Four Color Television - Legends of Tomorrow Season 2 Recap

So some dude showed up in a duplicate of their timeship and told the Legends not to go anywhere.  Did they listen? Of course not!

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Recap: 

Oliver Queen is busy doing some Mayor stuff in Star City when a historian barges into his office with a cryptic message about how “The Legends” are lost in time, Oliver is of course planning on having this guy removed from his office when he mentions the names Ray Palmer and Sara Lance.  Ollie listens to the guy's pitch and discovers that Dr. Nate Heywood (Nick Zano) has found evidence that shows that time has been altered which leads to an expedition off the Eastern Sea Board where they find a submerged Waverider, with Mick Rory in stasis.  Mick explains that the team were told not to go to the 1940’s but they did it anyways and had to fight Nazi’s and prevent a time aberration in the form of a nuclear bomb in New York before the A Bomb was ever actually created.  The ship managed to take most of the brunt of a nuclear explosion and Rory was shielded in his stasis field, but the ship would not have protected anyone else – so Captain Rip Hunter scattered them all throughout time.

Luckily Mick can fly the ship, so Nate and Mick go and retrieve the scattered team before going back to the 1940’s and stopping in to visit The Justice Society of America who want absolutely nothing to do with the insane Legends. The Legends cannot find Captain Hunter, and before they can leave the 40’s – the Reverse Flash comes back in time and kills Rex Tyler before he can go back in time and warn The Legends.  Thinking that it was one of the Legends that murdered Rex, Amaya Jiwe aka Vixen (Maisie Richardson-Sellers) smuggles herself aboard the Waverider.  After being convinced that no one on board is responsible for killing Tyler, Amaya joins the team to try to put time right and hopefully save his life.  An accident gives Nate the power to turn into a solid metal mass and he takes the superhero name of Citizen Steel*.

Eobard Thawne isn’t the only time traveling villain, he has also recruited Malcolm Merlyn and the past version of Damian Darhk.  The three villains, soon dubbed The Legion of Doom are looking to gather all of the pieces of The Spear of Destiny, that conveniently Captain Rip Hunter has scattered throughout time.  The Legends start out trying to repair time aberrations or alterations to the timeline, and soon discover that these aberrations are being caused by the Legion.  Professor Stein inadvertently alters his own timeline, resulting in a daughter he never knew, and the Legends dedicate themselves to stopping the Legion.   And Then:

ALIENS INVADE EARTH. TWICE.

After rescuing Team Arrow from the alien ship, The Legends go back in time to the first time the aliens invaded in the 50’s and kidnap one of them for information.  They discover that the Dominators are on earth because they know Barry Allen has manipulated the timeline.  Professor Stein figures out how to defeat them, and everyone goes back to their respective corners of the multiverse.

The Legends return to hunting for the Spear of Destiny which brings them to 1967 where Rip Hunter is in hiding with an altered memory.  Rip has erased his own personality and now believes that he is a film student at USC making his thesis film which is about a group of time traveling heroes led by Captain Hunter battling an immortal villain.  The Legion shows up to kidnap Rip so they can force him to reveal the location of the spear, meanwhile Nate and Ray Palmer have forgotten all of their science knowledge due to the aberration the Legion created in 67.  Rip while believing he was a student gave his piece of the spear to a fellow USC student by the name of George Lucas, and the craziness of the arrival of time travelers has led George to quit USC and run away.  If George doesn’t graduate, he doesn’t make Star Wars or Indiana Jones which are the films that inspired young Nate and young Ray to follow their chosen career paths*.  The Legends protect George and get him back on track to make Star Wars but ultimately the Legion captures Rip and rewrite his memory yet again to believe that the Legends are his enemies.  

Rip joins the Legion and tries to kill the Legends, while Merlyn and Darhk start to discover the true nature of Thawne’s plan for the spear.  Apparently Thawne is something called a Time Remnant, his entire family was erased from the timeline (See Flash Season 1) but because he was running through the speed force he was able to escape being erased (See Flash Season 2) and now The Speed Force is sending The Black Flash* (Zoom) to erase him from the timeline.  Thawne’s plan is to gather all of the pieces of the Spear and use them to rewrite history so that he can remain alive and no longer be hunted by the Time Wraiths or The Black Flash.

