A Murder Mystery Takes Shape On This Week’s ‘Stargirl’

by Frank Martin

The tone of Stargirl‘s third season has definitely started to emerge. The show has firmly planted itself as a slow-burn murder mystery. It also uses this mystery to deal with the tensions between all of the characters. Chief among them: Sylvester Pemberton’s (Joel McHale) attempts to reintegrate into society following his resurrection and new role as part-time Starman. This all plays out as the villains continue to try to cement their new relationships with the heroes. There’s obviously an unseen force at work, which makes itself known in the episodes closing moments, but there’s still a long way to go before that threat starts to take shape and the season really kicks into gear.

The main plot of this episode is a mysterious message Doctor Mid-Nite (Anjelika Washington) received in her goggles. We learn this came from Cindy (Meg DeLacy), still trying to be helpful in her own way. Her behavior is going to have to come to a reckoning eventually, but for now, her actions lead to a confrontation between Starman, Sportsmaster (Neil Hopkins), and Tigress (Joy Osmanski). The highlight of the episode is their battle, which takes place in a supermarket. For a town that is known for being quaint and quiet, a superhero battle in the middle of a grocery store should be quite a scene. But given the nature and tone of the series, it’s easy to let such things slide.

The overall pacing of this season is far slower than the first two, but that’s mainly because of the format it’s taking. Using a murder mystery as a means to grow the arcs of the villains is a smart decision. It could become a liability, though, if it takes too long for the main threat to emerge. There are drips and drabs of what’s to come, but nothing concrete has taken shape yet. All in all, it has been interesting to see the shift in dynamics between heroes and villains that have grown over three seasons. There’s still a long way to go, but if past seasons or any indication, this season is still on track to finish strong, even if it is taking longer to get there.

Stargirl airs Wednesdays on The CW.

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