So one of the issues with the episodes so far is that most of them have no B-plots so I revisited them and added some new episodes as well.
1 – Pilot – After a long night of partying for her 25th birthday, Mari McCabe comes home to discover a package from her missing, thought to be dead mother. Mari discovers through the letter that her mother has been following her family’s tradition of using the Tantu totem to defend the Red, the force behind all animal like. The totem allows the user to access powers of the animal kingdom such as flying like a bird or charging like an elephant. To protect her family, Mari’s mother had to abandon her family. Mari rejects this fate for herself, not believing in the power but still taking the necklace with her. Mari ends up going to see Karen, her best friend and they have a few drinks and Mari heads home. Along the way she sees a thug breaking into an apartment and she tries to stop him, only to be surrounded by another group of thugs. The power of the totem kicks in and in a fit of animalistic fury, Mari defeats the thieves realizing the power of the totem. Unsure of whether or not she wants to follow the legacy, Mari puts the box away, unaware that a mysterious stranger has been watching her the entire time.
The first issue as in introduction should focus on Mari as a character and her apprehension while working on her relationship. Presumably there would be a few scenes to build the characters, show where Mari works that might not entirely add on to the main story, but a B-plot might work. Throw in something in the background about Daggett or disruptions in Bialya and it will do a good job setting up for the future.
2 – Welcome – Mari goes to work the next day and feels incredibly unsatisfied about her work since it doesn’t thrill her anymore and she can’t stop thinking about the totem’s power. Mari goes to see Karen and shows her what she’s learned from the totem. They talk about missing parents and Karen mentions her mother who has been overseas on a diplomatic mission for ages. Looking for more information on the totem the pair hunt down Jack Knight who specializes in curious objects but he isn’t any help with the research though he does hook her up with some good material to make a hero costume. Jack suggested the name He does relate to her feelings about having a legacy thrust upon her but ultimately can’t help further. As Mari heads home, she notices a thief breaking into the museum and chases after her, only to be stopped by the Bronze Tiger who assumes she is a thief. When Mari is able to convince Tiger that she isn’t a thief, since she couldn’t set the alarms off, the two hunt down the real thief, Magpie, who ends up escaping. Tiger deals with the police and lets Mari go on, but can’t reach her in time to tell her about the hero laws. Once she reaches home, Mari is exhausted from the evening.
Here you don’t need a B-plot either since you are still introducing characters with Bronze Tiger and Jack Knight while also building in the mystery of Karen’s mother and introducing the first villain/rival Magpie.
3 – Dreams – Mari has a vision in her dreams where she listens to her mother’s spirit who explains the Red and sends her to Buddy Baker to talk – all the while Mari is unable to speak. Baker, the former Animal Man, has given up most heroics to spend time with his family and to keep them safe. He suggests that Mari avoids the heroism business all together since it only leads to problems. As they talk, a fire downtown shows up on the news. Buddy refuses to leave believing the fire department will be there but Mari feels like she has a mission to protect others goes downtown and stops the fire at Stagg Chemicals. As she gets there, Mari sees someone running away with documents and Mari chases after and stops the person but ends up arrested for illegal powered vigilante activities.
Its another story where I think a B-plot might be hard to fit in naturally since you already have two sides. The important thing is introducing Baker as someone who cares about his family and wants to spend his time with them as a normal person.
4 – Questions and Answers – Mari is released on bail by Karen and gets to talk to Renee Montoya, the superhero law enforcement consultant. Due to the high concentration of heroes, she can’t get a superhero license even though Mari argues that she’s already stopped a few crimes. This gets her into more trouble from Renee. Defeated by the legal system Mari and Karen go out drinking but when Mari finally returns home, she finds the Question waiting for her. The Question hands Mari fake heroic documentation and connects her to Static, another member of the community who the Question thinks could be helpful. Meanwhile as a result of Mari stopping the unnamed criminal who was running from the fire, the police found the embezzlement records and patents that Daggett Industrial was going to steal from Stagg. Daggett brings in an assassin, Copperhead, to prevent the vigilante from interrupting his plans anymore.
