Review: "The Lady and the Tigress"

As it usually does, Young Justice: Phantoms uses “The Lady, or the Tigress?” to subvert our expectations and bring together stories. It answers some of our questions, confirms some theories, but creates countless more. On this week's episode, we learned more about the plans that Lady Shiva has, we learned who the mole is, and we cut away in the final moments with no idea as to what will happen next. We said it last week, but we have to say it again: the seventh episode of the season is Young Justice as its best.

“The Lady, or the Tigress?” kicks off on M’arzz. You read that right, on Mars! M’comm is midspeech with his supporters when M’gann shows up like the goddess she is. M’gann blames M’comm for Conner’s death and is willing to do whatever it takes to learn the truth. She learns he was not the cause of the kryptonite and escapes with a father box.

Santa Prisca - We move back to the group headed to Santa Prisca continuing to discuss amongst themselves who is or isn’t the mole. We see Oracle again as she helps guide Tigress from her computer. We begin to learn more about Orphan and her relationship with others. Tigress, Cassandra, and Onyx infiltrate onto Santa Prisca and continue to make us ask who, if either, is the mole? The move further into the island and find a place to hide until it is dark again.

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Back on Mars, we learn from Hawkwoman that all of the kryptonite in the Milky Way galaxy is accounted for, and there are no more leads. We see what may be the last time M’gann is ever on planet as she says goodbye to her parents. As M’gann and J’onn board Baby to head back to Earth they are stopped by Em’ree who asks to join them. They both agree, and all three board and leave M’arrz.

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On Santa Prisca with the cover of night Tigress, Cassandra, and Onyx move to the hideout and have Oracle cut the lights. They infiltrate further into the complex until Cassandra reveals herself to be the mole, having used a glamour charm to disguise herself with the missing arm, and to conceal the infiltrators within it. Oracle manages to use a sonic pulse to stop the infiltrators from uploading the League data as Shade, Rictus, and Black Spider arrive. Cheshire reveals herself while taking out Savage evening the odds and moving the group to Orphan’s cell. The group is cornered and given the choice of surrendering or dying as the episode ends.

This episode decides to take flashbacks to the next level. We flashback to Orphan’s time with Lady Shiva. She has been tasked with killing the Joker as her first target because he has lost favor with the Light. We are shown a monologue explaining how the Joker is angry at the Light for using him in the Injustice League. Joker plans to kill the UN using his Joker Venom but is interrupted by the Batfam. We learn that Barbara’s transition from Batgirl to Oracle came at the hands of Orphan’s blade, as she steps in front of what would have been the killing blow on the Joker. She ultimately save Oracle from becoming a killer at great personal cost to herself.

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Rather than the edge of our seats, we were hovering out in front of chairs throughout the episode. We must talk first and foremost on Young Justice’s take on the Killing Joke. The entire time the scene was playing out we were going between dreading the Killing Joke or thinking it wouldn’t happen. We were surprised to say the least as Orphan cut through Barbara, but then it set in that Young Justice managed to take one of the most controversial storylines in DC’s history and turn it into a moment that further developed characters and make us love and appreciate them. Then we are treated to what might be one of the more punchable versions of the Joker being taken down by most of the Batfam. While we felt that his monologue fell short as a somewhat confusing rambling mess, the set up led to an expertly handled scene.

Several times we were able to shout “I knew it!” in the best way possible. From the first scene of M’gann on a mission to hunt down the brother she thinks killed her husband to be, to Cassandra Savage being the mole we knew she was destined to be. Cheshire showing up right when she was needed and wanted was the icing on top of a delicious cake. It’s a subtle thing that Young Justice does so well, it sets you up in way that when you are right about your guess it is rewarding, but also when you are wrong its rare that you feel punished.

As we cut through the different locations with more action than some other episodes, it is plain to see that having Studio Mir tackle all of the animation really has taken the show to another level. The overall quality, the consistency, and most every other aspect of animation is heightened. With that comes the ability to critique smaller aspects, and the one we noted this episode was the interaction of Orphan’s scar and her eyebrow, or lack thereof. Such a small thing to find feels great though in comparison to other seasons.

The momentum of the season feels like it is really starting to roll with “The Lady, or the Tigress?” It is amazing to think that we aren’t even a third f the way into this season, and the things we have already had happen. Given what we have seen, that is a thought that is both terrifying and exciting.

What did you think of “The Lady, or the Tigress”? Did you know who the mole was? Did you expect Jade to show up? How will they get out of the situation they are in? Let us know in the comments, our forums, or on our Twitter!

Author: Neal PowellEmail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
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