This Week In DCTV 10/20/19
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’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. NOTE: We will not be covering Epix’s Pennyworth at this time.
Weekly Score (4 Out of 5) - Another strong week, particularly with Flash and Titans being standouts. Good week, but I"m looking for a little more out of Arrow moving forward, especially since we only have 9 left, one of those being the crossover, so really 8. Speaking of Arrow, Twist of the Week goes to Arrow for the moment at the end with Earth-2.
Supergirl – 3.5/5 – “Stranger Beside Me”
Supergirl, Alex and Brainiac thwart an alien attack while William investigates Kara; J’onn J’onzz and Kelly use Obsidian tech to solve a problem. SPOILERS – On the surface, this episode didn’t do much, but it looks like many of the seeds of the Leviathan story are being planted in this episode. It’s hinted at by Eve and William that there is something else moving beneath the surface, however the rest of team Supergirl are all distracted by J’onn’s brother and all of their own personal drama. This episode felt a lot like filler, but a few significant moments could prove to be pivotal as the season develops – specifically whatever Lena is doing because I believe it will put her directly into Leviathan’s crosshairs.
Arrow – 3.5/5 – “Starling City”
While trying to decipher The Monitor’s mission, Oliver returns to Starling City where he encounters familiar faces; Mia and William’s team clash with a new foe. SPOILERS – This is the final season of Arrow and at the end of last year, Ollie set out on a mission for The Monitor. Maybe it’s our limited exposure, but it seems like a huge fetch quest. That doesn’t mean that it’s bad, but I think that I hoped for more of an epic journey for a character’s final adventure. That said, it was nice to see how everything was an altered telling of the first season of Arrow. Comic fans recognize Tommy as the villainous archer that was Malcom in the first season. Thea is dead, Felicity has her own company, Curtis is in Queen-Merlyn at IT, Dinah and Rene are henchmen, and finally, Laurel is Black Canary alongside Adrian Chase as the Hood. Such a reversal of roles is amazing, but one thing remained that is disturbing to me – the 2040 flash forwards. They don’t serve any purpose outside of the pending spin-off. Outside of that, I did enjoy the episode, but there is definitely work to be done. Diggle tracking Ollie down, knowing how Ollie looked to give him the slip, Dig falling for the handshake/choke out and other moments showed how those two always remained at the core of the show. By the way – that ending was a gut punch. I had no expectations of an entire world, Earth-2, getting the Thanos treatment.
The Flash - 5/5 – “A Flash of Lightning”
Faced with the news of his impending death, Barry’s resiliency suffers as he struggles to fight fate; Cecile’s career as a D.A. conflicts with her identity when she crosses paths with a villainous meta-human. SPOILERS – The Flash continues to dazzle this week as Barry deals with the news of his impending doom from The Monitor last week. Barry and Iris do all they can to find a way to fight it, with Barry opting to run into the future. He is thwarted and is led to Earth-3 and Jay Garrick who sends his mind through the Speed Force allowing Barry to see all the possible options. This leads to one of the most incredible comic to screen moments this show has offered – a glimpse at Barry Allen’s death from Crisis. As a result, Barry’s resolve strengthens to give the ultimate sacrifice if it means everyone else gets to live. In the side stories, Frost is learning to live as an adult, despite having the skills of a child, which made for some fun interplay. Cecile’s powers and job were in direct conflict leading her to change professions, which makes so much sense. She has been set as a character who cares about metas, so this progression seems natural. Excellent episode all around.
Black Lightning - 3/5 – “The Book of Occupation: Chapter Two: Maryam’s Tasbih”
With Freeland under occupation, the Pierce family gets pulled in different directions; Jefferson and Lynn are at odds with each other; Jennifer feels powerless despite having powers. SPOILERS – This episode was… different. It was slower than others for the most part, taking characters in different directions. It put Jeff and Lynn at odds again, which is becoming old quickly. Anissa embraced a darker, more aggressive aspect of her personality to keep her people safe at the farm, which stands to be explored a little bit more. Jennifer gets into a (poorly shot) fight, where the stunt double is clearly exposed in a wig. The most interesting aspects were subplots with Gambi and Inspector Henderson, as well as the resurrected and mindwiped Khalil, and finally the seemingly immortal Lala. Didn’t love it this episode, but it sets up some coming conflicts, specifically the Markovians. Finally, Agent Odell is a creepy, creepy dude.
Batwoman - 4/5 – “The Rabbit Hole”
Jacob Kane and the Crows up the stakes; Kate continues to look to Bruce Wayne’s legacy for guidance as Luke Fox inadvertently gets pulled into Batwoman’s vigilante heroics; Sophie and Kate are forced to team up. SPOILERS – Well, that escalated quickly. I really thought that this show would take a slow burn approach to Alice being Beth, or Jacob finding out Alice is Beth. Boy, was I wrong about that. I’m happy that they are allowing this show to develop quickly with story while also making it a compelling watch. Much better than last week. I really loved how Kate seems to be embracing her inner Bat, but her public persona is going to need a little bit of work. I was really hoping that this show would break the whole “team of the hero” formula that surrounds the other solo Arrowverse shows, but it looks like that’s a tradition that will continue via Luke Fox. Hoping that they break things up as this show moves forward.
Titans – 4.5/5 – “Bruce Wayne”
As Dick sets out alone to track down Deathstroke, a familiar voice begins to haunt him – taunting him and attempting to guide him back to being the leader the Titans need. SPOILERS – This episode shows how different this show is capable of being and remaining entertaining in multiple ways. Having Bruce Wayne manifested as a part of Dick’s guilty psyche is awesome and provides both dark moments and moments of levity. I loved how the threads moved easily throughout this episode, especially the ones that revolved around Jason Todd, who seems like he’s been reprogrammed by Deathstroke. Having this episode feature 2 Robin’s at it’s core was smart because we get to see the difference between the two “generations” of Titans, their struggles, and their approach to overcoming obstacles. Dick’s murder confession to a near suicidal Jason Todd and the relief that accompanies his confession shows some of the connection between the actors. Another thing that the show has been masterful at is the rare physical representation of Deathstroke. He’s far more terrifying when we don’t see him often. The interplay between all of the Titans in the tower, which now includes Conner, is so fun and interesting. Sometimes heavy, sometimes sexy, sometimes funny all of which are on full display in this episode. This episode to me shows why this is a flagship show of this streaming service.