Someone needs to be connected to the Daggett plot otherwise it seems like too much of a pull away from the rest of the story. Maybe have Bronze Tiger or Static spying here. Static might work because of the next episode.
5 – Bites – Mari ends up late for a fashion suite and her boss, Vivian D’Armis takes over instead. Mari, low on cash, takes another gig as a booth model for a ribbon cutting with Static who she was supposed to meet with. After the event Mari, who had to act superficial, tries to talk to Static who doesn’t respect Mari since she is a model and a “superhero.” Static tries to leave so Mari, tired of that misogynist crap, starts following him. Copperhead notices that Mari looks like the target he is supposed to take down and tries to stop her with poison darts. Mari and Static both get hit with the darts but the totem’s power saves Mari. Static meanwhile gets poisoned. While Mari fights with Copperhead on the rooftop, she turns down a call from her boss for a big social party that evening so she can make sure that she can take care of Static. As Static gets worse, Mari leaves the fight against Copperhead with Static, taking him to the hospital. Copperhead returns with information from Mari’s phone call he got during the fight for his boss.
Here I think this works too. It continues the last story and has a pull towards the next episode.
6 – Court and Spark – Mike Maxwell, Mari’s old boyfriend who went to Kenya to study zoology returns home and tries to reconnect with Mari. When Mari realizes that he hasn’t changed and that Mike is still immature, Mari fakes a business call to run off. Karen who was coming to find Mari runs into Mike and the two start talking. Meanwhile Mari as she is running out and gets a call that Static is doing better and goes to meet him. On her way she runs into Magpie along the way (out of costume). Mari makes sure to store her scent for later, something she learned to do earlier in the episode, before meeting up with Static who apologizes for how he acted. Static gives her the name of Ted Grant who could help with her fighting so she can fight faster and Mari accepts, happy that she is being treated better.
Here it might work tied into the last episode for a full hour but I think it is fine as is.
7 – Guys and Dolls – Vivian needs Mari to fill in for some of her missing models who vanished after vacations but Mari is caught up and asks Karen to help who in turn calls up Jack to look into where they went. While they look into it they find out that all of the models had gone to the same spa. Meanwhile (as Vixen) is staking out Magpie’s hideout hoping to catch her when she returns. When Jack and Karen reach the spa, they are quickly drugged by a man who calls himself the Dollmaker. He gives permanent youth treatments via plastic injections that require regular drugs to continue working and without the drugs, the injected people harden and die so the models have to keep paying the Dollmaker. Mari freaks out when Jack and Karen haven’t called to check in with her so she goes to save them at the right time, saving them before they get plastic injections. When Mari gets back she realizes that she should have helped her friends instead of following after Magpie.
Here giving Jack and Karen time together works because both of them know Mari’s secret and both have an adventurers legacy in them. At the end, maybe having Jack look at a star rod as a teaser might work.
8 – Recoil – Mari (as Vixen) is hunting down Magpie again when she finds Magpie and Copperhead talking out of costume. Mari doesn’t feel confident fighting both of them so she calls in Tiger and Static but by the time they get there, Magpie and Copperhead have left. Mari ends up going to Ted Grant aka Wildcat who runs an old gym. Meanwhile Jack and Mike meet up and Mike thinks that Jack is interested in Mari and Jack thinks Mike is interested in Karen. The two enter a drinking contest till Renee, tired from a day of work comes in and quickly outdrinks both of them. Mari ends up getting beaten by Wildcat but starts to pick up on how boxing and fighting works and she learns how to read movement. By the end of the day she is exhausted and has to watch Magpie walk past her, unable to do anything because of how tired she is.
