"Double Date" is the sixth episode of the second season of Justice League Unlimited, and the 19th of the overall series. It originally aired on June 4, 2005. After her vendetta against mob boss Steven Mandragora gets her expelled from the Justice League, Huntress enlists the aid of The Question in tracking Mandragora down, leading them to clash with Green Arrow and Black Canary.
Huntress infiltrates Steven Mandragora's high-security mansion, sneaks into his bedroom, and empties her crossbow into the bed. But she is shocked to peel back the sheets and see a pile of artfully arranged pillows. Before she can do more, she is teleported up to the Watchtower, where she is confronted by an angry J'onn J'onzz. He says she was ordered to stay away from Mandragora, while she is appalled to realize that the League is actually protecting him. J'onn dismisses her from the League and orders her to clear out her quarters. He then asks Huntress to turn in her Justice League membership card which she angrily did.
Returning to her cabin, she happens across a muttering Question, engaged in his obsessive search for a link between Lex Luthor and Project Cadmus. Using all the feminine wiles she can command, she offers Question a deal: he helps her find Mandragora, and she'll share what she knows about Cadmus. Question accepts.
Mandragora, it turns out, is being kept in a safe house eating oysters by federal agents before appearing in court, as they expect him to testify on his criminal associates in exchange for leniency. The League has assigned Green Arrow and Black Canary to assist the agents. The task proves onerous, as Mandragora goes out of his way to be offensive. Before long, Green Arrow has to be restrained, though it is Canary who throws the punch that gets both of them expelled from the house.
Taking watch from a treehouse, Canary is annoyed that they have to go through so much trouble to protect a murderer, but Green Arrow admits however that the world isn't perfect. They both then soon share a moment together until they see Huntress and Question pull up outside. Forewarned by J'onn, they bar the way. The couples then engage in a ferocious battle. Question is quickly dispatched by Green Arrow, whereas Huntress and Black Canary seem evenly matched, until Black Canary reveals she has been holding back. Black Canary then finishes Huntress off. At the same time, two of Mandragora's thugs arrive at the front door dressed as policemen, causing a diversion that allows Mandragora to overpower his captors and escape.
As Canary argues with Huntress and Question over the ruins of the safe house, Arrow notices Question pick up something from the floor – a key to a locker at the train station. Arrow and Canary leave to pursue Mandragora, while Question reveals that the key was a decoy – the clue he picked up was a schedule of freighter arrivals at the local docks. However, Arrow was suspicious and he and Canary wait to see Huntress and Question leave.
En route to the docks, Question reveals that he knows full well that Huntress actually knows nothing about Cadmus, and also why she is so bent on revenge. Her father, Franco Bertinelli, was a powerful mob boss; when Huntress was only a child, Mandragora, Franco's chief enforcer, took over the gang, killing Huntress's parents while she watched from a hiding place. Blinking back tears, Huntress asks Question why he is helping her perform what he knows will be a revenge killing. He doesn't answer, but instead notices that Canary and Arrow are following them on her motorcycle. Question manages to lose them in a railway tunnel, but the two couples still reach the docks at the same time. Arrow and Canary try to overpower Mandragora, but he is too strong for them. Huntress aims her crossbow at him, and he surrenders.
He is expecting to be returned to custody, but Huntress says that's not what she has planned. She is about to execute him, when a small boy runs to Mandragora from an arriving ship, shouting "Papa!" Mandragora hugs his son, explaining that the boy was kidnapped by a rival gang, and he has only now managed to rescue him. He never intended to cooperate with the federal authorities, but instead was just stalling until the boy was rescued, then they would both disappear and take on new identities.
Huntress saw that the man who killed her parents was now a loving father. Question leaves the choice to Huntress, and she makes the right one: she turns her crossbow up and drops a heavy crane load onto Mandragora, knocking him unconscious. He is returned to federal custody, now left with no choice but to cooperate, while his son is likewise taken into protective custody.
Huntress realizes that Question knew all along what Mandragora's plan was, and that his son would be arriving. She asks why, then, would he go to such trouble to help her find him, including risking his own life. Sheepishly, Question admits it was for an entirely foolish and inconsequential reason: he likes her. Surprised at first but swept away, Huntress grabs him and plants a big kiss on his face (mask and all), then drags him away by his tie to someplace more private while Black Canary, who was watching, says "I'm sorry, but... eww!"
