Stargirl Season 1 Episode 12 & 13 Finale Recap: Stars & S.T.R.I.P.E.
In the 12th episode of DC’s Stargirl, with the ISA on their trail, Courtney, Pat, and the team regroup to figure out their next steps. Meanwhile, Rick makes a breakthrough, and the team prepares for a showdown with the ISA. Then, in the Season 1 finale, as the ISA comes closer to accomplishing their mission, Courtney and the JSA face off against Icicle and the villains of the ISA.
Stars & S.T.R.I.P.E. Part One
Dr. King informs Jordan that Sportsmaster and Tigress are on the hunt for Pat, Courtney, Barbara, and Mike while Dr. Ito preps his machine as they discuss their master plan that will end with Brainwave reprogramming a chunk of the country to hold their same “values” in their New America. Brainwave says Jordan’s wife would be proud; Jordan wants to be informed when Stargirl and her family are dead. As Barbara and Courtney pack up at home, Pat takes Mike to his shop with the intention of showing him his giant robot and to tell him the truth about everything, but Mike ends up storming out after another fight. Sportsmaster then appears and attacks Pat while Tigress shows up at Courtney’s home and tries to kill her and Barbara. Barbara watches in awe as Courtney manages to overcome Tigress, and Mike shows up with a drill in the nick of time to save his bloodied up father who uses the distraction to knock out Sportsmaster and put STRIPE on autopilot.
After listening to his parents tell him to get over Barbara and how she wouldn’t have made a good wife on top of their suggestions they need to fill his son, Cameron, in on everything, Jordan receives word that Courtney and her family survived. Jordan contacts Principal Bowin, who is busy encouraging her son, Isaac, to use violence to stand up to his bullies. Courtney and her family regroup with Rick, Yolanda, Beth, Justin, and STRIPE at the family’s cabin. At the ISA headquarters, Cindy — still stuck in her jail cell — lashes out at King when he says it’s her fault he had to end Henry because she was supposed to watch him more closely. Brainwave tells Cindy that her father only sees her as a failed experiment, and the rest of the ISA agrees. Dr. Ito collects King to run an experiment on him and his new machine, with the test proving to be successful as Brainwave assures Ito their plan will work.
At the cabin, Beth checks on Yolanda who is pretending like she’s okay but is still grieving over Henry and feeling guilty. Rick explains to Justin how he’s trying to crack the code in his dad’s journal, knowing that his father must have figured out the ISA’s evil plans. Meanwhile, Tigress and Sportsmaster are licking their wounds when Principal Bowin shows up and tells them she’s going to help them take out Stargirl and her family, ensuring they won’t fail again. When Bowin accuses the pair of being unfit parents due to their sadism, Tigress shoots Bowin with her crossbow. Back at the cabin, Pat explains to Barbara that he didn’t tell her about his past before they got married because everyone he ever knew died and he thought he was done with that life, that all he cared about was their family. When he asks if they’re going to be okay, Barbara says she wants them to be.
Upstairs, Pat helps Rick crack the code by bringing up his father’s 1966 Mustang. After Rick finally pieces it together, Beth uses the goggles to manifest a 3D version of the map Rick’s dad put together of the ISA’s headquarters in the tunnels, including the synaptic amplifier machine Ito built. Now that the team knows what the ISA is up to, they come up with a plan to destroy the machine. Courtney suggests they split up, with Rick, Yolanda, and Justin entering from the opposite side of town while Courtney and Pat/STRIPE head in through a tunnel big enough to fit the robot as Beth and Chuck hack into the computers at The American Dream. Barbara says she wants to go with Beth, saying she knows the building better than anyone else. Pat tells Mike his job is to look after the dog. Later, when everyone is in position, they learn that the ISA appears to be trying to do some good (forcing people to embrace universal healthcare, ending discrimination, etc) but at the cost of millions of lives for those who don’t survive Brainwave’s reprogramming. The team also learns that only adults are affected and that the process has already begun, with Barbara, Justin, and Pat falling under Brainwave’s spell. The episode ends with Brainwave controlling Pat and using STRIPE to take a swing at Courtney.
Stars & S.T.R.I.P.E. Part Two
The season finale reveals that the amplifier was built underneath the school’s football field and is now up and running, essentially “freezing” all of the adults in town who are staring up at the sky as their brains are taken over by Brainwave. Jordan walks through the town, listening to a child desperately attempt to get her father’s attention. Jordan reassures the child that her father, and all of the adults, will be better people when they wake up — if they’re lucky enough to survive the process. In the tunnels, a Brainwave-controlled Pat manning STRIPE attacks Courtney, who is able to help Pat try to resist the mind control by referring to herself as Pat’s daughter and telling him that he’s always been there for her and she needs him now.
