Arrow: Legends of Yesterday


The Arrow/Flash team-up concludes in Arrow’s “Legends of Yesterday.” Even with a busy crossover event happening, we can’t get away from Flashback Theater. This week’s is about Hawkgirl and Hawkman in their lives in Ancient Egypt when they were Shayera and Khufu. Their forbidden love affair is discovered by a priest, who kills them and then, in the midst of a meteor strike, becomes the immortal Vandal Savage. Vandal vows to pursue them into their next lives and beyond as they lay dying. 

In the present day, Kendra keeps getting flashes of her past life, but denies it. I guess she’s not ready to admit to having lived before yet, which I can understand. Because the heroes decided they needed a new place to operate out of during the current crisis, they go to a very rural farm house, which prompts Thea to make a joke essentially about Avengers: Age of Ultron. Carter begins training Kendra, being a dick to her and Cisco both in the process.

Oliver is off on his own, keeping secrets again, because historically that’s always gone so well for him. In this case, he’s checking up on his ex that he saw at the end of the Flash half of this crossover. Samantha admits her son is his, and that Moira Queen paid her off to lie to Oliver and vanish. Samantha even still has the check, since she never cashed it. Oliver, needless to say, is stunned. Barry confirms this via a DNA test on a piece of hair Oliver lifted.

Malcolm Merlyn pops up again, to say he has arranged a meeting between Savage and the heroes. Malcolm fears Savage, because while everyone seems to know of Savage in Malcolm’s circles, no one knows anything about him. Malcolm is acting from the same motivation he usually does of late- trying to help Thea. In this case, Malcolm fears fighting Savage will get her killed.

The meeting goes badly. Savage lectures and blusters. Unimpressed, Barry asks if he practiced that speech in the mirror. Oliver ends up shooting Savage, who is also unimpressed. As Savage casually pulls the arrow out, he reminisces about Robin of Locksley. Savage gives them twenty four hours to turn over the Hawks before Savage starts laying waste to Central City.

Barry is keeping a secret of his own. While running around getting ready for the meeting, he saw an image of himself, which he calls ghosting. He’s seen this before– when he time traveled. Since Barry knows he doesn’t do this on a whim, it’s a bad sign for the near future.

Carter and Kendra have a somewhat stereotypical training session. She can’t lay a finger on him and he mocks her, or at least appears to not much care. Finally, she charges him in rage, and her wings pop out as she attacks him. He says that’s a good sign, and that rage is the key to her powers. Felicity interrupts at this point with some news from Team Arrow.

They found an old Betamax tape of a Professor Borgman from St. Roche University. He talks about Vandal’s past, and him possibly being the death of the world. Kendra works out this might be linked to the staff she has seen in her visions of their first lives. St. Roche is a nice nod to the Hawks’ history- they were based out of that town at one point, which seemed to be a fictionalized New Orleans.

Oliver’s attempt to keep his son secret is short-lived. Felicity finds out and they have what seems like a very soap opera scene. Felicity is upset that he didn’t tell her, and Oliver is trying to explain that he just found out himself. Personally I think this is a really bad time for this discussion, but what do I know?

Cisco has developed some gauntlets he think will cancel out the energy field around the staff that Barry found out about earlier. Barry wears them to the prisoner hand-off, which Oliver dictated to be him, Flash, and the Hawks. It all falls apart, the gloves don’t work, Savage uses the staff to cause a major energy blast that acts like a nuke. It kills Oliver, the Hawks, and pretty much everyone else in the Central City area. Barry survives, runs off, and now we know why he time traveled before.

Barry ends up back at the initial meeting with Savage. Bits of it replay, as Barry tries to sort out what to do differently. Finally getting Oliver alone, Barry warns him about what happened. Got to give Oliver credit, his life has gotten so weird that he just accepts this and says they will do things differently this time, which is the first time for everyone except Barry and the audience.

This time, they play to their strengths. Carter’s training with Kendra failed, so Barry and Oliver send Cisco. Between his connection with Kendra, his optimism, and his being such a huge fan of metahumans, Cisco is able to get through to Kendra in a way Carter couldn’t. So that’s one change for the better.

Between Barry, Kendra, and Carter, they manage to come up with what Cisco’s “Anti-Gandalf gloves” were missing. Oliver also brings everyone this time, giving them a lot of back up, two more changes for the better. Also, Black Canary, Green Arrow, Hawkgirl, Hawkman and Flash all together? That’s a good bit of the Justice League there, which was really cool to see in live action. Together, they manage to get the Staff away from Savage, and even disintegrate him, leaving a pile of ash behind.

Cisco and Kendra have a talk, which goes the way we knew it would since she’s going to be on another show. They at least part on good terms. Barry cautions Oliver about “temporal backlash” from changing time. Oliver replays his meeting with Samantha, and again agrees to keep William secret. Not good, Oliver. At the very end, Malcolm finds Savage’s pile of ashes, takes some, chanting the same thing Savage did back in ancient Egypt, which I guess is how Savage is still around for Legends of Tomorrow.

What I liked: It was really cool seeing that many heroes together, and the last few pieces we needed for Legends of Tomorrow. I liked the banter between the characters. Cisco continues to impress me, not just as comic relief but as a good man with useful skills.

What I didn’t:: Oliver keeping William secret from Felicity makes no sense. It doesn’t matter what he promised Samantha, she’s not going to know if he tells Felicity. Keeping secrets for no reason is never a good plan.

I’ll give this one a 3.5 out of 5. It was a fun crossover. They’ll both be back next week for their mid-season breaks, and Legends of Tomorrow airs in January.


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