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Western Animation / Young Justice - Revival Series

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Tropes dealing with the revived Young Justice (2010) series that streams on DC Universe, starting with Season 3 (Outsiders).
The heroes you demanded are finally back.

Young Justice: Outsiders is the third season of Young Justice (2010), the animated superhero series loosely based on the eponymous comic series by DC Comics. The show, created by Greg Weisman and Brandon Vietti, originally aired on Cartoon Network, premiering in 2010. Despite garnering critical acclaim and a devoted fanbase, the show was cancelled after two seasons in 2013. For three years, fans would rally behind the show in order to get a third season made. In the end, the show's revival was announced in November 2016. The show officially released on January 4, 2019, as an exclusive to the DC Universe streaming service, and was folded into HBO Max in November 2020.

Outsiders follows up on the events of Season 2. Two years after the Reach reveals the existence of the metagene to the general public, various nations and organizations have started participating in metahuman trafficking. With Lex Luthor hindering the Justice League's ability to officially interfere, Batman and a few other superheroes secede and form their own covert faction. Meanwhile, trouble brews in the monarchy of Markovia when Baron DeLamb takes power, forcing the metagene-positive Prince Brion in exile. A mysterious girl the Team finds in Markovia, Halo, may turn out to be the key not only to the metahuman trafficking conspiracy, but to a plot of world-ending consequence.

A fourth season with the subtitle of Phantoms was released in two halves, the first in October 2021 and the second half released in March 2022. Phantoms uses a mini-arc format (about 4 episodes) to tell its story. M'gann and Conner head to Mars, while Artemis deals with a situation regarding the League of Shadows. Zatanna is now teaching three young sorcerer and teams up with Doctor Fate to stop a new Lord of Chaos. Kaldur handles political instability in Atlantis. Rocket travels to New Genesis in an attempt to form an alliance with the New Gods. Nightwing's arc focuses on trying to discover what happened to Superboy.

Unmarked spoilers for the original series will follow.

Young Justice: Outsiders & Phantoms provide examples of :

