DC’s Stargirl’s second season concludes in epic fashion with “Summer School: Chapter Thirteen.”
With the team back together in “Summer School: Chapter Twelve,” the Justice Society of America (JSA) has its final showdown with Eclipso (Nick Tarabay) in “Summer School: Chapter Thirteen.” The final battle does not disappoint with exciting fights, high stakes, and the assistance of some unlikely allies. Almost every character plays a role in taking down Eclipso, and there are some genuinely funny moments throughout. The episode does a great job at concluding the season while setting the stage for the currently in-development third season.
The finale picks up where the last episode left off, with Eclipso’s child form (Milo Stein) telling Beth (Anjelika Washington) and McNider (Alex Collins) of his plans to corrupt Courtney (Brec Bassinger). As Eclipso distracts the two Dr. Mid-Nites, Courtney, Yolanda (Yvette Monreal), Pat (Luke Wilson) and Cindy (Meg DeLacy) arrive and begin their face-off with Eclipso. While brief, Courtney, Yolanda, and Cindy’s team-up is fun despite it still being difficult to trust Cindy after her actions earlier in the season.
Eclipso distracts Cindy by having her face a younger version of herself and sets a vision of the original Wildcat (Brian Stapf) on Yolanda. Meanwhile, Pat faces off with a vision of his younger self. Each of these visions pack both a physical and emotional punch as they prey on the insecurities of their targets. While each fight is exciting, it’s especially great to see Yolanda back in action after being missing for several episodes.
Meanwhile, Beth and McNider break Beth’s parents (Kron Moore & Gilbert Glenn Brown) out of Eclipso’s hold with an assist from The Shade (Jonathan Cake), who reveals that he merely overexaggerated his demise for dramatic effect. The Shade has been an interesting addition this season and the reveal that he is still alive is welcome. In addition, Beth’s parents learning the truth about Beth’s secret identity adds an interesting new dynamic to their relationship, and McNider’s continued support of Beth is amazing.
After Thunderbolt (Jim Gaffigan) returns to the auto shop, Mike (Trae Romano) and Jakeem (Alkoya Brunson) fix S.T.R.I.P.E. and unleash their own attack on Eclipso. Mike pilots S.T.R.I.P.E. and runs into Eclipso with the robot and it’s great to see Mike come into his own, even though Jakeem’s effort to electrocute Eclipso with Thunderbolt ends up with him trapped inside S.T.R.I.P.E. Pat rushing to help Mike is also a great moment between the two after their struggles throughout the season.
Though Rick (Cameron Gellman) is unable to fix his hourglass in time for the battle, he still suits up and confronts Eclipso. Solomon Grundy jumps in to help Rick, and pummels Eclipso for a couple of glorious moments. The show has done a good job at making Grundy into a sympathetic character through his unlikely friendship with Rick and his death at the hands of Eclipso ends up being a truly emotional scene. Unfortunately, with everyone assembled at the center of town, Eclipso is able to possess Courtney after getting her to give into her dark side by admitting again that she hates him.
While seeing Courtney with Eclipso taking over her body is both visually cool and emotionally distressing, help arrives from the original Starman (Joel McHale) who has been filled in on everything by Barbara (Amy Smart) and Jennie (Ysa Penarejo) after arriving at the Whitmore-Dugan house. Starman reminds Courtney that the staff chose her for a reason, which causes Courtney to regain control of herself by seeing memories of the people she loves. While Courtney’s overcoming of Eclipso by seeing her loved ones is a powerful moment, it’s emotionally dampened somewhat by the fact that a stranger is the one to help her break out of Eclipso’s hold rather than Pat, Barbara, or any of her friends, even if the moment is meant to be a passing of the staff between the two.
Almost every character, including the last-minute arrival of Artemis (Stella Smith) and her parents (Neil Hopkins & Joy Osmanski), gathers and faces Eclipso in an epic shot. As multiple blasts of light are directed at Eclipso, Jakeem is the one to defeat Eclipso by wishing that Eclipso was toast. Thunderbolt turns Eclipso into a literal burnt piece of toast which is a creative and hilarious way to dispatch a villain as evil as Eclipso. In the aftermath, Courtney tells Pat that the moment of heroes and villains coming together showed her that there’s good and darkness in everybody, which is a great message to end the season on.
The remaining moments of the episode provide an epilogue while setting up some interesting storylines for the show’s third season. The JSA officially reunites as Yolanda returns for good. While it’s unfortunate that we didn’t get to see more of Courtney, Yolanda, Beth, and Rick working together in the back half of the season, hopefully, we will get to see more in the next season. Starman decides to stay in Blue Valley and help train Courtney, setting up the potential of more insight into Pat and Sylvester’s past dynamic as Starman and Stripesy.
McNider officially passes on the Dr. Mid-Nite title to Beth as he leaves to reunite with his family. In addition, Beth’s parents decide not to get divorced and become overly invested in Beth’s superhero life. The resolution to Beth’s arc is satisfying and the tease of her getting a new costume is exciting. Meanwhile, The Shade tells Rick, as he buries Grundy in the woods, that he intends to stay in Blue Valley and suggests that Grundy may not stay dead. It’s great to see The Shade sticking around, and it will be interesting to see what will come of Rick and Grundy’s dynamic going forward.
The former villains sticking around remains a theme as the show reveals that season three will be subtitled “Frenemies.” Artemis and her parents have moved in next door to the Whitmore-Dugan house which creates potential for some humorous storylines next season. Meanwhile, Cindy attempts to get Yolanda to agree to let her into the JSA. While it’s great to see a possible redemption arc, Cindy’s inability to apologize to Yolanda for her role in the leaked photos shows that she has a way to go before she is fully redeemed. The dynamics of superheroes and supervillains coexisting together in a town where nobody seems to be aware of them has a lot of potential for a fun future season after the darkness of this one.
Despite the “Frenemies” moniker, the finale also introduces next season’s villains. Cameron’s (Hunter Sansone) grandparents (Jim France & Kay Galvin) finally decide to tell him the truth about his father and his hereditary ice powers. While Cameron has been an afterthought for much of the second season, I look forward to seeing how he takes the news and what he will do with his powers. In addition, Nurse Love (Lynne Ashe) talks to Mr. Bones (Keith David) about Jennie’s search for her brother and the two decide to pay a visit to Blue Valley. The storyline seems intriguing, and Mr. Bones will likely be as formidable as he looks.
What did you think of DC’s Stargirl season 2 finale?
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Author: Jessica Wolff
Jessica Wolff is a graduate of Drexel University with a BS in Film/Video. She has a passion for entertainment and representation in entertainment. She currently resides outside of Washington, DC.
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