One problem with a lot of the shows is that the heroes are too invincible. If someone is going for several rounds with a boxer – over and over again on the say day – they would probably not be able to fight a nemesis. Here we also get to see Mari as a sensible heroine. She isn’t jumping in to take down all comes.
9 – Tiger Style – Bronze Tiger calls up Mari asking her to come over. Mari has to turn him down since she is in a modeling gig that she needs to get money from. When she gets there, she finds Tiger unconscious and his house emptied with a note on the wall threatening him to give up heroing or else he will never see his family again. Tiger comes too and knows that Daggett is behind the attack since he’s been following the company. Ben explains that he lost his son as a result of a mugger and wanted to clean up the streets after and that Daggett is the biggest danger in town. They end up calling in Static and the Question to help out and they sneak into the building from the roof. They quickly find Ben’s wife but also discover that the floor they are on is set to explode as metal shutters cut off the room. The group starts to panic as the timer runs down. Meanwhile Mike, Karen and Jack end up looking for Mari and run into Jenna Raleigh, an illegal and accident prone hero called the Red Bee. Bee likes to follow The Question around since the Question inspired her to become a hero and she is totes in lesbians with her. Using the star rod from Jack’s dad and Jenna’s bee-tech, they are able to shut off the bomb before it explode.
Probably need to reorder this one around but I like that the “sidekicks” are heroes in their own right. Also here Mike realizes that Mari is Vixen and it is the wakeup moment for him.
10 – Swallow – Mike decides that he needs to start acting more serious but it is his birthday so he wants one final rager – a costume party. Sometime during the party on a dare, Mike swallows the Tantu totem and at the same time, Mari (dressed as Vixen) is abducted by a figure known as The Auctioneer. The Auctioneer puts Mari into a cage and says he plans on selling her to the highest bidder. Mike meanwhile gets up and feels horrible as his body struggles to process the totem and he starts gaining animal parts till he finally throws up the totem. Mike calls to apologize to Mari but when he doesn’t get a call he gets worried. He calls Karen for help, but she and Jack are out of town (which is why they weren’t at the party) so Mike gets Static for help. Mari tries to convince the Auctioneer that she isn’t actually Vixen which works until Mike and Static burst in and save her. Mari then gets the totem back and beats up the Auctioneer till he vanishes.
The depowered episode.
11 – Turk County – Follows where Jack and Karen were in the last episode! Karen’s mom needs her to pick up something in Silver City and since Jack is the only person with a car, she gets him to come along. During the drive the car breaks down at a farm. Jack tries to see if he can get any help but the farm turns out to be a front for Dr. Woodrue, the Floronic Man who plans to release hyper allergenic spores that will wipe out a majority of the population (Karen finds this out by reading his notebook while Jack talks to Dr. Woodrue). The two claim that they are going to wait for the repairman that Jack called but instead they try to burn down the farm with the hyper allergenic spores. As the fire blazes, the Floronic man captures them and knocks them out, planning to let them die in the fire as revenge for them stopping his plan. Before they are killed though, a mysterious figure – the Black Pirate – rides in and saves the pair before stopping Woodrue. The police come and arrest Woodrue but by the time Jack and Karen reach Silver City, the package has already been collected by someone else.
Karen tries to apologize but her mother is incredibly angry and promises that she is coming to town soon.
12 – The Other White Meat – Circe the Sorceress comes to town looking for people to torment. In a singles bar, Renee tries to hit on her but ends up getting turned into a pig. Karen, who was looking for Mike sees this happen and calls Mari who calls Buddy because “hey, you deal with animals and magic stuff!”. Buddy begrudgingly comes out to help as Circe starts to turn more people into animals in the city. Her powers don’t work on Mari and Buddy due to their connections to the Red but they can’t get through her magic shield. Karen meanwhile heads to the library to look up Circe and discovers her weakness to the moly plant. Buddy uses the plant that allows him to ignore her magic and knocks her out, undoing the spell and returning everyone to normal.
A fun episode.