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This article is about the Season 1 episode. You may be looking for the eponymous character of the same name, Henry King Jr..


"Brainwave Jr." is the tenth episode of the first season of Stargirl.

It premiered on DC Universe on July 20, 2020, and aired on The CW on July 21, 2020.

Synopsis

"LET ME START AT THE BEGINNING — As Henry Jr. hones his newfound skills, uncovered secrets from his family’s past force him to make a difficult decision. Meanwhile, Courtney, Yolanda, Beth and Rick’s latest plan brings them face to face with a member of the ISA. Finally, tensions between Pat and Barbara force her to revisit her own past."

Summary

Two years ago in Blue Valley, Pat Dugan is studying several notes as Barbara finishes her work a couple of booths away. The waitress announces they're closing and asks for any final orders - they both answer a banana split. They look at each other with a smile and make chit chat, with Barbara announcing she's finished with selling her deceased mother's house, adding it was hard to let go. Pat asks if she leaves here, and she responds she used to but now lives in California, just like Pat. They introduce each other, and she asks what he's doing in Blue Valley. Pat responds he's on a hunt before correcting himself and says he collects old cars. The waitress returns saying they only have one banana left. Pat wants Barbara to have it, but she has a better idea - they split it and make conversation over the dessert.

In the present, Barbara drops the laundry in shock at the Cosmic Staff, yelling it was. The pair both stutter for excuses, and Pat lets Courtney take the lead but she says it's a broom. Pat decides to tell the truth, much to Courtney's reluctance, and he says it's Starman's as she say it was her dad's. She elaborates that he was a superhero and now she's one too. Pat advises her that's not a good place to start, but she marches on and accuses Jordan Mahkent of murder. A confused Barbara asks Pat was she's talking about. He decides to tell her from the beginning.

Cut forward, Barbara is looking at a picture of Starman and Stripesy, commenting on the latter's name. Courtney adds he now goes by S.T.R.I.P.E., much to her corrective chagrin. She asks if Jordan, her boss, is this iceman they're talking about. Courtney confirms he's Icicle, whose behind everything bad in Blue Valley and who murdered her dad. Barbara rebounds on Pat, angrily telling him off on filling her daughter's head with this superhero nonsense. Courtney defends Pat, but Barbara demands she goes upstairs. She tries to convince her mother the Staff chose her as Sylvester Pemberton is her father, but Barbara denies this. As she tries to approach the Staff, Barbara finally screams at her to go to her room. Pat says he knows it's a lot to process, but Barbara is dubious of his past as a "assistant superhero". He corrects her that he was a sidekick. Barbara, admitting that if this is true, then their entire marriage is a lie. Pat fiercely declares what they have together is real, but Barbara is angry he dragged Courtney into this life. He retorts that all of this was supposed to stay in his past and it was never meant to be brought up again. Barbara asks for one last truth - she asks if Courtney's accident was really from a car wreck. He confesses it wasn't, and she solemnly asks him to get out of the house.

At the hospital, Henry King Jr. approaches his father, who whispers it was just last month when Jr. was blowing out six candles on his birthday. Ten years he can't remember. He asks what they're doing in Nebraska, and Jr. responds that they moved here after his mother died. Henry Snr. mutters her name, Merri, in shock, and Jr. realized he doesn't remember her death. He explains to his father that she drowned in an accident, having supposed to pick up Jr. at school. He says Snr. told him she was found in the pool, ice cold. Snr. hugs his son, declaring he loved her in a mental thought. Jr. responds that he knows, much to Snr.'s surprise that he inherited his gift. He asks if he knew beforehand, but Jr. says he didn't - it only began when he was in a comma. Snr. surmises he may have been reaching out to his son to activate his powers. He says he knows how freighting his powers might be in the early stages, but vows to help his son.

Courtney sadly paces her room, looking down at her father's locket and going to get the gift she was going to give him in her childhood. She hears Mike asking Pat if everything's ok since Barbara looks upset. Pat assures his son it's all fine, that'll he go sleep at the garage and be back in the morning. But Mike questions what's next after that, to which Pat doesn't have an answer. He asks if they'll be a divorce, but Pat hopes not. Mike declares he'll go with him, to his protests but he's determined to follow his dad. Pat, touched, comments that he knows he doesn't say this a lot, but says he loves him as Mike goes upstairs.

