Episode 2 of Justice League Action is hilarious and features one very obscure character. It’s a fun ride, and a rare chance to see Superman depowered for almost the entire episode.
“Follow That Space Cab” opens with Space Cabbie (Patton Oswalt) flying along an asteroid belt. He’s at the end of his shift, and he’s pondering what to do after work.
It sounds like he has a lot of stuff going on! The planets, Al’s Diner, and Darlene he mentions aren’t in the comics.
Superman suddenly falls into the cab with a smoldering hole in his uniform. “Drive!” he grunts, and the chase is on!
Specifically, he’s being chased by Lobo and his friend Jonas Glim. Supes has captured a terrifying intergalactic terrorist named Mr. Mind, who takes the form of a small green caterpillar.
He looks like Popcap’s Bookworm, actually.
The bikers start shooting, Space Cabbie has the pedal to the metal, and Superman calls in reinforcements.
Along the way, we get some exposition that pretty much explains everything I just explained.
Eventually, Lobo and Jonas manage to disable the cab. Lobo takes down Jonas so he doesn’t have to share the reward, and closes in for the kill.
Justice League reinforcements finally show up in the form of Hawkman. He’s not up to Lobo or Superman’s level, but his mace still packs a wallop.
Actually, I think Hawkman is a little overpowered in this.
Lobo gets in first blood with a move straight out of Injustice, and the two start a running battle through a nearby mine. Once Superman finally regains his strength and joins in, it’s over.
Meanwhile, back at the Space Cab, Mr. Mind has escaped. Space Cabbie manages to trick him by playing on his vanity, and saves the day.
His reward? A selfie. No invitation to the Justice League for this one, not that he wants it!
At least until Lobo comes in and literally squashes Mr. Mind underfoot.
The heroes are all shocked, but Lobo just wipes up some of the remains and figures that’s enough to collect the reward.
Capping off the episode is Lobo trying and failing to sell some of Mr. Mind’s to a fence named Boss Kack.
And finally, as a closing gag, Mr. Mind regenerates… in a Justice League prison cell. One more selfie with Mr. Mind, a diamond provided by Superman, one more selfie, and we’re done.
Voice actor Patton Oswalt, a great stand-up comedian, actor, and voice actor. He played Remy in Ratatouille, and he’s in the new Mystery Science Theater 3000.
Info & Trivia
- Space Cabbie’s just a guy who drives a cab. In space.
- Ironically, he once spent a long story arc working for Lobo and his gang as a getaway driver. Lobo hung him out to dry, but later rescued him from prison.
- Space Cabbie also lives in the 22nd century. Why is he in the present so often? He took a second job to make ends meet. In the present. No explanation asked or given.
- “I think I’ll drop by Elle’s Diner, flirt with Darlene, and call it a… huh?”
- “That’s ok, Mr. Superman. You rest easy. I’ve never lost a passenger yet.”
- “Give it to him, Superman! Smash him, Hawkman!”
Info & Trivia
- Like so many “oddball” DC characters, Lobo’s first animated appearance was in the DCAU. Brad Garrett reprised the role several times.
- His most memorable episode was when he joined the Justice League after Superman’s apparent death. He wasn’t a great fit.
- Lobo has become a parody of himself, in the best way possible. Originally conceived as a brutal villain in the 80s, he became a “dark and edgy” anti-hero in the 90s. Since then, he’s become a poster child for how silly that whole era of comics was.
- Today, he’s self-aware, funny, and occasionally even nuanced. He’s a bounty hunter with a biker gang style. In space. He has a space motorcycle, and more wacky guns than Rocket Raccoon and Ratchet & Clank put together.
- “I like my chicken extra crispy.”
- “Space Cabbie! Sup, my brother?”
- “No one makes a chump out of the main man!”
- “You’re using a lot of alien words I’ve never heard before, like ‘we’ and ‘share’!”
Voice actor Troy Baker, the voice of Hawkman.
Info & Trivia
- Jonas is friend of Lobo’s, though he doesn’t trust the biker as far as he can throw him. It’s mutual, and they’re both big guys with lots of throwing muscles.
- The character first appeared in the Lobo comics of the 1990s.
- “Can’t believe you took Superman out with one zap, Lobo.
Voice actor Oliver Vaquer. He’s Karnak in several Marvel properties, and one of the creepy Lutece twins in Bioshock Infinite.
Info & Trivia
- Mind’s first appearance was on the Filmation production The Kid Super Power Hour with Shazam, voiced by Alan Oppenheimer.
- He never made it into the DCAU, but he did show up in Batman: The Brave and the Bold, with voice acting by Greg Ellis.
- Mind is a Captain Marvel/Shazam villain typically, though he’s proven himself more than a match for the entire Justice League on multiple occasions.
- Although he’s not much physically, Mr. Mind has an uncanny ability to think up nefarious plots that actually work. That’s a rare skill in a supervillain.
- “If by ‘welched’, you mean I tried to blow up Kack when he came looking for his money? Yes. Yes, I did.”
Voice actor Troy Baker, the incredibly prolific voice actor who’s played Batman and The Joker, as well as dozens and dozens of other video games and cartoons.
Info & Trivia
- Hawkman is usually a core member of the Justice League, although the DCAU decided to focus on Hawkgirl instead.
- There are several different versions of Hawkman. Sometimes he wears artificial wings. Sometimes he’s Thanagarian, a member of a race of winged aliens. Occasionally there’s a connection to Ancient Egypt. The only constant is the presence of wings, and his “Nth metal mace”.
- The Justice League Action version of Hawkman seems to be Thanagarian, or at least Lobo assumes so. If he follows the rest of that origin story, then he’s a police officer on Thanagar who has decided to spend time on Earth.
- In this episode, Lobo calls him “chicken nugget”, “Big Bird”, and “Foghorn” (after Foghorn Leghorn).
- “You’ve interfered with Justice League business. Leave this area now.”
- “Hmm, transwarp drive with a triple fusion power core. Very nice! I’ll just rewire this heap to blow up and take those witless heroes with it.”
- “You’re no match for The Magnificent Mr. Mind!”
Voice actor: Jason J. Lewis, the voice of Superman.
Info & Trivia
- This is the fence who hired Lobo.
- I couldn’t find any other references to him, but it’s likely he appears somewhere in DC comics.
- “I have the readout on the squashed cells. It’s Mind’s DNA alright, but where’s the rest of him?”
Do you know who this guy is? Comment and let us know!