April 21, 2024

Gabbing Geek

Your online community for all things geeky.

Going Through The DCAU Part Eighty-Nine

Jimmy and Tom come ever closer to the end of this road with the JLU episodes "To Another Shore," "Flash and Substance," and "Dead Reckoning."

We’re getting close to the end of Justice League Unlimited.  Really, there are probably only about two of these entries left.  But that doesn’t mean we can skip around and forget stuff.

As such, this time around, Jimmy and Tom will be talking the Justice League Unlimited episodes “To Another Shore,” “Flash and Substance,” and “Dead Reckoning”.

“To Another Shore”

A melting glacier at an environmental summit has something inside of it that Grodd wants…

jimmy:  Why does J’onn hate us, Tom?  What did we ever do to him?

tomk:  Locked him up and held him prisoner when he first arrived to warn us about the aliens that killed his people?

jimmy:  Oh that. That could happen to anyone.

tomk:  Like you?

jimmy:  Happened to me just last week.

tomk:  Was it because of Watson?

jimmy:  You don’t want to know what they do when it’s “because of Watson”.

tomk:  Got it.  Ryan riled up the Krull Cult.  Both of those guys can be a problem.

jimmy:  It was an interesting observation though.  Trying to remember J’onn going on any recent missions.

tomk:  Aside from the end of the Cadmus arc, he never left the Watchtower.

jimmy:  He was probably trying to avoid Zack Snyder.

tomk:  Can you blame him?

jimmy:  Given his usage in ZSJL, no.

tomk:  But when that sequel comes out…

jimmy:  Oh Tom, you and your jokes.

tomk:  Like how the fugitive guy was also in Robocop 2?

Crap.  Wrong chat.

jimmy:  I thought all the Robocop 2 guys were in TNG?


tomk:  I got my streams crossed. Stupid sexy Impossible.

jimmy:  I’m surprised streams don’t get crossed more often.  MM would be one of the very obvious cuts to make Justice League a sensible length.

tomk:  But then who would show up in an expensive cameo and do nothing?

jimmy:  Superman’s mustache?

tomk:  Well, speaking of things unseen…did anything about this episode beyond the J’onn development seem weird to you?

jimmy:  Diana spinning around and changing clothes?

tomk:  Um, close.

Here’s the question:  who the hell is Devil Ray?

Follow-up:  why did Diana fight him underwater?

jimmy:  I figured he was someone i didn’t know but thought he was Black Manta at first.

tomk:  It was supposed to be Black Manta. In fact, this was supposed to be an Aquaman episode.

jimmy:  Instead of Diana?  Probably would have made more sense.

tomk:  Yes.

They were trying to develop an Aquaman live action show in the style of Smallville and DC revoked permission for JLU to use any Aquaman related characters. Devil Ray is just a Black Mantra knock-off.

jimmy:  And how did that show turn out?

tomk:  They made a pilot. It was called Mercy Reef. Never got picked up by the network but was available on iTunes and for a time on DC Universe when it still streamed shows.

jimmy:  Purchased by exactly 1 person.  Rhymes with Blotson.

tomk:  Billy Blotson?

jimmy:  He has better taste than that.

tomk:  He does have lightning in his hands.

jimmy:  Let’s not talk about that.

I imagine the stuff with J’onn must have played out differently or not existed in the Aquaman version.

tomk:  Probably not.

jimmy:  Yeah, he’d have no place to talk to J’onn about that.

tomk:  The plot could have still used Diana or even Oliver to fill that role.

jimmy:  Sure.  Probably lots of different ways it could have shook out.  Or, according to the interwebs: “Additionally, Timm mentioned that had Aquaman would have been featured in the episode, J’onn J’onzz’s subplot would have not been included in the episode’s story.”

tomk:  That also works.

jimmy:  Diana quoting the “Rime of the Ancient Mariner” seems like it would be more fitting for Mr. Curry as well.

tomk:  But Diana saying some kind of benediction for a long dead ancient warrior is also appropriate.

jimmy:  True enough.

tomk:  So, how about that Viking Prince?

jimmy:  What was he the prince of?  Asskickistan?

tomk:  Um…yes!

jimmy:  Nice.

tomk:  That was certainly a name that could have been used by DC in the 50s when they created the character.

