Welcome to our newly revamped Boomb Tube! Here, we will be catching you up on the week in comics TV, both through micro-reviews, as well as links to our full-length TV reviews. We also tend to review series that are dropped all at once weekly, so there are a few ‘older’ shows mixed in for good measure. Are we missing your favorite show? Let us know in the comments!
Batwoman – “Broken Toys” (S3E11, The CW)
After a couple of lackluster weeks, Batwoman found a way to balance the interpersonal drama of the team with some fun and exciting superheroics in “Broken Toys.” It’s hard to pinpoint what made this episode more fun than in previous weeks, but there was a certain energy to the episode lacking from the Poison Ivy duology. This is thanks to Nick Creegan’s infectiously fun performance as Marquis Jet, whose energy in the episode is the perfect balance of anarchic fun and haunting menace. There’s no second-guessing Marquis in “Broken Toys”; he’s evil, and he loves it. With Marquis, there’s very little nuance when compared to the “Villain, but conflicted villain” of Pam Isley. He’s out for revenge and has all the toys and resources to get what he wants.
Maybe that’s what ultimately makes the episode work, the struggle between the spoiled rich kid who was never told no vs. his sister who has worked for everything she got. “Broken Toys” has some pretty impactful dialogue scenes as Ryan confronts Jada about the decisions Jada made. While it sometimes felt like the show was retreading old grounds and conflict, there was a real vulnerability to these scenes. The return of Victor Zsasz added some actual stakes to the episode, which helped these scenes, and it ultimately made all of Ryan’s petty drama with Sophie and others work better. It also helped that this week did feature some pretty fun action sequences and superhero antics to balance out the interpersonal drama. While Ryan and her team might be in a better position, they still fight against a villain with more resources. They are just better at communicating and a little scrappier. Overall, “Broken Toys” was a much more entertaining episode, and while it didn’t do anything necessarily revolutionary, everything was done well. – Joe Skonce
The Book of Boba Fett – “Chapter 6: From the Desert Comes a Stranger” (S1E6, Disney+)
Hit Monkey – “The End: Part One” (S1E9, Hulu)
In the penultimate episode of the season, Monkey and Bryce are reunited on election day and need to keep their eye on the prize, finding Ozu. The two also get to team up with officer Haruka to help protect Akiko as they prepare for the election results and if her uncle will be voted as the new Prime Minister. Now when episodes are split into two parts, the first is the set-up to a much bigger unseen twist, so it’s pretty slow. “Hit Monkey” did not get that memo and decided to throw everything at the wall. Lady Bullseye gets her time to shine as she takes out anyone that Monkey has come into contact with, such as the tailor for his suit and the monk that helped him and Bryce. The exciting part of the latter is that the monk had a slip of the tongue as he was dying and mentioned Bryce as a ghost. At that moment, something clicked in her mind as if getting the recognition for a crazy theory of hers.
There’s also the introduction to a couple of new characters that felt a little rushed for no reason. Silver Samurai is a Mutant warrior who makes his debut in the show for three minutes as the protector of the Prime Minister and apparently has a history with Yuki, another spirit trying to bring peace to Japan. We also finally found out the man’s name from the funeral, in the second episode, known as The Bonsai Master, but just as quickly as we got his name, he was killed by Monkey. Sure the fight was pretty dope in comparison to some of the other battles, but if he’s dead so quickly, it must mean that there’s going to be another baddie we’re not aware of, right? Yes, right before he commits seppuku, he says a quote about being loyal to Japan that Shinji repeats verbatim in his acceptance. We finally find out who not only was behind the hit on Ken Takahara, the original politician, but Bryce, it was Akiko’s uncle, and he’s not as innocent as he seems. Now all the dominos are ready to be knocked down for the finale. – Alexander ManzoContinued below
Legends of Tomorrow – “Rage Against the Machines” (S7E11, The CW)
Naomi – “Enigma” (S1E4, The CW)
The two best parts of Naomi remain the sheer likability of Kaci Walfall as the titular character and the pace at which the show is dealing with the internal tensions between its characters. This feels different from a lot of CW shows, as the ‘secret’ that Naomi was keeping from her parents was rejiggered by her parents also keeping a secret, and both being addressed by the end of the third episode. That allows the general shape of the season to look and feel different than so many other shows of this ilk.
But there’s a third piece of the show that is emerging, which is that it is refusing to paint its characters in absolutes. Naomi is doing her best, but she’s sort of a flake; she enters, and then withdraws from, the student council election, she makes plans with Annabelle and then flakes on them (for the very good reason of being attacked by an interdimensional bounty hunter, but she recovers from that enough to go make out with Nathan, but not get a burger with her bestie). Major McDuffie loves his daughter, but is still a huge dick to Dee, someone who is quite literally just trying to help. It allows some of the cheesier aspects of the show not matter so much, as the relationships feel real when we dig into them beyond surface level. While Naomi’s crew still seems more assembled from a list of high school archetypes, when she gets one on one with them, all the characters seem pretty well developed.