  • 10-Minute Retirement: Black Lightning does this at the beginning of the series, having killed a 14-year old girl. He also temporarily loses his ability because of this. However, Nightwing is able to convince him to go on one last mission. His ex-wife lampshades this trope, saying that giving up the life never sticks with superheroes.
  • Actor Allusion: Steve Blum voices Devastation's disguise using the exact same voice he gave Zeb. He then utters Zeb's catchphrase, "karabast!"
  • Adaptational Backstory Change:
    • Harper Row in the comics, being a member of the Batfamily, is from Gotham. In the show, she lives in Happy Harbor. The rest of her backstory is pretty much accurate.
    • In the comics, Halo is originally the troubled youth Violet Harper (a blonde, blue-eyed Caucasian girl) whose corpse is taken over by an alien entity and assumes the name of Gabrielle Doe. In the series, the opposite happens, where Gabrielle Daoh (a dark-skinned girl of African ethnicity) is killed, an alien entity takes over her body and assumes the name of Violet Harper.
  • Adaptational Distillation:
    • Nightwing's team in the first half of the season is a composite of multiple eras of the Outsiders team along with new additions: Black Lightning, Geo-Force and Halo are founding members of Batman's original Outsiders in 1983, while Nightwing was the founder of the 2003 reboot, here serving as the leader as well. Meanwhile, there's Superboy, Tigress, Oracle and Forager, who are new additions that were never affiliated in the comics.
    • Green Arrow, Arrowette, Plastic Man, and Hardware were never members of Batman Incorporated in the comics. Katana and Metamorpho were, but as part of a sub-team led by Tim Drake and otherwise comprising the original Outsiders.
    • Beast Boy's Outsiders team bears little resemblance to any version of the comic team. The only common element they share is that both center on the theme of the members being 'outsiders' in some way, but each operates very differently. In terms of roster, Beast Boy's Outsiders is almost identical to the Johns' era Teen Titans, only absent Starfire, Raven, and Cyborg (who was later introduced and eventually joined as well), and with the addition of Static, Blue Beetle, and Geo-Force (the only actual member that was part of the Outsiders in the comic). Their purpose actually bears more in common with the Doom Patrol or Marvel's X-Men, in that their primary goal is to better the image of super-powered indiviuals with the public.
    • Metron is stated to be the creator of Boom Tubes, Mother Boxes, and Father Boxes. In the comics, Metron only created Boom Tubes, Mother Boxes were created by Himon (a scientist from New Genesis who resided on Apokolips), while Father Boxes have never been given a creator, possibly because they are likely just Mother Boxes reverse-engineered by Apokolips. It's a sensible change, as Metron no doubt possesses the intelligence and knowledge to create all three himself, though why he shared his creations with New Genesis and Apokolips, given his nature, isn't explained.
  • Adaptational Nice Guy: Terra (Tara) is not openly mean and callous as she was in the original comics, rather she keeps mostly silent and speaks rarely. When she does speak, she's usually rather cordial and comes across awkward. She's still a mole for Deathstroke, however, and regularly messages him information. It makes sense that she wouldn't want to draw attention to herself by offending the other heroes, even if she did still retain some of her meanness. She also ends up siding with the Outsiders once ordered to kill Beast Boy.
  • Adaptation Relationship Overhaul:
    • Unlike most adaptations of The Judas Contract, Beast Boy and Terra have no romantic interest in each other, and the former is dating Queen Perdita.
    • Also, unlike the most recent Judas Contract adaptation and the original comic itself, Terra and Slade's relationship is portrayed as parental, with Deathstroke training Terra personally in order to teach her to defend herself so she doesn't get kidnapped again, though there are some moments where Terra seems to be somewhat afraid of Deathstroke, so it might not be optimally wholesome.
    • In the comics Ronal is Lori Lemaris's husband. Here they are colleagues who lead different parts of Atlantis.
    • In the comics, it's Donna's death that leads to Dick cutting himself off from his friends and teammates and making more and more ruthless decisions. Here, the same behaviour stems from Wally's death, as Dick and Donna lack their comic counterparts' Platonic Life-Partners status.
  • An Aesop: There is a very clear cut message about playing shadow politics throughout the season. Keeping secrets and manipulating others is not acceptable and should not be done, regardless of intentions or motives. You may move your goals forward and may even come out ahead for a bit, but using illicit methods to make gains will catch up with you and sooner or later you will be made to answer for your actions. The heroes barely avoid self-destructing because of their chosen methods and the villains start taking heavy hits like never before because of theirs.
  • Ambiguous Robots: Overlord, the being that Granny uses for the X-Pits, appears to be some type of robot.
  • Amicable Exes: Black Lightning and Lynn. Though they're divorced, Lynn still lets Jeff see their daughters and they talk about his superhero career.
  • Anti-Climax: The end of Kaldur's arc in Season 4. Arion is revealed to be a clone created by Vandal Savage with Orm's mind placed into it just moments after he's voted High King of Atlantis. It looks like there's going to be a massive struggle to keep Atlantis from falling under the Light's thumb that might tear the nation apart, but instead, the false Arion puts the Crown of Atlantis on only for the Lords of Order to smite him dead. Aquaman proclaims that his wife is the true one to fulfill the prophecy, gives her the crown, and everybody cheers.
  • Arc Number: Just like the first two seasons: 16. See: Vic's Jersey number, Space Trek 3016, the opening of "Leverage" beginning on Scene 16-Take 16.
  • Arc Words: For Zatanna's arc in Season 4, at the end of a Flashback:
  • Art Shift: Going with the animation change, the art style is also noticeably different this time around. Phil Bourassa, who won an Emmy for his character designs on the series, went on to be the character designer for DC's subsequent line of animated films (to the point that several films just recycle and recolor minor Young Justice designs like young Garfield Logan and T. O. Morrow) and those years of Art Evolution have cycled back around into Outsiders.
  • Artistic License – Law: Luthor, in a thinly-veiled topical reference, mentions changing 'international libel laws' after being (credibly) accused of corruption before the UN by the heroes. International libel laws aren't a thing. Individual countries each have their own set of libel laws, with some far stricter than others. For example, it's much harder in the United States to prove libel—particulary when it involves a public figure—than it is in, say, the United Kingdom. The UN does not set any kind of libel law.
  • Ascended Extra:
    • Black Lightning had an extremely minor role in Season 2, only getting a speaking part in his final appearance (which barely amounted to anything). Here, Black Lightning is one of the main cast members as part Nightwing's team.
    • Beast Boy is a unique example of him retaking his status in the main cast, and then upping it to main character level while he's at it. For the first half, Beast Boy is largely Out of Focus apart from his sporadic appearances as an actor, while the story is focused on Nightwing and his own group of outsiders, only getting the penultimate episode to himself. Then, in the second half, Beast Boy suddenly becomes a major player and a point of focus. He gets back into the hero game, forms his own team consisting of later Team members, and that team is the titular Outsiders of the season. Beast Boy becomes a major driving force in the story, as someone who publicly rebels against the laws put in place to restrain the Justice League.
    • A villainous example with Ma'alefa'ak. Originally a minor antagonist in season 3 who was aligned with Apokolips and played a part in why Forager went to Earth, by season 4, he becomes one of the Arc Villains and works with the seasonal threats, the Zod family.
  • Back from the Dead: Jason Todd is revealed to have been resurrected by Ra's Al Ghul in “Rescue Op”, and not too long ago, since his memory is only beginning to return. The recentness of his resurrection is likely the reason we have yet to see him again in the series.
  • Badass Bystander: Played straight, but it's Not Quite the Right Thing to do. Black Lightning and Otto/the second Plasmus duke it out near a farm and the owner runs off to grab his gun. Black Lightning manages to remove the device controlling Otto, but the farmer comes back and shoots Otto in the brain right afterwards. The farmer is glad he could help, but Black Lightning is pissed.
  • The Bad Guy Wins: "Terminus."
  • Bait-and-Switch: After Lobo gets one of his fingers cut off, we cut to it multiple times throughout the season growing, implying that it may grow into Slobo. And then at the end of the season, Lobo stomps on it and burns the remains just as "Slobo" is "born". There can only be one main man...