jimmy:  Speaking off, the telling of his story was certainly done differently from an animation standpoint.

tomk:  You mean using what looked like Joe Kubert illustrations?

jimmy:  That, exactly.

tomk:  Yes. Yes, it was. Nice tribute to older artwork.

jimmy:  Or the animators wrists were tired.

tomk:  It wasn’t a live broadcast for this one.

jimmy:  Tribute it is!

tomk:  They were resting up since the Warlord episode had been done live.

jimmy:  Haha

tomk:  But speaking of scheduling… I remember it was really screwed up when these episodes were new.

jimmy:  How so?

tomk:  Well, when this season started, the first two episodes aired back to back on a Saturday night in September .  Then the following week, same with the next two episodes.

After that, nothing, not even reruns, until the following February.

jimmy:  Odd.

tomk:  From there,they aired two episodes a month until they finished up the run. Almost felt like Cartoon Network didn’t really want the show.

jimmy:  Buyers remorse?

tomk:  Don’t know. Maybe the episodes weren’t ready yet. Not like when the second season of Young Justice had a scheduled episode not air for weeks without explanation.

jimmy:  With so few episodes they need to spread them out too. Though airing two weeks of two episodes doesn’t really jive with that.

tomk:  It was frustrating.

jimmy:  When did it start?  September I assume?

tomk:  Yes. September, four episodes, then nothing again until the following February.

jimmy:  Ouch. Probably figured it wasn’t coming on again.

tomk:  I don’t know what happened. I probably could have looked it up at the time, but instead I just…waited for it to come back.

That hiatus was probably long enough for, like, three Aquaman shows to be rejected by networks.

jimmy:  Heh. At least we don’t have to worry about it this round with every episode available at the push of a button.

tomk:  Yes. Plus, one of us has seen them all before.

jimmy:  Is it me?

tomk:  Maybe.

jimmy:  It is amazing at times that you remember watching these the first time around. Not just the show details, but stuff like the long break between episodes, etc.

tomk:  It was supremely frustrating. Especially since they didn’t really do that before.

jimmy:  Who knows why they do these things?

tomk:  They do presumably.

By the by, the Viking Prince thing is comics accurate, but some stories suggest he woke up during World War II and teamed up with Sgt Rock, finding a way to die in the war (plastic explosives) that Odin’s curse didn’t touch and allowing him to go to Vahalla and see his Valkyrie love.

jimmy:  Yay for blowing up with plastic explosives!

tomk:  That came out weird.

jimmy:  I don’t write the legends.

tomk:  You’re more the subject of legends?

jimmy:  I’m working on it.

tomk:  You got the name part down.  That’s an important first step.

jimmy:  One step at a time.

tomk:  Next up, you need to do something impressive.  Maybe finish your Epic Spider-Man Chronology.

jimmy:  I know. I suck. Not much of a legend so far.

tomk:  Every legend has to start somewhere.  Perhaps someday, supervillains will be fighting over your corpse too.

jimmy:  Getting stuck in ice seems entirely possible.

tomk:  You can be the Canadian Viking with Moosely, his trusted sidekick.

jimmy:  I’ll take it.

tomk:  Just like J’onn took a vacation?

jimmy:  To connect with humanity.

tomk:  Is that for you or the Moose?

jimmy:  For J’onn.

tomk:  Oh, I see.

Meanwhile, Wonder Woman apparently told off Dick Cheney between scenes.

jimmy:  He probably deserved it.

tomk:  At an environmental summit?

Yeah, probably.

jimmy:  That was likely very funny if I knew more than next to nothing about Dick Cheney.

tomk:  Well, the very fact that Diana told the VP off by itself could be funny.  Knowing which VP it was when the episode airs makes it…somewhat appropriate.

jimmy:  Diana doesn’t care who you are.

tomk:  Clearly.  Especially if she’s looking for a host body for Steve Trevor.

jimmy:  Ouch. Cold. Accurate. But cold.

tomk:  I calls ’em like I sees ’em.

jimmy:  Legends.

tomk:  So, did you like this one?