At the hospital, Henry Jr. dozes off until he begins to hear his sleeping father's thoughts, who repeats Merri's name along with Jordan's and Starman's. Realization dawning on his face, he rushes out the room, not noticing Jordan Mahkent as he enters Henry Snr.'s room, who greets his old friend as he sleeps.

At home, Henry racks through old boxes and finds Tape #3233, which begins with a blunt announcement by Henry Snr. that his wife is dead - just like that. Jr. dejectedly looks at his mother's picture as Snr. tells of when they met as he robbed a bank. He says she was known as the Girl of 1000 Gimmericks, and says he was stunned by how pure and good her thoughts were. She caught him, in more ways than one. However, being with her made him question Jordan and his mission. The latter couldn't allow it - he led the JSA to them and killed them, including Merri's brother, Starman. He knew she'd never forgive him for his part, and hoped she's go into hiding but didn't. He utters a "damn you" to Jordan, and says there are no more good thoughts left. Jr. utters Jordan's name, and races of the office.

At the Dugan-Whitmore house, the Cosmic Staff enters Courtney's room and wakes her. She says they can't go out as her mother is too upset, and orders it back to its crate. The Staff leaves, but evidently travels to Pat's garage and ominously points at a picture of Icicle.

At the hospital, Jordan proudly states the decade-long progress of Project: New America is nearing it's reality, and Henry Sr. is the last piece needed to control every mind within six states. As Henry gets dressed, Jordan excitedly tells Henry about helping them see the light - their light, their way. Henry Sr. asks about Stargirl, and as he does, the Cosmic Staff crashes into the room, hitting Jordan with a ball of light that sends him into a wall. Henry immediately neutralizes it, trapping it in place with his mental shield. The Staff cries out in warbled shrieks as Jordan approaches, and as he touches the tip he encases the Staff in ice to his glee. Just then, Henry Jr. enters the common area and sees Jordan with the Staff through the window. Jordan mutters where the Cosmic Staff came form, and a confused Henry asks if that's Starman's Staff. Jordan tells his friend to come with him to get his questions answered. As they step outside, Henry Sr. senses the mental presence of Jr., whose hiding nearby. However, he doesn't think much of it, and the two men leave.

In the morning, Courtney discovers the Staff gone, and races up to question her mother. Barbara thinks Pat took it, but Courtney rabbles on that the Staff is the only weapon that could stop Icicle and she's the only one who can use it. Barbara announces they're leaving Blue Valley, much to her shock. Courtney once again tries to defend Pat, but Barbara says she's going to work and will be back in one hour and tells Courtney to start packing.

Courtney goes over to the Pit Stop, where Mike is asleep in a car. She knocks on the garage door, and Pat opens it. Courtney quickly explains that Barbara wants them to leave today, which makes Pat regret telling her everything in the first place. He drives off to try to explain everything to Barbara again, and Mike comes out to again talk to Courtney, about how they're supposed to be siblings, and that siblings don't keep anything from each other. He tells Courtney to have a good life, and closes the garage door.

Dejected, Courtney walks around in town, and suddenly hears someone call her name. Looking around, she sees Henry, who motions her over. She runs over, and he puts a hand on her shoulder, which triggers a whole bunch of thoughts in pictures, from the tape where Henry Sr. reveals that Merri's brother is Starman. When she snaps out of it, Courtney shrieks and falls down, and tells Henry to stay away from her, and Henry explains that he didn't know what he just did. Courtney tells him that she could see what he was thinking, and suddenly realizes that they're cousins, and hugs Henry, who awkwardly tells her to maybe sort that out later. He explains that Jordan has her staff, and his dad. Courtney suddenly realizes that Henry's dad knows who she is, as Henry explains that he can't remember anything from the last ten years since Merri died, because it hurts him too much. Courtney says that's good, and quickly says it's sad, but good for now, and says that they need to get her Staff and Henry Sr. back. Henry explains that his mom was starting to change his dad, and that he could see it, and feel it, and realizes that that might be the reason Jordan killed her. Courtney says that Jordan killed her dad, and his mom too, and that they're going to need help.

