The Legends of Tomorrow continue their round-robin turns on the introductory voice-over. This week, it’s Jax’s turn as the team deals with “Compromises.” The opening scene starts off as Damian Darhk in what seems like it should be an old Miami Vice episode. However, as the DEA rolls up and tries to make a bust, Darhk gets help from a villain we’ve seen with him before: Reverse-Flash, although so far he’s mostly avoiding his costume. The two of them are feeling each other out about a partnership that bodes ill for every hero in the CW-verse.
The team is back on the Waverider, attending to various issues. Jax and Stein are debating preserving the time line vs. making things better. Does this mean Firestorm is talking to himself? Jax finally appeals to Sara for some support. She tells him that she likes his ideas, but she’s siding with Stein. A disgusted Jax refers to the team as “time janitors.”
Rory is trying to train Ray in the uses of Snart’s cold gun. Ray is initially wearing Snart’s goggles as well, but discards those quickly. Ray wants to tinker with the gun, because that’s what he does, and Rory is very opposed to the idea. I think Rory is having trouble letting go.
Hank is tinkering with a new gadget in Rip’s study, and is joined by Vixen. Since they keep talking about “timequakes,” Hank is making a “time seismograph.” How being a historian qualifies him to do this, I have no idea. But apparently, it works, since it goes off almost immediately, after Vixen proves to be evasive about Hank’s questions regarding the JSA.
The disturbance is in 1987 Washington, DC. So, decked out in era-appropriate clothes, the team splits up to investigate. Some of them go to the White House and get in on a tour, while Vixen and Hank go to a hidden JSA training facility. Nothing goes as expected for anyone in various ways
The first hint that things are going awry is Stein seeing his younger self in the White House. What he remembers of that day is never going inside. Ray and Rory raid Reagan’s jellybeans. When the team sees Darhk as a White House advisor, chaos erupts. Somehow or other, Sara, Ray, and Rory got weapons inside the White House, which makes no sense at all. The team ends up fleeing, even when backed up by Firestorm, who should be able to handle pretty much the entire Secret Service by himself.
Vixen and Hank find that the JSA facility is moth-balled and looks abandoned. For whatever reason, Obsidian is hanging out there by himself, in costume. Which doesn’t sound healthy. Due to the pretty much mandated misunderstanding rule, they fight before exchanging information. The JSA went on one last mission years ago and never came back. They didn’t trust Obsidian to come with them because of something that gets hinted about but not discussed.
Eventually, the team regroups and decides to spy in Darhk. Somehow or other, they end up with a van to base their surveillance out of. Nothing goes well here, either. Ray and Rory bicker, Stein’s younger self blunders in causing many problems, and there are vague references to some kind of package being delivered.
Obsidian proves reluctant to help, and the JSA sounds more and more like it was run as some kind of military unit. That doesn’t sound like a fun team to be on. I also wonder why, if they had enough support in place to find and train metahumans (long before Flash’s particle accelerator), a new team wasn’t assembled to replace the old one.
Whatever plot is brewing revolves around a state dinner that Obsidian manages to get them into. There are complications with young Stein, Clarissa (his wife)’s young self, and Vixen and Sara debating enforcing the law versus being a vigilante/killer. There’s a lot of talking for such a tense situation.
There is a fight between the heroes on one side, and Damian Darhk, random goons, and the KGB on the other. Once again, the vastly powerful Firestorm does next to nothing. Eventually, they manage to chase off the bad guys, prevent a bombing, and actually get in some teamwork. I will say that with Firestorm, Nate/Steel, and Vixen now on the team, “horde of bad guys” isn’t really a believable threat/obstacle anymore.
Stein scolds his younger self about how he’s treating Clarissa. This is twice now the team has interacted with Stein’s younger version, but it doesn’t seem to be complicating things anywhere near as much as Barry’s time jaunts over on Flash. Time travel seems very inconsistent across the CW shows. Obsidian says his fighting days are over and reveals what his big secret was from back in the day, which is no surprise to comic fans. Vixen finally eases up a bit and tells Hank about the JSA and his grandfather. And the show ends with Damian and Reverse-Flash furthering their partnership, which isn’t real good for anyone.
What I liked: It was nice to see Obsidian in action, since he didn’t really get to do much in the first Legends/JSA team up. The 80’s references were amusing. The special effects for Vixen’s powers still look great. Neal McDonough’s portrayal of Damian Darhk is always amusing.
What I didn’t: How in hell did they get metal weapons into the White House on a tour? Why was there no replacement for the JSA? If supers were working for the government as early as World War II, how were both Arrow and Flash such big shocks to everyone? Where’d the van come from? How many times are they going to run into young Martin Stein without seriously screwing with his timeline? How was Hank able to build his gadget? Has everyone forgotten Rip is still missing?
I keep hoping this show is going to get better, and they keep disappointing me. I’m giving this one a low 2.5 out of 5.