Young Justice Outsiders: Batman's Plans Almost Broke His Team Up (Again)

Batman and Outsiders in Young Justice

Young Justice season 3, episode 22, "Antisocial Pathologies" features broken trusts and questionable strategies as Batman's plan unravels and almost breaks the team again.

Three different hero teams - the Justice League, the covert operations team, and the Outsiders - have been manipulated by only a handful of heroes, led by Batman himself. When Jefferson Pierce, Black Lightning, figures out how all of them have been essentially pawns in a wider game, it almost tears the team apart. Every hero who took part in Batman's brain trust was questioned, Superboy and Beast Boy's trust in M'Gann was tested, Black Lightning's faith in Batman and Nightwing was shattered and Tara Markov's view of this chaos between the heroes only strengthened her loyalty to Deathstroke.

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Bruce Wayne's need to be in control of the situation and narrative crumbled before him after the events of Young Justice: Outsiders episode 21, "Unknown Factors." Dick Grayson is in critical condition after a covert mission to infiltrate the house of Gretchen Goode alongside Black Lightning failed. It was as the Bat-family were bedside with Dick that Jefferson figured out the secret that's been under his nose since the Young Justice: Outsiders' premiere: it's all Batman's fault.

It turns out that Batman's resignation from the Justice League and the public spat between himself and Aquaman was simply a facade to mask Bruce's true plan. With Lex Luthor binding the Justice League from taking any true action from his seat at the U.N., Bruce needed a way to get out of the League without losing his resources and connection to their operations. He originally wanted Black Lightning to be a part of his covert team but Jefferson's refusal kept him from learning the truth.

Batman's control of the narrative didn't stop there. By forming a team alongside the majority of his Bat-family, Miss Martian, Aquaman and Wonder Woman, Bruce put himself in a position to oversee all hero teams currently operating. This includes the newly formed meta-teen team, the Outsiders, who Batman personally created easy missions for so their popularity would rise, throwing another wrench in the Light's plans.

Young Justice: Outsiders has proven deft at holding a mirror up to the heroes and the villains. While both fight on different sides in the battle of good vs. evil, their methods are not so different. Each team holds secrets from others, has rouge and public faces, and will stop at nothing to get what they want. While this is expected from the villains, it is not something one would expect from Earth's greatest heroes.

Related: The New Aquaman Revealed As Gay In Young Justice: Outsiders

The psychological warfare between Bruce Wayne and Lex Luthor is one of the highlights of Young Justice: OutsidersWhile they are on completely different sides of the conflict, their methods are all too similar. Episode 22 moves several plot elements forward as Young Justice season 3 heads towards the final four episodes of the season. Even at this late stage, it's unclear what the final team will look like when it's all said and done.

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