Warning: Spoiler Alert
The newest inception of a Superhero narrative begins tonight with the series premiere of DC’s Legends of Tomorrow. If you’re one of the few uninitiated, Legends of Tomorrow is essentially a spin-off from both Arrow and The Flash, with what I at least hope will feed some very epic crossover episodes. The Atom-Ray Palmer, Sara Lance, Firestorm-Dr. Martin Stein and Jax, Captain Cold-Leonard Snart, Heatwave-Mick Rory, Carter Hall-Hawkman, Kendra Saunders-Hawkgirl, and Rip Hunter will plan to bounce through the fabric of time and space doing whatever they can to prevent Vandal Savage (an immortal and the bad guy) from becoming the villain he is to become.
Our story begins in London in the year 2166. Vandal Savage has journey through human existence acquiring skills and knowledge along the path of world domination. In 2166, he has conquered the known world. Our first glimpse into his terror comes at the field execution of a seemingly innocent mother and her son, Jonas. A relative Time Lord (Time Master in this realm) by the name of Rip Hunter does his level best to convince the Time Masters Council that he be granted permission to travel through time and change history when necessary to prevent Vandal Savage from reeking the havoc they know he will.
Rip boards his ship and we see our first crossover element. Rip doesn’t need a crew to fly his time ship, only a singular consciousness. Gideon. What follows is a series of short segments showing Rip ‘recruiting’ the previously mentioned team of eight. While Rip speaks with a certain gravitas, not all eight are on board.
As predicted Captain Cold and Heatwave (criminals in their own right)reject the idea of being heroes on spec. Jax, the youngest and newest hero, is logically hesitant. Hawkman and Hawkgirl are in based on their tie to Vandal Savage. Going back to a previous Flash episode, Carter and Kendra were the source of Vandal’s rage centuries ago. He must kill them, but due to a spell from Kendra’s previous self, they reincarnate every time he kills them. It begins to look grim when Rip pulls out the big guns.
Rip: I know its difficult for you to fathom but where…when I come from, the year 2166, you, everyone on this roof aren’t just considered heroes. You’re legends.
The not quite team has six hours before making their decision and meeting up with Rip, they individually try to come to grips with the weight of this venture. Ray is absolutely on board. He died once already (well, not really) and was instantly forgotten. He would like to leave an impact on the world. Kendra who can’t remember any of her previous lives, is scared. Assuming that Vandal is unbeatable, she is ready to run. Carter convinces her otherwise. White Canary and Black Canary spar while Sara explains to Laurel the proposition. Laurel convinces Sara to become take the mantle of the White Canary. Heatwave and Captain Cold were a little easier. They could bounce around time stealing things without the pesky nuisance of technology to stop them. The most difficult of all is Jax. He wants no part of this. So Professor Stein decides to go without him and offers a toast and a drink. Predictably, Jax passes out from whatever Stein slipped in his drink.
At the rendezvous point our team that isn’t yet, look around to find nothing. Ray even suggests they’ve been punk’d. Then Rip emerges and reveals his time ship. The imagery is shades of Star Trek IV when they decloaked the Klingon Bird of Prey. “It’s called the Wave Rider”. Inside, Rip explains that they cannot find or track Vandal, but they will travel to the man who can. A man with a unique connection to all of this, Dr. Aldus Boardman.
They catch Dr. Boardman asleep at his desk. He stirs awake but before he can wipe his eyes, he immediately recognizes two of the eight. Calling them by their original names, Dr. Boardman knows exactly who Kendra and Carter are. His mother and father from a previous incarnation of themselves. Dr. Boardman explains how Vandal Savage lurks in the shadows of nearly every bad event in human history. Nazi Germany, the Kennedy assassination, and on. Rip interrupts the story to suggest that Dr. Boardman is aware of Vandal Savage’s current whereabouts.
Dr. Boardman: I have an educated guess.
Sara Lance, Snart and Rory decide to enjoy a little of the 1970s. They aren’t in a bar two minutes before Sara decides to let off a little steam. Dancing alone in this dive bar, a large biker walks over and tries to ‘suggest’ she join him in the parking lot. What follows is Sara, Snart, and Rory taking out the entire bar. Outside, Jax tries to convince Gideon to take him back to 2016. As she rejects his idea, the Wave Runner begins taking on heavy fire from a bounty hunter named Kronos.
The team arrives just before Kronos gets tor breach the ship. Stein makes a move to enter the ship to merge with Jax. Kronos is getting of many shots as the team was not prepared for a fight. Kendra and Carter are the only ones in costume. Stein gets to Jax in time but now, Kronos is bearing down on Rip. At the last possible second Kronos gets tagged by a red muscle car.
Snart: We go out for one lousy drink you manage to pick a fight with Boba Fett.
Kronos gets to his feet as Firestorm and Atom emerge. Kronos is able to hit Dr. Boardman but that’s about it. On board the ship, Rip rants and raves about the colossal missteps that just occurred. Kendra ends that pretty quickly with a right cross and a demand of the truth considering her son is hurt because of this latest time jump.
It turns out that Rip ‘was’ under the employ of the Council of Time Masters. Kronos is one of theirs. The fabric of time and space is fragile. As it were, Rip lied about his standing with the council and the whole ‘legends’ part. He chose these eight because a hundred years from now, their lives will have no impact on the timeline. Still, Ray pushes further, suggesting there must be a more personal reason for this quest. Against the wishes of the council, Rip fell in love with a woman and they had a son. A son named, Jonas.
Rip shares his pain and its in abundantly clear that not everyone is willing to turn a blind eye and automatically return to their lives. It will take time. Dr. Stein suggests they weigh their options which is convenient since the ship must be repaired and a time jump would not be advised until Dr. Boardman stabilizes. Despite their initial instincts, all members of the team decide to stay on. If in some not so small measure to change their futures. Be the heroes (or villains) that would affect the timeline.
This moment is not without loss though as Dr. Boardman has passed away. Gideon plots a course to find Vandal based on a theory by Dr. Boardman. Meanwhile in Norway 1975, we see Vandal and his men secure a nuclear warhead. See how this pilot episode two parter concludes next Thursday here, at NJATVS.