My thoughts on DC’s Legends of Tomorrow

As I wrote in my last blog post, I had some problems with DC’s Legends of Tomorrow. I would like to go more in depth with them.

Vandal Savage
It was a mistake to feature Vandal Savage from the beginning. They should have alluded to him, and instead have sent Chronos, the hunters and the Pilgrim after the team. The writers have essentially given Vandal Savage “Joker Immunity” – a term borrowed from the site TV Tropes. It is especially item no. 3 that caught my attention: “The struggle against a single major villain is the Series Goal and if that villain is defeated, the series would be over. If this is the case, then the Grand Finale will occasionally revoke Joker Immunity.”

This is a big problem! I am so tired of the team not succeeding in one upping him. He walks away again and again making the heroes look like bumbling fools. But if they defeat him the series is over. This is the main reason why I suggested sending in adversaries and keep the Time Masters and Druce, and Vandal Savage until the last episodes of the season. Surprisingly I am not bothered much about Time Master Druce – maybe it is because Martin Donovan is a good actor compared to Casper Crump. If I thought Wentworth Miller and Dominic Purcell chewed the scenery in The Flash I was wrong. Casper Crump is worse – I cannot stand him. I have not seen him in anything else than LoT even though he is from my native country. Unfortunately according to IMDB we are saddled with Vandal Savage for the last four episodes of the season. Hopefully, Kendra will be able to kill him. This leads to my next subject.

Hawkgirl
Kendra Saunders is supposed to be badass, but she comes off as very bland. I am very indifferent towards her and her love triangle with Ray and Carter (which up until the last episode – Destiny really did not exist as Carter died in Pilot Part 2). The writers made a mistake making her the only one who can kill Vandal Savage because it does not make sense in context. Why did Rip Hunter not find a reincarnation of the Hawks before now? We know he tried to kill Vandal Savage in ancient Egypt, but could not do it. Why has Carter not taught her how to fight? If she is the one destined to kill him she should really learn hand-to-hand combat. She has gotten a lot better during the series with a lot of help from Sara Lance.

The other problem with her character is her relationship with Ray.
1. It felt rushed
2. I did not tune into a superhero show to see a romantic subplot. I know it is a CW show – and that love triangles or relationships are necessary on that network. Supernatural have survived 11 seasons without being saddled with stupid romantic subplots – okay there was Jo, Bela, Ruby, Anna and Meg, but it never felt forced like her relationship with Ray does.
3. I would very much like to see a female character develop on her own. Why can’t a female character evolve without their life revolving around a man or men.
4. In the episode Marooned Kendra makes it clear that she is not interested in a relationship with Ray because she would not be tied down with a romantic plot after Carter’s death. Two episodes later (Left Behind) she shares a kiss with Ray after he nearly dies. WTF? I do not understand this. Maybe I should blame the writers for that one.

I know TPTB pitched Legends as a TV-Show with Kendra as the main character and I am so happy they decided to turn it into an ensemble cast since everyone is acting circles around Ciara Renée. She is not the best actress in the world and that saving the world hinges on Kendra is not good. In River of Time she chose the love of her life instead of the entire humanity. I do understand the reason behind it, but I still think she made the wrong decision. And capturing Vandal Savage is going to bite the team in the rear because he is always one step ahead of them.

Update: And it did bite them in the rear – spectacularly! Rip, Ray, Kendra, Carter, Mick, Jax and Stein was captured by the Time Masters.
Vandal Savage worked with the Time Masters and still killed Rip’s family. I actually had an inkling that they worked together.
Sara and Leonard to the rescue – and in the end the latter ended up sacrificing himself. More on that later.

Rip Hunter
Rip is the worst leader ever! He has no authority over the team – they do exactly what pleases them and often for very selfish reasons. I loved Arthur Darville in Broadchurch (never seen Doctor Who), but I am not sure if he is the right one to lead the team. So far Leonard Snart has been much more genre savvy about decisions. In Marooned he pointed out that it smelled fishy to him that the other ship needed their help – and he was right. In River of Time Rip gambled with Jax’s life by making him repair some stuff Rip himself should have done. This caused Jax to age rapidly before finally being sent back to 2016 against his will by Stein. The latter spend much of the following episode dying because his other half (Jax) was in 2016. They need to fuse from time to time in order to maintain their health.

