Hey everyone! My name is Jem (they/them) and I have to be honest with you: Despite being a She-Ra stan, I haven’t yet watched Season 4. Before you come at me with pitchforks, I promise I have a good reason. Catra is
the love of my life my favorite animated character, ever. Maybe it’s because I like an underdog, or because I can relate to aspects of her internal struggle. Maybe it’s just because her cat ears and spiky hair are adorable. Whatever the reason, Catra is my ride or die, and because of this, I couldn’t bring myself to watch Season 4 when it was released. Three seasons of Catra emotionally breaking down and lashing out because she couldn’t process her trauma was more than enough for my psyche. I thought I would hold out until the final season, skip ahead and see if she gets her happy ending before going back and putting myself through Season 4.
However, months after its release, I knew the time had come. Tissue boxes, tea, and my fluffy chihuahua in hand, I took a deep breath and began my watch. I thought it would be fun to record my thoughts, so please enjoy!
Episode 1: “The Coronation”
Catch our detailed review of “The Coronation” here!
Of course, I can’t skip the theme song because it’s a bop. And there are a few little changes in the sequence. In this shot, Catra’s in her new uniform, but more importantly, Shadow Weaver is gone and replaced with a creepy-eyed guy. I already know who he is because spoilers are hard to avoid this far after the release, but I’ll leave him unnamed incase you happen to be luckier in the avoiding-spoilers department.
Season 4 kicks off with Glimmer’s coronation. In past seasons, Gimmer’s relationship with her mother was tense because she wanted more respect and responsibility from her mom, but now, with the passing of Queen Angella, Glimmer is forced into a leadership role far earlier than she expected. She looks broken and lost, but she’s trying to keep it together.
Good thing Glimmer has the Best Friend Squad and the Princess Alliance to support her. Also, Adora turns her sword into a mop. I literally snorted laughing.
The comedy aspects of these scenes—the antics of Adora, Bow, Swift Wind and the Princess Alliance—clash with the seriousness of the scenario, a child mourning the death of her mom. The contrast is jarring, but the lighthearted tone is welcoming. It reminds me why I love this show, and I can’t believe I avoided watching it for so long.
Meanwhile, in the Fright Zone: Hordak is upset because his
girlfriend lab partner betrayed him, or so he believes. His lab is wrecked, Entrapta is gone, and Horde Prime is coming. Hordak is understandably feeling pretty bad right now. But Catra—we stan—is absolutely rocking with power. She’s proving herself to be the smartest (strategically and tactically) character in this show. Seeing her excel so quickly is awesome, even if her motives are skewed.
I mean, look at her outfit change. Thigh highs, an arm sleeve, and a keyhole uniform?
And her hair—rest in peace—gone are those anime spikes and fluffy ear tufts. Catra’s hair looks slick. Because I’m an animation nerd, I could go off on the significance of her and Glimmer’s outfit change (they have contrasting arm sleeves!), but I’ll save that for a different article. But Crew-Ra, I see what you’re doing here and I like it.
Catra’s the perfect counterpart to Adora—Adora, our golden-hearted jock, who has heart and muscles, but no strategy past running head-first into battle and punching things. I am on the edge of my seat, literally shaking with excitement for Season 5 when, ideally, these two join forces and punch bad guys and complement each other perfectly.
Also, Scorpia is a precious bean and deserves the world.
Episode 2: “The Valley of the Lost”
Catch our detailed review of “The Valley of the Lost” here!
DOUBLE TROUBLE! DOUBLE TROUBLE! I was so excited to meet them, and they’re finally here! DT is such a theater kid and I love it. They treat life like it’s reality TV and it’s like adding a little spice to the angst soup that is SPOP. Double Trouble is just here to stir things up and I look forward to stepping back and viewing the chaos from their eyes, enjoying the fun of it instead of just feeling the pain.
In this episode, Adora, Bow, Perfuma and Huntara travel to the Crimson Waste to retrieve a spaceship. Adora, as usual, puts too much pressure on herself while also being a goofus. She and Huntara try to out-muscle each other and at one point Adora eats sand. I love this ridiculous, muscular child. Also, Perfuma and Huntara’s relationship is cute as heck.
At one point, the Rebellion squad get help from one of Huntara’s old friends, and she–out of nowhere–beans Perfuma with a loogie.
Always foiling plans, Catra and the Horde already stole the spaceship, and they’re preparing to transport it to the Fright Zone when we meet Double Trouble. DT, I repeat, is the best and I love them. They come into the scene looking like Scorpia, and what ensues is basically this:
Toward the end of the episode, there’s an excellent fight scene between She-Ra and Double Trouble posing as Catra. The fight choreography and animation is so, so good in this season.
You can tell the storyboarders, the set designers, and all the other animators and artists have gone above and beyond this season.
Episode 3: “Flutterina”
Catch our detailed review of “Flutterina” here!
Aww, Catra is so sad! Someone help this angry baby. This episode starts with Catra having nightmares because she betrayed Entrapta and opened the portal, putting the entire planet at risk and, possibly, severing any chance of reforming her relationship with Adora. At this point, I don’t think Catra thinks reconciliation with her ex-best friend is what she wants, but she’s repressing a lot right now. Also Catra is wearing pajamas (Catra has had like a million outfits and poor Adora is still rocking her red Horde jacket) and we see that Catra has stripes on her back. This detail is not something I’d considered before, but I like it.
Next, we shift to the Rebellion side of things. Adora, Bow, and Swift Wind, after saving a village, are rewarded with a giant party. Adora, as usual, oogles over a buff woman. We get to see Adora and Bow being happy, which is a nice relief, but then it gets to their heads and Adora gets over-confident.
Adora makes some questionable decisions—come on girl, what are you doing—and ultimately gets captured by the Horde, who also kidnap Bow and the entire village. Catra has Adora and Swift Wind trapped, using the opportunity to electrocute the two Rebellion fighters, offhandedly mentioning it’s a trick she learned from Shadow Weaver. Not a good look, Catra.
Hijinks and fighting ensue, but ultimately She-Ra escapes and the villagers are saved. They even recruit a young villager, Flutterina, as the episode it titled, into the rebellion. But plot twist, Catra is a genius and this was her plan all along. The rebellion’s newest recruit was actually Double Trouble the whole time and now Catra has a spy on the inside! What can I say, she’s just that smart. But as usual, she’s also mean in this episode and continues to lash out at Scorpia and Emily. Scorpia deserves better. Is that going to be a theme this season?
Final Thoughts: This season is off to a great start! I look forward to the upcoming episodes, as I’d like to see how Double Trouble stirs up, well, trouble in Bright Moon. I’m ready as I’ll ever be to cry over Catra’s slow and painful breakdown and to see how Glimmer’s relationship with the Best Friend Squad evolves with her new role as Queen. I know I’m in for a wild ride and I can’t wait to see where it takes me!