‘DC’s Legends of Tomorrow’ (Season 2): Spears of Destiny Can Be Deceiving

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“DC’s Legends of Tomorrow” continued its strong run of episodes in the back half of the season with a quartet of shows that chronicled the final assembly of the Spear of Destiny and its subsequent (mis)use by the villains who might not have gotten in the first place had the team not gotten ahold of all the pieces in the first place and gathered them in one place. Turns out that Rip (Arthur Darvill) had the right idea to separate the pieces after all.

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Of course, to be fair, the Legion of Doom had turned Rip bad, thus allowing him to undo said good idea and cause everything else that happened subsequently, so it’s not as if Rip’s intentions weren’t well meaning. But you know what they say about good intentions and the road to Hell. Besides, it would have been pretty anti-climatic if all had gone completely according to plan, anyway, right?

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On the first episode since my last review, “Land of the Lost,” the show did a homage to both the show/movie of its namesake and any number of other “prehistoric” influences, such as the “Jurassic Park” movies and the work of the legendary Ray Harryhausen. While a bit slight and kind of a “bottle” episode- albeit split into two bottles, as it were- it was nonetheless a lot of fun, if, as ever, occasionally a bit flawed in the logic department.

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For instance, it seemed like the whole retrieval of the piece of the Waverider was needlessly prolonged, when it could have been resolved a lot quicker by Ray (Brandon Routh) simply getting into his suit and going after the item and speeding back, simple as that. Still, the glimpses of what he was up to last time he was there were amusing. I especially got a kick out of the miniature versions of his teammates that he built to pass the time with in their absence.

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But I get it- the show had bigger fish to fry, mainly the burgeoning relationship between Nate (Nick Zano) and Amaya (Maisie Richardson-Sellers) and the fact that it was essentially doomed before it could begin. In addition, the show also needed to rectify the whole “Rip gone bad” thing, which they did in the meantime, while Ray, Nate and Amaya were off having their dino-venture.

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Interestingly, it was Mick (Dominic Purcell)- who has managed to somehow become both one the unsung heroes of the show while at the same time remaining true to his darker, villainous self- who came up with the idea of going into Rip’s head to figure out what was going on in there and get him back to his usual self, pointing out that the same thing had been done to him to turn him “bad.”

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To do so, Sara (Caity Lotz) and Jefferson (Franz Drameh) had to enter Rip’s mind and help him along to defeat whatever was causing the problems in there. Interestingly, upon their arrival, both ran afoul of their own “dark” selves, and had to combat them to complete their mission. It was very entertaining seeing Sara in particular fighting herself, as it were- not to mention seeing that “evil” Rory was basically the same as “normal” Rory! (Like I said, Rory contains multitudes- who knew?)

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However, the undeniable high-point of the episode was the reveal of the personification of none other than Gideon herself, aka actress Amy Pemberton, who, as Sara amusingly pointed out, was as hot as she is smart. Who says you can’t have it all? Seeing her the way Rip sees her in his mind’s eye was very cool, as it was for us just to see what she looks like in the first place- though I suppose some of us knew already from having looked her up previously.

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Still, cool moment, especially the kiss between Gideon and Rip, which helped seal the deal of his getting back to normal finally. In other words, Gideon sort of saved the day in the end, which was kind of awesome. Between this show, “Agents of SHIELD” and “Westworld” I guess hot AI is all the rage lately. It’s no wonder a lot of people think robots will be the end of us all- if these examples are what we have to look forward to, then it’s pretty stiff competition to all us lowly humans, lol.

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Next up was “Moonshoot,” which mirrored a similar episode on “Timeless,” as ever, though that episode actually preconfigured the big-screen success of “Hidden Figures,” whereas the “LOT” version was more focused on other matters, notably Nate’s ongoing romance with Amaya and the repercussions of it on both the past and the future if they continue, as well as all the Spear of Destiny business.

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That said, it was a pretty fantastic episode, between the “Beetlejuice”-style homage of the vocal stylings of Dr. Stein (Victor Garber), as he regaled NASA with a full-throated rendition of “Day-O” as a means of distracting them at a key moment, to Hank Heywood’s ultimate sacrifice, which dashed Nate’s ill-advised hopes of revising the future by having him spend more time with his son, even at the risk of messing with his own future.

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Naturally, this didn’t go over well with Amaya, who pointed out the ramifications of doing such a thing, which led to Nate hinting at Amaya’s own past/future just enough to get her curious about it to later on look into it herself. This in turn led to her also being uncertain about her future with Nate, given the tragic path she realized was in store for her and her family, and the fact that technically she could stop and/or change it. But should she? As we discover later on, she never really gets a chance, but I won’t get ahead of myself.

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I liked the fact that, with Rip obstensibly back in charge, he soon realized that he had been more than ably replaced by Sara, eventually realizing the crew was better off with her in charge and stepping aside to allow just that. This, of course, calls into question what his role will now be moving forward, which, as with Amaya, we don’t really ever get around to dealing with before everything goes south in a big way on the next episode, and even more so in the one after that.

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I also enjoyed the thrill of Ray’s sojourn to the moon, which was not shared by his comrades, and the unexpected circumstances which led him to have to cooperate, like it or not, with Thawne (Matt Letscher) in order to get back home safe, always an interesting dynamic to take for a show like this.

