Synopsis for "A Better World, Part II"
Continued from "A Better World, Part I"...
In the Justice Lord Batman's Batcave, each of the Justice League members except for Hawkgirl are held spread-eagled in shackles and cells with mercury switches that will alert its Batman to any slight movements. Justice League Batman simply asks his Justice Lord counterpart why. Justice Lord Batman says it's because the Justice League failed to do what needed to be done. Then that Batman goes over to Flash's cell where he tries to calm his prisoner down, saying that the Justice League Hawkgirl is in one of their best hospitals. He begins to say, "The last thing we want is to lose another...", and then he just stops and looks at Flash asking, "Another what?", before he walks away and leaves the cell area.
The Justice League Batman tells Flash that the Justice Lord Batman "seems to like" him because something must have happened to his world's Flash that has triggered him and his team to go to this extreme. The only thing Flash is concerned about is escape and so asks the Justice League Batman if he's coming up with a plan to get them out. Batman tells Flash that he's not going to, knowing that his Justice Lord counterpart could anticipate every single move he would ever make.
In the Justice League universe, the Justice Lords begin renovation on the Watchtower by sealing up its launch bay door with a durable metal plate. Wonder Woman comments on the Justice League leaving its satellite headquarters so unprotected. Hawkgirl says they themselves did that at one time, with Superman adding that doing such came back to bite them time and again.
Back in the Justice Lords universe, its Batman continues to monitor his prisoners until he sees that one of them, the Flash, has suddenly flatlined. He immediately goes over into the Flash's cell and unlocks one of his hands, only to get knocked out by the Flash with only one hand. Flash unlocks himself from his shackles and puts Justice Lord Batman in them, mockingly saying, "you'll appreciate this someday." He then goes over to the Justice League Batman's cell and rapidly and randomly punches numbers on the security lock keypad when Batman simply tells him the code: 91939. Flash punches the code in, and the door opens. Batman simply tells Flash they're the numbers he himself uses. When asked how he managed to escape, Flash says he sped up his heart to make it look like he flatlined -- something he never even knew how to do until now.
After freeing all the captive Justice League members in Justice Lord Batman's cell area, Justice League Superman feels ready to kick some butt, but the Flash tells him they need to get Hawkgirl out of the hospital first. Justice League Batman tells them to go find the hospital Hawkgirl was put in while he goes to find the portal that brought them to this world. Justice League J'onn J'onnz offers Batman help, but he says he must do this alone.
The Justice League's search for hospitals through the computers, though, proves fruitless until Green Lantern suggest that, since the Justice Lords are seen as villains in their world, there's only one possible hospital to put a villain in. This leads the team to Arkham Asylum, where the Flash is told to wait outside since he's seen as dead in that world. They are greeted by an eerily-cordial Joker who is seen with two tiny holes in his forehead, who shows the team past a rec room inhabited by Batman villains also with the same tiny holes in their foreheads. Before he gives them access to a locked room, the Joker asks for that day's password. J'onn J'onnz reads Joker's mind and tells Superman "applesauce", which he then tells the Joker. The Joker tells them that Wonder Woman was supposed to say that and then presses an alarm button. Soon they are greeted by a bunch of Superman robots which the team must fight through.
Justice League Batman soon finds the portal deep in the heart of the Batcave, but Justice Lord Batman finds him and the two engage in a battle of wills and words about each other's methods, with Justice Lord Batman prevailing in convincing the Justice League Batman that he has made a world in which no eight-year-old has to worry about losing his parents to a punk with a gun (referencing Batman's origin). Justice Lord Batman notices that the Justice League is "tearing up Arkham" and offers to get them out safely. As the two Batmen head for the hospital, Justice League Batman notices that the Gotham City of the Justice Lords Earth is much cleaner. Justice Lord Batman tells his Justice League counterpart that if he wants citizens to respect the bigger laws, he should enforce the smaller ones. However, a scene at an open-air restaurant where a customer is taken away by the authorities simply for questioning how much he was being billed for for his meal does give the Justice Lord Batman some pause as far as how much control he has taken to make his world a better one.
Flash meanwhile continues to wait outside Arkham, smelling a rose that he picked until a familiar voice tells him he shouldn't pick the flowers. It is Poison Ivy, who sounds strangely subdued and has two tiny holes in her forehead like the inmates in Arkham. She proceeds to snip off the heads of the roses, saying that such things don't bother her anymore. Suddenly a head from a Superman robot comes flying out to the entrance gate, which cues Flash in to the fact that his Justice League members need him. He zips in and offers the team assistance in taking down the Superman robots while Justice League Green Lantern goes into the room where Justice League Hawkgirl is put on life support. He disconnects her and heads for the entrance as the Justice League has turned the Superman robots into scrap, but get no further beyond the door when they are greeted by the police and the military, telling them to surrender. Then Justice Lord Batman shows up and tells the policemen to stand down by his authority as a Justice Lord. He leads the Justice League out the back of Arkham and to the Batcave, where they reenter the portal to return to their own world. Justice League Batman gives his Justice Lord counterpart a look before he follows.
