Green Lantern TAS Season 1.5 episode 7: Babel

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This is a filler episode that takes a more light-hearted tone after all the drama that’s been going on in the previous episodes. There’s not a lot that happens here, though there are a few nice laughs.

Play by Play

Continuing directly from the last episode, the Interceptor’s still drifting through space and with no energy thanks to Aya draining its energy and swatting it away. The Green Lanterns' portable power batteries are also drained, leaving them with little power remaining on their rings. Razer tells the team that it will take some time for the main battery to recharge itself.

But suddenly the Interceptor gets caught in a desert planet's gravity well which complicates things as they now need power to avoid being killed. They decide to use Razer's still-functioning power battery to supply power to the engine, despite the danger of the Red “rage” energy possibly blowing them up: it works, and Hal is able to “safely” crash-land onto the desert planet, but unfortunately Razer’s Lantern battery ends up out of power due to this. The ship is also in a dangerous condition as the bridge’s main window shatters and the planet’s atmosphere is made up of methane.

The Lanterns shield themselves and see a domed city on the horizon, and fly towards it; but the Lanterns are low on energy and fall, so they decide to run to the city, and sing a song. Sometime later, they arrive at the city, introduce themselves to the gate guards who happen to be these short, blue Goblin-looking creatures who shoot at them when Hal tells them they’re Green Lanterns. They run away and hide, but suddenly the Green Lanterns' rings run out of energy and they get exposed to the atmosphere. Razer saves them in a bubble as he still has power in his ring.

Unfortunately the loss of the Green Lanterns' rings is also the loss of the universal translator and this means that Hal and Kilowog can’t understand each other but they can understand Razer somehow, even though he’s speaking in his own native language. They decide to sneak into town by sneaking on board an armed vehicle going into the city, and they drop off when they get into the town’s alleyways.

Hal deduces that they need four hours for the Interceptor’s battery to recharge, but then Razer’s ring also runs out of power. The Lanterns try to be stealthy despite being unable to understand each other but they fail when they enter a bar and get chased. While they’re running they meet one alien who they deduce is friendly and is offering them a ride out of town for a price. The Lanterns try to barter by unloading their pockets, and the alien appears to find Hal’s smartphone a good trade despite the fact that it’s getting old; however Hal finds out that it was actually the picture of his ex-fiancee Carol Ferris on it that interested the alien, and Hal then understands what the driver actually wants.

He somehow tells Kilowog to tell the driver that that’s impossible, and Kilowog knocks the driver out because they were discovered by the other aliens. They jump on the driver’s vehicle and get chased by a bunch of tanks and they crash. When they drop off, Hal attempts to get the team to strategically take down the guards but they don’t understand him, rush into battle and they all get stunned unconscious.

They awake in a cell in an arena and Hal figures out that they have to fight a battle, but their opponent is a giant brown alien monster that’s unleashed onto the arena and eats a goblin alien that was in the arena. Their cell is opened and Hal tries to form up strategies for their attacks again, but the others don’t understand him and just attack the alien and get thrown around. After getting thrown to the ground Hal hears the Manhunter’s motto (“No Man escapes the Manhunters) in English and sees a Manhunter head attached on a bandolier around the alien's chest. He realizes that the Head contains Green energy he can use to charge his ring; suddenly the arena shifts, raising several platforms under their feet for some reason, and Hal tries to tell his friends of his plan to get the Manhunter head and gives a pep speech to the other Lanterns, who respond positively and somehow make a co-ordinated attack on the alien.

Hal jumps on the alien, attacks its head and works his way to the skull, while Razer and Kilowog try to trip it and attack its legs. When Hal gets the head he holds it like a Lantern and recites the Green Lantern oath. The alien throws him into the air and swallows him but he blasts out safely, powered up now, and gives the head to Kilowog to recite the oath in his language and powering up, and then Kilowog throws the head to Razer who points out that it’s useless to him.

The Goblin aliens now realize that they are Lanterns and attack them, and Kilowog stops them and then joins Hal to finish off the monster alien with Razer delivering the final blow by throwing the Manhunter head at the beast. The Goblin aliens run to the arena, crying out "what have you done to our mother!?” and the Green Lanterns just fly off with Razer.

Back on the Interceptor, the Green Lanterns fix the bridge and Razer recharges and it turns out that his Red Lantern battery recharged itself. Hal's happy that they managed to work together without understanding each other, and boasts about his pep talk, and Kilowog and Razer lie to Hal Jordan that they understood even though they didn’t and the interceptor flies off.

Observations

Apparently the Lanterns Universal translator somehow manages to translate out of the wearer though that’s not something odd in science fiction. This episode really seems completely insignificant as no characters are introduced, the story arc isn’t advanced and really nothing at all important happens; even if the team meet this new civilization it appears it might not pop up ever again, especially since nothing of it is learned except that the aliens might be xenophobic as only one type can be seen (the alien monster is their mother so it’s the same type of alien) and that they especially hate Green Lanterns for some reason.

That being said, the concept of the characters having to work together without understanding each other is somewhat funny. Hal ends up being the straight man, always trying to get the team to coordinate and work together while the others bumble around since they don’t understand him until the end where they somehow get it. The fight with the Giant alien also ends up being entertaining, especially when Razer just throws the Manhunter head at it and it falls, though it seems to have served no purpose as the aliens just let the team go after they knock the aliens' mother out.

One thing weird though, is that the Green Lanterns used the Manhunter head to recharge like it’s a power battery. This could mean that the Manhunters in the series are like some of the versions in the comics which use their power batteries to steal emotional energy from other creatures.

Will Republicans like this episode?

It’s just a diversionary episode that’s a bit funny, so yes.

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