Friday, June 21, 2024

All Aboard to a Robotic Conundrum on Legends of Tomorrow

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After their accidental murder of J. Edgar Hoover, the Legends are a little bit in lurch. Nate especially, who is ridden with guilt for his part in Hoover’s death. With a radio they find in Hoover’s car, they learn news of the bullet blondes has spread quickly, but not a word that Hoover was after them personally. Knowing Hoover’s death is going to send ripples through the timeline, Sara proposes they make people believe that Hoover isn’t dead, at least until they can get access to time travel again. Gary whips up some magic potion to make Nate look like Hoover, thanks to a hairball Gary coughs up.

Back at the Cruz house, Astra is trying to comprehend how her magic brought Gideon to life, Spooner is explaining the concept of an AI to her mother, and Gideon… isn’t doing much of anything. She hasn’t spoken and doesn’t seem to have all of her faculties.

Here is to the many more opportunities to screencap this face.

At the train station, the rest of the Legends are looking for their chance to get ‘Hoover’ on board, but the potion isn’t ready and the train is about to leave. As a distraction to get on board without anyone looking too closely at Hoover, Sara slaps a pair of handcuffs on herself and Ava while Gary declares to the whole station that Hoover caught the Bullet Blondes. Nate pulls his hat low over his face as they’re led to the honeymoon suite on the train.

Finally alone, Nate recaps why Hoover dying would be detrimental to the timeline. Morally the man was awful but was a huge influence in the 20th century. Sara and Ava duck out to the mobile mansion to finally get some honeymoon action. Only they’re waylaid by one of their kids one more time. Zari is high as a kite on some of Behrad’s stash.

Back on the train, the potion is done and just in time too because there’s someone knocking at the door who knows Hoover personally. Behrad is concerned about Nate stepping into the shoes of someone as horrible as Hoover, but Nate says they don’t have a choice. Gary does give a warning he isn’t sure how long the potion will last. It could be several hours or just one.

Nate drinks the potion, but because of weird magic rules, Behrad and Gary still see him as Nate because he drank in front of them. Thankfully, Gary’s magic skills hold true and he’s able to fool Hoover’s friend. They head to the first-class cabin, but Gary and Behrad are dismissed on account of not being straight white men. Nate looks conflicted but he says nothing to stop it.

Meanwhile, back in Odessa, Gideon hasn’t talked yet, but she’s is making apple dolls. Astra seems especially frustrated by it. Gideon suddenly collapses. When Gloria is checking her over, she asks if she’s had any water. Astra points out that computers don’t need water. Gloria takes Astra’s hand so she can feel Gideon’s pulse. She may have been a computer before but now she’s a flesh and blood person. She also brings up the very valid question that if their friends promised to return when they had time travel, why didn’t they travel back to moments after they left.

Ava, in a shirt and only a shirt, wanders out of the bedroom to find Zari eating whipped cream out of the can. She’s a little concerned at this point, wondering if maybe Behrad’s way of coping with things isn’t Zari’s way. She suggests a new task, like cleaning and sprucing up the mansion to make it more her style.  

On the train, Nate finds a missing purse, much to the entertainment of everyone in the first-class cabin. Behrad suggests they return to the cabin but before they can two FBI agents board the train with information that someone is attempting to kidnap Hoover.

Behrad, Nate and Gary
Should have known things would go sideways leaving these three alone.

Nate knows from history Hoover wasn’t kidnapped so they have to solve who’s behind the kidnapping before it happens. Nate, Behrad, and Gary split up to question the passengers. Shockingly (by which I mean, in no way surprising at all) the rich and white passengers all love Hoover while those from poorer backgrounds don’t. Nate figures out that for any kidnapping attempt to work they’d need to move the train away from the main track, which means someone working on the train has to be involved. The two agents find the train’s engineer, who wasn’t scheduled to work that day and also happens to be Russian.

In the mansion, Zari is ready to start cleaning. She opens the fridge to find a bottle of whiskey, which is very Constantine. Then she opens the fridge again… to find another bottle of whiskey. She’s still a little high so she needs Ava’s help to confirm there are actually two bottles. This ends up sending her down a rabbit hole of theories about the Waverider and the fake Waverider. Ava tries to get her on the cleaning track again, but she’s already too invested in her theories.

Back on the train, the agents want Hoover to get a confession out of the man. Behrad tries to talk him out of it, but it seems like Nate has gotten too deep into the character. He’s been caught up in trying to repair his mistake. Thankfully, his good heart wins out, so instead of beating a confession out the man, he fakes it and discovers the man had no kidnapping plot planned. He also notices the train’s been diverted off the main tracks. He realizes the real culprits are the agents, who turn out to be fakes. They’re really working for Al Capone.

