Last time, the bad guys won in an ugly, decisive way. The Legion of Doom got the Spear of Destiny, and they used it. How bad is it? Well, Eobard Thawne, the Reverse Flash, is doing the opening voiceover now, which can’t be a good sign. As he says at the end, “It’s a brave new world.”
The show opens in the new version of Star City 2017. A masked figure runs from Amaya and Sara, who are not only hunting her, but taunting her cruelly. I had thought it might be Huntress at first, but it was both better and worse. The two former Legends capture Felicity Smoak and bring her to Mayor Damian Darhk’s office. Darhk summarily has Felicity killed, and adds her mask to his trophy case which is full of disturbingly familiar items. The masked hero set isn’t doing well in this version of the world. At the end of this, they do the Legends title screen, but the elements are the bad guys’ logos, not the heroes’ any more. That was a nice, clever, subtle change.
Thawne is running STAR Labs in this reality, and has the Black Flash that’s been chasing him trapped in a cell. Malcolm drops by and we get a rundown of his new life: wife and child alive and well, Thea (perpetually off screen, poor girl) loves him, and Talia’s life is fairly horrible. He even has his hand back. But, like many people and almost all villains, he’s not satisfied and wants more. Thawne refuses to give him the Spear. Jax walks in, now working for Thawne. Malcolm doesn’t like this at all, saying that keeping the Legends around is sloppy. Thawne gets evasive about a special project he’s got Jax working on.
Heat Wave and Captain Cold pull off a robbery and we see the special deal they have in their new world. Snart seems content with it, while Mick has some reservations. We also hear about why the Legends are still around at all. Rip, for his part, is trapped on the Waverider, making cakes to pass the time. He says he’s been there for a year, and he’s developing a new problem or two in the virtual isolation, no disrespect to Gideon’s company.
STAR Labs got a make over, and it looks like the headquarters of the Legion of Doom from the old Superfriends cartoon. Jax is apparently a manager here, and he’s horribly abusive to his underling, Martin Stein. It almost sounds like a redux of Scrooge and Cratchet. Also at the edges of the scene is one of the janitors: Ray Palmer.
Thawne is on the phone with someone who is never named but sure as hell sounds like it’s President Trump. He has Snart and Mick there, and is telling them to keep an eye on Malcolm for him. Neither are happy with this assignment, more because it makes it sound like they work for him than qualms about spying on their fellow Legionnaire.
In a scene that inspires some deja vu, Nate Haywood bursts in, demanding to see Thawne. Intrigued, maybe amused, Thawne waves off security. Nate goes on about reality being wrong, that he’s noticed “reality scars” that cover various inconsistencies. Thawne is impressed. He’s so impressed, he orders Cold and Heat Wave to kill Nate. Nate is stunned. As the two Rogues take him out in the woods, Nate keeps asking questions in between begging for his life. In a moment that surprises even Mick, Mick knocks out Cold and saves Nate’s life, telling him what happened to reality. I think my favorite bit is Nate scoffing at the name Legion of Doom, and Mick telling him he’s the one who named it.
Ray lives in a crappy apartment and is a hard core gamer, which sounds about right. His playtime gets interrupted when Mick and Nate show up, relating the story of changed reality once again. Ray eagerly seizes on the idea of something being wrong with reality, and, even as a janitor, is still an inventor. His latest gadget should theoretically restore memories, like an undo command on a computer. They debate possible side effects, until Mick ends the talking by zapping Nate in the chest. In the stunned silence, Ray says it probably needs to be the head for it to work, and Mick shoots an aggravated Nate again. Nate falls, then leaps to his feet and punches Mick hard in the face for turning on the team.
Snart, Malcolm, and Damian meet up, and talk about Mick’s apparent defection. Darhk sends his attack dogs, Sara and Amaya, after Mick. Snart has a GPS on Mick. There’s a reason Snart tends to be in charge of the gangs on the CW shows and led the Rogues in the comics.
As this goes on, Mick blasts Ray, who also punches him. Mick mutters that he had that coming, and then points out none of them would still exist if it wasn’t for him. Ray seems almost as upset about how many toilets he’s cleaned as he does about the shifts in the world. Sara and Amaya burst in, with Nate and Ray at first happy to see them, until Mick points out the ladies don’t know who they are. The fight that follows makes little sense. Sara and Amaya should kick the three guy’s asses easily, but instead it lasts long enough for Amaya to run away and Sara to get zapped. Of course, she punches Mick.
