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Recap / Miraculous Ladybug S 02 E 24 Catalyst Heroes Day Part 1

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It's Heroes Day in Paris, and Marinette finds herself in a jam when she rashly promises to throw her class a party at the last minute. But the real trouble is when Hawk Moth turns Nathalie into Catalyst, a villain who can amplify his powers. With her boost and help from Volpina, the newly enhanced "Scarlet Moth" unleashes a swarm of akumas to create a supervillain army!

The first half of the season 2 finale.

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Tropes:

  • All of Them: Invoked by Tikki, when she suggests that Marinette should take all of the Miraculous to fight Scarlet Moth, but she decides that there wouldn't be enough time to explain to everyone how to use their powers, and just takes the three she's already given to people.
  • Almost Kiss: Alya and Nino are about to kiss each other in the locker room when Ladybug shows up to recruit them.
  • Batman Gambit: Gabriel purposefully slanders Volpina on TV, fueling Lila's hatred of Ladybug to the point where she can be akumatized again.
  • Blatant Lies: Lila has her class convinced that she's in Prince Ali's country helping him, while in actuality she's hiding in her room. She also convinced her parents that Adrien's her boyfriend and that the school has been indefinitely closed down because of all the akuma attacks, explaining why she hasn't been seen on the show in so long.
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  • Bat Signal: After the supervillain army shows up, Chloe improvises a "bee signal".
  • The Bus Came Back: After sitting out the entirety of the season, Lila not only returns, but is crucial to Hawk Moth's plot.
  • Brand X: The link address of the webpage on Lila's laptop about Prince Ali is "www.internet.internet".
  • Breath Weapon: Plagg cracks the surface of the road by breathing on it.
  • Chekhov's Skill: Hawk Moth/Scarlet Moth uses and combines the past villains' skills for his master plan.
    • First off, he has Volpina inflict enough emotional trauma to most of the Parisians via her illusions, enabling him to akumatize almost all of his former targets again.
    • Later, Vanisher, a villain who was only given a little focus compared to almost all other villains, is given the task to follow Ladybug and track down the remaining Miraculous in Master Fu's possession, using the chaos caused by the other returning villains as a distraction. Fortunately, Ladybug suspected that Vanisher would be on her tail and ducks into the sewers where Vanisher's footsteps in the water give away her position, allowing Ladybug to de-akumatize her without much hassle.
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    • On the heroes' side, Plagg saves Adrien from Gorizilla, by using his powers of destruction, first shown in the "Style Queen" episode.
  • Cliffhanger: The first part of the Heroes' Day special ends with the five Miraculous heroes staring off at the Eiffel Tower, preparing to face Scarlet Moth and his re-akumatized minions head on.
  • Continuity Cavalcade:
    • Scarlet Moth recreates a large portion of his past villains for the season finale. Specifically: Timebreaker, Dark Cupid, Horrificator, Mime, Gamer, Vanisher, Guitar Villain, Princess Fragrance, Volpina, Stoneheart, Prime Queen, Gigantitan, Glaciator, Gorizilla, and Frightningale. Also, Volpina's illusion of an akumatized Ladybug wears the costume of Antibug.
    • On a non-villain side, Alya's sisters Ella, Etta, and Nora make an appearance, and Mr. Damocles wears his "The Owl" costume.
  • Despair Event Horizon: Invoked by Hawk Moth when he has Volpina create an illusion of an akumatized Ladybug killing Cat Noir with his own Cataclysm, thus ensuring that the citizens of Paris will be afraid for their lives and therefore vulnerable to his power when he releases his swarm of akumas.
  • Didn't Think This Through: When Marinette is put on the spot about not putting much effort into her Heroes' Day gift, which every year is a box of macaroons for the class, she quickly makes up a lie about having a party for the class with a large variety of treats for everyone. That large an order would be asking a lot on such short notice as is, but her parents are already busy making a pastry model of Ladybug's head for the mayor and can't spare the time. By her lonesome, Marinette has no chance of getting it done. Lucky for Marinette, Scarlet Moth's attack spares her from having to admit she lied, at least for now.
  • Do Not Adjust Your Set: Scarlet Moth has Prime Queen use her powers to transmit his message to Ladybug and Cat Noir.
  • Even Evil Has Loved Ones: This time around, Gorizilla's primary directive from Scarlet Moth is to keep Adrien safe. Justified, as after what happened with Style Queen, it is obvious that he'd have more restraint. Furthermore, with so many akumatized villains around there is far more potential for collateral damage which Adrien could get caught up in, yet at the same time this means that Scarlet Moth has the luxury of delegating a villain to the task without risking his overall plan.