And it’s Aquaman-free story?

jimmy:  I did. Much of it was just an extended fight sequence. What’s not to like?

tomk:  The Viking Prince just lies there?  Some people hate poetry?  Too depressing if you think about the global warming plot and it’s real world connections?

jimmy:  Are you in that group, Tom?

tomk:  No. I liked this one.

jimmy:  You would think the Prince would have thawed out and joined the fight. Usually how these things go.

tomk:  There might have been a problem when he used his Viking battle axe to decapitate Killer Frost and Heat Wave.

jimmy:  Not with me.

tomk:  More for the network censors. Frost can freeze people to death by the looks of things, but you can just pretend those guys thaw out later. No blood.

jimmy:  Or you can destroy tanks that must have been empty or controlled remotely.

tomk:  Or you can set a robot on fire even if they were programmed to feel pain.

jimmy:  He’s just a robot.

tomk:  You’re heartless.

jimmy:  Violence on those shows are a whole different ballgame.

tomk:  Oh, now you wanna talk baseball?

jimmy:  No?

tomk:  OK.  Good.  I’m not one for sports.

jimmy:  And speaking of sports, anything else on this one?

tomk:  Grodd still isn’t wearing pants.

Who does he think he is?  Donald Duck?

jimmy:  But when he gets out of the shower, does he wrap a towel around his waist?

tomk:  Only if Batman hands him one. And don’t ask about drainage clogs.

jimmy:  Eww. Yes. Let’s not.

tomk:  But Grodd usually messes with the Flash. Where’s he been?

jimmy:  He’s here to hug it out.

tomk:  Or he has something big in Central City.

jimmy:  …I smell a segue!

tomk:  Sure!  Wanna see what life is like in the Flash’s hometown?

jimmy:  Do I?!?

tomk:  I think you do.

jimmy:  I do!

tomk:  Then let’s take a trip to the Flash Museum!

“Flash and Substance”

Some of the Flash’s greatest enemies come out to kill him when Central City opens a Flash Museum.

jimmy:  Batman smiles at the end. Don’t make Batman smile at the end.

tomk:  You’d rather see Orion smile at the end?

jimmy:   He probably wouldn’t smile either.

tomk:  Taking Orion to handle the Flash’s Rogues is probably overkill, but it worked.

jimmy:  Especially since Batman almost took them out single handedly.

tomk:  But hey, the Flash is actually beloved in his home town.

jimmy:  He really is. Isn’t there a Flash museum in the comics as well?

tomk:  Yeah.

Central City really loves the Flash.

jimmy:  You know what though, he seems to be the only one that really interacts with the citizens.

tomk:  He’s also surprisingly humble given what he’s looked like in the past.

jimmy:  Orion probably thinks it’s an act.

tomk:  He seems to think Flash is just a fool at first.

jimmy:  He does gain his respect by the end.

tomk:  And he maybe always had Bats’.

jimmy:  He was pretty quick to agree to show up for the museum ceremony.

tomk:  While using a tone to suggest he wasn’t interested.

jimmy:  That’s so Batman.

tomk:  Also, threatening a mentally ill guy voiced by Mark Hamill.


tomk:  Yes. He still plays the Trickster sometimes today.

jimmy:  Like trying to trick Patrick Stewart in those commercials.

tomk:  Um, no. On the current Flash show.

jimmy:  He must be playing Trickster’s Dad at this point.

tomk:  He did do that but they said he was the original Trickster, and they play him like the Joker.

jimmy:  The Joker?  He’d have no experience playing something like that!

tomk:  See for yourself.

jimmy:  Good old JWS is still at it.

tomk:  All the main cast members of the 90s show appeared on the new one at least once, often as the same character.

jimmy:  I just looked up Amanda Pays…I wouldn’t even recognize her now.

tomk:  Thirty years will do that.

jimmy:  Tell me about it.

tomk:  You aren’t recognizable to people from the 90s either?

jimmy:  Probably not.

tomk:  How sad.

How about how much reporter Linda Park was smitten with Wally?

jimmy:  He’s like the whole track team all at once!

tomk:  And she’s the only woman he won’t look at twice despite the fact they got married and had a set of twins in the comics.

jimmy:  That’s because he’s secretly Barry Allen.

tomk:  Or Barry was his blonde supervisor.

jimmy:  Did Wally work in a crime lab too?

tomk:  Looks like he does.

jimmy:  I was asking more in the comics since I know Barry did.  I don’t know much about Wally.

tomk:  Wally in the comics was, well, a professional superhero.

jimmy:  That doesn’t pay so well.

tomk:  He actually got an inheritance from a rich deceased supervillain.

jimmy:  …did you make that up?

tomk:  Nope.

