DC Super Hero Girls #LeagueofShadows Special

In honor of DC’s big event “DC FanDome” on Saturday, Cartoon Network aired a lineup consisting of only DC series. They aired repeat episodes, special events and miniseries of Teen Titans Go! In addition, they aired a two-part special episode of DC Super Hero Girls titled “#LeagueOfShadows”. Yes, each episode of the series starts with a hashtag in front of the title. It’s fitting for the series which follow teenage versions of major DC superheroes.

DC Super Hero Girls follows Barbara Gordon aka Batgirl (voiced by Tara Strong), Kara Danvers aka Supergirl (Nicole Sullivan), Diana Prince aka Wonder Woman (Grey DeLisle-Griffin), Zatanna Zatara aka Zatanna (Kari Wahlgren), Karen Beecher aka Bumblebee (Kimberly Brooks), and Jessica Cruz aka Green Lantern (Myrna Velasco) as they deal with juggling going to school at Metropolis High School and their secret superhero identities. They have to fight other DC villains and team up with other teenage super heroes in their school. The series also has a really catchy opening theme song. I love it and always sing along to it as it plays and I have no shame in loving it. Each episode usually features most, it not all of the girls, but they usually have a closer focus on a few of them. They learn lessons from each other, grow as individuals and a team, and is a clever way to adapt these characters. There was a previous version of the series which had a different art style and some different voice actors.

Part 1 of #LeagueOfShadows begins with Babs, Diana, Jessica, Zatanna, Garth Bernstein aka Aqualad (Jessica McKenna), Hal Jordan aka Green Lantern (Jason Spisak) and Barry Allen aka The Flash (Phil LaMarr) all sitting on a couch, eating popcorn while watching a soapy show on TV. Kara jumps in front of the TV extremely excited to tell them that a band she loves is going to be performing in town. The band is called “Ra’s al Ghul and The League of Shadows”. I bet we know who they will be going up against later in the episode! The heroes on the couch continue to eat popcorn and watch the TV, ignoring Kara’s excitement. She turns off the TV, and begins playing the band’s music. Zatanna uses a spell to break the speakers and Hal says he’s never heard of them.

Karen begins playing a poppy boyband song sitting at her desk from a group called “Up Past 8”, and Hal makes fun of her for listening to it. She begins gushing about the band and says she has tickets to their show. No one wants to go with her, and they turn the TV back on and lose interest in both Kara and Karen’s music. Kara takes Karen under her wing and tells her they’re both going to see Ra’s al Ghul together. Kara tries to get Karen to become edgier by changing her clothes and hairstyle. Karen freaks out when she sees what she looks like in the mirror.

They arrive at the venue and Karen feels out of place. She tries to fit in and follows Kara’s lead as she rocks out to the music. Karen trips and falls, leading to her crowd surfing. Kara joins in. The security camera catches Kara in the crowd and Ra’s sees her. He says “bring her to me.” Security approaches Kara telling her she’s been asked to come backstage. She cheerfully follows the guy as Karen screams her name and falls back into the crowd. Karen tries to find Kara and gets scared by all of the attendees and their outfits. Kara finds Karen and rescues her. They enter an elevator and arrive on the bottom floor.

They walk into Ra’s al Ghul’s room. Karen wants to leave but Kara tells her to be cool. Ra’s introduces himself and Kara freaks out when she realizes Ra’s knows her name. Karen becomes concerned. He tells them he knows Kara is one of his biggest fans. He says he’s amassed true believers to his cause, hinting at his evilness which Karen picks up on. Ra’s tells Kara that she could be his ultimate shadow puppet. He gives her a glowing red guitar pick.

Back upstairs, Ra’s and his band perform on stage while Kara rocks out. His lyrics are literal and lays out his plans for controlling the world. Kara brushes them off as metaphors but Karen grows even more concerned. Karen tries to get them to leave but Ra’s dedicates the next song to Kara. As he begins to play with his red guitar pick, sound waves travel out into the crowd and Kara’s pick reacts, pulling her into another dimension. This transition is a cool different visual animation style break from the normal. Ra’s possesses Kara’s soul, with her becoming his puppet all while singing his evil plans to her. We see he plans to use Kara’s powers as Supergirl for his own evil benefit.

