Thursday, January 10, 2019

DCSHG: The Fortress Of Solidarity


Thanks to folks who feed me Supergirl information that I would otherwise be oblivious to.

I admit that if there is a hole in my standard Supergirl perusals, it is DC Superhero Girls. I think my focus is so drawn to comics and the show that the ancillary stuff sometimes falls to the wayside.

So thanks to all those who told me I should seek out DC Superhero Girls Episode 521, 'Fortress of Solidarity'.


You can see the two part episode over on Youtube here:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xhZbng5SbQU

It is as close to a holiday episode as you can get with the usual fun look at the DCU. One thing that has grabbed my attention in the few episodes that I have seen this season is that there has been something of a running thread about Supergirl and her feelings of loneliness.

That started in 'For the Girl who has Everything', a story where she is missing her family and is looking for some control, some world where she is more preeminent.



At the Superhero High lighting of the Christmas tree, we see Kara reminiscing about the Winter Feast on Krypton, a time where families hung crystals on plants and exchanged gifts under the nighttime rainbow sky.

Batgirl asks if the rainbow sky is similar to the Aurora Borealis, a phenomenon that Kara doesn't seem to know about.


She not only misses her Kryptonian family, she is missing her Earth family. Once again, as we saw them do in 'For the Girl ...', the Kents are missing. Here they are attending a farming convention rather than heading to the high school for the end of year festivities.

If that wasn't bad, we see families and friendships all around Supergirl. There is even a funny bit where Trigon shows up and some shenanigans ensue.

But this is a Supergirl who feels very alone.

Missing Krypton, Kara decides to take a look at the Earth version of the Rainbow Sky.

She heads to the Aurora.

Luckily, Batgirl sees her friend streak by in the night sky.

Heads to aurora



She is amazed at the Northern Lights.

But unfortunately, she lands near Captain Cold who is also hanging out there. He spies her Kryptonian Crystal necklace. He knows those crystals react with water. He could use it to start a new ice age!

Okay, I shouldn't be thinking too hard about a DCSHG short. But she happened to land right near Cold? He knows about Kryptonian Crystals? And he packs a Kryptonite setting on his ice gun??

Supergirl ends up being taken out by the K-rays.

Showing that she is not alone, Supergirl's closest friends show up to talk to her and now help her. Mera, Batgirl, Wonder Woman, and Killer Frost are all there.

Somehow, Cold puts up a decent fight! It takes everyone working together to stop him.


And then the lesson. Batgirl tells Supergirl that she knows how hard the holidays can be when you miss people you love. But Supergirl has her friends.

Oh yeah ... the Kents also decided to skip the convention and are waiting for her back at the school.

Still, Kara didn't know about the properties of the Kryptonian crystals.

She also knows that her mother would never give her something so dangerous. She puts the crystal into the snow which grows a crystalline structure.

Batgirl says that even now her parents' love is the gift that keeps giving.


It is interesting how this is so very Donner. Crystals growing land masses and Arctic fortresses. Amazing.


What I really love is the ending.

Her friends think that this place will be Kara's Fortress of Solitude, where she goes when she needs alone time to think about Krypton.

But if we have learned anything these episodes it is that Kara doesn't want to be alone. She doesn't need a fortress of solitude. She needs a fortress of solidarity, a place to be with friends. Because the best gifts are ones you share.

Okay, the animation is pretty rough. And Captain Cold shouldn't be able to hold off a mini-JLA. But the sentiment of the story is spot on. And I love how they are addressing Kara and her thoughts on her home.

Not a bad mini holiday special.

10 comments:

Anonymous said...

"Okay, I shouldn't be thinking too hard about a DCSHG short. But she happened to land right near Cold? He knows about Kryptonian Crystals? And he packs a Kryptonite setting on his ice gun??"

All excellent questions. But, yes, children show.

"It is interesting how this is so very Donner. Crystals growing land masses and Arctic fortresses. Amazing."

I know it will look hypocrytical coming from someone who badly misses the Bronze Age Fortress, but I'm somewhat tired of Superman content aping Donner's ice castle.

If I'm not mistaken, this episode was intended for the fourth season, as evidenced by the Supergirl/Batgirl embrace under the Northern Lights which was seen in the S4 trailer but was never seen during that season, but for unknown reasons it was moved to the end of the next season.