At the American Dream, Barbara is packing up her things into a box, and puts a picture of her and Courtney in it, along with a cup that says "World's Greatest Mom". She picks up a picture of Pat and Mike, hesitates, and puts it back on the desk. Barbara suddenly sits down in her chair and writes an email to someone named "skurtis61@gmail.com", and titles the subject "Your Daughter Courtney," and asks him to reply if this is him. She then proceeds to search up "Starman."

During lunch at BVHS, Rick sarcastically congratulates Courtney for giving away their identies to the enemy, and Courtney says that he's not the enemy. Yolanda protests against Henry's presence, and Henry says that if it helps, she didn't tell him anything; he read her mind, to which Courtney hastily adds that he's not going to do anymore. Beth says that's only polite, as Courtney explains that her mom wants them to leave town today, forever, and Beth says she can't leave. Courtney says if they can get the staff and defeat the ISA, they can save the town, and Pat and Barbara. Rick adds that they'll be able to save Henry's dad, and tells Courtney that if Brainwave gets his memories back, he'll kill her first, then all of them, and that their identities will be hidden until Jr. gives them up first. Henry Jr. says he's not going to tell anybody anything, and Rick says that they all know when they find Brainwave, they have to break him in two while they can, much to Henry's protests. Rick taunts him, standing up and saying that he should try and stop him, right now, as Henry, starting to lose control, tells him to sit down, as he mind blasts a tray of food and Rick flying across the cafeteria. Beth stands up and tells everyone to sit down and ignore them, "like you usually do", and Yolanda reminds Henry that she told him to stay away from her friends, and that he knows what she'll do to him, as Courtney tries to break it up, telling her to save it for the bad guys, as Yolanda says that Henry is the bad guy. Rick says there's no way he's working with Henry, and Beth asks what Pat thinks about it. Courtney explains that he's with her mom, and Beth tells everyone that they have to do it for Courtney. Yolanda says she's only doing it because she knows Courtney's going to do it anyway, and that someone's going to have to watch her back. She adds that Courtney chose Henry over her after all he did, and that they're not friends anymore.

Barbara is clicking on a picture of Starman, as Pat walks in, asking what she's doing here, and being returned the question. He tells her that this is the most dangerous place in town, and asks why Barbara's searching Starman up, who explains that she's all confused right now and just wants to figure it out, as Pat says that it's not her mystery to solve, and to just get Courtney and go far away. Jordan knocks on the door and enters, with Sofus and Lily in tow, and Sofus says Barbara looks lovely today. There's a little awkward exchange between Jordan and Pat, and Pat's phone rings, and after seeing that it's Courtney, he puts it away.

Underground, Courtney tells them that Pat's not answering, but they can't wait for him, and that she hopes him and his mom are okay. They all look at the tunnel ahead of them, and Beth asks who wants to go first, since she's been down there before, and that it's scary. Courtney leads the way, and the rest of them follow. Beth reports that Chuck is getting cut out underneath the signals. Rick says that now they have no info from Chuck and no Cosmic Staff, much to Yolanda's annoyance.

The tunnel splits into two parts, and Courtney decides that she and Henry should go one way while Beth, Yolanda, and Rick go the other way, and Yolanda says there's no way she's leaving her alone with Henry, and that she's going with her. Courtney agrees, and Beth and Rick go left while the other three go right, and decide to meet back in fifteen minutes.

Sofus places a plate of cookies on the table, and says it's to thank them for dinner, and Barbara says that it is so thoughtful. Sofus and Lily begin talking in Norwegian, and Jordan tells them something, and decides it's time for them to go. They leave the room, and Pat looks at Barbara, who asks him if he speaks Norwegian. Pat says he doesn't, as Barbara holds up her phone, which shows she was recording them the whole time.

In the underground tunnel, Henry tells Yolanda that he wishes she could read his mind, because he knows how much he hurt her, and that he would honestly do anything to take it back. After a moment of hesitation, Yolanda snaps at him that he can't, and walks off, following Courtney.

On the other side of the tunnels, Rick and Beth walk past Solomon Grundy, and Beth asks what that is. Rick replies that it's the thing that killed his parents.

