Tuesday, December 4, 2018

DCSHG: For The Girl Who Has Everything

I have been remiss in recent times to review all of the Supergirl appearances in DC Superhero Girls. Perhaps I am falling into a 'comic continuity' funk, knowing that Shea Fontana's version is going to be replaced by Lauren Faust's soon.

Thankfully, I stumbled upon the most recent episode, a Supergirl-centric tale available on YouTube here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YJWCG4ZyTm4

It is a shame I lost track of this because it is a ton of fun.

The title is 'For the Girl who has Everything' and comic fans know that title as a riff on 'For the Man who has Everything', the classic Alan Moore/Dave Gibbons Black Mercy story from Action Comics Annual #11. We know in that story the Black Mercy flower shows Superman his fondest desire, that Krypton did not explode and he has a family. Of course, he realizes (with the help of this friends) that this is a flawed 'perfect reality' and breaks free.

And this isn't the first time we have seen a Supergirl take on this story. It was part of Supergirl season one on CBS:

So what is the DCSHG Supergirl's perfect world?

It turns out that maybe Supergirl is a perfectionist or just needs to be in control of all things. Her origin story is sad and chaotic when you think about it so maybe she just wants that sense of stability.

And so we see that despite an art project being assigned to Harley, Batgirl, and Supergirl, Kara did the whole thing. This diorama, meant to portray a perfect world, earns the group a C. It only reflects Supergirl.

Harley isn't happy.

And it turns out that Supergirl has a lot of things on her mind.

Her adoptive parents can't attend an upcoming school event. She is pretty sad by the whole thing.

I wonder if this is a running theme in this season?

I do recall that one of the menaces this season are the 'Krypto-mites', little sentient chunks of Green K.

Here, they show up in the Super Hero High hangar and just start attacking the vehicles there. Supergirl is powerless against their radiation but luckily the others, Wonder Woman, Harley, and Ivy, show up and drive them off.

Inside Supergirl's rocket is a purple flower. And botanist Ivy seems intrigued.

Okay, was the Mercy there the whole time and Kara never noticed it?

Did the Krypto-Mites leave it there as a trap? If yes, who gave it to them?

But we know what that is. I wonder what viewers who don't know what that is think of the concept?

We head right into the second part.

Kara, who had been incapacitated by the Green K exposure in the first half, awakens in her bedroom.

It is a different world.

She got an 'A' on that project.

Principal Grodd showers her with praise.

Out on campus, she spies Krypto-Mites but she finds she is invulnerable to them.

Grodd tells her she can't be hurt anymore. She is the most powerful hero in the world, one without weaknesses.

(We could talk about the very very brief Silver Age time when Kara was also invulnerable to K but this isn't the place.)

And then, like all Black Mercy visions, this becomes a dark version of a 'perfect world'.

Because Supergirl is so perfect there wasn't the need for other super-heroes. They all quit. Super Hero High is now Supergirl High, adorned with her image and iconography (sort of like that art project).

This isn't the world Supergirl wants.

It is a nice rendering that the world slowly descends into darker and darker purple. And Grodd, as the voice of the Mercy, becomes larger and larger.

Finally, Kara rejects this demon world, attack the Kong-sized and suddenly plant-like Grodd.

Pretty cool to see Supergirl realize how this isn't a wonderful life and defend herself.

Suddenly we see things as they really are with the rest of the gang trying to rip the Black Mercy off Supergirl.

Katana arrives and just like that, snicker snack, the Mercy is cut off Kara.

Ivy apologizes to Kara. She didn't realize the Mercy would do this. She thought it might cheer Kara up.

Supergirl then apologizes to her pals, getting them all in a super-hug.

More than ever, she realizes she needs this extended family.

So all in all a fun DCSHG-appropriate take on the Black Mercy. A lesson is learned.

I do like the Donner-esque state of Supergirl's bedroom. And the framed pic of Krypto is cool.

The animation quality seems lower than I am used to for DCSHG. But still, all in all a lot of fun.


Anonymous said...

"It is a shame I lost track of this because it is a ton of fun."

Anj, did you watch "Bottle Episode"? It features Supergirl and Kandor.


Sadly, there're no many episodes focused on Supergirl in the current season, not even a two-parter involving a crazy version of the "Anti-Monitor". This season has resembled S1 for the most part: most focused on episodic, one-and-done stories featuring crazy hijinks.

I'm annoyed at the latest instance of showmakers adapting a Superman story instead of using her own stories. I get that Superman's stories are better known, but they are better known -among other reasons- precisely because they have been used by other media.

"The Supergirl From Krypton" is relatively well known among comic fans. Why? Well, maybe because it was adapted to film.

On the plus side, one of her storylines was kind of referenced in "Mood Ring" when the students were pput under the influence of the emotional spectrum.

And I guess it could be said that two instances of FTMWHE used as a Supergirl story are kind of "payback" for Julius Schwartz talking Alan Moore into replacing SG with WW.

"Okay, was the Mercy there the whole time and Kara never noticed it?"

I'm wondering about that myself.

My theory is someone -maybe Mongul- gave the Black Mercy to Lena, and she instructed her Kryptomites to leave it there.

Anyway, I think the dream sequence was odd. You'd think Krypton would be whole and her family alive.

But maybe I'm nitpicking. After all, this is a light-hearted children show.

"The animation quality seems lower than I am used to for DCSHG."

I think so, too.

Anonymous said...

Glad you got around to reviewing this Anj. And yeah, nitpicking aside, it was a fun romp of an episode with SUPERGIRL front
and center... with a little help from everyon at DCSHG. And honestly, even though it's an adaption of a Superman story,
Fontana et al still managed to make it so fun and watchable... for as long as TPTB allow them to keep making this, KEEP IT UP!
DC Superhero Girls!

> The animation quality seems lower than I am used to for DCSHG. But still, all in all a lot of fun.

That's something else I've noticed as well... almost to the point it's like they're using Flash-based rendering and animation.

Just to ask, and I know your schedule is busy enough as it is, but any plans when you'll review any of the full length movies
of DCSHG? Or even Supergirl 1984?

Hero Of The Year was another fun romp but again some GREAT Supergirl character moments; the Lego ones were amusing romps in
their own right, and Legends of Atlantis I can't praise enough for a) the great Batgirl/Supergirl friendship moments and
b) setting a pretty high bar for the Aquaman movie coming out this month.


Anonymous said...

Great review Anj.

DCSHG is a favorite of mine, so the heavy degradation in animation quality the last season hit me in the heart.

I still love the show though but I'd easily open my wallet and take this away from free youtube if it meant getting the high quality production back.

I can't be too upset about it though. I thought we would lose Shea's version altogether after Cartoon Network scooped it up for Lauren to interpret. Getting something is so much better than getting nothing.

Anonymous said...

I get DCSHG on DVD only (ie: Legends of Atlantis was last?).

Yea, adapted, but from a GREAT episode; 1 of my favs
on DVD is from JLU s1 ep2. I REALLY like the intro music
when they dive into the ocean ("I hope I didn't scare you").


Anonymous said...

I think projecting Supergirl into her own "diorama world" was likely a meta-decision, since the CW Series had already used the "Kara alive on Krypton with the family living large as a de facto Princess" storyline.

Seems odd though, of all the beings to "host" her dream state she choose defanged version of a famously telepathic gorilla.