- Question was ordered by Batman to investigate a possible link between Lex Luthor and Project Cadmus in the episode "The Doomsday Sanction" and eventually finds it in the episode "Question Authority".
- Green Arrow and Black Canary are now officially a couple, after the ice was broken between them in the episode "The Cat and the Canary". His heroism in helping her in that episode (including almost getting killed) is likely what makes her lose her cool when Mandragora insults him.
- An adult Edgar Mandragora appears as a powerful psychic in the Batman Beyond episode "Mind Games", and in The Zeta Project episode "Ro's Gift", both set in the future, but broadcast long before "Double Date".
Home video releases
- Justice League Unlimited - Season One (DVD)
- Justice League - The Complete Series (DVD)
- Justice League Unlimited - The Complete Series (Blu-ray)
- Early drafts for this episode featured Barbara Gordon in a Birds of Prey storyline. It would have Barbara getting injured during a case as Batgirl. Since Batman forbids her from participating any further she would recreate herself as Oracle (an identity Barbara Gordon assumed during much of the 1990s and 2000s in mainstream DC comics). She would then get in touch with Black Canary and Huntress to finish her case. Neither of them would meet her in person. Also, Nightwing would have made a cameo appearance as Gordon's ex-boyfriend. Due to the Bat-embargo, the story replaced Batgirl with Green Arrow and The Question.
- Huntress's costume is changed from its appearance in her earlier appearances; also, instead of a bo staff she now wields a crossbow. This seems to be due to her promotion from a background character to a recurring role.
- 'Fluoride' is misspelled 'Flouride' on Question's poster (as so it was in the episode "Fearful Symmetry").
- When Question leads a chase onto the subway track, the track is wide enough to allow the car to drive between the rails. The width of an average four-door passenger car is larger than a train's gauge, as most trains in the US adopt the standard gauge rail, 1,435mm wide.
- In DC Comics, Steven Mandragora is the mob boss who ordered the killing of the Bertinelli family, though Huntress did not find out until much later on whose orders he was acting. In this episode, however, his appearance is based on that of Tobias Whale, Black Lightning's nemesis. Curiously, the Netflix plot summary for this episode incorrectly refers to him by Whale's name.
- Question's line "Oh Cadmus, Cadmus, wherefore art thou Cadmus?" paraphrases that spoken by Juliet as she stands on the balcony asking about Romeo in Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet. It may also reflect his love for conspiracy theories for which Cadmus is a good example.
- The relationship between Huntress and Question is likely a tribute to a brief liaison featured in the comics storyline Huntress: Cry For Blood, in which Huntress, framed for mob assassinations she did not commit, flees Gotham City after inadvertently injuring Batman in trying to defend herself. Vic Sage, The Question, takes her under his wing, and there is a strong attraction between the two, but he leaves her in disgust when she reverts to habit and uses her old mafia connections to arrange her antagonist's murder.
- This episode marks Special Agent King Faraday's first appearance and Huntress's first speaking appearance.
- While stalling, Mandragora refers to a deceased associate who was killed by "one Tommy Monaghan", a tribute to DC Comics' Hitman character.
- Question's car seems to be a 1967 Pontiac GTO.
- Huntress' father, Franco Bertinelli, bears a striking resemblance to Tony Montana ― Al Pacino's character from the 1983 movie Scarface.
|Carl Lumbly||J'onn J'onzz|
|Amy Acker|| Huntress|
Maria Bertinelli (uncredited)
|Morena Baccarin|| Black Canary|
Edgar Mandragora (uncredited)
|Jeffrey Combs||The Question|
|Scott Patterson|| King Faraday|
Franco Bertinelli (uncredited)
|Glenn Shadix||Steven Mandragora|
|Kin Shriner||Green Arrow|
Huntress: You must be the ugliest guy of all time, Question, hiding your face like that.
Huntress: Do you know what "apophenia" is?
Huntress: Oh, baby doll. And just for the record, I usually prefer my dates to have a face.
Black Canary: Faraday's right, Arrow. Relax, nothing this guy can say is gonna affect me one way or the other.
Green Arrow: Why are you doing this, Question?
Green Arrow: I strongly advise you to stay down. These impact arrows are non-lethal, but they hurt... a lot.
Green Arrow: Don't make me sic Black Canary on you. You've only seen her nice side so far.
Question: Somebody's following us.
Green Arrow: You're not supposed to drive when you're angry...
Steven Mandragora: Get behind me, Edgar. It will be all right...