Meanwhile, Courtney, Yolanda, and Henry arrive in Dragon King's lair, where they see Brainwave in his suit, hooked up to different wires, and the Cosmic Staff, locked up and hung up in the ceiling. They walk past Cindy, who is still locked up. Upon seeing them, Cindy yells for her dad, and tells him that Courtney is here, and that she wants to kill her herself. Dragon King looks at them, and signals for his henchmen to kill them. Courtney grabs a spear from the wall, and they prepare for a battle against at least 50 henchmen. Courtney flips them over with her spear, and Yolanda fights them in hand-to-hand combat. Henry attacks them with his mind, and they seem to be winning until a mob of the henchmen appear and best out Courtney. Yolanda runs over to save her, and slashes the henchmen.

Rick flips over his hourglass and Beth asks him what he's doing. Rick responds by saying he's going to rip out the door and kill Solomon Grundy himself, while Beth protests, saying that it's not what they're here for. Rick says that now they have a change of plans.

By now, Courtney, Yolanda, and Henry are defeating the last of the henchmen, and Dragon King decides to go fight them himself. Meanwhile, Henry goes to unhook his dad from the machines, and Dragon King is going over to Courtney to fight her himself. Cindy protests, asking to kill Courtney herself, as he ignore her and begins fighting with Courtney. Dragon King is able to get the best of Courtney, sawing her spear in half, and knocking her down. As he prepares for the killing blow, Yolanda runs to get the Cosmic Staff, and slides it to Courtney just in time, who uses it to fight back and send Dragon King flying a few feet. Dragon King stands back up, revealing his real face: a horrible reptilian face, which cause Yolanda and Courtney to scream, and Courtney blasts him away with the Cosmic Staff, effectively knocking him out.

Henry has managed to get his dad off the table, only to discover it's too late--Henry Sr. has his memories back. Sr. tells his son that this is how he's always been, and that it's who he is too, as Jr. screams, "No!" and sends his dad flying. Henry joins Courtney and Yolanda as they run off.

Rick is still trying to break Solomon Grundy out, and has just managed to bend the metal door open a little when Beth sees the henchmen, and tells Rick they have company. Rick simply punches one of them, which causes a domino effect, and the rest of them get knocked down too. Beth tells Rick they should go, as Rick tells Solomon Grundy that he'll be back, and runs off with Beth. As they run, they bump into Henry, Yolanda, and Courtney, and realizing that they're being followed, they run away.

At Richie's diner, Pat tries to praise Barbara on the way she recorded them so that they could hear what the Mahkents were saying, and Barbara brushes it off, while her phone is translating the recording. The translation is ready, and Barbara and Pat listen to it: "I like her. You can see how Jordan looks at her. It won't matter soon. Once the machine is turned on, everything will change." Barbara asks Pat what machine they're talking about, and he says that he doesn't know.

Jordan knocks on Barbara's door, and opens it, seeing that there's no one there. He closes it, and we see that "skurtis61@gmail.com" has replied to Barbara's email.

Meanwhile, the teens are still running, and run straight into metal bars blocking their path. Rick bends it easily and tells Beth to go through, who complies. Yolanda follows her, and calls Courtney to go through, just as the bars bend back. They turn around and see that Brainwave is there, controlling it. Courtney tries to blast him with the Cosmic Staff, but is intercepted by a wave of telekinesis. Rick and Henry work together to bend the bars back, and Rick steps through, while Henry manages to make Courtney fly through the bars, while she's still trying to get past the wave of telekinesis. Just as Courtney flies through, Brainwave snaps the bars back to normal, and Rick tries to bend the bars back, while Beth tries to get a signal from Chuck.

Brainwave talks to Henry telepathically, and attacks him, which makes Henry fall. Henry attacks his father back, who steps back a little bit. As he stands up, Henry tries to talk to his dad, while everyone behind the bars attempt to break them, to no avail, as Brainwave is controlling the bars. Henry says that people aren't monsters, and that he doesn't want to fight Brainwave. He tells his dad that he loves him, and Sr. says that he loves his son too, and tells Jr. to allow him to train him. Jr. says no, and says that his dad is better than this; that his mom knew his dad could be good, and believed in him. He says that Merri loved his dad, and that he knows Jordan killed her because she saw the good in him too. Brainwave says that Jordan didn't kill her; he did. He had to make a choice, and he asks Henry to not make him make one again. Sr. asks Jr. to stand by his side, and Jr. says that he will never stand by his father's side, as he telepathically brings pieces of the floor up to attack his father. The rocks are intercepted by Brainwave, who says, "Goodbye, son," and sends the rocks hurling towards Henry Jr., who goes flying and hits the bars hard, falling to the ground. Brainwave begins to bring the ceiling down, while everyone tries desperately to break the bars.