As Pat fights against Brainwave’s control and Yolanda and Rick try to help Justin do the same, Beth realizes the tunnels themselves must have frequency blocking systems that they might be able to turn back on to free Justin and Pat. To get past the Gambler’s firewalls, Beth and Chuck begin hacking into his money, distracting Sharpe long enough for Chuck to access the frequency blockers and disconnect Justin and Pat from Brainwave. It works, and Pat breaks through, telling Courtney he heard every word. Justin has also woken up and leads Yolanda and Rick further into the tunnels. While Sharpe warns Jordan that the JSA is in the tunnels, Rick tells Yolanda that after they destroy the machine he’s going to kill Solomon Grundy to get revenge for his murdered parents.
After Justin and the JSA regroup, they come face-to-face with Jordan, Sportsmaster, Tigress, and Dr. Ito. The JSA and ISA finally battle as Sharpe opens up Grundy’s cage so he can join in. During the fight, Cindy gets out of her cell and stabs Ito, telling her father he shouldn’t have locked her up. The JSA overwhelm the ISA, and just when Pat/STRIPE is about to deliver a final blow to Jordan, Grundy appears and knocks him away. Rick attempts to charge at the beast but is sideswiped into the wall. Pat tells Courtney to go after the machine, saying he’ll protect Rick as he takes on Grundy. Courtney and Yolanda take off, but Cindy engages Courtney in a fight, leaving Yolanda alone to go after the machine. Brainwave leaves the machine, telling Sharpe to run his signal on a loop and that he’ll be back in five minutes, saying he’s going to help “kill those children.” Yolanda fights a few of Ito’s drones and eventually runs into Henry, who says his father didn’t kill him and that he’s been hiding in the tunnels. Yolanda sees through the lies, though, and stabs “Henry,” aka Brainwave, in the neck with her claws, telling him she had to watch Henry die and now she’s going to watch him die.
Tired of fighting with Cindy, Courtney blasts her with the staff and knocks her out. Courtney catches up with Yolanda, who acknowledges she knows it’s wrong but she killed Brainwave. The two race to find the machine; the students outside of the high school watch as Stargirl and the Cosmic Staff destroy the machine as it comes crashing to the ground. In the office, Jordan appears and freezes/breaks Beth’s goggles, supposedly killing Chuck, and grabs Barbara. Elsewhere, after Grundy destroys STRIPE Rick saves Pat and later tells him to go save his wife, telling him he doesn’t need the robot, while Rick uses the last five minutes on the Hourglass to keep fighting Grundy. Jordan drags Barbara to the top of the building and tries to convince her to run away with him, saying he can keep her and Courtney safe, but that one day Project: New America will succeed. Barbara rejects Jordan, and before he can toss her off the roof, Pat shows up.
Jordan tells Pat that he doesn’t have any powers, or STRIPE, so how exactly is he going to save his wife? “Our daughter,” says Pat, before Courtney flies in and knocks Jordan down. Meanwhile, Rick is pummeling Grundy and is about to kill him with a large boulder but notices the big guy suddenly isn’t fighting back. Rick screams at Grundy for being a “stupid animal” before tossing aside the boulder and yelling at Grundy, who appears only scared now, to leave and never come back. Justin finds Rick and sees that he has “spared the beast” before the two run outside and find Beth. They watch as Stargirl and Icicle struggle on the roof before a powerful blast sends them both flying. Pat saves Barbara from falling over the side as Wildcat appears and breaks Courtney’s fall. They look over and see that Jordan is okay, but before he can attack once more, Mike shows up and hits Icicle with Justin’s truck and asks if that means he can now join the JSA. The group has a mini celebration complete with hugs.
After Rick, Courtney, and Yolanda promise Beth they will fix her goggles and bring Chuck back, the group says goodbye to Justin. Justin tells Pat he feels like he didn’t do anything, but Pat says Justin helped them to realize what was going on in town and that he helped stopped the ISA. Justin says he’s going to try and find the other soldiers and Pat asks him to let him know if he does find them because he would like to see them. Justin tells Pat that Starman would be proud of him and then takes off. Barbara later wonders what the rest of the world is going to think happened in Blue Valley, but Pat says the mysterious “they” always comes up with a story. Sure enough, the news reports that the small town experienced an earthquake, nothing more. Elsewhere, Cindy tears through a storage unit before finally finding a diamond-shaped object. She tells Eclipso, whose soul is seemingly bound inside, she can see him in there.
The last bit of the episode moves forward six weeks after the battle between the JSA and the ISA. Barbara and Pat have invited the kids over to join them, Courtney, and Mike for Christmas dinner. Courtney takes Pat aside and gives him a present, saying it’s something she’s been wanting to give him for a long time. The gift ends up being a mug that says World’s Greatest Dad; Pat says he loves it and the two hug as Barbara happily looks on. The entire group takes a big family holiday picture together, and for the moment, everything is perfect. Later, the Cosmic Staff takes Courtney on a ride around town before they stop at the water tower. Pat, flying in a rebuilt STRIPE, joins his daughter as they gaze at the snowy forest around them before the two take off in flight together. In the final scene, we head to North Hollywood, California where Sylvester Pemberton, aka the apparently alive Starman, is searching for Pat Dugan.
What did you think of the Stargirl two-part season finale? What are you hoping to see in Season 2? Let us know in the comment section below!