Unlike the rest of episodes of S5, this was written by Shea Fontana. It is clear from the way the SG/BG's relationship is portrayed -they have barely talked in the remainder episodes- and, sadly, from the easy way Supergirl was taken out.

This is something that bothers me about DCSGH. Every time the show needs the super-powerful alien out of the way, someone pulls Kryptonite out ot nowhere and she passes out at once. And most of time she's taken out quickly and pathetically so the other characters can shine.

Sigh. Well, at least Supergirl is a recurring character in a popular kids cartoon. I'd like believing she'll at least make a cameo appearance in Young Justice and the incoming JL vs Fatal Five movie, but I'm not hopeful.

Anonymous said...

Better an imperfect team affiliation, than no team affiliation whatsoever...at in DCtoons Kara has what is otherwise denied her in the floppies. The Super Best Friends Forever, DC Super Hero Girls, Justice League Action...its seems only animators grasp her team up potential...


JF

Anonymous said...

Great you got to take a look at this Anj. And yeah, what it misses in terms of Suspension Of Disbelief(TM),
it makes up for in GREAT character interaction and some GREAT emotional heartstring moments. And you can't
knock the GREAT Batgirl/Supergirl moment in this episode! I had to like the reference to the combracelets
the two share -- how long ago was that that Batgirl and Supergirl got those? :)

The capstone was the Donneresque crystal / fortress moment -- it practically broadcasted that with the mention
indialogue, but as I mentioned before, I still get chills watching them reenact that scene with the REALLY
interesting twist that Supergirl doesn't want the place for Solitutude but Solidarity! Now THAT I can get behind!

Speaking of DCSHG, checking their YouTube channel, looks like the "new" DCSHG (aka SBFF Pt2) has taken over,
with first broadcasts starting Jan 17th. I'll still give this a fair shake, but I miss Fontana's version already.
I did have to crack a grin at the cast list of the 1st episode posted up -- it reads as basically an MLP
voice cast reunion. Nicole Sullivan is also back doing Supergirl's voice!


Regards

Anonymous said...

Just to add to my previous post... Fontana just "gets" the Batgirl/Supergirl friendship! Whereever Fontana is, thanks for always having given us that! :)


Regards

Timothy Brannan said...

Sounds like an awesome episode. I'll need to check it out sometime!

Anonymous said...

"Better an imperfect team affiliation, than no team affiliation whatsoever...at in DCtoons Kara has what is otherwise denied her in the floppies. The Super Best Friends Forever, DC Super Hero Girls, Justice League Action...its seems only animators grasp her team up potential..."

Even Bruce "All women in the DCverse lust after Batman" Timm treated her better than her cousin.

By the way, "The Late Batsby" short is already on Youtube. Pretty funny, but at the end it credits Siegel and Shuster with creating Supergirl. WHAT?

Anonymous said...

I can only concur with everyone else. Shea understands Supergirl, she understands Batgirl, and the Fortress of Solidarity brings tears to my eyes, seeing how Babs loks out for Kara when she struggles through the Holidays.

I think that Laurens version will be really fun to watch, and I will love it, but it's not going to be Supergirl inside that outfit anymore. It's going to a really funny snarky character, but it won't be Kara.

Anj said...

This is the sweet, dorky Supergirl.

Lauren’s looks like the fierce, proactive Kara. I liked her in SBFFs.

I guess we’ll have to wait and see.

Professor Feetlebaum said...

"And he packs a Kryptonite setting on his ice gun??"

Maybe there's a place that provides villains with whatever type of weapon they may need. You never know when you might run into one of those pesky Kryptonians. Maybe Captain Cold buys his stuff from Acme. Wile E. Coyote can't be their only customer.

"...but at the end it credits Siegel and Shuster with creating Supergirl. WHAT?"

I'm sure it has to do with the settlement between DC and the estates of Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster. Apparently, they get credit for any characters derived from Superman. The Supergirl comic has a "based on the characters created by Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster" credit line. Siegel and Shuster should get SOME credit for Supergirl, but so should Otto Binder and Al Plastino. Probably Mort Weisinger deserves some credit too, as well as Curt Swan, who drew the cover of Action 252.

Anonymous said...

This was the only episode (well, double-episode) Fontana wrote this year, and I thought the show this past season could have used more of her influence.

With all the double and triple part episodes, they really aired 6 episodes in the place of 2 during the last week of December. I guess "My So-Called Anti-Life" concludes the fifth and final season.

This will be missed.

T.N.