Powerless Recap: Falling Head Over Henchie

Emily falls victim to the risks of dating in a city full of heroes and villains in this week’s episode of Powerless when she discovers her seemingly perfect new guy has some ulterior motives. Elsewhere, the guys try to get a face-to-face meeting with the Dark Knight (or Dork Knight if you’re Van). “Emily Dates a Henchman” was written by Neel Shah and directed by Matt Sohn. Here is what went down in Charm City this week.

FLUNK OUT OF LOVE | The team pitches an indestructible phone case (unless you drop it directly on the screen) to Emily (Vanessa Hudgens) but she is distracted by the wedding invitation she just received from her ex-boyfriend. She tries to play off being chill about it all but Jackie (Christina Kirk) directs their attention to the Facebook stalking shame spiral Emily has fallen into. They convince her to try and meet a new guy (if only to get her out of their hair) and Emily declares a Girls’ Night. At the bar, Emily dismisses every possible guy in there (I audibly gasped at the horror of eating mozzarella sticks with a fork) so Jackie heads home and Wendy (Jennie Pierson) goes on her own prowl. Now at the bar alone, Emily is approached by a cute doctor named Dan (guest star Robert Buckley) and they immediately hit it off. She gives him her number before they part for the night; she to her apartment and Dan to the back room where he and two other Riddler flunkies are sending a message on behalf of their boss. Emily is none the wiser to his extra-curricular activities but when he picks her up from work sporting a welt in the shape of Green Lantern’s ring, the rest of the team immediately know the truth. They decide not to tell Emily for now, hoping it will either flame out or he’ll die (“just like dating a base player”).

They realize the time has come to fill her in when she comes in bragging about her weekend plans with Dan where he will be taking her to his boss’s mansion carved in the side of a mountain with no cell reception. At first they try to talk her out of it without actually telling her why but Jackie drops a drive-by truth bomb that she is dating a henchman. She’s still not convinced but as she describes the house Dan’s taking her to (villain thing aside, that house sounds AMAZING), she realizes she is totally dating a henchman. Unlike how she handled her ex-boyfriend cheating on her, Emily is determined to take the low road this time and needs an experienced traveler of said low road like Jackie to help her really rip Dan a new one. He shows up to pick her up after everyone has gone home and she (with Jackie rolling her eyes behind her) confronts him via bad pun about being a henchman. He not only doesn’t deny it, he tells her his name isn’t even Dan and he brought a whole crew of henchies with him to rob the place. They tie Jackie and Emily to a chair and go about stealing the indestructible phone technology while Dan/Reggie villain monologues as all bad villains do. Jackie gives Emily a relationship pep-talk about being young and making mistakes but Dan interrupts to tell them The Riddler has decided what to do with the pair of them, only he communicated it via a riddle. Because she’s Emily, she gives them the answer but luckily for the two of them, it is at that exact moment that Van (Alan Tudyk) stumbles in, eating a burrito and wearing his hand-made Robin costume. Thinking he is the real Robin and that Batman can’t be far behind, the henchies run for it, leaving Jackie, Emily, and a very confused Van unharmed.

CELEBRITY SIGHTING | After finding a real Batman Battarang wedged in a piece of tech they are trying to fix, Teddy (Danny Pudi)and Ron (Ron Funches) fight over who gets to keep it. Van finds out about it and tells them of his feud with Batman (that I am certain only Van knows or cares about) after the Batmobile took off one of Van’s side mirrors. Determined to make Batman pay for the damages, Van plans to hold onto the Battarang and make Batman reimburse him when he inevitably comes to get it because the Dark Knight never leaves tech behind. Ron’s plan is to leave out milk and cookies on the balcony a la Santa Clause (theory accepted) but the only one to show up is Van. The guys notice that Van is squeaking and that his nipples are unusually pointy under his shirt but before they can get a closer look, he takes off, half tucked in cape and all. The next day, they are determined to figure out what Van is hiding but are not prepared when he opens his shirt to show them the hand-made Robin rubbersuit he is wearing under his clothes. In addition to getting a payout for his car mirror, he plans to present himself to Batman as a new Robin even though he is a middle-aged man with no athletic skills whatsoever. They try once more to lure Batman out by waiting for him in an alley but the only one who finds them this time, is a mugger with questionable hair-style decisions. They immediately hand over their wallets and turn around to sulk when they mugger is suddenly zwipped into the air by Batman himself and the Battarang in Teddy’s hands is replaced with their stolen wallets. I would make fun of their reaction to meeting Batman but were I in their shoes, I would have reacted the exact same way, bouncing and all.

• So who in the Writers’ Room went to a rival of Arizona State’s?
• Line of the Night is a tie between Ron’s “The acceptance of a racist grandfather is my white whale” and Jackie’s “If I leave now, I can still get home in time to not be here.”
• I hope to someday be a cool as Teddy’s grandpa and repeatedly ‘solve The Escape Room’ I inevitably get put in when I’m old.

So what did you think? Which superhero (or villain) would have you chanting and dancing like the guys? What is the best diss pun you would throw at a lying henchie like Dan when you caught him in the act? IS Batman also Santa Claus?! Let us know in the comments below!

Powerless airs Thursdays at 8:30pm on NBC!

Photo Credit: Evans Vestal Ward/NBC