Monday, 6 July 2020

Stargirl - Shiv Part 2

As I write this, it was recently announced that Stargirl was renewed for a second season. As a fan, I'm excited to see more of these characters. As well, with most of these shows, the first seasons are known to end with cliffhangers. So on the off chance, this season ends on a cliffhanger, I am relieved that it will be resolved. At least when it is okay to film again.

Set immediately after last week's episode, Courtney is in the hospital. To provide her an alibi, Pat crashes his car into a light post. He sidelines Courtney to bedrest, and seeks to look into Cindy Burman, and find out who her parents are. He also plans to tell Barbara the truth, but Courtney begs him not to

Instead of relaxing and resting up, a cat and mouse game is played when Cindy shows up to the house the next day. The night before, Cindy proudly goes to her father and claims to have beaten Stargirl, but The Dragon King is not impressed. Cindy exposed herself, and since Stargirl isn't dead, she knows the location of the cave in the school and can come back with her allies. He now has to explain to the ISA her actions, and threatens to remove his hood if she doesn't behave. I am quite curious about his abilities. He is intelligent, as he is a bit of a mad scientist, having given Cindy her abilities when she was a child and plans to use The Wizard's body for whatever purpose, but I haven't seen his actual physical powers, nor the face behind the mask.

Courtney and Cindy each know who the other is, but neither knows how much the other knows. They keep up the charade under the pretense of hanging out, but they drop it at the end. The dynamic between the two actresses in this scene is great drama. I was getting Professor X and Magneto frienemies vibes. The script this week is certainly better than previous weeks and was a lot less cringy. Meanwhile, the rest of the JSA, mostly sidelined again go on a side mission to find out more about Cindy by sneaking into her house. Beth and Pat go inside under the guise of being father and daughter. While Pat talks to the stepmom, Beth sneaks around with her goggles. When she enters Cindy's room, she finds a photo of her dad and has Rick and Yolanda help her sneak out as Cindy returns home.

Henry is given a mostly silent storyline where he begins to discover who he and his family is. Beyond reading minds, he finds himself able to move things with his mind when looking for pain medicine. He finds his father's Brainwave costume, and finds a letter from The Dragon King, telling Brainwave that Cindy will monitor him.

A short rematch fight scene between Shiv and Stargirl occurs. It is not as technically impressive as last week, but it has its moments. When Stargirl crashes through the window while Cindy is looking at herself in the mirror, it was such a great shot. The fight makes its way onto the street when Henry arrives. He is overwhelmed with the two girls' thoughts, and mind pushes them. Cindy is then suddenly taken into the sewer by her father's minions as Henry flees, leaving Courtney in the street confused. A great tease for next week.

Jordan, the big bad went on a business trip with Barbara. The dinner goes fine enough, nothing too sinister. Nothing at all. They set this up last week, but Barbara hasn't been given a storyline. As a main cast member, this is disappointing. Supporting or guest cast, that would make sense. Later though, Jordan waits in the room of Mr. Riley, who was an executive at a chemical plant responsible for the death of Jordan's wife. With no effort, he kills him. This hints at what targets Jordan may hit with his plan.

The slow burn pacing has its good weeks and its bad weeks. Sometimes, the pacing can excite me for what's to come, but this week, it had me shaking my head. I know that this show airs on television, but I do wish that it took more advantage of it being on a streaming service during this season for episodes to be a bit longer like the pilot. While the JSA members each had an introduction episode, we still haven't spent much time with them. We are past the midway mark of the season, so this has the change fast.

Shiv, Part 2 continues to raise the stakes and begins to pay off storylines set off from the start. Still needs to work on being an ensemble and should speed some things up.

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