It’s been a long and hot summer, but don’t worry, Legends of Tomorrow is still just as silly and self-referential as you remember. But this year it’s all balanced with a dark edge brought in by John Constantine himself, and it looks as fun as ever.
Spoilers ahead for “The Virgin Gary,” the latest episode of The CW’s Legends of Tomorrow, which aired Monday, Oct. 22, 2018.
In what is clearly a nod to closing the chapter on the past season or two, the Legends are lauded by the Time Bureau for finally cleaning up all the anachronisms that have plagued the timeline. They’re heroes, not screw-ups! For once! Of course, the glory doesn’t last all that long. Constantine had warned last season that defeating Malus may have unleashed a whole lot of supernatural badness. It took five months to start manifesting, but yeah, the magical evils are certainly prowling around.
This week, it manifested in the form of a heart-eating, rainbow-spewing unicorn. Yes, a deadly, murderous rainbow unicorn — which also happens to shoot out acid trip goo if you get too close. It’s a plot point that’s just goofy enough to work, as we see most of the team start tripping balls to the point of having a conversation with a man-sized rat (oh, Rory) or making out with a tree. The adventure also sent the time-hopping adventurers back to 1969 at Woodstock (to prevent the Woodstock massacre caused by the aforementioned unicorn), so we got plenty of hippie looks and nods to the music and culture of the era.
As fans might expect, it’s the reintroduction of Constantine that really steals the show and sets the stage. The Legends have handled all sorts of insanity, but it takes someone with the Hellblazer’s particular skill set to get them out of this particular jam. It eventually costs Gary a nipple, but Constantine casts that rainbow-spewing hellspawn back whence it came. But just because he helps out this week, that doesn’t mean Constantine will be an easy sell to going up with the Legends.
He flatly and rudely rejects Sara’s offer to come aboard the Waverider, and it seems Constantine is hiding a major secret related to the past five months we didn’t get to see. Constantine seems more spiritually broken than usual, and our last look at him finds him nearly possessed by an unseen force that warns it will be coming for him. What exactly did Constantine do these past few months?
It seems pretty clear getting Constantine into the core cast won’t be an easy journey (though the fact that Matt Ryan is a series regular this season means, yeah, he’ll eventually come around). But true to Constantine, he won’t take easily to the idea of working with a team. We’d expect nothing less, and seeing how Sara finally brings him around should be a major piece of the next few episodes.
True love at last: It’s not often a show like Legends will mine a healthy relationship for stories, but that’s exactly where Sara and Ava seem to be heading — and we couldn’t be happier. We spent the past season dealing with angst, but these two have become the heart of the show over the last year. If anyone deserves a slice of love and happiness, it’s Sara. This storyline looks to be a breath of fresh air, and here’s hoping it’s the one area free of drama this year.
*Ray talking about ratings was cute, and as usual, this is the only show that can get away with a gag like that.
*Nora Darhk is still on the run, and though we don’t see her outside of Ray’s fantasy here, expect her to return fairly soon.
*Mick and Nate make a really great pairing; here’s hoping we see more of that.
*Nate gets a C-story to tackle some lingering resentment about his father, and yeah, it's a shame he can’t just come clean that he’s a superhero now.
*As usual, this show is an acquired taste, and it’s amazing every single week that this show exists at all. It’s big, silly, and insanely fun. Strap in, it’s going to be a wild year.
Next week: The Legends come face to face with the worst fairy godmother ever.