Bringing in some more danger, both from the military and the bounty hunter, as well as some mystery and the uncertain alliances of Zumbado and Akira, help cut some of the silly teenage frivolity a bit, and allows the show to rise about Riverdale-esque high school melodrama. – Brian Salvatore
Peacemaker – “Murn After Reading” (S1E6, HBO Max)
Cracks are forming in the Project Butterfly team just as their enemies are consolidating their power. Murn reveals to Adebayo that he is a Butterfly that rebelled against the world domination plans of the Butterfly queen – a.k.a. the Butterfly that was inhabiting Senator Goff, a.k.a. the Butterfly that Peacemaker has been keeping in a jar in his trailer. When the artist formerly known as Goff gets loose, she takes over the lead detective, sparking a hostile (and viscerally disturbing) takeover of the police force and the prison by a swarm of Butterflies. Meanwhile, Peacemaker’s father Auggie dons his White Dragon garb and gathers his white-hooded followers around him as he pledges to murder his “disappointment” of a son.
Peacemaker has been playing with fire since its inception as its white nationalist B-plot dances around the edges of its Deep State alien invasion A-plot. The collision of those two tracks was inevitable, but the assimilation of the police sends them careening into one another in a way that could end up being either insightful or catastrophic. On a character level things seem to be trending towards the former; Peacemaker finally acknowledged his violence and masculinity issues, and it’s only a matter of time before our antihero is forced to own up to his father’s role in that.
As Peacemaker quietly expresses his feelings with a surprisingly tender Motley Crue cover, the episode leaves its primary characters in emotional turmoil. Adebayo grapples with her betrayal of the team on her mother’s orders, Peacemaker confesses he no longer wants to kill, and Murn gets a beat to grapple with the loss of life caused by his crusade against his own people. With the cop/Butterflies (Copterflies?) publicly calling for Peacemaker’s arrest and using Adebayo’s planted diary as evidence, all their internal character struggles are set for an explosion. –Reid Carter
Raising Dion — “Issue 201: A Hero Returns” (S2E1, Netflix)
Raising Dion — “Issue #202: Sankofa” (S2E2, Netflix)
Pat explains his resurrection to Suzanne in an interrogation cell, while a flashback shows his body being reconstituted in the sky (it’s basically a more PG version of the scene from Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2.) Things continue to move at a good pace as Nicole finds out when she walks in on Suzanne watching surveillance footage, and is understandably upset that the one man she never wanted to see again, the man who murdered her husband, and tried to seduce her, is the one who gets to come back from the dead.Continued below
Meanwhile, Brayden tries to ingratiate himself into Dion’s circle of friends, even using his powers of persuasion on Jonathan to spend some time alone with our hero. The Crooked Man tries to take advantage of this, but is too weak to take his revenge, which is fortunate for Dion, as he proves fairly oblivious about how dark his surroundings can suddenly become. Later that night, the Crooked Man encourages Brayden to get Dion to truly trust him, so he sends a psychic projection of himself into his bedroom, and reveals his powers: oh boy, now that’s scary.
By the way, sankofa refers to a word Kat learned from Ghana, which literally means “go back and get [it].” She brings it up while telling her sister that she felt lost in her old job, and that it embodied her need to reconsider what she actually wanted from life, before suggesting Nicole needs to go back and get something (or someone) to combat the stress of work. The word certainly takes on a cruel irony once Nicole finds out Pat is alive and (not really) well. – Christopher Chiu-Tabet
Resident Alien – “The Wire” (S2E2, Syfy)
Snowpiercer: “The Last To Go.” (S3E2, TNT)
The most promising element of “The Last To Go,” is that the pacing is accelerated this season compared to season 2. Already, the two sections of the train are reacing to a confrontation.
Wilford creates an advantage for his side by building a limited burst EMP machine but then he learns the biggest lesson of this show: Do Not Mess With Ruth. Ruth, with her trusty rat messengers and her trusty assistant Pike, spearheads the destruction of the EMP machine, using the big celebrity wedding as a distraction. Wilford is less than pleased, and Ruth’s about to lose her arm as a result, but the EMP goes off as it’s jettisoned, knocking out power and giving her a reprieve. Ruth 1, Wilford 0. The EMP bursts also messes with the big celebrity wedding but was anyone really interested in the marriage of serial killer Lilah Jr. and corrupt former brakeman Oz besides Wilford?
Meanwhile, on the other train, Layton is still having visions of the Tree of Life and making their new visitor comfortable. It’s basically status quo until the EMP bursts allows runaway rebels see the other train, which still can’t see them. The fight is on! I’m hoping that in the next episode, Layton gets a moment as bad-ass as Ruth did this episode, perhaps in ending Wilford. Wilford truly needs to die not only because his character is loathsome but because he’s become one-note. There’s no arc to Wilford. He simply does one horrible, creepy thing after another. To use a Game of Thrones reference, Wilford is Ramsey Snow, whose only characteristic was cruelty. – Corrina Lawson
Star Trek: Prodigy – “A Moral Star, Part 2” (S1E10, Paramount+)
The crew continue to execute their plans to rescue those living on Tars Lamora, get back to Gwyn and the Protostar, and defeat the Diviner.