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Along the way, we got some much-needed character moments with Thawne, which fleshed out the character in a welcome way, showing that, as with many of the better villains in the comics canon, he’s one that doesn’t necessarily see himself as bad. He also made a good point about Ray’s motivations with his suit and the whole Dwarf Star tech. Still, when all is said and done, his real motivation is saving his own bacon, so there’s that.

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Next up was the even more fun “Fellowship of the Spear,” in which the crew teamed up with no less than J.R.R. Tolkien (Jack Turner, “Stitchers”), in hopes of destroying the Spear of Destiny, a la the One Ring in his famed “Lord of the Rings” trilogy. Of course, all of this took place before he’d written said books, and ultimately served in a roundabout way as inspiration for the books later on, one assumes.

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The loopy storyline, which also incorporated a search for Christ’s blood during World War I- and I do mean DURING- in order to destroy the spear used in stabbing Him on the Cross (!) was more than a little bit insane, but no more so than any given plotline to a Indiana Jones movie, really, so it was absolutely in keeping with a lot of the more far-out episodes this season. I mean, the team actually managed a cease fire during an all-out war, for, um, Christ’s sake, if you’ll pardon the unintentional pun.

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Be that as it may, it was a great episode, not in the least because of the unexpected twists along the way, notably the revelation that Mick’s hallucinations of Snart (Wentworth Miller) weren’t figments of his imagination after all, but the real deal. It seems that the Legion had plucked Snart out of the timeline in hopes of using him to recruit Rory and turn them against the team, which in the end, was exactly what happened- though not for long, as we would later see.

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Of course, you can’t entirely blame Mick for turning against the team, given that they unequivocally state they can’t trust him- and probably never would. But it’s precisely that push and pull which leads Mick to have second thoughts later on, leading him to be the secret hero of the season in the following episode, “Doomworld.” Granted, one could point out that they might not have been in that position in the first place, had Mick not joined the Legion at the end- and many of them do- but it was nonetheless entirely up to Mick to do the right thing in the clutch, and he did, so that’s saying something.

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The “Doomworld” was a bleak one, to be sure, at least for the team, with Ray reduced to janitorial duties, while Sara and Amaya were forced to do Thawne’s bidding, as were Mick and Snart, more or less, much to Rory’s chagrin. Indeed, it was Thawne’s hubris, basically in making everyone concerned into his minions- even Merlyn (John Barrowman) and Darhk (Neal McDonough), who had previously warned him about sidelining them- that led to everyone plotting against him in the first place.

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However, bringing down Thawne proves easier said than done, as, even after Mick manages to salvage most of the team- save Dr. Stein, which has some decidedly unfortunate repercussions- Thawne ultimately manages to secure the Spear again, and even worse, destroy it altogether in the end, which can’t be good. Once again, the show ends on a pretty bleak note, with evil triumphing over good.

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Thankfully, there is still hope, as Rip has managed, with the indispensable aid of Gideon, of course- to repair the Waverider and is in the process of sending out a distress signal to the others at the end of the episode, boding well for a happy ending in the final episode of the season. Maybe. Hopefully, the third episode will be the charm for our faithful crew, though, as Thawne’s fellow Legionnaires point out, maybe he should have stopped with all the monologues and simply killed the crew in the first place and it wouldn’t have come to this.

Of course, no one wants that, and I think Thawne can’t help himself when it comes to lording over everyone, even the members of his own team. Note also his “trophy case” of defeated foes, which included some familiar masks among the display, including the Green Arrow and The Flash.

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In addition, there was a shocking opening scene, where we also saw Felicity Smoak (Emily Bett Rickards) taken out in particularly nasty fashion all around, between a broken leg (or whatever), to a snapped neck, with most of the damage inflicted by Sara and Amaya themselves. If most of this season has been about having fun, this episode showed that playtime was definitely over.

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All in all, it was a decent episode, but a bit disappointing in comparison to the episodes that came before it. Though the darker-than-usual episode made time for a few good laughs, certainly (Nate’s imitation of Mick was amusing, as was Ray’s bro-type janitor, and dear God, what was up with Nate’s mom’s sandwiches?), overall, it wasn’t as good as the run-up to it.

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For one thing, Amaya’s “death” was sort of anti-climatic, which was really unfortunate, and it wasn’t helped by the fact that it isn’t likely permanent- I wouldn’t be the least bit surprised if she’s back before the end of the season, in fact. As such, it robbed the episode of some of its impact, something that wouldn’t have been the case had it, say, been Mick killing Snart, which might have been more shocking and attention-grabbing. Not saying I wanted that to happen, just that it would have made more of an impact than Amaya’s death as it stood.

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Still, we’ve still got an episode to go, so there’s still hope to right that episode’s wrongs, and even considering them, it wasn’t enough to derail the entire season as a whole, IMHO. One misguided episode does not a bad season make, after all. I’ll get into my assessment of said season in my next, postmortem review in April, but until then, for the most part, this was another fun run of episodes that was highly enjoyable overall.

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What did you think of the last few episodes? Which was your favorite? What did you think of Mick’s arc this season? Could it have been done better, or did you like the way it was done on the whole? What did you think about Snart’s return and how that was handled? What about Rip’s tumultuous run of episodes and character arcs? What do you think will happen on the finale? What do you HOPE will happen? Sound off down below, and be sure and join me for a recap after the big finale!