I think it was the Icicle, a Golden Age villain who respected various Flashes.

jimmy:  Weird.

tomk:  The idea was it was more of a game in the old days and villains often respected the heroes they routinely battled.

jimmy:  Joker also talked a lot about his boner.

tomk:  As you like to remind me.


tomk:  You do like a good boner.

jimmy:  Um..well…either way, I wouldn’t chortle at the Joker’s.

tomk:  Best idea not to. Probably shouldn’t mock Captain Cold’s ulcer either.

jimmy:  Speaking of The Rogues, if Mirror Master uses mirrors to go into that wacky alternate universe that Flash and Linda are momentarily trapped in, and then come out into a different mirror…how did he get trapped in a broken mirror?

tomk:  Um, science!


tomk:  Maybe Mirror Master got stuck partway.

jimmy:  Maybe. He was awfully concerned about them getting all the pieces.

tomk:  It’s his first day?

jimmy:  Hahaha!  Ok then. Sweep’em up boys! 

tomk:  You were the one asking for the science behind a guy who walks through mirrors.

jimmy:  It’s not about science, it’s about obeying the rules of your universe that you literally just set up.  That would be like saying Cap spent the rest of his life in the original MCU timeline even though the entirety of Endgame established that all time travel created parallel universes.

tomk:  You’re right. That would just provoke arguments.

jimmy:  And no geeks want that.

tomk:  Nope.

Did you enjoy the trip to Central City?

jimmy:  It didn’t irritate my ulcer.

tomk:  Did you notice a Kid Flash costume exhibit in the Flash Museum?

jimmy:  Not that I recall.

tomk:  It’s there. Fans noticed. I saw it this time.

I bring it up because Kid Flash did appear on Teen Titans for two episodes, and he was voiced by Michael Rosenbaum.

jimmy:  Which Kid Flash?

tomk:  Never identified but probably implied to be Wally. Then again, that show never did more than hint Robin was Dick Grayson.

jimmy:  Maybe it was Barry in a role reversal.

tomk:  I think they made Wally’s crime lab boss look like Barry.

jimmy:  You mentioned that. Poor old Barry. Always getting the shaft.

tomk:  Until live action Flashes return.

jimmy:  Played by Ezra Miller. I stand by my previous statement.

tomk:  No love for Grant Gustin, I see.

jimmy:  I was waiting for that. The exception to the rule. Not that I’ve watched much of the show.

tomk:  I won’t tell Ryan if you won’t.

jimmy:  He knows.


jimmy:  Usually correct.

tomk:  Well, I think you’re quite knowledgeable about a great many things.

jimmy:   Not usually DC related.

tomk:  You know more now than you used to.

jimmy:  This is true, sensei.

tomk:  Why, you could probably teach Jenny a thing or two by now.

jimmy:  That wouldn’t take much.

tomk:  Perhaps, but you learned so much about lesser DC characters.  And who knows how many more might appear in these last few episodes?

jimmy:  You tease.

tomk:  Unless we just get five episodes of Batman playing solitaire for 22 minutes at a stretch.

jimmy:  I’d watch it.

tomk:  You’d watch anything with Batman.

You probably even sat through the Snyder Cut once.

jimmy:  You didn’t?

tomk:  I never said I didn’t.

jimmy:  You never said you wouldn’t watch Batsolitaire either.

tomk:  That was implied. I barely knew what to write to review the Snyder Cut.

jimmy:  I think one of the biggest problems with the Snyderverse is that from the onset he made Superman into Batman. Which messes with the characterization of Superman that your review longs for. And then when it came time to do Batman he was like “oh crap, if Supes is that dark, how do I make Batman even darker?  I know, let’s have him kill people and fire machine guns!”  Again messing with and completely missing Batman as a character.

tomk:  That’s why the Snyderverse is both inferior to the Spiderverse and is secretly about the Crime Syndicate’s Earth.

jimmy:  Man…that works so well actually. Now I want the Snyderverse back so he can turn them into the Crime Syndicate and lead to a multiversal crossover where the real Justice League show up to save the day. As a bonus, it will kill Watson. His soul at least.

tomk:  You really have it in for soul destruction.

jimmy:  Only one.

tomk:  Well, there is a DC hero who might object to that.

jimmy:  Azrael?

tomk:  Um, no.

