Superman Homepage reviewer Marc Lax reviews episodes from the “Justice League Action” Animated Series, airing on Cartoon Network.
Check out his review of the 32nd episode of Season 1 in which, when the diabolical Amazo attacks the League and begins to steal their powers one-by-one, the klutzy, backwards-thinking Bizarro becomes our heroes’ last hope to turn things around.
Originally Aired: August 19, 2017 (U.S.)
Written by Heath Corson
Directed by Doug Murphy
Kevin Conroy as Batman (voice)
Crispin Freeman as Martian Manhunter (voice)
Rachel Kinsey as Wonder Woman (voice)
Thomas Lennon as Amazo (voice)
Jason J. Lewis as Superman (voice)
Charlie Schlatter as The Flash (voice)
Travis Willingham as Bizzaro (voice)
Paton Oswalt as Space Cabbie (voice)
Rating – 5 (out of 5): The Justice League is having their monthly meeting when Wonder Woman contacts them from Paris. She seems to have run into Bizzaro and is humoring him by going on a “date” to play miniature golf. Bizzaro wants to join the League so she tells him if he wins he can join. Doesn’t look good for Bizzaro.
Meanwhile Amazo crashes the Watchtower telling the heroes his creator Professor Ivo is dead and he’s ready to take control. As our heroes fight Amazo, one by one he mimics each of their powers. Super speed from The Flash, phasing and morphing from Martian Manhunter, his own power ring from Green Lantern, etc. Amazo catches Batman in a vice unaware that Superman is sneaking up behind him. After a brief fight with the Man of Steel Amazo absorbs his powers as well. After making fast work with the Justice League Amazo activates an alert signal to the rest of the JLA so on arrival he can take their powers. Meanwhile, while eating burgers and fries with Bizzaro, Wonder Woman gets the alert and heads for the Watchtower not realizing Bizzaro is right behind her. But he has a stop to make first. Wonder Woman arrives at Watchtower to see the rest of the League imprisoned by Amazo. She uses her Lasso in attempt to stop him but after phasing through the Lasso he catches and imprisons her. Bizzaro arrives to save the day with the universe’s greatest mind… Space Cabbie! After a quick fight with Bizzaro, Amazo absorbs his powers and goes after Space Cabbie who needs to flip the switch that will stop the alert that summons the other League members. Will he make it in time? Can Bizzaro beat Amazo?
Amazo has been a well known Justice League villain appearing sporadically through the decades to menace our heroes. His first appearance was in The Brave and the Bold #30 (June 1960). Created by Gardner Fox and Murphy Anderson, his first official Justice League appearance was in Justice League of America #27 (May 1964). While there have been variations on the character throughout the years his main purpose has been to menace the League by absorbing their powers. He’s a formidable foe but the League usually bests him in the end. Amazo was never one of my favorites because, except in some rare cases, mimicking the heroes powers is his only gimmick. I know certain writers and certain stories have made him more formidable but I just never had an affinity for the character. But I must admit I really enjoyed his appearance in this episode. Yes he’s using the same mimicking power but it seems this is the first time this League has fought him and he really takes them by surprise.
As for Bizzaro! Who doesn’t love this character? Yes, he also has a gimmick but what’s fun about him is he’s totally unpredictable. Bizzaro has been a bumbling menace, a powerful villain, and even a sidekick. We know he’s very powerful because of being an imperfect clone of Superman and some people see him as a monster. He has been played as a sympathetic monster but also a worthwhile opponent for Superman. As I’ve said, he’s entirely unpredictable and I’ve always loved that about him. Here he’s more the bumbling menace but in his own way really wants to be the hero.
This was a terrific episode. A truly traditional Justice League story. Well, as traditional as Justice League Action can be. The heroes were portrayed pretty accurately and each one was used well. Space Cabbie as usual steals the show. He once gave Bizzaro directions (though he ended up going the wrong way), so of course Bizzaro thinks he’s a genius. The heroes send Cabbie to turn of the switch to stop the alert but Amazo is on his tail. Cabbie slows him down with some kind of ray gun but he shows up in time to fight Bizzaro. Amazo having all Bizzaro’s backward powers, ice vision instead of heat seems a good match until the one thing that Amazo didn’t count on was also getting his intellect, that’s to say his backward child-like, cockeyed intellect, which starts to short circuit Amazo’s brain finally putting the villain down. After helping the League Superman, Wonder Woman and the rest feel maybe they should ask Bizzaro to join but Batman, always being the smartest guy In the room, tricks Bizzaro with his backward thinking and he goes flying into space. Hello Bizzaro, I mean goodbye Bizzaro!
Check out the “Justice League Action – Episode Reviews” Contents page.