Starring: Brec Bassinger, Yvette Monreal, Anjelika Washington, Trae Romano, Amy Smart, Luke Wilson, Neil Jackson
Created By: Geoff Johns, Greg Berlanti
Written By: Various
Studio: Warner Bros. Home Entertainment
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Warner Bros. Home Entertainment provided me with a free copy of this Blu-ray set that I reviewed in this post. The opinions I share are my own.
With the death of the JSA at the hands of the Injustice Society of America, all hope was lost and a generation of superheroes was gone and forgotten. But with the arrival of a new heroine named Stargirl who has taken up the mantle and staff left behind by Starman, this could be the dawning of a new era of the Justice Society of America.
The series starts off with the final battle of the JSA as they’re outnumbered and outwitted by the Injustice Society of America. Each member of the JSA meets their untimely demise but Starman (Joel McHale) manages to pass on his Cosmic Staff to his sidekick Stripesy (Luke Wilson) in hopes that someone else (just not Stripesy) will be worthy of the staff in the future. Ten years passes and we see Stripesy AKA Pat Dugan as he has moved on with life, got married and is moving to a small town in Nebraska called Blue Valley. His stepdaughter, Courtney Whitmore stumbles upon the Cosmic Staff and information pertaining to the JSA. With the revelation that Starman may have been her father and that the Cosmic Staff has chosen her, she confronts Pat and the two decide to join forces and investigate the whereabouts of the Injustice Society.
“Stargirl” does a great job of mixing high school teen drama with Golden Age superheroes in a modern world. The show feels a lot like how a live-action “Young Justice” television series would be. Even D-listers like Sportsmaster, Tigress and Artemis Crock show up to add to that feeling. While I wasn’t initially a fan of the writers seeking out a handful of high schoolers to take up the mantles of previous JSA members, having some of the kids being legacy characters to their predecessors as well as the show being true to the feel of the Golden Age comics and with the kids actually being the heroes and not just sidekicks made it much more believable.
One of the things that are also true to the comics is that Geoff Johns, who is the creator of the character in DC lore as well as the co-creator of the TV series, created the Courtney Whitmore character in honor of his sister Courtney who died tragically in the explosion of TWA Flight 800. It must be both amazing and bittersweet to see this character come to life over the years and to maintain her popularity among fans.
“Stargirl” was initially created for the DC streaming universe but with its demise the show has been handed off to the CW. It has its own personality though and while it definitely fits into the Arrowverse shows, it does what those shows usually don’t…it flat out embraces the comic book campiness and the era in which its characters came from. While the younger generation of the JSA may take a little getting used to, it helps that the casting is great, the costumes are excellent and the writing is both fun and exciting and dark and foreboding. It also doesn’t hurt that Luke Wilson steals the show most of the time with his old-fashioned kindheartedness, oh shucks naivety and willingness to do the right thing no matter what. It’s very refreshing in an era of superheroes with questionable morals and plenty of gray areas.
Stargirl” isn’t just another CW show thrown into the mix for the sake of making more superhero shows. The main group of heroes is genuinely good people fighting to right the wrongs that happened to the JSA and to seek justice for their deaths while also making a name for themselves. While it may seem campy and corny at times that’s nothing but a tribute to the Golden Age of comics in which the JSA and many other classic superheroes came from. It’s a welcomed breath of fresh air.
DTS-HD Master Audio English 5.1
English SDH Subtitles
1080p High Definition 16×9 1.78:1
Bottom Line: A cosmic superhero romp through high school that also involves diabolical supervillains with scary names like the Gambler and Icicle who are hell-bent on murdering teenagers in Nebraska. I mean, what else could you ask for? “Stargirl” is that kind of show but in a Golden Age comic book way. Enjoy!
Running Time: 567 Mins
Rating: Not Rated