This is the recap of episode 7 of Justice League Action. DC has packed each episode chock-full of obscure characters and references. Let’s try to find them all!
We open with Batman, Superman, Big Barda kicking a bunch of Parademon butt.
Although they’re a big part of DC comics, the New Gods and their enemies from Apokolips hadn’t yet made an appearance on Justice League Action until now.
Jack Kirby was a weird dude with an incredible imagination, and some of the most bizarre, most cosmic, and most mind-bending stuff in comics involves characters like the ones in this episode.
It’s no coincidence that they’re finally showing up now that Justice League live-action film is drawing near. Darkseid and his Parademon army look to be the main villains in that project.
Who knows what they’ll be like in the Zack Snyder movie, but in Justice League Action, Parademons are cosmic cannon fodder. The trio are making short work of them.
Nice Lord of the Rings gag. Big Barda wants to keep a kill count like Legolas and Gimli do. Batman’s response? “No.” Just a flat, “No.” And besides, Superman’s leading by several dozen.
Big Barda warns that the Parademons were led by something more powerful. A few seconds later, Superman flies up and pulls Steppenwolf out of the rafters.
Steppenwolf takes this in stride, and opens a boom tube. It sucks him and Superman onto an alien world. With a red sun.
As Superman quickly realizes, he doesn’t get any energy from this sun. He can’t fly, his heat vision is piddly, and he’s overall… not so super.
It’s a fair fight here.
Superman adjusts, and a brutal melee ensues. It temporarily ends when Superman drops a naturally-occurring giant golf tee on top of Steppenwolf.
A couple of Parademons fly in to pick up Steppenwolf, and Supes takes the opportunity to run.
Meanwhile back on Apokolips, Batman and Big Barda arrive via boom tube. They intend to break into Steppenwolf’s war room and steal his plans.
Batman sees some similarities between Apokolips and Gotham, and dispatches a demon dog in the best way possible.
Superman is doing some Predator stuff in the jungle as Steppenwolf searches for him. He quickly takes care of a couple of Parademons with bolas and boulder traps, and soon it’s just him and the green guy.
Unlike previous episodes, the action here is evenly split between the A plot (Superman) and the B plot (Batman and Big Barda). Batman and Barda have arrived in Steppenwolf’s control center, when a four-foot-tall German World War I general arrives.
It’s Virman Vundabar, and he has some tricks up his sleeve. His kinetic force shield easily repels all of Barda’s attacks, under Batman has the idea to try a steady pressure.
Barda places a giant rock on top of the little guy, and Vundabar gives up the goods before long.
Back on the (other) alien planet, Superman is starting to have some trouble. Steppenwolf is much better equipped, and Superman is prone to fatigue in his weakened state.
They run into a Sand Worm of the Desert Planet Arrakis while running around the desert, throwing Steppenwolf off his game but also injuring Superman.
Supes manages to defeat Steppenwolf through quick thinking (he electrocutes the water Steppenwolf is standing in), and has a few minutes to enjoy the sunset before Batman and Big Barda arrive to rescue him.
“And that’s why they call me Superman!”
Voice actor Laura Post, best known for anime like Hyperdimension Neptunia, where she played Arfoire. She’s also Ahri in League of Legends.
Info & Trivia
- Like most of the characters in this episode, Big Barda is a Jack Kirby creation. She’s a native of Darkseid’s planet Apokolips, but defected to the New Gods.
- She’s usually associated with fellow hero Mister Miracle, so it’s a fair bet we’ll see him sometime soon.
- Big Barda is super-strong like most of the New Gods, and she backs it up with her “mega-rod”, which gives her numerous other powers.
- She’s appeared in multiple DC animated series, including Batman Beyond and Justice League Unlimited. This is the first time Laura Post has voice acted her.
- “That’s 12 for me!”
- “Darkseid’s inner circle is legion and mighty.”
- “Demon dog! Get behind me.”
- “You said you didn’t keep count!”
- “Batman, no! He’s… short.”
Voice actor Peter Jessop, who has provided voice acting for dozens of video games. He was Sovereign in Mass Effect, Valendrian in Dragon Age: Origins, and many others.
Info & Trivia
- Steppenwolf is one of the earliest New Gods villains, first appearing in New Gods #7 in 1972.
- He’s a loyal servant of Darkseid, and often commands the entire Apokoliptian army.
- This is far from Steppenwolf’s first appearance in the DCAU. He’s present just about any time the Parademons show up.
- Like most New Gods, he is super strong and super fast. He’s also immortal, unlike some others of his species.
- “Excellent, Superman! As powerful as ever. That’s good.”
- “You are betrayed by your own biology. And my genius.”
- “Fetch me my astro-harness!”
Voice actor William Salyers, the voice of Mordin Solus from Mass Effect. Too bad he didn’t sing in this episode.
Info & Trivia
- Possibly the weirdest of all of Jack Kirby’s very weird creations. Vundabar was drawn to resemble Benito Mussolini.
- There’s actually an explanation for this. He was raised by Darkseid’s lieutenant Granny Goodness, who named him Vundabar after the German word for “wonderful”, and presumably the English word for “vermin”. The name gave Vundabar a fascination with Earth military history.
- He’s made cameos in other DCAU shows that involve the New Gods, most particularly Justice League Unlimited.
- Vundabar makes up for his small size with technological ingenuity. The force field he deploys in this episode is a reference to his love of gadgets.
- “It seems that while my partner crushes Superman, I have to deal with my own infestation of heroes.”