  • Beat Them at Their Own Game: Because the Light gained such an advantage through compartmentalization, branching into numerous different organizations while remaining in the shadows, the heroes opt to do the same. They project an illusion that they're completely separate entities, but in reality the Justice League, Outsiders, Team, Batman Incorporated, and the various other heroes, are working together (knowingly or not) to Out Gambit the Light. Robin even refers to this arrangement as the "Anti-Light". It doesn't sit well with Wonder Woman though, as she's against this form of deception and equates Tim's "Anti-Light" statement to the literal term: Darkness.
  • Big Bad Duumvirate:
    • In season 3, the Light return, with Ra's Al Ghul, the Brain, and Black Manta being replaced by Deathstroke, Ultra-Humanite, and Granny Goodness (serving as Darkseid's proxy). "Evolution" reveals that Darkseid and Vandal Savage made a pact centuries ago to conquer the galaxy together, and once complete, Apokolips and Earth would fight each other in one final "winner take all" battle.
    • Season 4 continues their partnership, with most arc villains being connected to either party. The former presides over Tigress' arc and Aquaman II's arc, with Lady Shiva, who aims to capture several League of Shadows defectors, her own daughter Orphan, and steal League intel, and Vandal himself using a clone of his grandson Arion with the mind of the deceased Ocean Master to attempt to control Atlantis, respectively. The latter presides over Miss Martian's arc and Rocket's arc, with Ma'alefa'ak causing racial tensions and being rewarded with a gene bomb, and Lor-Zod making alliance with Darkseid to gain access to Ma'alefa'ak and Mantis so they can get the Phantom Zone projector. Although they do not interact as often in season 4, the alliance is still there as Vandal hands Supergirl and Ma'alefa'ak to Darkseid after capturing the Kryptonians.
  • Big Bad Ensemble:
    • In season 3, after Granny Goodness finds the Anti-Life Equation, she leaves the Light, Savage offering assistance to the team in an attempt to stop her. By season's end Savage and Darkseid have settled their partnership back to normal, Granny being punished for her failure, and her spot being taken by Markovian ambassador Zviad Baazovi.
    • Most of the conflicts in season 4 are caused by agents of the Light or Apokolips, but the initial exception is Child, the antagonist of Zatanna's arc, who is unaffiliated with either party and aims to usurp Klarion's role as the main Lord of Chaos, and forcing the heroes into an Enemy Mine with Klarion and Vandal. While Lor-Zod and Ma'alefa'ak are mainly operating on Darkseid's orders, they too become another separate faction once General Zod is broken out of the Phantom Zone and they declare loyalty to him, though Ma'alefa'ak folds back into Darkseid's loyalty after being let out of the Phantom Zone and being given Durla.
  • Bittersweet Ending: As is tradition for this show, Season 3 ends this way as well. The Metahuman Trafficking Ring is finally taken down, Terra subverts her usual role and legitimately joins the Outsiders, Black Lightning becomes Leader of the Justice League while Batman Incorporated returns to the fold and Lex Luthor takes a Public Relations beating after the heroes out a lot of his connections to the trafficking. However the Light once again rebound pretty quickly, Brion gets a psychically-induced Face–Heel Turn (though Word of God states it's up for interpretation how much Brion was actually manipulated and how much was his own doing) and takes over Markovia even bringing Jace back into the fold. Oh and Darkseid has yet to make his appearance and will likely go straight after Violet due to her ability to induce the Anti-Life Equation.
    • Season 4 ends like this, though far more on the sweet side. Conner is rescued and gains his sanity back from his time in the Phantom Zone, Zod's invasion gets stopped before it barely gets off the ground, Lor-Zod is ultimately killed as revenge by Metron, and Conner and M'gann finally have their marriage with all of their friends (even Icicle Jr.) in attendance. Really the only thing making this ending even slightly bitter, is that all of the Kryptonians held in the Phantom Zone were immediately captured by the Warworld, Mary becoming Black Mary to join up with Darkseid alongside Kara Zor-El to become new Female Furies, and Emerald Empress being the only member of General Zod's army still at large, about to give birth to a new incarnation of Lor-Zod.
  • Bloodier and Gorier: While not a total gore-fest, the fact that Outsiders doesn't deal with CN regulations means that blood, corpses, unambiguous death, and even melted faces can and will be shown.
    • Lady Shiva even unambiguously slices Ocean Master's head off.
    • Victor's half crushed body is shown in graphic detail, including a still-beating heart.
  • Breaking Old Trends: To a mild degree. The first two seasons stuck to a format where each would cover six months of time, from either July 4 to January 1, or January 1 to July 4. Weisman once stated (after Season 2) that this was the format they would like the show to stick to. "Elder Wisdom" occurs on New Years, and is not the season finale, meaning Season 3 will occur over a longer time period than the previous two seasons.
  • Breaking the Fellowship: The Justice League splits at the beginning due to the UN (specifically, Lex Luthor) preventing them from being able to operate on Earth legally without unanimous approval, to the extent that they can't even mount rescue missions. Because of this, Batman resigns and takes a number of both League and Team members with him, while Black Lightning joins the Outsiders for different reasons. Triptych reveals this is a subversion. The heroes are actually still working together though most don't actually know it. It was actually a plan to create the illusion that the heroes had split up to deceive their enemies. The only confirmed people in on the plan are Batman, Robin III, Aquaman II, Miss Martian, Nightwing, Oracle and Wonder Woman.
  • Brick Joke:
    • Gar got that TV show that he asked about back in "Bloodlines"— though it's scripted, not reality.
    • In "Elder Wisdom", Kid Flash II (Bart Allen) is hit above his left eye during their battle in Bwunasa. Since his super speed gives him a slight healing factor, it's nothing too serious, but people, namely Lex Luthor, springboard off of it to say that the Outsiders' activities will get them killed. Bart, meanwhile, responds with an 'I'll be fine!' from off screen every single time it's mentioned.
  • Broad Strokes: Season 4 suggests that some version of the events of Green Lantern: The Animated Series occurred in the universe, though with enough differences in details on the Earth to show that it was not a one for one exact telling of those same events.
  • The Bus Came Back: Jason Bard returns after a tiny appearance in the first season to become Artemis's boyfriend in Phantoms.
  • The Cameo:
    • Black Lightning's daughters, Anissa and Jennifer, make silent appearances with their mom in the first episode.
    • Courtney Whitmore is the host of an entertainment news/talk show called Stargirl.
    • "Home Fires" features appearances from the families of several League members, including the first appearance of Lois Lane.
  • Celebrity Superhero: Exploited. In addition to being the hero Beast Boy Gar is also the lead of a famous TV show. He comes up with the idea to take the Team (or some of its members, at least) public and use social media savviness to drum up support for the good guys and their efforts, as well as provide positive representation for metahuman teens.
  • Character Development:
    • M'gann goes bald and changes her skin back to white to show that she's embracing her true self as a White Martian. She is also one of the team leaders participating in the "Anti-Light" deception, and seems weirdly comfortable manipulating Beast Boy and the Outsiders, though it's been to his benefit, if still rather underhanded.
    • Conner has lost much of the anger issues he had seven years ago, and has come a long way in being responsible and caring for others, while also showing his considerable skill developed over years of training.
    • Artemis acts far more subdued than in previous seasons, while still retaining some of her snark. Likely the result of Wally's death taking a very heavy toll on her, to the point Paula states it nearly destroyed her.
    • Dick has noticeably matured since Season 2. He's (seemingly) stopped having casual relationships with multiple women at once and settled into a relationship with Barbara, who previously stated she was waiting for him to grow up before trying a serious relationship with him; he's also been shown to be taking his role as a mentor to younger heroes far more seriously. This can likely be attributed to both his best friend's death and Barbara's paralysis making him less easygoing. Though his willingness to engage in the deception of his friends and teammates is still present, as shown by him being one of the team leaders in on the 'Anti-Light' scheme.