  • Family-Unfriendly Death: The illusion of Cat Noir suffering from a Cataclysm.
  • Gondor Calls for Aid: Ladybug and Cat Noir bring in Rena Rouge, Carapace, and Queen Bee to join the fight.
  • Head Desk: Marinette does this during Lila's class presentation, since she can't catch her in a lie.
  • Hoist by His Own Petard: Volpina's illusion shows Ladybug killing Cat Noir with his own Cataclysm, although it's still unknown whether this would work on the real Cat Noir or not.
  • I'm Not Afraid of You: Not displaying fear in the face of the akumatization causes the butterflies to ignore you, as in the case of Juleka, Alya, Nino, Principal Damocles, and Alya's sisters.
  • Internal Reveal: Nino learns that Alya is Rena Rouge, and Alya confirms that she had already figured out he is Carapace.
  • Loophole Abuse: Hawk Moth gets around the "one akuma at a time" and the No-Self Buffs limitations of his powers by turning Natalie into Catalyst, who has the power to boost his own, allowing him to create an army of his previous victims.
  • Mission Control: For the first time, Hawk Moth (as Scarlet Moth) leaves his lair to go into the field himself, leaving Catalyst behind as his Mission Control.
  • Mundane Utility: Marinette briefly considers using Ladybug's Lucky Charm to magic up an entire spread of delicious sweets for the party she promised her class. Tikki just gives her a Disapproving Look and Marinette admits it would be pretty irresponsible.
  • Not Brainwashed:
    • Nathalie is willingly akumatized to help Gabriel achieve his goals.
    • Lila's Psychotic Smirk after making it look like Ladybug killed Cat Noir implies that she was fairly in control of herself as well.
  • Only Sane Man: Lila's claim that she's in Prince Ali's kingdom has most of the class fooled, with the exception of Marinette (Who tries to expose her) and Adrien, who can only shake his head at Lila's apparent Aesop Amnesia.
  • Pet the Dog: Gabriel shows concern for Nathalie when they're about to enact their plan, a rare moment of empathy for someone other than his son.
  • Powerup Full Color Change: Empowered by Catalyst, Hawk Moth gets a red version of his usual costume and even changes his name to "Scarlet Moth". All villains transformed by Scarlet Moth also get a red color scheme, but they aren't any more powerful than before.
  • Properly Paranoid: Ladybug suspects Scarlet Moth might have her followed and ducks into the sewers to confirm her suspicions, allowing her to catch Vanisher in the act.
  • Psychotic Smirk: Lila gives one the moment she's willingly de-akumatized. It's implied that not only does she remember tarnishing Ladybug's reputation, she actually enjoyed it.
  • Reality Ensues: With the akumas having an almost unlimited range of abilities, it was really just a matter of time before Hawk Moth would start using them for more creative applications, instead of only using it as a source of Confusion Fu against the heroes in direct combat. Master Fu even says that he feared Hawk Moth would eventually realize he was capable of something like this.
  • See the Invisible: Scarlet Moth sets Vanisher on Ladybug's trail, only for Ladybug to sense that she's being watched. She ducks into the sewers, where Vanisher's footsteps in the water give her away.
  • Shout-Out: One half of the heroes (or an illusion of them) is turned to dust.
  • Sickeningly Sweethearts: Nino and Alya get into this as Rena Rouge and Carapace as to who will protect the other while Queen Bee, Cat Noir and Ladybug look in annoyance.
  • Super Empowering: Catalyst's superpower is to supercharge the powers of others, giving Hawk Moth the ability to akumatize as many people as he wants.
  • Swapped Roles: Hawk Moth has spent the entire series so far staying in his dark room and playing Mission Control for his akumatized villains. As Scarlet Moth, he goes out into the field himself to lead his army from the front, and leaves his latest akumatized villain, Catalyst, behind in his lair to play Mission Control for him.
  • Wham Episode:
    • Lila returns and becomes Volpina once more, creating an illusion of Ladybug killing Cat Noir with his own Cataclysm, the first step in Hawk Moth's gambit. He hints that he has other plans for her down the line, as well.
    • We see Hawk Moth remove the akuma from one of his villains himself; the magic dissipates reverting it back into a butterfly.
    • Nathalie appears in Hawk Moth's lair for the first time. She's the only other character aside Gabriel/Hawk Moth and Nooroo to be seen in the lair.
    • Nathalie is willingly akumatized by Hawk Moth in Catalyst, allowing her to supercharge his powers so he can create multiple akuma at once.
    • Nino learns Alya is Rena Rouge. Alya, of course, knew Nino was Carapace the whole time, thanks to his use of the word "dude".
    • Scarlet Moth actually leaves his lair and takes the fight to Ladybug and Cat Noir himself, with Catalyst staying there in his place.
  • Xanatos Gambit: It is implied that Scarlet Moth made up a backup plan in case Ladybug intercepted Vanisher and stopped her from obtaining the other kwamis.

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