Stargirl: Shiv (Part 2) Review
*This Review Contains Full Spoilers*
On this week’s episode of Stargirl, Shiv Part 2, Courtney (Brec Bassinger) and Pat (Luke Wilson) debate on telling Barbara (Amy Smart) about their superhero alter egos as the rest of the new JSA go on their own mission to investigate Cindy (Meg DeLacy).
After the big brawl between Courtney as Stargirl and Cindy as Shiv, Pat has to deal with the fallout and find a way to explain Courtney’s injuries without revealing her super-powered alter ego. So, he decides to frame it as a car crash – which is pretty interesting as it shows how experienced Pat really is in these situations. Sure, it comes at the cost of Pat’s sweet looking car, but it does seem that Pat is ready to get to digging to find out Cindy’s powers and who her parents are. However, while he doesn’t mind the rest of the world believing that Courtney ended up the hospital because of a car accident, Pat believes it’s time to stop lying to Barbara and it sparks a big debate between him and Courtney. It’s an interesting debate with two understandable views as Pat wants Barbara to be aware of what’s happening so that she doesn’t unknowingly walk into danger and Courtney is afraid that she’ll make Courtney give up being Stargirl and that it could cause a division that’ll give the Injustice Society the advantage they need.
However, Barbara’s already getting closer with Icicle (Neil Jackson) as we see them go on a date, or rather, work trip together. Look, there’s no real romantic connection forming, and Barbara isn’t showing interest for obvious reasons, but the framing of it gives it this romantic connection I’m not there for. Icicle trying to swoon Barbara is such a forced, cliché plot thread that his character doesn’t need – especially with a great scene we get with him visiting an “old friend.” We get a slightly deeper look into Icicle’s plans to change America as he confronts the vice-president of a large corporation that apparently got his wife sick. It’s a nice scene that gives us a taste of Icicle’s devastating powers as he turns the businessman into a crumbling ice statue and a cool transformation.
For the moment, it seems like Pat is going to tell her, regardless what Courtney thinks, even though we don’t get anything with it here. We do see Courtney essentially bed-ridden for most of the episode though and her kind of dealing with her new enemy and her tragic loss. It’s definitely another swift lesson that Courtney, in the moment, that Courtney is forced to learn through her mistakes and Pat’s heeding remarks about the importance of keeping your identity a secret come to a head when Cindy walks through her door to “check on her.” Overall, the entire sequence of Cindy visiting Courtney is pretty underwhelming because it just goes as you’d expect. They act as if the fight hadn’t happened until Cindy leaves with threatening words and they even have a moment from The Last Jedi where they say that they believe the other is going to turn. Frankly, it would have been more unique if they simply called each other out right from the start and had an interesting conversation about how and why their pitted against one another. It doesn’t happen though, and it hits the same notes that lead to the final confrontation at the end of the episode that’s pretty standard.
Before that happens though, we see that Yolanda (Yvette Monreal), Rick (Cameron Gellman), and Beth (Anjelika Washington) work together on their own mission to investigate Cindy’s house. As per usual, Rick is in full on vengeance rage mode and ready to get answers with his fists, but Beth talks him down as she has a plan of her own. Eventually, the group makes their way over to Cindy’s house for some snooping and we get a delightful combination of Beth and Pat, who shows up to stop them, after they’re invited into the house by the Dragon King’s (Nelson Lee) mysterious wife Bobbie (Lesa Wilson). It’s a pretty stellar awkward comedy routine as Pat and Beth try to get on the same page without looking too suspicious to Bobbie – who makes a strange sexual pass at Pat showing how much of a pawn she really is. To be honest, nothing too major comes out of this aside from Beth snagging a human photo of Dragon King from Cindy’s room and it triggers Pat’s memory at who Ito actually is.
This also triggers Courtney to get out of bed and take on Cindy all by herself again. It’s another moment where her learning a lesson goes in one ear and out the other and hopefully something sticks soon for her. Either way, the fight itself is pretty fun to watch as they tear Cindy’s room apart and take things to the street. It even ends in a great fashion with the Dragon King’s servants dragging her back to his lair for a swift scolding and Henry’s (Jake Austin Walker) powers becoming known. Throughout the episode, we see Henry becoming much more aware of his telepathic ability and even see him find his father’s costume. The way this series has slowly built up the idea of the kid’s of these villains learning their own powers is great and we the raw energy Henry can boast as he stop Cindy and Courtney’s fight with a powerful fit of rage.
This week’s episode delivers a great fallout from last week’s big fight between Courtney and Cindy coming into her own as Shiv and provides a solid narrative of the rest of group working with Pat and Henry starting to take control of his own abilities. With Pat now knowing about the Dragon King being in town, it’s only a matter of time before identities are revealed and the real battle begins.