    • Gar has gone from a hyperactive-but-lovable kid who mostly hangs around Megan and Dick, to a fairly mature and serious emancipated minor who leads the Outsiders concurrently with running his own online campaign raising awareness of metahuman trafficking.
  • Conlang: Markovian, whose lexicon hasn't officially been revealed but is an actual constructed language for the show. It follows grammatical conventions typical for Baltic languages.
  • Continuity Nod:
    • Beast Boy is revealed to be dating Queen Perdita, the young girl Wally West saved from Count Vertigo in the Season 1 episode “Coldhearted”. When pressed for details, Beast Boy explains that they met at Wally’s funeral following his death in the Season 2 finale.
    • Beast Boy also transforms into the alien bird-creature he met on Rann at the beginning of Season 2 when he wants a form with speed and agility.
    • Superboy says that "[he] feels naked, and not in the fun way", borrowing Artemis's words from Season 1.
    • Superman, of all people, has started using "aster" and "whelmed" when talking. It's not limited to The Team anymore.
    • Rocket's living room contains a photograph of the original 8 members of the Team in winter clothing circa the end of Season 1.
  • Corrupted Contingency:
    • Bart Allen brought suppression collars with him when he aided Saturn Girl and Chameleon Boy, but after Lor-Zod and Ma'alefa'ak overpowered them, the three heroes were the ones forced to wear the collars.
    • The Team enters the Phantom Zone to rescue Superboy who has been trapped there for months but are ambushed and defeated by the criminal Kryptonians that reside there. Planning for this, Nightwing breaks out a piece of kryptonite to weaken them, but being in the Phantom Zone means it doesn't affect them physically and it gets taken by Dru-Zod, the Kryptonian leader. Later Dru-Zod uses the same piece of kryptonite to incapacitate Superman once they get out of the Phantom Zone.
  • Costume Evolution: Most of the already-introduced characters, particularly the Justice League, have new costumes — many of which lean towards their DC Rebirth appearance. Notably, this all contrasts with the first two seasons because they were visually based on the pre-New 52 DCU, as the New 52 and Rebirth revamps happened after the show started.
    • Superman loses his classic trunks but has no collar unlike his previous New 52 suit.
    • Wonder Woman's new costume is an amalgimation of her outfit created for the direct-to-video shared universe movies starting with Justice League: War and the skirt costume designed by Michael Wilkinson for Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice that quickly became her main costume in the comics.
    • Bart Allen as Kid Flash II integrates elements of his old Impulse costume into the Kid Flash wear, like his goggles and prominent red, and a modified logo. When he first appeared as Kid Flash at the end of Invasion, he merely wore a copy of Wally's costume.
  • Credits Gag: In "Evolution", Geo-Force half-seriously suggests "Hot Lava" as his superhero name before deciding on "Geo-Force". He's actually credited as both for that episode.
  • Culturally Sensitive Adaptation: The series removes Slade and Terra's sexual relationship and portrays her as a teenage girl bullied and manipulated into being a villain by Slade who is depicted as unambiguously evil.
  • Darker and Edgier:
    • The series was already dark to begin with, but Outsiders is confirmed to allow more mature content than what was possible on Cartoon Network, thanks to the lax standards of streaming television. Greg Weisman himself stated the season is now PG-13 leaning toward R, rather than PG on the verge of PG-13.
    • The first five minutes show a 14-year-old girl being abducted, taken to a trafficking lab (where dead bodies are explicitly shown), and forcibly turned into a monster to attack Rann, where she's soon killed by accident by Black Lightning, much to his horror. Marking it further, her death is completely unambiguous, unlike most deaths in the first two seasons.
    • Halo receives her powers only after being killed by her metahuman transformation. So she is being buried alive when her abilities bring her back to life. Then even more horrifically her face is melted off by Plasmus which she also manages to survive.
    • A minor case, but characters now freely say "kill" and "die" to go with the unambiguous deaths, as opposed to how they could only rarely do it before.
    • If you thought Halo's face getting melted off by Plasmus was disturbing, it's much worse in "Another Freak" with Victor Stone, after the explosion at Star Labs. Think Justice League: War, only a lot more gruesome to look at.
    • The language is also a bit saltier with PG-13 swears such as "ass", "dick", and "damn" being used fairly often.
  • A Day in the Limelight:
    • "Private Security" stars Roy "Will" Harper alongside Dick Grayson (alongside the original Roy, and the other clone Jim), who had been completely Out of Focus in Season 2 after finding the original.
    • Though they were largely Demoted to Extra in the first half of Season 3, the Team still get an episode focused on them with "Away Mission", which is about the remains (Miss Martian, Kid Flash, Blue Beetle, Static and Thirteen) going to New Genesis.
    • "Evolution" centers on Vandal Savage, the origin of his alliance with Darkseid, and the founding of the Light.
    • "Nightmare Monkeys" is all about Beast Boy, and answers a lot of fan questions about who had custody of him after his mom died.
    • Season 4 does this on a bigger scale, giving characters their own personal, short arcs within the season. This is especially notable for characters like Zatanna and Rocket who generally have been background players at best for the duration of their time on the show.
  • Death of a Child: In stark contrast to the first two seasons, this is played straight. The very first new metahuman introduced is a teenage girl named Ana who is shown through POV as she is abducted by traffickers, has her metagene activated turning her into a lava monster, then arriving on Rann leading an Apokaliptan strikeforce against Rannian forces and the Justice League before being accidentally killed by Black Lightning. Child deaths are not new to Young Justice, but they've never been shown on screen or in such horrific detail before.
  • Decomposite Character:
    • In the comics, the civilian identity of Plasmus was Otto Von Furth. Here, there are two people going by Plasmus (at least in the credits), Anna and Otto, with Anna being a Canon Foreigner.
    • On a team level, there's the Outsiders this season being led and founded by Nightwing, while Batman starts his own organization called Batman Incorporated. In the comics, the original Outsiders were formed by Batman himself, largely for the same reasons (being dissatisfied with the League), but here it's instead a team taken from Batman (Grant Morrison), which draws from that team with new additions to fit the storytelling similar to Nightwing's Outsiders. Basically, the idea of the Outsiders was split in two. Nightwing's roster also take cues from a later Outsiders team he formed in the comics. However, neither team is actually named the Outsiders. That name is instead given to Beast Boy's public branch of the Team, which otherwise is similar to the Teen Titans.
  • Demoted to Extra:
    • The Team itself, which were the driving force of the series in the first two seasons, is now but a shell of its former self with most of its membership having gone separate ways. This season focuses on the titular Outsiders, which consists of former Team and League members as well as new recruits, and to lesser degree, Batman Incorporated. The Team only get sporadic appearances in the first thirteen episodes, with the fifth episode being A Day in the Limelight — but even then, it mainly focused on Miss Martian (who has avoided this by having an association with the Outsiders despite not having full membership) rather than the other members.
    • More specifically, this very noticeably happens to Blue Beetle and Kid Flash II (aka Impulse), the two most well-developed Team newcomers in Invasion. Here, they have no relevance to the plot itself and are completely disconnected from the wider action despite still being there. Justified, as they both had personal stakes and ties to the Reach in Season 2 which explained the focus given to them (some would even argue they were given too much focus even then), with both of their origins being directly tied to them, which obviously can't be done again, so less focus was inevitable no matter what.
    • Also out of focus are Wonder Girl, Static, and El Dorado (Eduardo Dorado Jr.), even though they're members of the Outsiders as well. So far, they've only appeared in fights, though Eduardo did receive focus in regards to the Meta-Human Youth Center in Taos, but whenever the Outsiders are merely hanging out, it's usually just Forager, Cyborg, Halo, Brion, Terra, and Garfield, who are the residents of The Hub in the Premiere Building.
    • Cheshire and Artemis both have fallen out of the limelight in the second half of the season, leaving some unanswered questions in the wake of both Cheshire's mission and Artemis's falling out with her mother.