Spooner is wondering if they should go after the rest of the team; perhaps they got in trouble. Astra points out two women of color and one sorta-computer woman won’t be able to get around easily in 1925. Gideon, in the meanwhile, has been making more apple dolls. Six, in fact, one for each Legend not present. Spooner tries to understand what Gideon is trying to tell them, but Astra only gets annoyed. She yells that she wishes Gideon would go back being in wires and sockets again and Gideon, looking scared for the first time in… maybe ever, runs out of the house. Spooner knows Astra isn’t mad at Gideon and the real problem is something else.

Her self expectations are so high she made a whole person and still thinks that’s a failure

After failing her spell, Astra is feeling useless. Spooner points out that she’s even more useless than Astra right now. They commiserate together when they notice something happening with the power. Rushing outside, they find Gideon at the power box, pulling out wires. She shocks herself. Spooner realizes she listened to Astra about the wires and sockets, which makes Astra feel even worse.

Back in the mansion, Zari has sobered up and she’s been busy. She’s been making a list of potential suspects for who wants to kill them. And she’s been using whiskey bottles to lay them all out. She invites Ava to join her and, never able to say no to a true crime, she agrees. Eventually, they have a list of what feels like every character, major and minor, who’s ever appeared on the show but they’re not any closer to knowing who actually it.

Ava and Zari
Every single aspect of this shot is a delight.

Back with Nate, Capone’s men have stopped and surrounded the train, threatening to shoot passengers unless Hoover gives himself up. Nate does just that, but the potion’s effects have worn out. He’s no longer Hoover. Gary and Behrad run to get Sara and Ava, filling them in on Capone’s men having Nate. Zari points all they have is whiskey to try and stop this, but Sara thinks that’s exactly what they need.

Nate is explaining to the mobsters that he killed the real Hoover. He offers some advice about self-love, forgiving himself in the process for the mistake that was out of his hands. The mobsters would rather just bring back a body. Becoming the Bullet Blondes again, Sara and Ava go out, offering the whiskey as a peace offering. The mobsters, who are fans of the Blondes, seem about ready to give this a happy ending when they’re interrupted by J. Edgar Hoover.

The Legends are very confused by this turn of events on account of Gary eating Hoover not too long ago. A gunfight breaks out between him and Capone’s men, Hoover singlehandedly taking them all down. Sara grabs a bottle from Zari (one that they’d been using to list suspects) and breaks it over Hoover’s head, a shard of glass embedding in his neck. For a moment they think they’ve killed Hoover again, but Sara notes there’s no blood and pulls the skin away to reveal a robot. The very same theory Zari had written on the now broken bottle. The robot starts a self-destruct sequence, which is the Legends cue to get out of there.

Back at Gloria’s, Gideon begins to wake up. Astra apologizes to her. Spooner wishes she knew how to help her communicate. Her mother says that they’ll figure it out and mentions that Spooner didn’t speak until she was six, yet still always found ways to communicate with her. Spooner doesn’t remember that, but it does give her an idea. She tells Gideon she’s not useless and maybe in a way, she’s saying it for Astra and herself too.

She reaches out, but when she touches Gideon, she gets flashes of her thoughts. Gideon is confused and worried. She also gets flashes of the address and date of Dr. Davies. Something snaps into place and Gideon is able to speak. But what she says brings no comfort, their trio needs to get to Dr. Davies first or the Legends all die.


The 1920’s setting is one that the writers and actors are clearly having a lot of fun getting to play in. But they’re also openly acknowledging the bigotry of the time and how that affects the various members of the team. They’ve found a balance that doesn’t downplay the harsh reality of the time without having to compromise Legends‘ generally upbeat and comedic tone. I’m looking forward to seeing which aspects of the decade they get to play in next.

I’m also looking forward to uncovering more of the mystery being built around this season. The 1920’s were a golden age for detective stories, so it makes sense to have a mystery brewing at the heart of this season. Or at least part of the season, until they unveil the big bad.

Next week, Legends of Tomorrow hit’s its 100th episode milestone. It’s been a long journey for this team of misfits and the next episode promises a look back on that journey with the return of several old faces.

Only Legends Could

  •  There’s a new period appropriate opening that is very snazzy.
  • Ava’s safe words are core competency.
  • ‘J. Edgar Hoover always gets his man, or woman… or gender non-conforming individual.’   
  • Zari, to Ava and Sara, ‘That’s gross, moms.’
  • ‘Without aliens, what do I bring to the table?’ ‘Ranch wear?’
  • I would have watched a whole episode about Ava and Zari theorizing about who wanted to kill them.
  • And the Mallus name debate returns!
  • Among the suspect names not mentioned that I could make out were, Rasputin, Kuasa, Lex Luthor, evil unicorn, and Ray Palmer.

Images courtesy of the CW.

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