Issue 60
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JLU - Great Brain Robbery

The Great Brain Robbery.

Okay, .my thirteen year old brain wants to say something, "OMGFlashhadsexwiththeevilgorgeouschick. " I'd use more text message slang, but I've never used it, as it's the opposite of languid words verbose. But whatever. Squee!.

Ahem. Now that that's taken care of, the episode.


The more I minnow about, the more I perceive the coral bones of consent issues throughout the episode.

Flash doesn't want to let his team members into his mind, but gives into GL's, "if you loved justice you would" persuasions. Grod chained, while Lex violates Grod's mind. The unrelaxing/unasked for touching, and unconsentful sexual encounters behind sliding doors. Lex tied up by his own people, facing sharp pointy death. Lex using the young wolves powers against himself, activated by a button on Lex's belt buckle. Even the imagery of the train robbery. The violation of reunification by the long train penetrating the cave and the attempted theft of the eggs as it were. Although, the last one may be where I took too many literature classes lo those years ago.

"Uneasy is the head that wears the crown."

Always pretenders to the throne. No sooner is the old king out, out, like a damn spot, but the wolves are growling at the gate. The first sign of weakness and they snap and snarl at your heels. And Lex, he has been foaming at the edges..

"Am you my mother?"

Yes Bizarro, Lex is your mother. He had you cooked up in a vat from Daddy's DNA But this is a work where scheming creates crooked results and things turned right around. You'd think Lex might take a moment to think when Bizarro asks this question, but villains never do. Because they're evil and they have to try..

This is a world where spells and science intersect with evolutionary apes as the conduit. Where it's not so much a great brain robbery, but a change partners dance. Well, so many things are.

Lex and Braniac have always been Superman villains. In this universe especially with Braniac being some last shard, some memory of Krypton. And yet, there's been a coral sea change. A transmutation in a moment. Lex doesn't change bodies with his arch nemisis. Doesn't switch with with the uber oppostion of Metropolis and Smallville, human and alien, corporate intellect versus brawny fourth estate. He spins around and is Flash, who once ran round the world and reached into Lex to rip all but heart and flesh away. Leaving mad mumbling and remenants of memory behind.

How wearisome it must feel to Lex, forced to throw sops of train heists, when what he wants is that godlike moment that once flung him up on the shoulders of giants and is now lost.

Lex's master plan is no more useful to a League of villains than turning humanity into chimps. Or apes or whatever. Plotting to turn the world bald, because Braniac would consume the world. It's what Brainiac does.

And yet, Lex isn't just mad and bad, he's dangerous to know and let tinker with your powers. I wonder if at this point there is any member of the League that hasn't been altered in some essential way. Like asking favors from the genie in the lamp, the wishes don't quite do what you expect.

Trying to rip knowledge from an ape, trying to trace a link, doesn't always do what you expect. Well, the best laid plans of mice and talking simians have a way of going awry. You'd think the heroes would remember that. But they don't. Because they're good and they have to try.

I wonder at the persistance of memory. Braniac is only in the episode as an absence. A negative space. The mearest fragment of Braniac should be able to recreate it. And yet it doesn't. This chip is a dead chip. And I wonder what that means.

"My head is where I keep all my one liners."

It's interesting that after last season's near dissappearance of Flash, this season has so many references to him. Even in episodes where he doesn't appear there are obligatory Flash jokes, "He made a monkey out of us. - Obligatory.." and references to his presence in various corners of the globe.

In an arc where the villains are legion (like rebellious angels), serving the driving intellect of the moment, and in the background, Brainiac whispers, cold emotionless, devouring, dead...I'm not sure where I'm going with this. That's the problem with stream of consciousness writing. It's quirky like that. But if the conclusion of S2 JL dealt with the Just Us League and hard and soft power, and the S3 JLU closer dealt with truely opening the League up and the racing beat of the League's heart, I'm very curious as to how this seaon will end. The opposition of intelligent Apes/Brillant Scientists/Machine Ghosts in the Flesh with the League's...(I don't know, is it too corny to say heart? Probably. Whatever. I love popcorn.) heart is interesting.

I think it's no coincidence that Lex knows immediately how to use Flash's powers. Scientist that he is, he's probably made a study of Flash by now. Studied and considered and still missed the point. Well, he is evil. He looked in the mirror and pulled back that mask and the face was meaningless. Of course. One face in 9 billion. What did Lex expect?

And perhaps, that's the point. In any story about heroes, I'm always very interested in unmaskings. Sometime's it's climactic. Sometimes, you peel back the mask and the CSI lab tech face that smiles back is just another face. Which given who does Flash's voice work, is just funny in context.

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