    • Sportsmaster throughout the first two seasons was one of the most prominent and recurring adversaries as The Light's main enforcer. Here, he only appears once in the first half of the third season, in a small flashback, and never outside of it. He's gone from being the top enforcer of The Light to a freelance mercenary for hire, which demotes his status in-universe as well as out. He then only appears in two episodes in Season 4 during Artemis' arc, but as flashbacks.
    • Several of the adult mentors from the first two seasons, most notably Red Tornado and Martian Manhunter, also hardly show up.
    • Phantoms has Batman appear only briefly with no lines sporadically throughout the season, with other older league members like Martian Manhunter, Zatara, Orin, Jay Garrick, and Superman having more substantial roles in his place.
  • Double Entendre: Shortly after they get engaged, we see Superboy and Miss Martian at home together, with Miss Martian out of sight in another room. Superboy asks her what she's doing, and she replies "Wearing my engagement ring. That's all." Superboy almost immediately realizes that while it sounds like she means she's admiring the ring, it can also mean that the ring is the only thing she's wearing. He rushes into the other room, and we hear her giggle happily.
  • Dramatic Irony: The heroes never find out what really happened to the original Ocean Master, despite the existence of his clones, and the same can be said for Lor-Zod, as Chameleon Boy briefly mentions that his defeat is a victory for a battle, but not the overall war, and at the end of the day, only Metron really knew what happened to Lor-Zod, due to setting up his death.
  • Everyone Went to School Together: Kaldur mentions that his fellow delegates at the Atlantean conference, Ronal, Lori Lemaris, and Nanaue Sha'ark, were his classmates at the Conservatory of Sorcery note .
  • Explain, Explain... Oh, Crap!: Played with - After Nightwing is injured, it dawns on Jefferson that the individual, 'independent' teams are working together. As he accuses them of deception, the real truth slowly dawns on him, and things just go downhill from there.
    Jefferson: And why? So you can break the law with impunity? While dragging me into it?!?
    Kaldur: It is not as bad as you make it sound.
    Jefferson: Oh no, I'm guessing it's worse.
  • Face–Heel Turn: Surprisingly enough it's not Terra, as all the heroes were aware of her being a spy for Slade to begin with and are able to earn her sincere trust and she joins the Outsiders completely. No instead it's Brion, who executes his uncle (in front of a worldwide audience at that) and takes over Markovia while banning all heroes from Markovia. While he was supposedly psychically manipulated, Word of God says it's up to viewer interpretation as to how much was influenced by that, and how much was his own will.
  • Flawed Prototype: In this case, a team. Task Force X (aka the Suicide Squad) is introduced in “Leverage”, and it's pretty clear that it's only been recently formed, since it only has three members—on that mission, at least—and they don't come across as if they've been doing this for very long. The absence of mainstays Deadshot and Rick Flagg would also indicate that Waller has only just gotten it off the ground and hasn't yet figured out the formula for how it would best operate. They're also not very effective, the only character they manage to seriously injure is Halo (which doesn't say much), and the whole mission swiftly goes downhill. Given this is Amanda Waller, though, she'll no doubt work out most of the kinks after another time skip.
  • Foreshadowing:
    • One of the assassins in Infinity Island is wearing a red hood. That assassin turns out to be none other than Jason Todd.
    • In Count Vertigo's base, Superboy finds a dismantled Mother Box. This is the first clue that Halo is actually possessed by the Mother Box's spirit.
    • The very last scene before the credits shows a waitress wearing a ring with a strange insignia. This is hinting the possible future appearance of the Legion of Super-heroes.
  • Fourth-Date Marriage: Played with in Phantoms during the New Genesis arc. Forager meets a female Forager from another hive while on New Genesis and tells everyone he has decided to stay with her when Rocket and Flash return to Earth. Rocket is shocked because Forager has only known the other Forager for two days, but Bear says that that's actually an absurdly lengthy courtship in Bug society.
  • Freudian Slip: Dick accidentally calls Will, "Wall", as in, Wally.
  • Fun with Acronyms:
    • In a truly meta sense: The first letters of the titles for all the episodes of the third season form the sentence, PREPARE THE ANTI-LIFE EQUATION!
    • Season 4 repeats the pattern with INVITATION TO KNEEL BEFORE ZOD.
    • The Targets miniseries has CHOSEN FAMILY taken from the first two letters of each comic title.
  • Hellfire: Klarion and fellow Chaos Lord Child are not only capable of conjuring magical red flames for combat against entities on their power level, they actively seem to enjoy doing so.
  • Hero with Bad Publicity:
    • The Justice League continues to have this problem come Season 3. It's gotten bad enough that there are calls for it to be shut down.
    • One of the reasons Garfield creates the Outsiders is specifically to avoid this.
  • Get Out!: After an ill-planned assault on Infinity Island, home of Ra's Al Ghul, Ra's himself steps forward to speak with the group. He reveals that he is no longer head of the League of Shadows. Artemis asks if the new leader is her father, then asks if it's her sister, prompting Ra's to respond, calmly, with a "Get out."
  • Hazy-Feel Turn: Season 4 does well to make the fallout from Brion's decision in the Season 3 finale more like this than a straight Heel–Face Turn, while also showing how excellent of a job the Light is doing in keeping him on plan without his knowledge. For 95% of the time Brion is his genuine, heroic self. He's created his own team in Markovia, and is doing his best to make it a safe haven for Metahumans. He also makes it perfectly clear that he actually harbors no ill will towards the Justice League, the Team, the Outsiders or anyone from his time in Season 3. That last 5% though is when he's psychically nudged into doing certain things that will keep the metahuman experimentation train flowing under his nose, and still pushes Violet away. He's slowly starting to notice the discrepancies adding up though, and Fury is also helping fill in the blanks.
  • History Repeats: A recurring theme in Season 4 where people that never learnt from past mistakes will result in the same mistakes be repeated later down the line.
    • Main instigator being Vandal Savage; His inability to control his ego and fighting forces beyond his capabilities resulted in nothing but tragedies to not just himself but those close to him.
    • Characters that do avert this on the other hand thanks to learning from past experiences.
  • Hotter and Sexier: Another benefit of being an online series. There's more risqué situations and dialogue, with Stephanie Lemelin even referring to the script as "sexier". It's shown in episode 8 in which Jefferson and Helga are shown naked under bedsheets after having sex. M'gann and Conner clearly have a healthy sex life, with Conner ditching Outsider training twice to "mend fences" with M'gann.
  • Idiosyncratic Episode Naming:
    • The first letter of each episode of Outsiders spells out "Prepare the Anti-life Equation."
    • The first letter of each episode of Phantoms spells "Invitation to Kneel Before Zod." Additionally, each story arc this season has its own theme.
      • M'gann and Conner's arc has one word titles.
      • Artemis' arc has titles referencing literary works.
      • Zatanna's arc has titles that are spelled backwards.
      • Kaldur's arc has titles pertaining to the ocean.
      • Rocket's episodes are bombastic phrases that end with an exclamation point, mirroring the naming style of Jack Kirby's comic books
      • The final arc has episode titles that are all two words with "and" between them, "Rescue and Search," "Ego and Superego."
  • Incompetent Guard Animal: Wolf seems to have been downgraded to this, spending nearly all his screen time napping. Subverted in "True Heroes" when he's the first to realize Victor is under Father Box's control and attacks him. While he's overwhelmed, he at least buys Violet time to regroup and take him out.
  • Insistent Terminology: Black Lightning repeatedly refers to Batman's splinter team as "Batman Incorporated."
    Barbara: You're the only one that calls it that.
  • Interface Spoiler: Superboy is still promoted in the fourth season's intro despite being seemingly killed four episodes in, an early foreshadowing for him actually being trapped in the Phantom Zone.
  • Jock Dad, Nerd Son: Inverted; Silas Stone is the workaholic scientist Nerd Dad to his son Victor's driven quarterback Jock Son. The dynamic of the father being distant and undervaluing of the son's life and interests remains.