Much of the time he just sulks on the ship while the team screws with the timeline again and again. He only sounds mildly exasperated when unwanted guests enters the Waverider. The character is not compelling to me.

Leonard Snart
After watching the last episode (Destiny) I’m very conflicted. I love what LoT did with Wentworth Miller’s character, Leonard Snart (Captain Cold). I think Leonard Snart’s death hit harder than other deaths I have watched on the silver screen because he CAN comeback in other ways. He is based on a comic book character, and they are notoriously for escaping death. The writers just stuff them on a new earth and voila they are fit for fight. I am so afraid how different Leonard Snart will be when he returns to The Flash. He went from being a villain with a capital V to some sort of anti-hero. I am afraid all his character development in LoT will be tossed to the wayside in favor of him going back to his villainous ways. If you compare his first episode (Going Rogue) on The Flash to Destiny and you clearly see a huge amount of character development. I just cannot see this Leonard Snart as a villain. He is supposed to lead the Rogues Gallery on that show, but with all the character development LoT gave him.

I have lost many favorite characters over the years of watching television – Joyce (Buffy), Charlie (Lost), Ellen, Bobby and Jo (Supernatural) – somehow I continued to watch these shows without them. Maybe it was the fact I knew they could never come back permanently as Leonard Snart is set to do in the fall. If they appeared, it was in flashbacks that made sense, and interacted with the people they cared for. I am still wondering how they will pull this off with Team Legends. Maybe I continued to watch because I found the other characters compelling and likable. I do not really find any of the others characters except maybe Sara Lance (White Canary) enjoyable to watch on her own. I am willing to suspend my disbelief concerning Team Flash, but he has personal ties to Team Legends in form of Mick Rory, his longtime criminal partner/best friend and Sara Lance.

For the first time I openly admit that, I was a shipper on deck for Leonard and Sara. Their actors had much more chemistry than other supposed romantic pairings. Maybe this has tainted my glasses – I do not know. The build up to their relationship was slow and nice. Not rushed like Ray and Kendra’s developing relationship, which took place almost off screen thanks to a nifty time skip.

I am going to miss the incredible chemistry he had with Ray, Sara and Mick. His snark and sass. Actually; him, Sara and Mick have received the biggest development of the nine main characters. I have a feeling it has to do with one how they write for them and two how much charisma each individual possess.

Reklamer

Favorite quotes from LoT Pilot Part 1

I am not writing my favorite quotes for every episode of Legends of Tomorrow because I found there were too many. Spoilers for episode 1 (Pilot Part 1). Just check it out!

——-

Rip Hunter: Set a course. United States. Star City. January, 2016.
Gideon: Ah, the early second millennium A.D. The golden age of gasoline engines, online pornography, and those silly little smartphones.

——-

The Atom: This feels good, being back in the field. Not that this is a field, but…
Green Arrow: Ray, are you up for this?
The Atom: Uh, too late to turn back now.

——-

Stein: Caution, Jefferson, 83% of the chemicals in this factory are combustible.
Jax: Yeah, tell that to Rambo.
Stein: Thought I told you to be careful.
Jax: Aah!
Stein: What’s the use of sharing my intelligence if you won’t listen?
Jax: Stop bossing me around like I’m one of your snot-nosed undergrads.

——-

Hawkman: You, my love, almost got us killed.
Hawkgirl: Thank you.
Hawkman: Your flying is still clumsy, like a bird just out of the nest…
Hawkgirl: Well maybe that’s because up until two months ago, I was a barista, not some damn winged demi-goddess.
Rip Hunter: Have you two considered couples counseling? I hear it’s quite popular in this century.

——-

Cop: Drop your weapons!
Heatwave: Ah, fry, you little piggies! A minivan? Really, Snart?
Captain Cold: Cops’ll never hassle a dad buying diapers in the middle of the night.
*Sirens wailing in the background*

——-

Stein: I, um, I hate to nitpick, but doesn’t a legend have to be dead?
Jax: Yeah, see, uh, that’s a deal breaker for me, so I’m gonna pass.