With Ray’s apartment blown, their next hideout is Nate’s mom’s basement. Mick raves about mom’s sandwiches. It’s rare for Mick to be that positive about anything, really. Sara interrupts the sandwich fan club to try and plan for what they’re going to do next. Sara’s going to go undercover, posing as Darhk’s loyal lapdog still. Mick fills them in about Jax and Stein working at STAR (which is odd, as Ray works there too and should have known), and they all agree that no one knows where Rip is.
Speaking of, the ex-Time Master is very drunk. Gideon tells him he needs to snap out of it, and gives him a lecture about what she’s been up to while he’s playing Cake Wars with himself. Rip finally says that, after he goes and throws up, they’re going to try and get out of there, following Gideon’s plan.
Darhk and Snart are in Darhk’s office when Malcolm walks in. They agree they’d like to get rid of Thawne, but they’re not sure how to kill a speedster. This is a bit odd given what we find out shortly, and considering Flash’s mask was among the trophies in the case. Amaya rushes in, saying they got ambushed and she doesn’t know what happened to Sara. Sara herself walks in a moment later. Ever suspicious, Darhk baits her into losing her cool by boasting about killing Black Canary. Sara attacks, and Darhk reveals he got his magic back. Which, you’d think, might help with a speedster. Darhk babbles, and Snart, eyebrow raised, asks if this is really the time for a bad guy monologue? Sara manages to hit Amaya with the memory gizmo and the Legion inexplicably flees. On the way out, Malcolm says that, for what it’s worth, he thought it was a very good bad guy monologue.
Sara restores Jax, and they reconvene in the basement, where Jax joins the sandwich fan club. Jax shares that Thawne’s project is a special reactor, which makes them wonder if the evil speedster is going to incinerate the Spear. If that happens, Nate figures out they can’t undo this reality. Even if they had the Spear, they don’t know how to use it. Mick casually mentions the language of the chant was Aramaic, which he recognizes because he’s a fan of the movie “The Passion of the Christ.” Sara pulls Amaya aside and tells her that if they get the Spear back, Sara wants Amaya to use it, and Sara should have let her before.
At STAR, Thawne continues to intimidate Stein into working insane hours on his mysterious project. While this goes on, the Legends decide on a plan of action. They also decide to leave Mick behind. Well, gee, since you’ve been mistrusting all along and that worked out so well before this, why not keep doing it? Mick and Amaya share a look as she leaves with the others. Mick, actually hurt by the Legends’ lack of trust, goes back to Snart. The two of them find Damian and Malcolm, and those four decide to get in on the chaos when the Legends attack Thawne, and try and get the Spear for themselves.
Things go badly from the beginning of the plan. Jax tries to restore Stein’s memories, but Jax has been so horrible to Stein while under the Spear’s influence that Stein resists and knocks the device to the floor, breaking it. The battle is joined just after that, with Thawne revealing that his new toy is a reactor that burns hotter than the sun so he can, as the team thought, destroy the Spear and make this the only version of reality. The battle goes up and down, and becomes a game of keep-away with the Spear at one point. The most amusing part is an almost high five between a Legend and a Legionnaire at one point. Finally, the Spear almost gets used and there’s a casualty which shocks everyone. It ends with a major cliffhanger and the future (and the past) very much uncertain. We also finally see exactly where the Waverider is trapped. Next time is going to be a big one, since it’s the season finale. I have a theory about two of the characters, but I’m holding off for now, since it involves information from sources that have nothing to do with the show.
What I liked: I always enjoy finding out how alternate realities play out, so that was fun to see. The everyone punch Mick routine was funny, and I enjoyed his off-hand revelation about the language of the chant being Aramaic. The death of Felicity and the collection of masks set the tone for how bad things are in this world. The running joke about the sandwiches was kind of funny. And I always enjoy seeing this version of Leonard Snart, even if he’s working against the team.
What I didn’t: A lot of the time, it seems like the Legends’ biggest enemy is the Legends themselves. They created part of this current mess by the way they’ve been treating Mick (which at least Ray and Amaya admitted), and they refuse to learn from it. I don’t get how they killed the Flash but can’t figure out how to kill speedsters.
I’ll give this one a low 4 out of 5. It was a pretty good episode, and I’m really wondering how they are going to wrap this up.