Recap / Justice League Unlimited S 3 E 11 Ancient History

Green Lantern chases the Gentleman Ghost, but then Ghost gets the upper hand until Hawkman intervenes by capturing Ghost in an Nth metal reinforced net negating his ability to escape them. Lantern grudgingly thanks Hawkman for the help, and he departs after making the request that he tell Shayera that he said hello. Shadow Thief witnesses this encounter and begins his plan.

At the Metro Tower, Shayera and Vixen are working out in the rec room. The two women toy with each other over Lantern. Shayera half jokes about not knowing the proper protocol about getting John back. John enters as Mari is leaving,and the two set up a date, but before Mari leaves, Shayera throws her back her water bottle. Knowing that Shayera joked about "poisoning your water", as she leaves, she throws the water bottle in the trash can outside the rec room, not wanting to take a chance of drinking poisoned water. However John is preoccupied with something else as he asks to speak to Shayera alone. Hawkman's reappearance is commented on as an encounter with her stalker boyfriend, but Shayera seems unconcerned by Carter's return.

The next day Mari is off to a photo shoot though catches Shadow Thief phasing through the wall into the apartment she is sharing with John. She and John battle him, but it takes a step up after Mari is knocked out. In the end John is beaten and taken hostage, and Shadow Thief announces he is after Shayera next and he tells Mari to stay out of it. Shayera and Mari head for Midway City Museum to find Carter. Shadow Thief thanks her for coming to him saves having to find her. The two women battle him unsuccessfully. Mari tries to free John, but gets thrown into the next room and ends up buried underneath the collapsing T-Rex display. He then manages to throw Shayera into a wall, but she keeps falling before finally stopping on the floor two levels down. Hawkman arrives, but he is unable to beat the Shadow Thief. Shadow Thief takes both down and he binds them up around the Absorbacron, the same memory interface that gave Carter Hall the memories of Katar Hol. The memories led to Carter Hall's claim that he is the reincarnation of Katar and Shayera is the reincarnation of Chay-Ara. A pair of Thanagarians that were stranded in Ancient Egypt and became local deities as authority figures. John, Shayera, and Carter awaken to the Absorbacron and Shadow Thief forcing their free hands to touch it. A memory flashback is begun where Katar and Chay-Ara are shown being welcomed as royal and religious figures in Egypt. Katar is bent on bringing the benefits of Thanagarian advances to this land whereas Chay-Ara wants to have a child. He insists that it will have to wait, but it is then that Bashari returns announcing another success in the field. He also brings horses as tribute from this new land. Chay-Ara comments that horses are unnecessary for her, due to her wings. He offers to show her and they ride horses through the city, then the aqueducts, and finally into the desert before stopping near a watering hole. He drinks from the cistern, then she does, but she spills all over her face. He wipes it off her face, but she grabs his hand before he can let go. She removes her headdress and they kiss. Hath-Set had followed them and after he alerts Katar to this interlude, but Katar refuses to believe his wife and his closest human friend would do this to him. He observes their return, which seems friendly at first, but when they kiss in front of him, he smashes a section of the balcony railing. He mutters about wishing they were dead, and Hath-Set takes this as literal.

A chamber attendant runs away from Chay-Ara's room screaming and Katar grabs her for a moment before going into the room himself to find her and Bashari dead. A poisoned wine had killed them. Heart Broken, he seizes her limp body in his arms before Hath-Set arrives announcing that it was done as he commanded so. Katar yells at him to leave, and the priest looks mortified, now understanding that Katar's jealous comment was in haste not truth. Katar drinks the wine too after the priest leaves and the last sound before the flashback nears its end is the clattering of the wine glass. Then its the linked hands of the Katar and Chay-Ara, which mirrors the sarcophagus they were entombed in together. The same tomb where Carter found their bodies and the Absorbacron years before. Shadow Thief then reveals why he is doing this: he is the incarnation of Carter Hall's deepest, most unspeakable desires, the perennial villain to the 'reborn' hero. He captures Shayera to reunite them and captures John in order for Carter to regain her by killing John. Carter instead frees John. John makes a splint with the power ring and goes after Mari. However he does share that bittersweet momentary stare with Shayera. They still feel for each other, maybe even still love each other. John gets to Vixen while Shayera and Carter battle the Shadow Thief. Carter realizes the only way to beat the Thief is to deny him battle, to reintegrate him, and so he does then prepares to bid Shayera farewell. He holds her chin after she comes over to check on him after the absorption. He admits that they were not meant to be together and she is left to herself again.

Back at the Metro Tower, Vixen is recovering and Shayera comes out to find John at the window. He finally tells her about the time he and Batman went to the future. He tells her about their son, Warhawk, but then contends that if they are destined to be together, it will be on their terms, not fate's, and for now, he is staying with Vixen Later, Shayera visits Batman while he is working alone in the computer lab. Sitting down beside him, she makes the request: "Tell me about my son".

Tropes:

  • Driven to Suicide: After his advisor poisons his wife and best friend, Katar drinks the poison himself to join them in death.
  • Enemy Without: Shadow Thief is this to Carter / Hawkman.
  • Get Out: Katar to the vizier.
  • I Wished You Were Dead: Katar wishes this - and ends up regretting it.
  • Murder the Hypotenuse: Shadow Thief orders Hawkman to do this to John. He refuses.
  • Ominously Open Door: At the museum where Carter works.
    Vixen: Since Hawkman's tangled with this guy before, he might be able to give us a lead - what's wrong with this picture?
  • One True Love: This episode greatly implies that John Stewart and Shayera Hol are soulmates. John, however, refuses to allow himself to be destiny's puppet and stays with Mari.
  • Reincarnation: Carter, Shayera, and John all knew each other in a previous life.
    • Reincarnation Romance: A Love Triangle. Carter and Shayera's previous incarnations were married, but Carter's decision to focus on the expansion of Egypt caused him to neglect his wife (who desperately wanted to bear his child). The lack of intimacy eventually drove Shayera into the arms of John's previous incarnation, who was Carter's best friend.
  • Rhetorical Request Blunder: Katar's advisor takes his "I wish they were dead" literally.
  • Screw Destiny: John insists that whatever happens between him, Mari and Shayera needs to happen based on choice, not predetermination.
  • Tell Me About My Son: Shayera ends the episode by asking Batman to tell her about Warhawk.
  • Undying Loyalty: Deconstructed. Carter's advisor was so loyal to him that he took a statement that Carter had made in the heat of the moment and followed through with it by murdering Shayera and John. Carter did not take it well.
  • Your Cheating Heart: Shayera cheated on Carter with John in a previous life.
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