DCAU #389: The New Kid

IN THIS ONE... Introducing Daisy Watkins, as Virgil fights Static-hunting robots.

CREDITS: Written by Stan Berkowitz, Alan Burnett and Rodney Vaccaro (wrote a couple of romcoms, like Three to Tango and Bigger Than the Sky); directed by Denys Cowan.

REVIEW: Well look at the big brain on Virgil! From high school shenanigans to an impressive sci-fi school which is just labs and supervillains. Temporarily at least, thank God. I just wouldn't have wanted to see the high school supporting cast jettisoned. In fact, the stand-out character from the new school, Daisy Watkins, moves over to the public school by the end - has Frieda been sidelined in favor of a more willing girlfriend? What will be the new romantic dynamic? - and Misters Specs and Trapper, grad students who act like Bond villains, are set to return later. Can't go wasting their mechanical genius (even though some of their breakthroughs are obviously the work of young students), even if Edwin Alva seems perpetually dissatisfied with their work.

So as the plot goes, Alva wants to capture and dissect Static, and he's having the less scrupulous brainiacs at the school he funds make progressively better hunter robots to do the job. Where things fall apart for me, is in the amount of violence and destruction perpetrated by Static himself. He basically leads the second robot across a merry chase, guiding through buildings and eventually right to Alva's doorstep. Hopefully no one got hurt. And even if we don't care about Alva's well-being, that drop into the pool was from too high up to NOT be a kill shot that failed. I like extreme action, but this time, it reflects poorly on Static. And since this is only Alva's second appearance, and he did not come into conflict with our hero the first, their interaction feels like we're missing a declaration of hostilities. The story arc is out of focus.

Speaking of dodgy moments, when Virgil gets locked out of school, it sounds a heck of a lot like he says "F*** me!". It can't be that, but I played the tape several time and for the life of me...

IN THE COMICS: Daisy Watkins was introduced in Static #3 as a slightly brainier and less high-profile girlfriend for Virgil; they had an on again-off again relationship through the series. Alva was actually Hardware's antagonist in the Milestone books.

SOUNDS LIKE: Daisy is played by Crystal Scales, the voice of Libby on Jimmy Neutron. Specs is stand-up comic Patton Oswalt, while Trapper is the DCAU's ubiquitous Michael Rosenbaum (Flash, Smallville's Luthor).

REWATCHABILITY: Medium - While the episode introduces a number of key characters, the plot isn't quite so well thought out as I'd like.



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