‘Young Justice’ Fans Actually Got the Show Renewed, So Why Do Some Still Complain?

Some fans’ sense of bitter entitlement betrays the heroes we enjoy.
on Jan 7, 2019

Just last week, DC superhero fans basically got the equivalent of Firefly season 2. But some of them are still unhappy.

This query requires a brief backstory.

In 2013, the animated series Young Justice was cancelled. It had focused on the “next generation” of apprentice DC heroes, such as Robin/Nightwing, Miss Martian, Superboy, Kid Flash, and Aqualad. Creators Greg Weisman and Brandon Vietti had ended season 2 with a cliffhanger and tease for the mega-supervillain Darkseid. But series host Cartoon Network canned the show after toymaker Mattel said the series didn’t bring enough toy sales.

Years later, fans pressed to renew the series. I joined them, starting by following a dedicated Facebook page. Occasionally I promoted a hashtag. Once I made a popular meme that has a really, really corny inside-joke for Young Justice fans.

And incredibly, in fall 2016, Warner Bros. announced they actually would renew Young Justice.

Young Justice: Outsiders

Last Friday, the new season debuted with the title Young Justice: Outsiders. With one “catch.” (If you could even call it that.) DC had chosen not to host Young Justice season 3 on a preexisting streaming service, such as Netflix (where many fans, including myself, first found the story). Instead DC debuted the season exclusively on its own relatively new media/streaming service, DC Universe.

Plenty of fans are overjoyed with this. But plenty of fans are not at all whelmed.

Consider these negative responses to a DC Universe social-media ad:

I’ll watch it after the DC streaming service fails due to lack of content and they come around and put it back on Netflix.

Where can I pirate this ? I ain’t joining a new streaming service for one show.

The fact you have to join and pay a hell of alot of money in order to see what you want is insane. DC needs to work harder then they are now. Because right now? Many fans have lost trust.

As Robin would have said in season 1, they are not “feeling the aster.”

And as I said in reply, this negative response is just another sign: that even when sinful humans get good things, our impulse is to whine and complain.

The sense of fan entitlement here is quite terrible. We are literally getting the third season of Young Justice, an achievement almost equivalent to Firefly season 2, and y’all are complaining about DC requesting compensation for $7.99 a month. Yes. A mere $8 (especially if you wait a few months, binge the complete series, and then cancel). Or maybe at most $24 for three months (three new episodes each week), about the same cost as a TV season Blu-ray box set.

And yet folks complain just because it’s not on Netflix (a platform that simply could not contain all non-Netflix-made media, without itself needing to raise prices to compensate for that many licenses).

I think this is a sad testimony to the natural-born human failure to receive good things, like stories, with joy and gratitude.

Over the weekend, my wife and I viewed all three of season 3’s first episodes. DC has not cut any corners here. All is the same as it was, only better: animation style, voice cast, thoughtful and creative worldbuilding. We are not only whelmed, but overwhelmed, at rejoining these animated friends for their further heroic adventures.

The only difference comes with the streaming platform. Our heroes have made the leap to streaming, which allows more content leeway. But to my pleasant shock—and at least so far—the creators have only allowed slightly more explicit violence, sights of animated blood, dead bodies, and such. Nobody’s snarling in so many nasty words about how much they hate Batman. Also nobody’s getting naked. And nobody’s falling over themselves to appease/promote the religion of Sexualityism.1

Instead, we’ve simply rejoined apprentice heroes who want to do the right thing, for the sake of joy in heroism and justice itself.

Would that all their fans would follow their example.

  1. In fact, one key moment in the first episode shows a hero identifying one fallen victim, a mind-controlled villain, as an Earth female, age fourteen. This simple moment proved a crucial element to the story. And this moment struck me as just another small example of how Sexualityism would have ruined it with all its bizarre (and frequently, rightfully parodied) insistence on self-identity and all that nonsense.
E. Stephen Burnett explores fantastical stories for God’s glory as publisher of Lorehaven.com and its weekly Fantastical Truth podcast. He coauthored The Pop Culture Parent and creates other resources for fans and families, serving with his wife, Lacy, in their central Texas church. Stephen's first novel, a science-fiction adventure, launches in 2025 from Enclave Publishing.
  1. I know what you mean by fan entitlement. It’s something I see a lot, whether it is people complaining when a comic series goes premium on a website like Tapas or people acting like authors need to write certain pairings as canon. It bothers me, though I think there’s things to learn from their complaints.

    With Tapas, for instance, there is the option to watch ads(which makes Tapas ad revenue) in exchange for coins that can be used to unlock premium series episodes. Sometimes people complain when a series goes premium because watching ads in exchange for coins can be difficult where they’re from(ad watching opportunities like that aren’t always readily available outside the US).

    In the case of this Young Justice issue, it would be wise for people to pay attention when people complain about there not being enough content worth subscribing to over the long haul, because even if they subscribe just long enough to watch Young Justice, DC will have a hard time retaining people if they don’t have more content that people want.

    It’s understandable for people to be frustrated about these things, I just hope that people take a step back and realize that there are constructive ways to handle that frustration.

What say you?