Legends of Tomorrow has done a lot of unique things over the course of its six seasons, with a seventh just starting. Now they add another new feat to their long list. Just a month after season six ended, season seven begins, which is a record turnaround as far as I’m aware. The show changes each season, and now they have made some really big shifts in the status quo as they kick things off with “The Bullet Blondes.”
Last season ended with the bizarre event (even for them) of the Legends all set to leave after they wrap up their chaotic quest to save Sara, deal with Mick’s babies, and rekindle Constantine’s missing powers. Just when it seemed like they had a happy ending, as Sara and Ava finally got married and Bishop was disposed of, the Waverider was destroyed right in front of them. This, coming on the heels of both Constantine and Mick leaving, puts the group in a bad place for the season to start. As the team picks through the wreckage, the Sheriff of Odessa, where they’ve been during all this, gets a lot of visitors talking about strange events the night before. The man doesn’t seem too impressed.
One thing I really enjoyed about this episode: most shows, with a new set up to run through the season, would have the characters pretty much just accept what’s happening and move on. Instead, the Legends try every trick they can think of to get back to how things used to be. The Time Courier doesn’t work, and they start to wonder if they’re stuck. Just as Ava cautions them about not attracting attention, the local pastor comes calling, asking about the strange noises and lights from the team fighting off an alien invasion. Eventually, Spooner gets rid of him, and they discuss options, including a new hope for their rescue. They also miss Constantine, who a lot of other shows would just stop mentioning.
Splitting up to find their next trick, Zari and Behrad discuss Constantine’s departure. Spooner and Astra try a tracking spell, which leads to more bad news. Ava and Gary go over some of the rules from the old Time Bureau and there’s a really strange one that sort of works for their situation. Sara sends Nate and Ava off on an errand while the rest of the team does one of Zari’s favorite things. As Sara, Behrad, and Zari spread their cover story, with some bumbling help from Gary, Nate works his charming magic, tells a lie or two, and gets what he was after.
True to form, this hope falls through as well, and the team realizes they’re going to have to do something fast to keep their cover going. I did like that there was a nod to another departed character in this bit. While the team argues about what to do next, they have more problems developing back in town. Deciding she’ had enough, Astra sneaks off to try and handle things on her own, attracting some attention from Gary on the way out. With horrible timing, Spooner’s mother comes back and has a long talk with her daughter. The team gets ready for their next bit of chaos, with Nate doing a trick I’ve never seen before with his powers, but Spooner comes by and calls a halt to the scheme. She has some reasonable objections, and Sara agrees. This is about when everyone else realizes Astra is gone (no one notices Gary’s absence, poor guy). Astra tries something desperate, trying to live up to what she believes Constantine’s legacy is.
Tensions build as Astra pushes herself and troubles accumulate in town. Astra’s efforts prove too much and she loses control, although she came impressively close. In the aftermath, Astra gets a lecture from Spooner and Gloria gets unwanted company. After some entertaining skulking around, the team makes a discovery about something Constantine left for them. Well, for Zari, really, but she shares. It seems like a familiar place, but Gary tells them what’s really going on. While Zari comes to some realizations, Sara tries to help Ava deal with too many changes at once. Gloria deals with a bad situation as best she can, and things move along, more or less.
In true Legends style, they come up with a wacky plan that actually sort of makes a kind of sense, helped by Nate’s historical knowledge. Sara loves the new idea, talks Ava into it, and even manages to get Gloria out of trouble. The team, down a few members, enacts their new plan, leaping into action and getting into character and even adapting new voices. They run into a superfan and draw some inspiration from them to make their idea even better. It’s one of my favorite scenes of the episode. Riding high on their success, they try for their new plan, but run afoul of a very persistent historical figure. After a few moments of shock, Ava suddenly bounces back and takes charge, drawing her own special knowledge that’s kind of been a running joke for a while now.
As the team embarks on a new life, there are a few quieter scenes back at Gloria’s place. Gloria offers Astra some insight about things she’s learned, and makes some good points. Following up on this, Astra finds Spooner trying to take care of some of the mess the group has left behind. They have a touching talk, and then, Astra’s spell residue takes a turn for the unexpected as a missing team member returns in an unusual fashion.
What I liked: Legends is goofy and insane and they embrace it. They kept trying to find a way to escape their new reality, and I liked their persistence. I also enjoyed them not pretending the ones who had left had suddenly ceased to exist, like so many shows do. They work well as a group, despite the very different personalities involved. Sara is great at rolling with the punches and keeping the team moving. Ava’s sudden inspiration at the end was great. They actually remembered people had powers when it was useful for them to have them. Ava’s new list should be entertaining, and might end up like Steve Rogers’ notebook in Winter Soldier.
What I didn’t: They were building up to something that probably would have been amazing to watch, and I’m sorry they changed course. I’m still irked about the way Constantine was forced off the show. This may be their biggest seasonal shift yet, and I’m not sold on it so far.
This show is fun, and refuses to take itself too seriously, which I like. I’ll give this a 3.5 out of 5. This season should be a wild ride, even by Legends standards.