Evil Rip chases the Legends to Camelot where they discover that Star Girl of The Justice Society has joined King Arthur’s court and is protecting a piece of the Spear of Destiny.  The team takes the spear piece from her and captures Rip.  Rip uses his secret controls of The Waverider to crash the ship during the Jurassic era so he can kill the Legends and take the spear fragments.  Sara recaptures evil Rip and does some superscience stuff to enter his subconscious.  She and Jax go through Rip's brain to free Real Rip from the evil mind control of The Legion of Doom.

Rip is back to normal and he knows where the last piece of the Spear of Destiny is.  The team goes to 1970 where Captain Steel of The Justice Society is posing as mission control at NASA to protect the last piece of the spear, which is on The Moon.  Thawne replaces a member of the team of Apollo 13 so that he can be on board the moon mission to retrieve the spear piece, on the moon there is some trouble and Thawne actually has to team up with Ray Palmer so that both of them can make it back to Earth alive.  Thawne escapes but Ray keeps the piece of the spear.

The Legion of Doom decides that they will go and retrieve the spell components they need and wait for the Legends to retrieve the blood of Christ so that they can steal the spear and the blood of Christ from the Legends to perform their ritual.  The Blood of Christ is located in No Man’s Land during World War I and the one man who can find it is a British soldier named J.R.R. Tolkien*.  Tolkien helps the legends find the blood, The Legion unleashes their secret weapon: Leonard Snart.  Snart convinces Mick to betray the Legends and help the Legion to steal the blood and performs the ritual – rewriting reality forever.

DOOMWORLD -  In the rewritten timeline Damien Darhk and Malcolm Merlyn are in charge of Starling City and all of Team Arrow are dead. Eobard now runs S.T.A.R. Labs in Central City and has basically retaken his role from Season One of The Flash but without being Tom Cavanaugh.  The one problem is that the Legion didn’t destroy The Legends they just erased their memories and rewrote them to be servants.  Just like at the beginning of the season Nate is able to figure out subtle differences in the timeline and is able to get his memory back.  Mick double crosses the Legion to help Nate restore the memories of all the Legends and track down The Waverider so they can fix the timeline.  The Legends go back to World War I and risk creating a paradox by helping themselves gather all the pieces of The Spear so that they can destroy it.  Sara succeeds in destroying it, The Black Flash arrives and erases Thawne from existence, The Legends return Malcom Merlyn, Leonard Snart, and Damian Darhk to their timelines and erase their memories.  Rip Hunter takes the time shuttle to go off on his own and all is well.  Until the Waverider crashes in Los Angeles in 2017 to find Dinosaurs running loose in the streets.  The Legends have broken time*.

Analysis:

What works about Season Two?  Just about everything.  Season two of legends is fun, the storylines are over the top but it works, the Legion of Doom are better villains here than they were in their own respective season storylines on their other shows (except Reverse Flash, I would argue that Tom Cavanaugh’s Thawne was a much better villain than Matt Letscher’s Thawne.)  The Team is great, the usage of George Lucas and J.R.R. Tolkien was inspired.  The commitment to playing with all the toys in the DC comics toybox is so much fun.  Season two is a VAST improvement on Season One.  It isn’t great television, but it is great fun.

What doesn’t work about Season Two?  Sadly Rip Hunter.  Arthur Darvill is great, but Rip Hunter is just a dull character who saps ALL the fun out of the proceedings.  The Legends are fun because they have no clue what they’re doing, and Rip puts a damper on that fun.

Next Week: You have failed this city Oliver Queen. Arrow Season 5

In Two Weeks: A TV Show vs Comic Book Showdown: Arrow vs Green Arrow

DC's Legends of Tomorrow: The Complete Second Season [Blu-ray]
Starring Victor Garber, Brandon Routh, Arthur Darvill, Caity Lotz, Franz Drameh

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