For those of you who’ve missed seeing the Justice Society of America, this week of LEGENDS OF TOMORROW, “Camelot/3000” reunites the remainder of the team for a very split second… and then one of them dies.
Rip Hunter continues his path of destruction, and visits the year 3000, where JSA member Dr. Midnight has been stationed to protect his portion of the Spear of Destiny. Hunter, now a certified savage, kills Dr. Midnight and recovers yet another piece of the spear. For those of you counting, that’s bad guys: 8000, good guys: 0.
The Legends arrive too late to save Dr. Midnight and learn, through a message written in blood, that Rip Hunter was the one to kill him. Amaya does the thing that I’ve wanted someone to do since the last episode and confronts Sara for letting Hunter go when she had the chance – especially now since he’s killed one of her team members and has another piece of the spear. Sara maintains that they are “not killers”, even though that doesn’t answer why she didn’t at least capture Rip when she had the chance.
After they return from the future, Gideon senses another piece of the spear located in Camelot, and the team rushes there. They’re captured by a distrustful King Arthur and learn that Stargirl of the JSA has held an identity on Arthur’s roundtable as Merlin. Stargirl recounts that during a mission in 1956 (which would end up being their last mission), the JSA were commissioned to protect the Spear, and Rip Hunter joined them. Each of the JSA members was responsible for protecting the spear in different time zones. Hence, Dr. Midnight was supposed to protect the spear in the future and Stargirl in Camelot.
Meanwhile, The Legion of Doom makes their appearance in Camelot, capturing King Arthur and using technology to control the king’s mind to infiltrate Camelot and find out where Stargirl is hiding the Spear fragment. When Stargirl refuses to relinquish the whereabouts of the Spear, Darkh gives the team an ultimatum: give them the spear, or they’ll use mind control technology to create an army of Dark (Darkh?) Knights and destroy Camelot.
Sara decides to order the team to stay and fight the dark Army, while Amaya, over Sara’s moral values, decides to take matters into her own hands. Amaya recovers the Spear fragment from Excalibur and convinces Sara that now that the Legion is distracted, the team should abandon the fight and escape with the fragment.
While Amaya’s plan is smart and tactical, Ray (a man of heart) decides to live out his fantasy of being a noble knight, and decides to stay and fight. After members of the team express that they’re not leaving without Ray, Sara succumbs to her gut and agrees that the team should help out Camelot, lest the Dark Army destroy them.
A long epic fight ensues between Camelot and the mind-controlled Dark Army, until Stein and Jax find a solution. Stein, who’d stolen a piece of technology from the year 3000, learns how to stop the army and hack the transmitters controlling their brains. Much to his dismay, Mick’s brainpower is the only one strong enough to control the entire army and it is Mick who gets to “save the day.”
During the battle, Rip gets severely injured, and his teammate Darkh abandons him on the battlefield, finally allowing Sara to capture him. However, back on the ship in his captivity, we learn that Rip still has control over Gideon, and I’m sure he won’t be afraid to use it.
I should mention that there was this weird chemistry between Amaya and Nathan after last week’s breakup, and it wasn’t pleasant to watch.
While in general this week was just as exciting as the last, the thing that got me pumped was Sara’s short love interest. I feel as though almost every other team member has been able to have a romantic or personal connection with another teammate/rando they meet when they time travel, except your girl Sara, so it was very satisfying when she got a little action with Gweneviere, the former knight turned Queen of Camelot. After Rip’s departure, we’ve seen Sara take on the role of the fearless leader who ain’t got time for no love, but it was nice to see her finally get some emotional connection with a woman who proves herself to be just as awesome as she.
Speaking of Gweneviere, I thought this episode highlighted just how unique this show’s treatment of women is. This episode featured a woman (Stargirl) as Merlin, one of the most important figures of the King Arthur fable and a woman (Gwen) who would abandon her place on the throne to lead the battle between the Camelot knights and the dark knights. I’ve said it since the beginning, but one thing that I appreciate about Legends is its equal treatment towards its male and female characters. I think this week, the show went out of its way to ensure that we didn’t get a full episode of men leading men to an epic battle. I appreciate how this show gives us well-rounded female characters – you know, just like how women are in real life – and writes its women characters with depth, emotion, and badassness. I’m truly not a fan of knights and Camelot, but perhaps if I learned more about the role women played during that time and some of the women who contributed to the fight, I would be.
Continuing my rant on badass women, I thought Sara’s storyline was really strong. As I mentioned earlier, since Sara has had to step in for Rip and become the leader of this often dysfunctional group, she hasn’t had much time for an emotional storyline. Although it didn’t overshadow the main action of the plot, I enjoyed seeing Sara kind of struggle with her decision-making tactics as a leader. This week Sara, who often portrays herself as confident and self-assured, had to question her own decisions. Should she be less concerned with doing the right thing, and be more concerned with doing whatever it takes to save the Spear? While I still think her decision to let Rip go last week was…odd… I’m glad that that was addressed this week and that the show gave Sara a chance to acknowledge that she may have made a mistake.
If I had to be nitpicky and write about something I didn’t like about this week’s episode, it would probably be the Ray/Nathan storyline. I’m sorry, ya’ll know these are two of my least favorite teammates so maybe I’m biased, however, I wasn’t at all that interested in watching Ray’s incessant need to “prove himself as a knight.” First off, where did that come from? Why did it feel like he was trying to be the hero of the era? I suppose his weird obsession with being “Captain Save ‘em All” this week was necessary to get the Legends involved with the big fight, but overall Ray came off as annoying and slightly self-indulgent. That’s just me though, ya’ll know I don’t like him. *Shrugs
We’ve got four episodes left, and Rip Hunter becomes less and less like himself each week. I haven’t read the comics and am not sure if this season is following them at all, but I hope that Rip never returns to their side. I’m having too much fun watching Rouge Rip, and I love how strong of an adversary he’s proving to be for the Legends.
In addition, I love how the writers are still able to work in time travel in a way that doesn’t feel forced or unnecessary to the story. The second half of this season has become more and more unpredictable, and I’m truly excited for next week.
PS: Give Jax more things to do please. Thx.
Season 2, Episode 12 (S02E12)
Legends of tomorrow airs Tuesdays at 8PM on The CW
Writer based in LA. Just trying to write good stuff while deep conditioning my hair.
Keep up with all of Vanessa’s reviews here.
Vanessa Jay | Contributor