  • Kid Hero: Reconstructed. In this universe, the Justice League has mixed feelings towards fighting alongside children. Although the Team proved their mettle in the previous seasons, they were always strictly a covert ops team to not draw attention to themselves, and the adults made sure that they were properly counseled. In this season, Garfield has the idea to take the Team public, which draws the ire of the adults, who fear that they are painting giant targets on their backs that their youth makes them unprepared to deal with. However, once Garfield points out that they are setting good examples for powered teens everywhere, permission is obtained. #WeAreAllOutsiders indeed.
  • Known Only by Their Nickname: Happens quite a bit in the credits. For instance, in her first speaking appearance, Halo was listed as "Dead Girl".
  • Kryptonite Is Everywhere: The Trope Namer is a subversion, as season 4 reveals the substance is quite rare in this show's canon, and the Justice League has tabs on all known samples. The kryptonite sample that Lor-Zod uses in the bomb targeting Superboy is also explicitly stated to be the last known sample in his timeline.
  • Kudzu Plot: The show has been an example of this since Season 2 (if not Season 1), but Season 3 takes it up a notch. Not helped by the writers' love of deliberately obscuring the truth to surprise (and mess with) viewers, letting them believe one thing (sometimes for a lengthy period of time) and then pulling the rug out from under them at the end, so it's possible some of the things that many assume to be plot threads aren't, and even if they are, they can go unaddressed (and unmentioned) for lengthy periods of time while other (often newer) threads are being focused on. None of this is made better by the heroes themselves never being fully informed about what's going on, with their assumptions and speculation often being completely wrong, even if they are the only ones unaware of it, or only some of them are unaware of it. Just trying to keep track of who knows what can get difficult. To be fair, though, most viewers do believe the creators have planned out answers to the mysteries set up, they just aren't sure how long it will take for them to get to it, or if it won't be resolved off-screen in a time-skip and just mentioned later, or if the show won't get canceled before they reveal them (though the show already being renewed for another season has relieved that worry, for now).
  • Last Episode, New Character: Season 4: Kara Zor-El
  • Literary Allusion Title: The episode titles of Artemis's arc in Phantoms are famous book titles modified to fit Artemis's life. She reads passages from said books over the episodes' coda (eg. quoting A Tale of Two Cities over the epilogue of "A Tale of Two Sisters").
  • Meta Origin: "Evolution" suggests that at least some if not all humans with the metagene are ultimately descended from Vandal Savage, the first metahuman through mutation.
  • The Mole:
    • Naturally, Terra reports on the Team to Deathstroke — though the aftermath of this revelation goes into Not His Sled.
    • Jace, for Ultra-Humanite. Though it seems she didn't become a proper mole until “Illusion of Control”.
  • Mood Whiplash: The Stinger of the third episode of Season 4 is a hilarious phone talk that Superman has with Lois. His Baby Son is growing, pooping on the celing. The Stinger of the fourth episode is M'gann sobbing alone on her Wedding Altar, after one episode filled with heartbreak for her: Bioship retires to live it's last days. Conner, as far she knows, is dead. Her Brother almost wiped out all of the Martians. All she can do is cry.
  • My God, What Have I Done?: Black Lightning is horrified when he learns he just killed a little girl. It's implied that he wondered what would happen if his own daughters were put in the same situation.
  • My Greatest Failure: Black Lightning feels this way about accidentally killing Ana/the first Plasmus, to the point that he hangs up the suit (for ten minutes, anyways) before deciding to join the Outsiders in the fight against metahuman trafficking.
  • Mythology Gag: Around the not-yet-Cyborg Victor Stone. His dad and one of his football teammates (named Ronnie, a reference to Cyborg's Evil Counterpart Ron Evers) are played by Khary Payton, who voiced him in Teen Titans among several other works; he's constantly surrounded by his most familiar voice. And his catchphrase; we get plenty of "booyah" from the football team, including Ronnie. Finally, his jacket is basically his costume from Smallville.
    • The Outsiders' base of operations introduced in "First Impression" has the Troubalert.
  • Natural Disaster Cascade: Child's global rampage to end all life on Earth in Phantoms has shades of this, alongside some even less earthly phenomena. Apart from the massive flash flood her land-reshaping battle with Klarion causes, after she's briefly gotten rid of him, she promptly creates a new active volcano in the middle of Sydney, creates an underwater pillar of fire next to Atlantis which rapidly renders the ocean waters lethally toxic, causes Agra, India and everyone at the Taj Mahal to freeze seemingly instantly amidst a blizzard, creates a fire pillar in the middle of the Arctic to rapidly accelerate its melting, and finally causes it to rain fire at her final confrontation with Zatanna's team.
  • Never Trust a Trailer: The marketing can often be so misleading it can only be intentional.
    • The marketing made it look like Arrowette and Spoiler would be prominent members of the Team. While their membership is technically true, they leave the Team for Batman Incorporated just minutes after their introduction, without speaking a word. This was done as a smokescreen to cover the fact that the Justice League undergoes Breaking the Fellowship at the beginning, that seeps into the Team itself.
    • Also, it was heavily suggested that Katana and Metamorpho would be members of the Outsiders. They never actually interact with them, but rather are members of Batman Incorporated.
    • The marketing for the second half gave the clear implication that Nightwing's team would continue to operate. They all-but formally dissolve in "Leverage", with most of the members joining the Team.
  • New Year Has Come: As usual. Though for the first time in the series, however, it doesn't occur at the start or end of the season, but partway through the second half, in “Elder Wisdom”.
  • Not His Sled: Tara Markov does not betray the team and side with Deathstroke. The betrayal is actually done by Brion, under slight psychic manipulation by Zviad Baazovi, in executing Baron Bedlam and usurping the throne of Markovia from his brother.
  • Not Quite the Right Thing: A farmer sees Black Lightning fighting a monster and runs to get his gun. Black Lightning is able to get rid of Otto's shock collar... and then the farmer shoots Otto in the brain.
  • One-Steve Limit:
    • Roy Harper (Red Arrow) now goes by "Will", likely to avoid confusion with the other Roy (Arsenal). Roy's middle name in the comics is William.
    • Averted with Violet Harper and Harper Row, which is lampshaded when they first meet.
    • There's also three Cassandras— Cassandra Sandsmark/Wonder Girl, Cassandra Cain/Orphan, and Cassandra Savage.
    • G. Gordon Godfrey shares his middle "G" with Commissioner James Gordon and his daughter Barbara, which he lampshades when reporting on the Commissioner's activities.
  • One-Wheeled Wonder: In "Royal We," Artemis rides a one-wheeled motorcycle on the covert mission to Markovia. She abandons it unpon rescuing Halo, as the bike is too small for both of them.
  • Passing the Torch: King Orin has retired from being Aquaman (and the Justice League) to focus on being king, passing the mantle to Kaldur.
    • Then in Phantoms, after a lot of criticism towards his run as King of Atlantis, Orin ends up passing the crown (after a tumultuous arc) to Mera.
  • Poisonous Person: Both the first and second Plasmus were metahuman teens turned into monsters that were so dangerous that touching them would cause your skin to melt.
  • Powered by a Forsaken Child: In Season 4, the Kaizer Thrall, a cubic device similar to a Father Box, is eventually revealed to be powered by the soul of a 11 year old human child.
  • Promoted to Love Interest: Jason Bard is a love interest of Barbara Gordon in the comics. He returns in Phantoms to date Artemis, a character he had no relation to in the original comics.
  • Put on a Bus: A number of characters from previous seasons that were still members of the League or Team have failed to re-appear, with no explanation for their whereabouts, including La'gaan/Lagoon Boy, Mal Duncan/Guardian III, Karen Beecher/Bumblebee, Aquaman I, Captain Atom, the Atom, and Icon. This is most obvious in the first episode when Kaldur calls the emergency meeting of the League to order and states that all members still on Earth are present, and the roster is noticeably missing a large number of members. They could be with the Leaguers in space, however. Mal and Karen eventually return for an episode later in the season, and La'gaan has a silent cameo in a flashback, relaying information to Kaldur.
  • Putting the Band Back Together: “Terminus” reunites the five surviving members of the Season 1 team (not counting Zatanna and Raquel) for the mission to rescue Violet from Granny Goodness.
  • Related in the Adaptation:
    • Black Lightning's wife, Lynn Stewart-Pierce, is John Stewart's sister. Her creator, Tony Isabella, deliberately gave her the surname of Stewart in case anyone wanted to make her related to John, but it had never been used until this series.