Part 2 begins with Garth and Hal playing a video game on the couch with Barry. Jessica is making posters and signs about saving the planet. Zatanna is playing solitaire using magic. Babs is using her super equipment, observing someone in the city with tech and gear. Diana is writing a letter with a quill and ink. Garth complains about Hal messing up the game. Karen arrives at the base and Hal makes fun of her new look. She quickly changes out of her clothes and begins playing her boy band music again to her delight. She admires the tickets she still has to see Up Past 8. Suddenly the room begins shaking and Kara crashes into the room saying “What up losers,” her eyes glowing red. She begins causing chaos in the room. She ruins Babs sting operation, she kicks over Jessica’s can of green paint, and messes up Zatanna’s cards. Kara gets bored of them and flies out of the room. Karen asks if anyone else thinks that she’s acting different but no one thinks anything of it. Karen then realizes that the tickets that were on her desk are now missing. Hal tries to make another joke at her expense but Jessica smacks him in the head. Karen thinks Kara took them, but everyone else laughs at the idea of her wanting to see the boy band.

Karen transforms into Bumblebee and begins following Kara. Kara arrives at the venue where Up Past 8 is performing and uses Karen’s tickets to get in. At first she gets upset at Kara saying “How could you Kara?!” but then realizes this is not what Kara would do and says “actually, why would you?” Kara enters the arena and makes her way to the stage, pushing people over and knocking food out of their hands. Karen thinks Kara spots her, but then realizes she’s looking up at an upper level where Karen sees Ra’s al Ghul. She sneaks up to him and sees him and his League of followers. He reveals his plan to rid the world of humans and their evils and will start anew. He plans to start by getting rid of bad music first. That’s why they’re at the concert. Karen realizes the guitar pick Ra’s gave her is controlling her because it is made of Red Kryptonite. Karen begins to freak out that they’re going to attack her favorite band. She regroups and calls in the rest of the team to help.

The show begins and Ra’s activates Kara with his mind control. As she goes in for the attack, a giant green construct punches Kara out of the venue. As the smoke on stage clears, we see that Hal, Garth and Barry have taken the places of Up Past 8 on stage. Backstage, Karen has them tied up, but out of harm’s way. She apologizes to them, takes a selfie and zooms off back into the fray. Hal gets really into the performance and the Super Hero Girls all notice how much he’s enjoying it. As Hal and the rest continue to sing and perform choreography, the girls fight Kara, each using their powers to stop her without hurting her too much. Ra’s keeps using his red kryptonite to push Kara further. Kara knocks out the girls, but Karen recovers and flies up to Kara. She looks at the red kryptonite that is controlling her and tries to pull it off of her. Kara begins to sing Ra’s al Ghul’s song and flicks her away. Karen realizes that the song is the key. She tells Hal that the song is stuck in her head and he has to hit her in the heart and make her feel something. He tells her he has just the thing. Hal Garth and Barry begin singing a bridge to the song with lyrics directly aimed at Supergirl. As Kara gets distracted by the song, the rest of the girls pile onto her and hold her. The kryptonite shatters and Kara lands on the stage. Now free of Ra’s control, she begins dancing to Up Past 8’s choreography. Ra’s exits and the rest of his followers begin dancing too. On stage, all of the girls begin dancing alongside Kara and the guys pretending to be Up Past 8. As the song ends, fireworks go off outside the stadium and light up the words The End.

I won’t lie, the songs in this episode were extremely catchy, especially the song Hal, Garth and Barry sang when they were impersonating Up Past 8. ~LET ME SAVE YOU WITH MY LOVE~ The song sounded like it could have been a Backstreet Boys song from back in the day. This special episode was a lot of fun and was a nice chance to focus on Kara and Karen and their differing personalities. It was a bit weird that they chose to make the villain Ra’s al Ghul when they could have used Music Meister. I mean he was right there in front of them! Either way, it was a fun way to highlight DC’s FanDome event and give everyone something to be excited about. We haven’t gotten a new episode of DC Super Hero Girls in a while so I’m glad we got this at the very least! Come on Cartoon Network! Air the rest of the season already!!

You can stream episodes of DC Super Hero Girls on Cartoon Network’s’ site and app or on Netflix.

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About the Author

Lee Arvoy joined the TV Source team in the summer of 2020 as a TV Writer.