As the Justice League reenter their world, Batman tells Superman that they may have to cross some line in order to defeat a team as powerful as they are. Soon the Justice Lords are alerted to a prison breakout with Lex Luthor taking a hostage with him. Justice Lord Superman decides he's going to take this Luthor down just as he did his world's own Luthor, but the rest of the team says this world may not be ready for that. They instead go down to the prison together, and Justice Lord Superman already has Luthor in his clutches, demanding to know where the hostage is. Luthor tells him there is no hostage, just before he transforms into the Justice League Martian Manhunter. Then as he turns invisible and intangible, the Justice Lord team is hit with a charge of electricity to stun them, just as they did to the Justice League. However, Justice Lord Hawkgirl manages to withstand it and break her way out of their enclosement, only to be hit by the Justice League Green Lantern's ring energy beams.
Soon the two Martian Manhunters turn into four-armed flying serpents and attack each other. The two Green Lanterns fight each other with their energy rings. The two Wonder Women whip each other around using the Justice League version's magic lasso. Justice Lord Superman is pelted by rocks thrown at him at machine-gun pace by the Flash until he runs out, then simply entices that Superman to slug him while darting his punches at super-speed. Then Flash grabs him and spins into a whirlwind to hurl Justice Lord Superman out into a lower-floor office. Justice Lord Wonder Woman has her Justice League counterpart on the ropes and is about to crush Justice League Batman with a piece of building when Justice League Wonder Woman knocks her out with her tiara, giving Batman time to dodge as she falls.
Flash enters the room the Justice Lord Superman has fallen into when he suddenly arises, knocks Flash to a wall, and grabs him, ready to kill him. Flash tries to remind the Justice Lord Superman he's the last piece of his conscience left so he can't kill him. Justice Lord Superman simply says he's done a lot of things he thought he'd never do the past two years, and killing Flash won't hurt. Then Justice League Superman gets his Justice Lord counterpart's attention with the appearance of his world's Lex Luthor beside him. Justice Lord Superman says his counterpart is now showing his true colors. Justice League Superman says it's just one of the hard choices he has to make.
Justice Lord Superman flies toward his counterpart and Luthor, but Luthor fires a beam from the gun seen earlier in the story at Justice Lord Superman, weakening him to the point where he falls to the ground. Then Luthor fires the gun at the other Justice Lords, also weakening them one at a time. Justice League Superman tells his counterpart that the weapon is a power disruptor that removes their powers permanently. Strangely, Luthor comes up behind Justice League Superman, sounding as if he's intending to use it on the Justice League as well, but instead hands the weapon over to Superman, saying that a deal is a deal. Justice League Superman reveals to his counterpart that the deal is a full pardon in exchange for his help. Justice Lord Superman says everything Luthor does from that point on will be his Justice League counterpart's fault. Justice League Superman says it's a high price to pay, but it's better than the alternative.
As the depowered Justice Lords are taken away, the Justice League Superman tells Flash that he wouldn't have been able to change his counterpart's minds because he himself deals with the same temptations everyday. This strikes the Flash as being strange, since he considered Superman to be a Boy Scout in comparison to the other heroes on the team. Superman interestingly says he never even made it to his first merit badge.
Later on at a press conference, when reporters ask Luthor what he's going to do now with his being pardoned, whether he will go back to running Lexcorp, he surprisingly tells them that he's considering going into politics.
Appearing in "A Better World, Part II"
- Justice League
- Justice Lords
- Superman Robots
- Jimmy Olsen
- Ron Troupe
- Arkham Asylum inmates (Earth-Justice Lords)
- Batgirl (Barbara Gordon) (Costume only)
- Nightwing (Dick Grayson) (Costume only)
- Robin (Tim Drake) (Costume only)
- Earth-Justice League
- Earth-Justice Lords
- Green Lantern Ring
- Lasso of Truth
- Thanagarian Mace
- Utility Belt
- Wonder Woman's Tiara
- Energy Disruptor/Power Disruptor Ray
- No notes.
- The episode borrows an element from the Marvel Comics' Squadron Supreme 12-issue mini-series story in showing villains that have been brainwashed into peaceful compliance, though through a direct lobotomy via Superman's heat vision instead of through a machine that rewrites a person's behavior patterns as in the Marvel Comics story. It also borrows the element of a superhero working together with a supervillain to take down other superheroes; in this case, the Justice League Superman aligning himself with his world's Lex Luthor to take down the Justice Lords.
- Batman's secret code for his Justice Lord counterpart's security override is 91939. The code is a reference to Batman's debut, published in 1939.
- After being freed from the Justice Lords' prison, Superman says, "I don't know about the rest of you, but I'm ready to kick some serious..." with a possible expletive that was immediately cut off by the Flash saying that Hawkgirl is in the hospital.
- According to Bruce Timm, the lines uttered by Justice Lord Superman's robotic replicas are unpopular quotes spoken by Superman in the first season of Justice League. The gag was episode writer Stan Berkowitz's idea.
- This episode and Part I are included as bonus features on the two-disc release of Justice League: Crisis on Two Earths.
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