Want to find out who?

jimmy:  I do.

tomk:  Ready to move on?

jimmy:  If you are.

tomk:  I am.

Besides, it might be time to find out what Grodd wants.

jimmy:  A banana?

tomk:  Not quite. You’ll need to see for yourself.

“Dead Reckoning”

Grodd puts his master plan into action as an unlikely ally goes to the League for help.

jimmy:  So Grodd builds a machine that creates an energy wave that rewrites people’s DNA and instantly turns them into apes. But all you need to do is turn the machine off and everyone immediately changes back. Convenient.

tomk:  You wanted the show to be Planet of the Apes Unlimited?

jimmy:  No, but it just didn’t make any sense. I know, I know, it’s just a cartoon.

tomk:  Like how the DNA thing also worked on aliens like Superman?

jimmy:  I hadn’t thought of that. Another good point.

tomk:  Well, it’s not like this might have been inspired by anything.

jimmy:  JLApe

tomk:  Yup!

jimmy:  Better than Wonder Woman turning into a pig, I suppose.

tomk:  What if Clock King and Sewer King mounted a magical throne and turned Wonder Woman into an ape with a pig snout?

jimmy:  Our watch would be over.

tomk:  GoT Season 7.  Got it.

jimmy:  And it all seemed so inconsequential in the end. Grodd’s machine that they spent the season so far building up to is destroyed and no one is overly perplexed. And then Luthor takes over with ease.

tomk:  Well, no one else liked being an ape.

jimmy:  Bizzaro loved it.

tomk:  Did he?  Did he now?

jimmy:  I assume since everyone hated it.

tomk:  Well, he sure did get around this time.  Nanda Parbatt…Gorilla City…Bob’s Big Boys….

jimmy:  That place with the milkshakes..

tomk:  I heard tell Captain Marvel goes there.

jimmy:  Boy Scouts do love their ice cream beverages.

tomk:  That’s a good point,  Have a milkshake.

jimmy:  Nice. I’ve been craving one.

tomk:  You may need a spoon for this one.

jimmy:  The Superman Special.

tomk:  Did you notice Luthor turned into a bald ape?

jimmy:  Turning into an ape doesn’t cure baldness. Everyone knows that.

tomk:  They don’t teach that in American schools.

jimmy:  They don’t teach apevolution?

tomk: They say it’s just a theory.

jimmy:  Like that a ghost can inhabit others to exact vengeance?

tomk:  That’s just science.

jimmy:  Paranormal science.

tomk:  Obviously.

jimmy:  Speaking of paranormal science, how exactly did Grodd get Tala out of that mirror?

tomk:  He asked Mirror Master for help?

jimmy:  …hmm…that may have worked.

tomk:  And you thought that guy didn’t know what he was doing.

jimmy:  As long as you don’t break the mirror as he goes through it, he’s all good!

tomk:  Regardless, Tala was smitten with an ape.

jimmy:  Until she wasn’t.

tomk:  She’s a wee bit fickle.

jimmy:  It’s all about the man in charge.

tomk:  I’m sure Lex trusts such a person implicitly.

jimmy:  Do you think Lex trusts anyone?

tomk:  Himself?

jimmy:  That would be my guess as the only one.

tomk:  He probably trusts Superman.

You know, to be so predictable.

jimmy:  I’d say Lex finds everyone predictable.

tomk:  Well, he didn’t see getting turned into an ape, so not that predictable.

jimmy:  Touché.

tomk:  It must have been frustrating to put all that effort into a plan that makes it so none of your shoes fit anymore.

jimmy:  And was so Grodd-centric and not Lex approved.

tomk:  Well, Lex was going to shoot Grodd in the face eventually.

jimmy:  Surprised it took this long.

tomk:  Apparently, so was he.

jimmy:  Brainiac must have told him enough was enough.

tomk:  Brainiac isn’t known for his patience.

jimmy:  And well known hater of apes.

tomk:  Oh, Brainiac doesn’t hate anybody. He’s an emotionless machine that believes he’s above everyone.

jimmy:  Even apes?

tomk:  Especially Lisa, but especially apes.