Henry looks up at Yolanda, and says to her, "I am sorry," and tells Courtney that she's right: people are good, and that she shouldn't let this change that. Just then, Brainwave brings the ceiling down on Henry, and as dust and smoke rise from the debris, Courtney and Beth look on with disbelief, while Yolanda struggles not to cry against Rick's shoulder.

Cast

Starring

Special Guest Star

Guest Starring

Co-Starring

Notes and Trivia

  • Andi Armaganian previously edited the Pilot of Stargirl.
  • Cameron Gellman (Hourman) had to pull apart metal bars during a scene with the JSA. He kept struggling with it and couldn't pull the bars apart despite having trained for it. The crew told him to "put his back into it" but he still wasn't able to bend them. The crew decided to try and when they failed, they realized they forgot to put the hydraulics at the top of the bars, so Cameron was trying to bend real metal poles.
  • In the scenes image of a trailer title, the name "Cheetah Man" can be seen on the door for Neil Jackson and Christopher James Baker's trailers. This isn't an actual comic book character and was created by Christopher James Baker's son as a way of proving he is an ISA member too and can be in the room with his dad and Icicle. "Cheetah Man" can run really fast.
  • When Barbara sends Sam an email, an unread email of hers is from "RoyalFlushC". The "Royal Flush Gang" also called the "Royal Flush Club" is the name of the gang that comic book Sam Kurtis was a member of in the Stars and STRIPE comic series. This group was a playing card-based team of supervillains that were usually enemies of the Justice League. Although the roster constantly changes, the aliases within the team usually remain centered around the top cards of a basic deck: Ten, Jack, Queen, King, and Ace.[2]
    • Additionally, the byline references a two of spades. In the comic series, Sam Kurtis' ranking within the Royal Flush Gang was the Two of Clubs.
  • Barbara's inbox also contains an email from Maggie Kramer, a character who previously appeared in "Stargirl" in a flashback. Maggie was Barbara's friend from Valley Village.
  • "Snap Dragon" is a nod to Dr. Ito's Stars and STRIPE counterpart, whose plan is called "Project Snap Dragon". The plans are similar in that they both involve a satellite dish.[3]
  • This is the second episode to feature a teenager's death, and the second episode to feature the death of an ISA member's child. The first was Joey Zarick in "Icicle".
  • (Neil Hopkins) revealed that Larry Crock had a scene in "Brainwave Jr." that was cut for both time and it took away from the suspense of the episode. In the scene, Larry invites Pat to stay at the Crock household since Pat is sleeping at The Pit Stop.[4]
  • For an exclusive interview with Jake Austin Walker and a breakdown of the episode, along with some incredible Easter eggs and behind the scenes information, click here.
  • In the first scene with Pat and Barbara in the diner, the waitress claims there is only one banana left, so the two decide to share the banana split. Right after this it cuts to a shot of the banana split with two full bananas on it.
  • On August 20, 2020, Calum Scott’s cover of Robyn’s “Dancing on My Own” debuted at No. 1 on The Hollywood Reporter’s Top TV Songs chart, powered by Tunefind. This comes after its appearance in the 10th episode of the first season of DC’s Stargirl during the scene where Henry Jr. sacrifices himself to save Courtney and the others.[5]

Gallery

Promotional

Screenshots

Behind the Scenes

Soundtrack

Title Artist Scene Description
Ain't No Mountain High Enough Marvin Gaye & Tammi Terrell Opening sequence.
The Book of Love The Monotones Barbara and Pat share a banana split during a flashback.
Dancing On My Own Calum Scott The JSA stare at the aftermath of Henry's death. Also plays during the end credits.

References

Navigational

Season 1 Episodes
"Stargirl" "S.T.R.I.P.E." "Icicle" "Wildcat" "Hourman and Dr. Mid-Nite" "The Justice Society" "Shiv Part One" "Shiv Part Two" "Brainwave" "Brainwave Jr." "Shining Knight" "Stars and S.T.R.I.P.E. Part One" "Stars and S.T.R.I.P.E. Part Two"
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