    • Queen Ilona of Markovia is the sister of Baron Bedlam.
    • Nabu, the Lord of Order possessing the Helmet of Fate, is revealed to be a son of Vandal Savage. Doubly surprising since he undergoes Adaptation Species Change from a spirit elemental to a spirit of a Babylonian metahuman.
  • Revisiting the Roots: Season Three plans restores the first season's use of mystery and espionage, something that was mostly absent from the second season, Invasion.
  • Rewatch Bonus: Superboy was believed dead in the first place because an ash stain was left on the wall in the same place the bomb was destroyed in, and seemed to be contradictory to him actually being in the Phantom Zone. Phantom Girl was presumed killed as well, despite being trapped in a coma in the Phantom Zone, when even though there were two presumed deaths, only one stain was left. In reality, that's because the stain belonged to Lor-Zod, who made another attempt to kill him but had been set up by Metron to be abandoned in the blast of the bomb.
  • Rotating Protagonist: As to be expected for Young Justice, which has historically balanced out focus for the large cast.
    • The first half of Outsiders focuses squarely on Nightwing's team operating outside the law, consisting of Nightwing himself, Black Lightning, Superboy, Tigress, and newcomers Geo-Force, Halo and Forager. Then, the second half sees said team dissolving, while the Outsiders (consisting of Beast Boy, Blue Beetle, Kid Flash, Wonder Girl, Static, Geo-Force and Eduardo) are now the ones in the focus, meanwhile the Team sees a shuffle with Tigress and Superboy rejoining on top of Halo, Forager and Terra joining for the first time. As characters can go in and out of focus when need be, the three most constant ones in the limelight are the newcomers of Geo-Force, Halo and Forager.
    • Phantoms takes a mini-arc approach, positioning one or two of the original Team members as the anchor over 4 episodes with side stories from the supporting cast.
      • M'gann and Conner as the protagonists of the first four episodes, revolving around their upcoming marriage on Mars. However, there is civil unrest among the Martians, as the old king was recently murdered.
      • Artemis is the lead for the next four episodes, as she learns of two defectors from The Shadows, each saying other is really a mole. Cheshire also has a lead role, as Artemis tries to reunite with her sister.
      • Zatanna takes the lead for the following five, as she trains 3 of her students in magic. However, a mysterious Lord of Chaos has descended with her own agenda.
      • Kaldur deals with underwater politics, as an ancient prophescy for the next king of Atlantis seems to be coming true.
      • Rocket is the lead representative for Earth as a delegation is sent to New Genesis, but there are forces building to something much greater.
      • Finally, Nightwing starts assembling all the information from the previous arcs, bringing it all together to rescue Conner who is not actually dead. However, there's an even bigger threat to deal with that demands attention, for the Zods are on the rise.
  • Ruder and Cruder: The third season features a sudden jump in curse words, body count, and instances of explicit violence over prior seasons. Justified as the first two seasons were released on Cartoon Network, which had strict policies regarding what content was deemed inappropriate. Since the third season was released on DC's own streaming service, these rules no longer applied, allowing the creators to produce a much darker and more mature show.
  • Running Gag:
    • Wolf spends most of his screentime napping.
    • invokedAlthough it's been around since earlier seasons, there's the recurring gag that a school bus with exactly the same driver and crew is always needing saving. Zatanna's arc calls attention to this by having the bus appear in space, go through alternate dimensions in the credits, and eventually revealed that it was all intentional: Klarion was using the bus as a temporary anchor to travel through time, and the Team makes use of it because it was able to enter the Phantom Zone.
  • Screw This, I'm Outta Here: Batman, Green Arrow, and several others pull this after getting fed up with all the red tape Luthor has been giving them and quit the Justice League to form a new group, nicknamed "Batman Incorporated" by Black Lightning.
  • "Shaggy Dog" Story: Violet dying as a result of improperly healing herself. The subplot continued for over four episodes, with Violet's turmoil and resulting actions taking up a sizable amount of screentime. Jace then reveals in “Antisocial Pathologies” that it was a lie that she concocted to manipulate and punish Violet for not being a metahuman and Violet was never in that sort of danger.
  • Shapeshifter Baggage: Referenced in "Nightmare Monkeys" when the Monkey God reveals that he is the source of Beast Boy's powers.
    "Why do you think you can only change into animals? And do the words 'conservation of mass' mean anything to you at all?"
  • Shipper with an Agenda: Paula would like to see Artemis and Will get together, but not solely because she believes they would be happier. She wants Artemis to leave the hero life behind permanently and, having lost faith that Jade will ever return, wants her to take the role of Lian's mother. She believes both are more likely if they got together.
  • Ship Sinking: After a brief kiss and an entire episode dealing with her trauma and grief from losing Wally, Artemis officially states that she'll remain platonic with Will. Will's a bit relieved, as the kiss had felt weird. He'd come to see her as a sister; fitting as she's his sister-in-law.
  • Shoot the Dog:
    • Black Lightning accidentally kills the first Plasmus, unaware that it was a young girl under mind control and a heart condition.
    • The second Plasmus is shot dead by a farmer, almost immediately after Black Lightning freed him.
  • Shout-Out:
    • Garfield is an actor in Space Trek 3016 (Space Trek: 2022 in the comics), an obvious reference to Star Trek. The actor who plays the captain on this is also a William Shatner expy. It should be noted that Greg Weisman is a Trekkie.
      • Another Star Trek reference is noted with the clone of Roy Harper that went by Red Arrow choosing to differentiate himself using his middle name as his legal name, akin to William Ryker and Thomas Ryker.
    • In keeping with Gar's monkey motif in this series, his character's name is Tork.
    • Speaking of Garfield, he is first seen doing a PSA about (meta)human trafficking, with the slogan "If you see something, scream something." This alludes to the Metropolitan Transport Authority's anti-terrorism safety campaign, which had the slogan "If you see something, say something" urging people to report suspicious activity.
    • There's a reference to Sesame Street of all things with Count Vertigo and Dr. Ecks. When the latter uses his powers, the former counts up "One, two, three, four" in his vaguely Eastern European accent, and Artemis quips, "Now we know why he's called Count Vertigo."
    • The logo of GoodeVision is the Warner Bros. logo.
    • There's an extended homage to Teen Titans Go! in "Nightmare Monkeys." Beast Boy hallucinates the Doom Patrol in the same animation style, complete with Greg Cipes using his TTG voice for Gar and the rest of the Teen Titans Go! regulars voicing Elasti-Girl (Starfire, Hynden Walch), Robotman (Cyborg, Khary Payton), Negative (Wo)man (Raven, Tara Strong), and the Chief (Robin, Scott Menville). For extra bonus points, when M'gann shows up in the hallucination, she's not as caricatured as the Doom Patrol, and uses the same character model she had in the episode "Let's Get Serious".
    • There's a shoutout to the old Doc Savage pulps in "First Impressions," when Big Words says "I'll be superamalgamated!" This was the favorite exclamation of surprise of Johnny Littlejohn, one of Doc's "Fabulous Five."
      • She also loses her glasses (but refers to them as "spectacles") and crawls on the floor to find them, much like Velma. Ironically, it's her friend Gaby Gabrielli who has a more direct Scooby Doo connection, as her voice actor Grey Delisle is the current voice of Daphne. There's also a Dramatic Unmask in that episode, but the culprits don't refer to the heroes with "You Meddling Kids".
    • In "Influence", Granny Goodness spoofs a certain Mary Poppins song when she calls G. Gordon Godfrey's flair for drama "the perfect spoonful of sugar to choke on after the medicine goes down."
    • Jason Blood's sanctum contains the Phoenix Gate, the Grimorum Arcanorum, and the Eye of Odin, three powerful magical artifacts from another Greg Weisman work.
    • When Razer is being provoked by Metron, he warns the New God "You won't like me when I'm angry."
  • Start My Own: The League's restrictions by the UN means they basically can't operate on Earth without approval. This leads to two teams spinning off of it after the mass resignations.
    • Nightwing forms a team including Tigress, Superboy, Oracle, as well as former League member Black Lightning. At first it was a one-time deal, but eventually it sticks. They recruit Geo-Force, Halo, and Forager along the way.