jimmy:  So I’m thinking more Lex and a lot less Grodd to finish out the season?

tomk:  Well…Grodd might not be dead.

jimmy:  Hence the “a lot less” and not “zero”.

tomk:  Deadman would know.

jimmy:  Good thing he’s still around to ask…though he’s not happy about it.

tomk:  Well, he did…accidentally kill a guy avenging the death of a man who can’t die.

jimmy:  And killed him with Batman of all people.

tomk:  And with a gun!

jimmy:  Yeah…Deadman probably shouldn’t ask Batman for help again anytime soon.

tomk:  Why?   Does Batman hold grudges and never let things go, maybe building killer satellites and I think I answered my own question.

jimmy:  He can use Wonder Woman if he asks permission. That just sounds wrong..

tomk:  Or Superman to block the bullets.

jimmy:  Or to tell us where that burger place is.

tomk:  Deadman doesn’t eat.

jimmy:  To tell us…

tomk:  Deadman doesn’t know that. Superman does.

jimmy:  Then why won’t he just tell us already?!?

tomk:  He did during a commercial break. Batman really needed that milkshake

jimmy:  To calm his nerves after the “incident”.

tomk:  Of course.

jimmy:  Nanda Parbat is a place I know gets mentioned a lot in DC but I know little about.  Anything to elaborate on it besides Batman training there?

tomk:  I think the show actually told you everything you really need to know. The Question is sometimes associated with the place too.

jimmy:  I hoped they’ve upped the security of their soul globe since then.

tomk:  Eh. They got a LoJack on it.

jimmy:  I doubt anyone will be coming back for it at this point.  Certainly not Lex.

tomk:  Lex has other plans…whatever they are. Deadman will probably get to see them. He’s not going anywhere.

jimmy:  Speaking of, I was thinking that Deadman had appeared previously and I just forgot about it.  Especially with the vouch from Batman.  But the interwebs say this is his first appearance, though he did appear in the comics based in the DCAU continuity.

tomk:  That is true. You get a cup of apple sauce.

jimmy:  Uh…thanks?

tomk:  It’s healthier.

Finish it and you can have this ice cream sundae.

jimmy:  …aaannd done!

tomk:  Here you go. Extra scoops and some hot fudge included. You should eat it with a spoon.

jimmy:  There is no spoon.

tomk:  It’s on the side. It’s made of cookies.

jimmy:  You’re going to make me cry.

tomk:  Yes, syrup is better than jelly.

jimmy:  We’re getting silly.  Anything else on JLApe?

tomk:  Deadman really needs better mentors if he’s told to avenge the deaths of people who don’t die.

jimmy:  …I never thought about that.  That was a pretty dick move.

tomk:  Lousy monks. They don’t get any ice cream sundaes.

jimmy:  They probably don’t even know what ice cream is.  But yeah!  No sundaes for you!

tomk:  You can have some of theirs. This one has crushed walnuts.

jimmy:  Delicious.

tomk:  Here’s one for the Moose and one for the Ms and one for Batman and one for the guy who lives under your bed.

jimmy:  The…who?

tomk:  Never mind.

jimmy:  Great. Won’t be sleeping again for awhile.

tomk:  Why?  He’s a good baker who supplied me with those cookies you like and he hates Watson.

jimmy:  So that’s why it smells so good under there!

tomk:  See.  He’s not an evil monster.

jimmy:  Phew.

tomk:  So, you saw an episode where supervillains first attacked a hidden city full of immortal warrior monks and then later some supervillains attacked a hidden city full of talking gorillas. And there was a ghost and DC’s trinity.

jimmy:  Bases.  Covered.

tomk:  Anything to add, Jimmy?

jimmy:  I don’t think so. I’m going to go up under my bed and place my snack order for next episode.

tomk:  Smart move. Hughie is good people.

But it may be time to get a tribute episode to two old DC teams while seeing how General Eiling fared after Cadmus fell.

jimmy:  They do enjoy their tribute episodes.

tomk:  Don’t you?

jimmy:  I do.

tomk:  Good. Keep your pictures of Spider-Man handy. You might need them.

NEXT TIME:  Tom and Jimmy are back for the penultimate trio of episodes with “Patriot Act,” “The Great Brain Robbery,” and “Grudge Match”.