Superman on Television
Justice League Action: Episode Reviews
Season 1 - Episodes 18: "Field Trip"Reviewed by: Thomas Dreyfuss
Originally Aired: January 21, 2017 (U.K.); May 13, 2017 (U.S.)
Written by Josie Campbell
Directed by Jake Castorena
Jake T. Austin as Blue Beetle (voice)
Natalie Lander as Stargirl (voice)
Jason J. Lewis as Superman/Specific Zod (voice)
Fryda Wolff as Faora (voice)
Stephen Tobolowsky as Professor Martin Stein/Firestorm (voice)
P.J. Byrne as Ronald Raymond/Firestorm (voice)
Rating - 4 (out of 5): During a tour of Superman's Fortress of Solitude, junior Justice Leaguers Blue Beetle, Firestorm, and Stargirl accidentally trap Superman in the Phantom Zone and simultaneously release General Zod, Faora, and Quex-Ul from the Zone. With the fate of the world at stake, the three teenage superheroes must put aside their egos and work together to stop the evil Kryptonians from escaping the Fortress, powering up on solar energy, and conquering Earth.
The thing that stands out the most about "Field Trip" is that the plot is fueled by the lead characters. Firestorm, Blue Beetle, and Stargirl each feel like they have something to prove but their constant attempts to one up each other only escalates the situation they unwittingly created. This setup is an effective way to communicate the tried and true message of "teamwork makes the dream work" and the humor stemming from our heroes many mistakes carries the episode towards that message.
This episode features a couple of character introductions with mixed results. Natalie Lander is perfect as Stargirl with the character's outgoing personality and star spangled design from comics kept intact. While I think Fryda Wolff as Faora and Jason J. Lewis does a fantastic 180-degree turn from friendly Superman to the menacing General Zod, the designs of Zod's crew threw me off. Despite the presence of Faora and Quex-Ul, their prison uniforms and mannerisms are too similar to Non and Ursa from Superman II. Making it weirder is that this version of Zod has no goatee. To be clear, none of this stuff is deal breaking but the composition of "Team Zod" is a weird mishmash of different versions that doesn't quite live up to any of them.
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