Legends of Tomorrow Goes Vampire Hunting Finds Another Old Supervillain

first_imgLet us know what you like about Geek by taking our survey. DC TV Comes to NYCC, Joaquin Phoenix’s Joker Grin & More DC NewsOur Favorite TV Superheroes Ranked Leave it to Legends of Tomorrow to keep horror fun the week after Halloween. Their E.T. storyline last week was great and had plenty of pumpkins and trick-or-treating, but you know what it was missing? Monsters. That’s why this episode took our heroes back in time to Victorian England, with time-traveling vampires and Jack the Ripper. It would be nothing more than a fun farewell to the Halloween season if not for the fact that it actually drove the plot forward. We’ve now met, or at least heard the voice of, our big bad for the season. Rip is on the outs with just about everybody, and the Legends have even solved their Time Bureau troubles for now. Man, this episode had a lot going on.It all starts when Nate stays up all night studying the cause-and-effect pattern of each anachronism. He notices a couple of outliers that don’t fit the pattern. One, they’ve already been to (the day they saved Zari from being murdered) and one involving a vampire in old London. Right away, the connection between the two tells us this isn’t going to be a standard anachronism-of-the-week episode. That’s only further confirmed when Rip Hunter shows up, enlisting the Legends to figure out what’s going on. Right away, you know this one is going to be important.Brandon Routh as Ray Palmer/Atom, Dominic Purcell as Mick Rory/Heat Wave, Caity Lotz as Sara Lance/White Canary, Nick Zano as Nate Heywood/Steel and Franz Drameh as Jefferson “Jax” Jackson (Photo: Cate Cameron/The CW)That doesn’t mean there’s no time for fun. Mick Rory really carries the early parts of the episode with the reveal that he’s always fancied himself a vampire hunter. He is currently deep into reading Bram Stoker’s Dracula, and he carries a stake around with him. Just in case. The stake comes in really handy when they question a Victorian coroner and suddenly hear a modern ringtone. Victorian mysticism being interrupted by a tinny “Return of the Mack” is probably the funniest gag of the episode. After Rory threatens the coroner with a stake, he reveals a Palmer Industries smartwatch. Apparently, a corpse that fell from they sky was wearing it. One short trip to the graveyard later, the body is gone.If this episode had one big flaw, it’s that it almost had too much going on in it. Everything that happened mattered, and it’s about time the show starts pushing its season arc forward, but it gets really muddled in the middle. There are so many subplots it was hard to follow everything that was going on. There was Zari’s guilt over taking her brothers amulet, and the fact that she can’t use the Waverider to bring him back. There was a medium, who turned out to be manipulating Zari’s emotions to get her amulet. Then there’s Nate getting captured and nearly drained of his blood (turns out the vampire is just a guy with a two-pronged syringe) so a mysterious man in a box can be resurrected. They try to do way too much, leaving us asking, “wait, what am I watching?”Tala Ashe as Zari and Maisie Richardson- Sellers as Amaya, Jiwe/Vixen (Photo: Cate Cameron/The CW)What saves it is that it all leads somewhere good. The episode finds a focus again once the man in the box is revealed to be Damien Darhk. This is the third year in a row Dahrk has been an Arrowverse villain, and the second in a row he’s been on Legends of Tomorrow. I don’t mind. Neal McDonough is so likable in the role, and he’s a way better fit for this show than he ever was on Arrow. Now, he’s more powerful than ever, which leads to a fantastic superhero battle. He’s already proving himself to be a much more formidable foe, and he’s only a henchmen. He and his daughter are working in service of Mallus. We still don’t know all that much about Mallus, but we did get to hear his voice. John Noble can still send chills down your spine when he wants to. Legends of Tomorrow has now set up three minor villains and one big bad for the season. All of them are complex, compelling characters and it’s going to be so much fun to watch the Legends figure out how to defeat them. Even if a good chunk of the episode was a mess, it focused at the end, and gave the rest of the season a great jumping off point.I also love what they did with Rip. Every time he’s brought back, he threatens to take control of the Legends away from Sara. She is the captain now, and established herself as a very good one last season. By the season two finale, it was clear to everyone that the Legends weren’t Rip’s team anymore. What’s really interesting in this episode is that neither is the Time Bureau. It was hinted at in the season premiere when he took the Waverider away from the Legends 15 minutes after giving it to them, but he really doesn’t trust anyone. When the Bureau he started wasn’t investigating Mallus to his liking, he turned to the Legends. While Rip attempting to leave the team was a fun throwback to season one, it was also a case for why the show can never go back there. Rip tries to seize control of the Legends at every opportunity when that’s not how the team works anymore, and the show is better for it. His distrust of everyone comes back to bite him in the end too. Unable to forgive his mutiny, Sara turns him over to the Time Bureau, where he is court marshaled. It gives the rest of the season a chance to really explore Rip’s personality. If they pull it off, we could see some real growth from him. It also gets the Time Bureau off the Legends’ back for a while. With Mallus and Darhk out there, the Bureau has much bigger problems to worry about than a time machine full of lovable idiots. The Bureau interfering when things went off the rails was fun for a couple episodes, but it got old fast.Nick Zano as Nate Heywood/Steel, Arthur Darvill as Rip Hunter and Caity Lotz as Sara Lance/White Canary  (Photo: Cate Cameron/The CW)The subplot between Jax and Martin was also incredibly sweet. It only serves to remind us how much we’re going to miss Victor Garber when he leaves the show later this year. Jax is working with Ray to sever the psychic connection he shares with Martin. As a side effect, he loses his short-term memory, leading to some funny antics the show doesn’t have time to explore fully. Stein finds out about what they’re doing and admits that being on the Waverider is much harder now that he’s missing time with his grandson. He agrees to help Ray and Jax figure out a way to break up Firestorm, making sure that Jax can become the hero alone. In an episode packed with high-stakes action and just a bit of horror, these slower scenes are a welcome change of pace. Plus, one of them featured Victor Garber singing a lullaby. If there’s a more wondrous sound in existence, I haven’t heard it.center_img Stay on targetlast_img read more