Reviews Comments: How to abuse the Competence Zone or The Justice League is Useless?!

Okay, I must admit, I'm not a fan of any comicbooks series, and particularly not of DC comics. Even among the animated series, I only like the old Batman The Animated Series. But what this series has done, frustrated even me to no end!

My real problem is not with the flat characters -'tho they definitely didn't help-, neither is the impossibly long and slooooooooowwww Myth Arc about the Light's Xanatos Gambit, or the abrupt changes that came with a freaking five years long Timeskip. Nor is the Romantic Plot Tumor between Superboy and Miss Martian -who are Kevin and Gwen all over again, right down to their appearences!-.
I get the purpose of the Competence Zone trope, and I know Tropes Are Not Bad. But the way this show used it, was definitely a horrible abuse of it! I can accept teenagers as the only competent characters in a show, where everyone else is no-name fodder. But seriously, when you have guys like Batman and Superman on the cast, and they continously proove utterly useless in the grand scheme of things, while teenagers solve literarly everything, then you've done something really badly!

Of course I must admit the plusses of the show: as everyone said, the animation and the graphics are amazing. The action scenes are really well-done, and actually exciting! The over-all plot is consistent with itself. Also except for it's horribly slow build-up, I actually liked how the Light manipulated everyone while building their plans.

All in all however I can't give the show more than 3 out of 10.


So you're saying that there should never be DC stories where the conflict is resolved by the proteges because their mentors exist?

I had no trouble assuming that there are other things in the world for the main Leaguers to concern themselves with, while the team did what they did. In some episodes this was even explicitly stated, like when Kid Flash had to deliver the donated organ because he was the fastest person who wasn't occupied by something else at the time.
comment #20412 McSomeguy 2nd Aug 13
No, I'm not saying that there shouldn't be any stories where the youngers resolve a conflict. The problem is the adult heroes were absolutely useless in the grand scheme of things. It's a flimsy excuse to say, that "they were otherwise occupied". By what? Battling a Moster Of The Week? And all of them, all the time? Even the example you came up with only supports my points, since even then the real conflict was about the hearth, not the storm-amchines. The problem is none of the adults contributed anything to foiling the Light's plans. It's one thing when the youngsters are absolutely on their own, and the olders don't appear at all, like in the old Teen Titans cartoon. But turning the adult heroes into useless cannon fodder, purely for the sake of including them? That was a very bad move in my opinion.
comment #20413 Werebazs 2nd Aug 13
Otherwise occupied by combating other aspects of the Light's plans, perhaps. I didn't need to be explicitly told what those might be for me to accept it as a possibility because this show, from the outset, was supposed to be about the team, not the League. The adults main purpose in the narrative was to serve as mentors to the young heroes from time to time so I didn't expect or want them to have all that much involvement.
comment #20414 McSomeguy 2nd Aug 13
No, they had no purpose at all as mentors. The only purpose they served was to be continuously played for fools by the Light, so the team could come off as more awesome, for keeping up with the Light. I got that the show was about the team. But that doesn't mean it had to turn the adult heroes into a bunch of pointless, useless extras.
comment #20415 Werebazs 2nd Aug 13
They showed up to dispense advice from time to time and trained with them off-screen, as evidenced by some of the scenes where we see members of the team and their mentor at the end of what is implied to have been either a patrol or a training session. How is that NOT what mentors are supposed to be doing?

I really don't get why their lack of involvement upsets you so much. If they had been taking active part in the conflict that we get to see then it would be the Team who were reduced to pointless extras, because why settle for the rookies when you have the actual Justice League handling things. Narrative Causality demanded that it be the way it was.
comment #20422 McSomeguy 2nd Aug 13
Your problem is with Dues Exit Machina not Competence Zone.
comment #20430 VeryMelon 2nd Aug 13
@Mc Someguy: My problem is that, they made the teens the only competent opponents the Light had to face. I don't care what the JL did off-screen, because it was off-screen. On-screen they're shown to be utterly incompetent as heroes(with the possible execption of the Flash), and they fail as mentors: Batman repeatedly sends them on missions he fails to recognise as harder than what the kids should face (the fact that they eventually get through these, isn't an excuse for Batsy!), Superman ignores Superboy, all Green Arrow does is trying to make Red join the team, etc . While Black Canary, does work more-or-less as mentor figure, in exchange she's never shown participating in a fight. As for Red Tornado...he's basicly one of the teens, he is in a similar position to Captain Marvel.
But that's only my opinion, so let's just say we disagree on this.
@ Very Melon: It would be Deus Exit Machina, if the adults did not get involved with the Light at all. But they were constantly there, and they constantly proved useless in foiling the Light. So it is Competence Zone. Even when Season 2 put them on a bus it's still Competence Zone, because they allowed the Light to force them into a positon where they had to make a Deus Exit Machina.
comment #20432 Werebazs 3rd Aug 13
superman does warm up in the season finale, and the light is crippled in season 2 after Aqualads deep cover mission.
comment #20464 DARTHYAN 5th Aug 13
A 3/10 because the show isn't about The Justice League?

comment #21024 SomeDeadGuy 8th Sep 13
No, 3/10 because the way they included them in a story that's not about them, made them look utterly useless.
comment #21238 Werebazs 24th Sep 13
See I thought the opposite, particularly in season 1 that Young Justice appeared noticeably weaker than the Justice League. There were several episodes that ended when the JL showed up and beat off the bad guys and even Red Tornado by himself could beat up large portions of their team. And in season 2 the thing that got the JL out of the way didn't seem like incompetence, it seemed like deliberately walking into a trap for noble reasons and because they trusted those left behind
comment #21239 tomwithnonumbers 24th Sep 13
Yes, the adult members of the JL are stronger. That's not the issue. The issue is, that despite them being the stronger, more skilled etc. they were useless against the Ligth. So what if they won a few battles? Nothing, because in the "war" as a whole, those victories were meaningless, irrelevant. Any battles that bore any importance at all, were fought and won by the kids. As for deliberately walking into the trap, yes it might have been noble from them to do it. But if they had not been useless beforehand, they wouldn't have been put in that position in the first place.
comment #21373 Werebazs 5th Oct 13
It wasn't so much them being useless right? It was one easy betrayal that set them up in that situation and a very long and deep grained plot to do it. Given that Red Arrow is more Red Arrow than Arsenal I can't say that it would seem reasonable to have spotted it. And it's not something the kids spotted and the adults didn't, they were just as clueless and got away because they weren't considered the same level of threat
comment #21374 tomwithnonumbers 5th Oct 13
And that's what boils down to, the JL wasn't useless, everyone knew how competent they were hence why the major goal was to take them out of the picture. They were willing to wait however long for speedy/red arrow to be accepted into the JL, then even then they incorporated a plan right away incase that one failed that took another several years to come into full effect.
comment #21375 marcellx 5th Oct 13

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