for this show, especially with the full time return of the lead.

The Flash – 3.5/5 – “What’s Past is Prologue”

Barry and Team Flash come up with a plan to stop Cicada, but it requires Barry & Nora going back in time to gather key necessities. Barry hesitates, concerned about his daughter seeing certain parts of his life. SPOILERS – As the 100th episode of the Flash, this advanced the story and managed to serve as a type of retrospective on the series. The bulk of the episode is centered on Barry and Nora revisiting key moments in Barry’s past, all of which are pivotal learning moments in the titular hero’s journey. We got to see many of the iconic villains from the show’s past. One strange, lingering question is around Zoom. What happened to him after the Time Wraith caught up with him? Anyway, the team gets what they need from the past to take on Cicada, which they do. It’s a mixed result. They get the upper hand and then Vibe breaches Cicada’s dagger into space, which was a questionable decision to me. Why wouldn’t you breach it to an alternate, desolate Earth where there’s no chance of him getting it back? Cicada recalls the dagger from space and steals the powers of Team Flash, except Killer Frost. Turns out her powers don’t come from dark matter, so she’s now much more important in the fight against Cicada. Finally, Sherloque notices some oddities from Nora’s journal. Turns out she has some interesting baggage that seems to directly relate to the Reverse Flash. Good episode, but there were some writing flaws or teases, depending on how you look at it.

Black Lightning - 3/5 – “The Book of Rebellion: Chapter One: Exodus”

The Pierce family reels in the wake of Jennifer’s disappearance. Jefferson, Lynn, and Anissa gather to discuss the most effective way to find her. After learning that she’s with Khalil, Lynn asks Detective Henderson to arrest him. SPOILERS – This episode centers mostly on the Pierce family using all their resources to track Jen down. There’s a pretty big shootout at the beginning as Khalil looks to get some money on their way out only to learn Tobias has a price on Khalil’s head. It feels nice to finally give these 2 characters something to do other than be characters on the periphery. Anissa and Lynn learn that Gambi is still alive which leads to an emotional conversation between Anissa and Gambi. Lynn turns to alcohol to comfort herself. Between the Pod kids and her own daughter, this is almost too much for any one person to deal with, and she’s close to a full breakdown. Part of me feels bad that she’s been drawn back into this life. Tobias hires Cutter to find Khalil who has a tracker in his head. There’s an excellent fight scene in Khalil’s aunt’s house, leading to them being rescued by Black Lightning and Thunder. In the excitement, Jen and Khalil escape and kill the tracker. Cutter, Jeff, Anissa, and Gambi continue to look, despite losing their trail. Tobias seems to be on the trail too discovering Black Lightning’s identity. I really hate how these episodes end because they don’t feel definitive.

Legends of Tomorrow – 3.5/5 – “Hell No, Dolly!”

Rory and Ava are at odds and Sara tries to come up with a way for them to get along. A new magical creature attacks the Legends. Constantine is forced to confront his tragic past but it could have devastating consequences for the rest of the team. SPOILERS – This episode had a definite Chucky/Annabelle feel to it. The fugitive is inside a doll, which is creepy and menacing. Rory and Ava mainly spent the episode despising each other over Ava taking the book from Mick last week. Gary tries to get Nate to ask Mona out for him, which he declines, but tells her to follow her heart. She discovers a nefarious plot by some to steal the prisoners. I’m happy that this storyline has some payoff. Constantine goes back in time to try to fix one of his mistakes, but instead winds up affecting the entire timeline. This explains why the Legends aren’t involved with the crossover this year. Solid episode, but next week seems like it’ll be the big one, especially since it’s the midseason finale.

DC Universe

Titans – 4.5/5 – “Hank and Dawn”

The origin story of Hank Hall and Dawn Granger’s relationship and the loss in each of their pasts that brings them together as vigilante Super Heroes Hawk and Dove. SPOILERS – What an excellent episode! This story focuses on multiple iterations of Hawk and Dove and what draws Hank and Dawn together. Mainly, the first third of the episode gives us Hank’s backstory and tells us about his life with his little brother Donny. There is quite an uncomfortable sexual abuse story from when they are kids, which sets them on the path to become crimefighters later. Donny cares about his brother’s health due to his injuries sustained playing football. A confrontation leads to them getting expelled from school (excellent scene with the Dean) and becoming crime fighters. The next third of the episode incorporates Dawn and her mom and their backstory. Dawn is a ballet dancer in the states and Dawn’s mom is in an abusive relationship with Dawn’s dad in England. All 4 characters quite literally bump into each other on the street when tragedy strikes, claiming Dawn’s mom and Donny. The final third brings Hank and Dawn together. They take out the football coach who sexually assaulted Hank as a child, bringing that story full circle. Most of this is told through dreams and flashbacks, with Raven psychically reaching out to them. I loved multiple aspects of this episode - Well written, well-acted, well directed. The only real issue I have was the placement of the episode. The core team had just got rolling and developing and this episode took momentum away. With 2 episodes left, maybe this story could have been cut in over the course of the season.

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