Legends of Tomorrow “The Justice Society of America” Review (Season 2 Episode 2)

Legends of Tomorrow delivered another stellar episode this week, introducing an entire new team of superheroes while continuing to show off just how improved it’s gotten in its second season. “The Justice Society of America” delivered not only great comedy beats and character development, but one of the best superhero fight scenes on TV in a while.

It’s brief, but the battle that opens the hour really is a fantastic spectacle, a fight scene that delivers on the show’s original promise of being a weekly action blockbuster. It’s a showdown that pits two superhero teams against one another, with standout moments revealing each of the JSA members’ powers in grand fashion. From Stargirl slinging bolts with her Cosmic Rod to Obsidian blacking out the sky, it was a visually diverse, exciting sequence for the show, topped off with a JSA theme that stands among the best in the Arrowverse.

With that big fight opening the episode, it’s not surprise that nothing else in the episode could quite live up, at least on the action front. Still, the other fight scenes had some strong points, even if it just meant seeing the JSA in action. Really, the biggest thing that hurt these scenes is the extremely wobbly CG on the transformed Krieger. Of course, how crazy is it that this show adapted Captain Nazi of all people, even if they did avoid actually calling him that.

What helped the rest of the episode continue to entertain was the constant stream of great jokes and fun scenes. The highlight in this regard was the club infiltration, which saw Sara throwing sassing Nazis, Stein taking to the stage to perform “Edelweiss” (and make yet another Back to the Future reference), and Ray struggling with the thought of saluting Hitler. It’s a complete farce, but it’s so delightful that you can’t help but smile. It’s that same sort of infectious energy that seems to permeate the entire show now, and it’s helping to make it so much stronger.

On the dramatic side, we got two major threads. I didn’t mention him last week because he barely played a role, but new team member Nathan Heywood was given a much better introduction this week. He became a historian in part due to his admiration for his grandfather Commander Steel, which makes for a tough time actually meeting him. He’s a character longing to be a hero, and travelling with the Legends – and a dose of modified Nazi serum – will give him that chance.

The other thread had to do with who would lead the team in Rip’s absence. While good old 1940s sexism initially leads to Stein being put in charge, is there ever any real question Sara’s the woman for the job? Even when Rip was around, she was the clear second-in-command, and she’s far more self-assured and confident than anyone else on the team (save Mick, but… a leader, he’s not).

As fun as the episode is, there are a few issues holding it back. For one, we only really learn about half of the JSA members, with Obsidian, Doctor Mid-Nite, and Stargirl not really doing much outside of the fight scenes. Ray, meanwhile, continued to get guff for relying on a suit to fight battles, which is a weird arc to give the character when neither Mick or Sara have powers either. Weirder still is that it’s Vixen giving him crap for it; her powers come from a magical necklace. Still, they’re small quibbles in an otherwise strong episode, and things the show can easily fix in future installments.

What did you think of this week’s episode? Let me know in the comments!