Stargirl reveals the truth about Courtney’s dad in “Shining Knight”

Courtney struggles to come to terms with a difficult truth on an emotional new episode of Stargirl that bonds our favorite characters closer together.

I didn’t think I’d love Stargirl as much as I do, but I really do. I don’t know if it’s the teenage superhero high jinx angle or what, but I’m so here for it. I think what really stands about this series is that it handles its multiple storylines well and manages to bring them together effortlessly.

Yes, we have multiple villains, and yes, there’s more than one superhero. But each character is given his/her time to shine and given a backstory that we can all relate to. Which brings me to this week’s episode and Courtney’s conviction that Starman is her father. Her doubt has never wavered, and she’s never believed anything else to be true. However, this week’s blast from the past shakes her up.

But before I get to that, let’s catch up on where Barb is with all this Justice/Injustice Society madness. She was all but ready to leave her life in Blue Valley behind after learning that Pat and Courtney were working in secret together. But after Brainwave killed his own son, Barbara is realizing that perhaps Pat and Courtney are right to worry about what’s been going on in Blue Valley.

I like how Stargirl has developed the relationship between Pat and Courtney over the course of the season. As her stepfather, Courtney wasn’t too keen on him, but I think she’s gotten to the point where she views him as a fatherly figure in her life.

Which brings me to the episode’s climax: the return of Courtney’s dad. In the previous episode, we saw Barb sending out an email to him, and I think we all hoped that Joel McHale would be retuning as Starman, that perhaps he survived that brutal massacre years ago.

However, we soon find out that Courtney’s father is a man named Sam Curtis (Geoff Stults). Raise your hand if you remember Stults from 7th Heaven  and Grace and Frankie!

Anyway, Sam shows up at their house under the ruse of wanting to check in on them and make sure they’re alright. Of course, from the minute he showed up on the screen, I knew he wasn’t there with good intentions. And of course, I was right. It turns out that Sam only wanted the other half of his locket, the one that Courtney has, so he could sell it. He didn’t give two hoots about his own daughter.

I relished the moment where Pat punches Sam square in the face after he saw how hurt Courtney was. And the fact that Sam made some lewd comments about Barb didn’t help his case either.

Go, Pat! We love you for standing up for your family!

DC’s Stargirl — “Shining Knight” — Image Number: STG111a_0698r.jpg — Pictured (L-R): Cameron Gellman as Rick and Luke Wilson as Pat Dugan — Photo: Mark Hill/The CW — © 2020 The CW Network, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

Courtney’s real father falling far short of his expectations helped solidify the father-daughter bond between Pat and Courtney. I really appreciated that we got to see how far Pat would go for her.

Meanwhile, in the superhero part of the episode, Courtney is having a difficult time coming to terms with not being Starman’s daughter. She no longer knows what her role is as Stargirl, and the power of the Cosmic Staff dissipates. She thinks this is because she isn’t Starman’s daughter, but really, the power comes from within her and her belief in herself, not because of her genealogy. I love that message.

During the episode, we also meet the school janitor, aka The Shining Knight, who seems to have amnesia. He carries a sword around with him and totally gives off a Sword in the Stone vibe. Is he Merlin? Is he King Arthur? Is he from the past?!

The more this man talks, the more it seems like he’s foreshadowing what’s to come. He mentions a “Dragon”…perhaps referring to the Dragon King?

Finally, we come to the Jordan/Henry section of the episode, which I’m totally hooked on. Ever since he woke up from his coma, Henry has been all over the place, and even killed his own son. The more he settles back into his powers, he’s remembering things, including that Courtney is Stargirl.

However, it seems like Jordan, aka Icicle, is reluctant to do anything to Courtney or Barbara, despite Henry’s demands he kill them, because he likes Barb. I don’t think he’ll be able to do anything to her, and given that Henry can read his thoughts, he can’t hide this.

Stargirl loves to explore these conundrums for both the heroes and the villains. It makes the story riveting to follow, because at any moments, things can flip and loyalties change.

“Shining Knight” ends on a jarring note: Henry and Jordan decide to kill Courtney and her family. Ugh, why Jordan, why?! Did you have to crack under peer pressure?

This week’s Stargirl laid the foundation for the final two episodes of the season, and I think we’re in for one hell of a treat. But mainly, I want to know what will happen with Project: New America, and to find out who the heck Shining Knight is.

See you guys next week!

Grade: B

Next: WiC Watches: Stargirl

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