    • Batman leads the charge of the resignations, and takes Green Arrow, Katana, Metamorpho, Robin III, Spoiler, Arrowette, Batwoman, Plastic Man, and Hardware with him to form "Batman Incorporated", as Black Lightning semi-derisively calls it.
    • After missing being a hero, Garfield forms the Outsiders to be a visible youth hero group, one that isn't restricted like the already established teams.
  • Strange Minds Think Alike: In the Audio Drama "The Prize", Forager is asked to be Lian and Amistad's babysitter during Conner and Megan's farewell party, though Forager thinks that "larvae-sitter" is more fitting because neither Lian nor Amistad are babies. Later, Will reassures Forager that he can cheer Lian up because Forager is her favorites larvae-sitter. Meanwhile, Conner is wondering if larvae-sitter is now a thing.
  • Subtle Superpowering: Zviad Baazov is the United Nations ambassador for Markovia and uses his subtle psionic influence to manipulate people. He uses this to nudges Brion towards committing regicide against his uncle.
  • Surprisingly Realistic Outcome:
    • Black Lightning and Superboy try a High-Dive Escape out of the metahuman trafficking hospital, and Black Lightning hits a rock hidden under the water and is knocked out.
    • Brion is (over-)eager to rescue his sister, but since he and his "team" (Halo and Forager) are new to "the life", they are immediately and effortlessly captured by Ra's al Ghul and co.
    • Wolf is no longer active as he's getting pretty old by wolf years. (Already a full-grown adult in the original season, it's been at least seven years and probably closer to eight at the start of season 3.)
    • The League's families have play dates at each other's homes, which essentially paints a target over their heads if villains manage to find out even one of their superhero relatives' secret identities. Fortunately, while the Light does know about the League's secret identities, they know that it's a bad idea to do anything about it, so when someone like the rogue Ocean Master attempts to do it, they send Lady Shiva to stop him.
    • Joan Garrick dies off-screen of either old age or sickness. The comics avoided this by stating continual exposure to Jay's Speed Force aura (or something) gave her the same longevity as him. It seems Jay's speed powers do slow down his aging and extend his life in the show, as he still appears to be in amazing health for a man his age, but the same doesn't apply to his wife.
    • Beast Boy in the comics, when facing traumas, is usually able to use his jokey attitude to cope with his losses, and continued to do so over the years without facing any serious health problems. This is not the case here in season 4. After a long Trauma Conga Line (his mother being killed by Queen Bee, his capture and torture by the Reach as part of Kaldur's Mole plan, the death of his adopted mother (his mother's friend from her show) along with almost her entire hero team in a suicide mission, and Geo-Force's Face–Heel Turn), his jokey demeanor is no longer present, he is shown to be very agitated and stressed out of fear of losing anyone else, and it takes one more bad thing happening to him (Superboy's Heroic Sacrifice) to make him snap into a downward spiral of depression and sleeping pill addiction, to the point where his girlfriend Perdita and an intervention from his teammates won't shake him. Ultimately, the solution proves to be something most superhero shows never fully dive into: therapy.
    • Bouncing off that last point, mental trauma has become a growing issue for all the superheroes within the show over the course of four seasons. While there was attempts to make therapy compulsory, there was only so much done especially since Black Canary seems to be the only licensed therapist within the superhero community. So in the Season 4 finale she suggests creating a place to get heroes away from the life for however long they need to recuperate their minds.
  • Superhuman Trafficking: Now that there's reliable ways to detect and activate the metagene, metahuman trafficking has become an epidemic on Earth, with everyone from first world countries to third world countries to corporations looking to exploit them.
  • Thanksgiving Episode: “Illusion of Control” takes place on Thanksgiving.
  • Theme Twin Naming: Dawn and Don Allen.
  • Thought They Knew Already: At the end of Season 4, Marvin is invited to the wedding of M'gann and Conner, where he learns that a large number of his friends were all superheroes. Turns out no one told him because they thought he already knew.
  • Threatening Shark: When Tigress infiltrates Santa Prisca via the water, a shark attacks her, Onyx, and Cassandra Savage, and has to be fought off.
  • Time Skip: Two years have passed since Invasion.
  • Toilet Humor: In the episode Forbidden Secrets of Civilizations Past! Kilowog relaxes in his chair and.. as the automated voice in his ring says, initiates recycling of bio-waste. This is very embarrassing for him as it is, but the fact that he did so during a meeting with the Justice League and New Gods, of all times, makes it so much worse...
  • Took a Level in Jerkass: Garfield goes this way hard in Season 4. He starts out irritable due to the lengthy stay in Mars (which makes you wonder why he even decided to join the trip in the first place), but once Conner is presumably killed he goes completely off the rails. He blows off Perdita, his acting gig and the Outsiders and when confronted he either gives poorly veiled excuses or just decides to tear into everyone verbally. It takes nearly the entire season to get him back to a stable condition, and even then it will take far longer to repair the relationships he hurt.
  • Turn Out Like His Father: In "I Know Why the Caged Cat Sings," Jade reveals that one of the reasons she doesn't want to be involved in the upbringing of her daughter is because she fears Lian turning out like her. Adding to this, she admits that she feels she is too much like her father, the mercenary Sportsmaster, who put both his daughters through hell, training them to fight and being abusive in general.
  • Valentine's Day Episode: "Overwhelmed" takes place mostly during the evening of February 14.
  • Voice with an Internet Connection: Oracle acts as Nightwing's and, by extension, the Outsiders' sitrep, later shown to perform this function for Batman's group as well.
  • We Can Rule Together: After pulling a Face–Heel Turn and declaring himself King of Markovia, Brion offers both Tara and Violet a place at his side. They refuse.
  • Wham Line:
    A masked man in a red hood: Gray...son?
    Ra's al Ghul: Oh, your memory is finally returning. Excellent.
  • Wham Shot:
    • Talia holding a baby.
    • In "Exceptional Human Beings", Hal looks visibly aged, despite this not being an issue for the other heroes and him being in his late thirties to early forties.
    • In "Triptych" at the end when the shot zooms out to reveal that the three debriefings that had been happening throughout the episode were all happening in the Batcave, at the same time, revealing the existence of the "Anti Light".
  • Xanatos Gambit: The third season finale sees the Team and Outsiders return to Markovia when Baron Bedlam escapes prison and performs a coup d'etat. When they get in, Terra, performing her usual The Mole role, is ordered to assassinate the Outsiders' leader Beast Boy at a critical moment with the hopes that the Light can use it to set up registration rules for future metahumans to traffic. Instead, the heroes knew she had been a mole, and use their kindness towards her to convince her to fully side with them instead. As her brother Geo-Force had been Locked Out of the Loop, he executes Baron Bedlam, their Evil Uncle, in rage, and takes over the throne from his older brother Gregor instead. Because he was another member of the Outsiders, the Light banked on substituting Terra's attempted murder of Beast Boy with Geo-Force's violation of Thou Shalt Not Kill against Bedlam to set up their law, except Black Lightning accessed the communicator that Terra threw to the ground, catching Luthor red-handed, and works with Cyborg, Superboy, and Superman to successfully oust him from the United Nations, with Troia now the secretary-general of the United Nations.
    • However, the Light had other plans that enabled them to survive this. Luthor wasn't the only criminal inside the United Nations, so was Zviad Baazovi, Markovia's ambassador. He used psychic manipulation to enable Geo-Force's takeover from internal impulses he felt deep down, but were nudged to the surface, rendering him a Puppet King to the Light, and securing their control of Markovia, the Light sacrificing their control of the United Nations so Markovia could be a country full of metahumans.
  • Yank the Dog's Chain: Black Lightning manages to save the second Plasmus... only for Plasmus to get shot by a farmer immediately afterwards.


Video Example(s):

Alternative Title(s): Young Justice Outsiders


(SPOILERS!) Young Justice s3

The Team is horrified after Brion kills murderous supervillain Baron Bedlam, as they have a strict no kill rule. After Brion's sister Tara and his girlfriend Violet refuse to side with him, Brion turns against The Team and banishes them from Markovia.

How well does it match the trope?

4.78 (9 votes)

Example of:

Main / WhatTheHellHero

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