If there is an animated DC property that I’m always excited about it without a doubt Young Justice, debuting on November 26th 2010 the show would tragically be cancelled in the Spring of 2013 (unfortunately not enough shows toys were selling to justify investing in it further) after two sensational seasons: having now been revived for a 3rd season on the DC Universe streaming platform exclusively; I wanted to share my thoughts as to why I really enjoy the show.
I’ve never read a DC comic in my Life (sorry comic book fan gang I will soon) and whilst I was aware of DC and its roster of characters, shows like Justice League (Bruce Timm), Young Justice and just all kinds of auxiliary media like films were how I would experience the DC universe. Shows like Justice League and Young Justice have been introduction to the characters, environments and concepts that exist in the DC universe, in addition to the various narratives that surround them, Young Justice is where I found these narratives to be the strongest and most enjoyable for myself. Young Justice excels at creating and balancing multiple plot threads, giving each thread enough detail to nearly look self-contained before smoothly and smartly tying them all together or bringing them in collision with another plotline. A thread with season 1 were the actions of a mind controlled Justice League, who during their time as thralls to Vandal Savage and the Light had 1 hour of time that their activity could not be accounted for; this would reach into season 2 where we would learn that the mind controlled Justice League had been sent off world to commit crimes and would need to stand trial for them, with the Justice League away from Earth this allowed the alien presence known as the Reach to coercively and covertly try to enslave the Earth with assistance from the Light and would be a massive part of season 2. The writing in Young Justice is just so very satisfying to me, it constantly builds on itself striking a strong balance of captivating conclusions and exciting cliff-hangers: so much so that it organically encourages you to watch the episodes, seasons or the whole show again. At the time of writing this 9 episodes of season 3 have already aired and already I’m filled with excitement and anticipation for what season 3 will hold. I know I’m not going be disappointed from a narrative standpoint with Young Justice.
Not only is the story in Young Justice a strong facet of the show, but also the characters and their characterisations. You can’t have a good story without well written characters that lend the story detail, intricacy and Heart. For a very long time I’ve slept on the quality of DC characters, the phrase amongst comic-book fans ‘DC better than Marvel’ fell on death ears to me due to my bias leaning towards Marvel (I like Spider-Man A LOT okay) and generally the phrase being an exaggeration of DCs quality, thinking back on the phrase now it may have been said to inspire and motivate comic-book readers to read DC comics and see for themselves if they liked the content. Young Justice makes me want to be a fervent DC stan and take the plunge into reading DC comic-books: the show just excels in its depiction, portrayal and presentation of characters. Character utility is of the highest quality within the show, such as displaying sincere and genuine character growth and experience retention, for example Connor Kent – a staple character of the show – began as an angry, withdrawn and reckless member of the Team that made him difficult to work with, however, much care was taken to dissect his character and reveal that his mentality and actions stemmed from his unknown origins and complicated relationship with Superman, since Connor has grown to know his heritage, build a rapport with Superman to be taken under the veteran heroes tutelage, work better with and embrace his team as friends in addition to entering a stable romantic relationship. Young Justice also includes characters whose personalities and quirks are magnetic in how they draw your attention to their humour and banter, characters like Dick Grayson (Nightwing), Wally West (Kid Flash) and Bart Allen (Impulse/New Kid Flash) are great at lightening the mood and bringing the tone of the show back down to relatable levels when situations become incredibly hyperbolic. Not only are the characters written and developed well, but their relationships with one another aren’t overlooked either, from romance (like Conner Kent and Miss Martian) to supporting each other outside of their hero identities and duties like a legitimate community committed to each other as much as the shared ideals that under pin their union. The show has so many varied characters for the audience to enjoy that I promise there is a character for you (like in One Piece).
A notable conversation within the comic-book industry now is the point surrounding ‘Diversity’ amongst superheroes due to the overwhelming majority being ‘white males’, Marvel has tried the approach of passing the mantle of prominent heroes like the Hulk, Captain America, Iron-Man etc to new BAME characters respectively with mixed to negative results, I myself like the approach taken in Young Justice (are we sensing a trend here? Lol) in creating new heroes or revitalising retired roles for BAME superheroes. The show brought in BAME heroes such as: Guardian (Mal Duncan), Bumblebee, Rocket, Blue Beetle (Jaime Reyes) and Aqualad (Kaldur’ahm); characters that I was very happy to happy and excited to see on my screen consistently playing an active role and not playing the role of furniture. Season 3 has established Aqualad as the new Aquaman, which in my opinion is has been extremely well-earned by Kaldur’ahm with all the development and growth the character has had from season 1. I’m very eager to see what new BAME superheroes will be involved in season 3.
Well there it is folks my thoughts on why Young Justice is absolutely worth watching, in my opinion its one of the best shows since Justice League/Unlimited to enjoy the DC universe, and having said that I’ll be looking to finally take the plunge and read a few DC comic-books because Young Justice sells me on the characters and stories it tells. Will you be watching Season 3? Are you ready for Season 3?
Let us know!!