The episode opens aboard the Protostar as the reprogrammed Holo-Janeway and the Diviner scan for the protostar engine. Gwyn makes an attempt to take down her villainous father, but it quickly dispatched and the Diviner heads back to Tars Lamora, but not before reactivating the Watchers. Dal rallies the prisoners with the help of giving them a united voice thanks to the universal translator, Zero makes rescue attempts, and Jankom and Rok discover their varied strengths when it comes to tasks and problem solving.
The episode does a lovely job of keeping the peril high while being able to slow down just enough to give focus to each of our heroes. Although we get a lot of positive and uplifting moments, it does feel like the Diviner could get the upper hand. Even when the cards begin to stack against him he uses Gwyn’s paternal love, hope of learning more about her heritage, and saving their entire race against her.
Again, the show’s biggest weakness is its limited run time. There are a lot of big ides and moments to be had that simply don’t get the necessary room to flourish. It also continues a franchise issue of fixing problems too soon after introducing them. It’s a story problem that has been detrimental for decades, but within a show aimed at younger audiences it makes more sense here, but it still feels like a writing issue that will forever haunt Star Trek.Continued below
The story closes a door for some plot devices and opens new ones for the rest of the season. And while it would seem that some of the biggest adversarial elements have been done away with I have a feeling we’ll see a return of at least one in the future. Even with a few handicaps, this mid-season finale is another strong outing for the series. As the episode closes out we get some unexpected reveals, emotionally stirring dialogue, and a rousing jump to warp before the credits roll. A proper Trek ending if there ever was one. – Christopher Egan
Super Crooks – “The Union of Justice” (S1E8, Netflix)
The big Union of Justice heist is here but first, we get a little more background on the only character in this entire show who seems like she might have a brain. Kasey, Johnny’s girlfriend, can control people’s minds, making them do things against their will and see things that aren’t there. She’s ostensibly a villain but she’s no Kilgrave. In a confusing flashback where Kasey has pink hair and looks nothing like her current self, she meets Carmine when the street thugs she’s been working with get scared of her powers and leave her behind. The function of this scene isn’t clear. Carmine lectures Kasey on loving her powers, not hating them, but the scene isn’t long enough or focused on Kasey enough to make us believe she hated her powers in the first place. Then Carmine offers her a job but we don’t see it, so we just have to believe that the offer was enough to turn Kasey’s life around. Lazy shortcuts like this are so common in Super Crooks that they cripple any sense of development or commitment to any of the characters, even our “main” ones.
Johnny and Kasey have sex, again, and in what I assume is a flashback, we see that Johnny isn’t afraid of Kasey’s powers because he’s so in love with her that he doesn’t care. Or maybe he just trusts her not to use them on him? It’s not clear and it’s also never been clear what she sees in Johnny that makes her trust him. He consistently proves to be clueless, reckless, and untrustworthy. He also spouts the corniest nonsense pickup lines! I guess they’re supposed to be endearing but I certainly wouldn’t recommend trying them out.
The actual heist itself goes sideways, as we knew it would. The only non-white characters in the villain gang are sent to Pittsburgh as bait, which seems pretty iffy to me. But they draw the superheroes away from their HQ by raising the dead and making them parade around on bicycles. This would be fun if it wasn’t just a distraction, just like most of the other really weird stuff this show pulls. The Praetorian shows up to interrupt the heist, telling the gang that their target is a fake, anyway, but that’s where we leave the episode. The rest of the heist will have to wait until next week. –Mel Lake
Superman and Lois – “The Inverse Method” (S2E4, The CW)
The Witcher – “Turn Your Back” (S2E5, Netflix)
Yennefer abandons Cahir and her best chance for freedom to save Jaskier from a mysterious torturer looking for Geralt and Ciri. Yen and Jaskier are only briefly reunited before Yen gets caught by Redanian soldiers, and saves herself by reciting Voleth Meir’s magic words, transporting herself to her hut in the woods. Meanwhile, Geralt and Istredd work together to learn more about the new monsters coming from the old monoliths, and Ciri agrees to give her blood to make more Witchers if she can be the first. Triss magically takes Ciri into her own subconscious, and is terrified to discover that Ciri’s thoughts actually can hurt them. Meanwhile meanwhile, Fringilla and Francesca become friends as well as partners, (aw!) and greet Cahir as he returns from Oxenfurt.
This episode is paced a little awkwardly compared to the rest of the season, but it is an episode of set-ups. Not a lot happens, but a lot is about to. Yen is possibly about to cave to Voleth Meir. Ciri is possibly about to become a Witcher, and Triss is about to freak out. Cahir is about to change the power dynamic between Fringilla and Francesca. Geralt and Istredd are about to uncover the mysteries of the monster-monolith connection. While setting up better episodes to come, The Witcher keeps you hooked with iconic character moments, like Yen spitting fire at Jaskier’s torturer, (badass!), and Fringilla and Francesca becoming each other’s first friend (adorable!). The combination of magical violent spectacle and grounded heartwarming friendships… like chocolate and peanut butter. Chef kiss! –Laura Merrill