Superman Homepage reviewer Marc Lax reviews episodes from the “Justice League Action” Animated Series, airing on Cartoon Network.
Check out his review of the 44th episode of Season 1 in which, when Batman discovers that he and the rest of the League are robots, he investigates to find out who did this and why?
Originally Aired: November 11, 2017 (U.S.)
Written by Patrick Rieger
Directed by Jake Castorena
Kevin Conroy as Batman (voice)
Jason J. Lewis as Superman (voice)
Rachel Kimsey as Wonder Woman (voice)
Jonathan Adams as Darkseid (voice)
Diedrich Bader as Booster Gold (voice)
Khary Payton as Cyborg (voice)
Rating – 4 (out of 5): Batman awakens in the Batmobile with no memory how he got there. He gets a message from Booster Gold telling him to hurry to downtown Metropolis where Zod and Harley Quinn are wreaking havoc. It seems villains have been attacking the city for days but Batman has no memory of the events. On his way downtown Batman encounters Green Lantern fighting Gorilla Grodd and Black Adam. Getting another message this time from Superman and Wonder Woman he’s told the villains have been appearing in strange pairs for a while and the whole League has their hands full. Batman arrives just as Booster’s getting tossed around. Harley comes after Batman who makes quick work of her and Booster flips Zod through a Big Belly Burger sign. While Booster congratulates himself Batman wonders why it was so easy to defeat Zod who has the same powers as Superman. Cyborg appears being chased by Parasite? Seems like it except he’s got tentacles. That’s new. He zaps Cyborg’s power knocking him out. Batman and Booster grab Cyborg and tell the others to head to S.T.A.R. Labs. Somethings not right! At the lab testing Cyborg’s vitals it’s revealed he’s an actual robot. Testing a theory Batman asks Superman to punch him in the face! Something he’s reluctant to do. So Wonder Woman steps up and punches Batman. Unhurt Batman is able to remove his face and is also revealed to be a robot as are the other heroes. Batman surmises that they’re not the real League and are just programmed with the League’s memories. But before they can find out who’s behind it a squad of Parademons converge on the lab. Trying to fight them the heroes realize that their punches resist the Parademons. Understanding that their programming doesn’t allow them to hit their targets they flee to regroup. While running from Parademons the League almost fall off a cliff in downtown Metropolis. Some of the rocks fall and it’s revealed they’re not in Metropolis but some pocket dimension, an almost holographic city. The demons give chase but lose the Justice League. Just then one of the Parademons gets a message from Darkseid and find they’ve lost track of the League. Darkseid tells them when the heroes are found their memories will be erased and reprogrammed. Batman realizes that they’re robots programmed by Darkseid so he and his minions can practice and learn how to fight the League. Realizing the Daily Planet is the command center the heroes converge on the robot villains. After a short fight they make it inside and find the robots won’t follow because they’re not programmed to fight inside the command center. Will the “League” stop the Parademons in time to get to Darkseid or is it to late?!
A lot is happening in this episode! Now this type of story has been done before but it’s the characters’ reactions and the who, where, and why that keep the action going. The scene where Batman asks Superman to punch him in the face and instead Wonder Woman accepts the challenge is well done. It’s understandable that Superman would be reluctant but Wonder Woman having no qualms, even relishing the challenge, shows the difference between the two. I liked that. I also liked when Wonder Woman said after punching Batman didn’t Superman at one time or another want to give him a slug in the face and while reluctant to really reply you can tell that, yes, Superman did at some point. As I mentioned in the description, I believed the creature attacking Cyborg was the Parasite. He was purple and was wearing a similar outfit we’ve seen him wear more recently. But the shape and the tentacles threw me off. I can understand villains wanting to test the Justice League and watch for weak points but that seems below Darkseid. Sure he’s fought them and lost on occasion but with his Omega beams and half of Apokolips on his side he should be able to take them when push really comes to shove. Of course Booster was the comic relief which is being somewhat faithful to the character and harkens back to his “Bwah ha ha” days with the Justice League International.
While in the command center the League is attacked once again by Parademons but with swift thinking Booster detains them long enough so the rest of the heroes can make it to Darkseid. After making small talk with Darkseid Cyborg quickly hacks into the system to destroy it, which in turn destroys the entire pocket dimension. Darkseid gets away with his Mother Box leaving the heroes stranded. Just when all seems lost the flash of a boom tube appears and the real Batman ushers the robots through. Back at the Watchtower Batman explains they got the distress call from robot Batman and found their location. They congratulate the robot League for their good work and tell them that there are other worlds that can use their protection. Robot Booster starts saying how these new worlds could use his robot expertise which makes the real Booster mention how he never sounds like that. In which Batman replies that he’s actually spot on!
A good episode! A fun premise and I like the idea that the robot League is out there somewhere fighting the good fight! Maybe another appearance? Would be nice!
Check out the “Justice League Action – Episode Reviews” Contents page.