WARNING: The following article contains spoilers for "Influence," Episode 14 of Young Justice: Outsiders, streaming now on DC Universe.
Young Justice: Outsiders has certainly placed the Justice League in a predicament. They're attempting to earn back public favor following the Reach's invasion of Earth, to say nothing of the brainwashed team's attack on Rimbor, while other heroes are off-planet, aiming to stop the metahuman-trafficking ring they now know is linked to Apokolips.
As they venture deeper into space, however, they discover Darkseid has another massive weapon in the form of his own twisted Watchtower, called "the Orphanage."
After running into conflict on Thanagar over stolen Nth metal, the League tracks an ion trail to another star system. They don't know what to expect, because the robbery didn't leave any hints of Parademons or Boom Tubes. The culprits turn out to be Granny Goodness, Big Barda and the rest of the Furies. Granny is furious Barda left the trail as a trap, as she believes in stealth. Nevertheless, after punishing Barda, she gears her crew up for war. It's then and there, we see the sheer magnitude of the Orphanage.
Superman balks at it, as it's twice the size of the Justice League Watchtower, and it's able to hack into their jet and hear the heroes' conversations. Knowing their plan, they brace for the League's invasion, and what results is all-out war on the tower. The Furies go after the heroes with a vengeance, leading to the League being trapped in a sphere that's clearly Darkseid's latest death tool. It's what the stolen Nth metal was used for, and harnesses a sonic blast that leaves everyone within its radius -- heroes and villains alike -- on their knees in pain. With Desaad goading Granny, it becomes clear this is a tuning fork that channels the Anti-Life Equation.
Superman somehow escapes, and pulls Barda out, leaving her to wonder whether she's on the right side, as Granny deemed the Furies expendable. He uses his heat vision to send Granny & Co. running, but as the League is ejected from the disappearing Orphanage, it feels like a major defeat for the heroes. And it is, because of the other component the tower has, which is directly related to its name.
When they first board, Wonder Woman informs the team there are missing metahumans there. Superman thinks it's the contingent of eight from Markovia, but as the camera zooms out, Diana says it's actually all of them -- thousands. This is where Granny has been converting them into weapons, making them submit, and then seeding them across the galaxy as her cosmic suicide squad. We don't even know what other experiments are being conducted there, but the League knows it's imperative they track the vessel again.
It has all the kids they're looking for and more so, Darkseid now has something similar to the Warworld death-star that Vandal Savage commandeered in earlier seasons of Young Justice. Seeing as it can teleport anywhere and anytime due to its Boom Tube technology, Superman, in particular, is very apprehensive as he knows Earth doesn't have the technology to conquer it. With Granny also masquerading on Earth with her own technological shenanigans (aka the VR glasses that co-opts metas), it seems Apokolips has its teeth sunk pretty deeply into everything the League's trying to combat.
Using such a weapon, Darkseid is officially a bigger threat than Vandal Savage and with his soldiers lined up to protect it, it's going to be a very tough job for our heroes to bring it down. Apokolips doesn't play by the same rules the Light did, and what makes it worse is a full-scale attack can't be launched impulsively because of the precious victims on board.
New episodes of Young Justice: Outsiders premiere Tuesdays throughout the summer on DC Universe.