——-

Heatwave: I can’t believe you’re thinking of hooking up with the Englishman. We’re thieves. Crooks. Criminals. I have no desire to save the world. Especially 100 years after I’m dead.
Captain Cold: He said across time, Mick. What about the years before? Before fingerprints and surveillance cameras and DNA analysis. Why did we become criminals?
Heatwave: Because we hate working and we love money.
Captain Cold: We could steal the Mona Lisa straight off Da Vinci’s easel, snatch the Hope Diamond before it was discovered. This is everything we got into thieving for in the first place. More than everything.
Heatwave: You want me in, I’m in. But I’m not gonna be anyone’s hero.

——-

Heatwave: Whatever you roofied him with, I’d like some.
Stein: I did not roofie him.
Heatwave: Oh, I ain’t judging.

——-

Jax: Time travel. Cool.
Rip Hunter: Some of you may experience some slight discomfort. In very rare instances, there will be some, uh, bleeding from the eyeballs.
Hawkgirl: I’m sorry, what?

——-

Jax: Oh.
Stein: Jackson, I’m so glad you’re awake. I didn’t want you to miss this.
Jax: Miss what? What the…
?: Oh, no, I wouldn’t unfasten those if I were you.
Jax: Get me off this… whatever this thing is!
White Canary: Good luck explaining this.
Stein: I did him a favor.
Captain Cold: He doesn’t look all that grateful.

——-

Jax  (to Stein): I can’t believe you kidnapped me. Hey, I want to go home.
Rip Hunter: Good news, then. 2016 will be around in, uh, 41 years.

——-

White Canary: I thought we were a team.
Rip Hunter: This mission doesn’t require your particular skill set. Yet.
Captain Cold: Meaning you don’t need anyone killed, maimed, or robbed.
Rip Hunter: Precisely.

——-

Stein: Are you coming?
Jax: I’ll stay put.
Stein: You’d rather stay with them?
Jax: They didn’t drug me.
Stein: Point taken.

——-

Heatwave: Why does this stupid station play nothing but reruns?
Jax: Don’t even bother trying to explain.
White Canary: Am I the only one on this ship who could really use a drink? I say we go get weird in the ’70s.
Captain Cold: Excellent idea.

——-

Heatwave: Ah. Dollar beers. You got to love the ’70s. Who wants to listen to some Captain and Tennille? My mother played it. A lot.

——-

Gideon: You seem overwrought, Mr. Jackson. If you’d like to go to the MedBay, I’d be happy to prescribe you a sedative.
Jax: I do not need another roofie!

——-

Captain Cold: We go out for one lousy drink, and you guys somehow manage to pick a fight with Boba Fett.

Source: Forever Dreaming

DC’s Legends of Tomorrow

I have always been more interested in the Marvel Universe to some extent. I chalk it up to the first superhero movies I watched was in fact the X-Men-series and the Spider-Man trilogy from the early 2000s. However, I have always known about DC universe – and seen movies with both Batman and Superman. Last weekend I started watching Legends of Tomorrow because I was bored and all aired episodes were on Netflix. I did watch season 1 of Arrow and dabbled into the Flash. I did know of the TV-universe DC and the CW is building, but again I was too busy watching the various MCU related things and other TV-shows to fully commit to Oliver Queen (Stephen Amell) and Barry Allen (Grant Gustin).

I have heard some people calling Legends of Tomorrow a cross between Doctor Who (time travel) and Guardians of the Galaxy (the cosmic thing). As I have never watched Doctor Who I cannot really relate to that notion, but it does reminds me a bit of Guardians of the Galaxy – just less funny. Though, some of the dialogue is pure gold in Legends of Tomorrow.

All my opinions come from only have seen some of season 1 of the Flash and season 1 of Arrow + some episodes from later seasons. Oh, and beware of spoilers!

Top 3 things I like

1. Captain Cold, Heatwave & White Canary
The odd friendship developing between Leonard “Captain Cold” Snart (Wentworth Miller), Mick “Heatwave” Rory (Dominic Purcell) and Sara “White Canary” Lance (Caity Lotz). Wentworth Miller has excellent report with both his co-stars. Yes, I know he and Dominic Purcell played the Scofield brothers’ in Prison Break – and that might be the reason why there is good chemistry there. However, I feel it is just as easy with Caity Lotz. It probably help that all three characters are kindred spirits of some sort. They are all on the fringes of the group as they are categorized as “villains”. It is lovely to see them all evolve into sympathetic characters as the series progress. And it’s White Canary  who pulls for Heatwave’s release after it’s discovered that he was Chronos (the bounty hunter). In return, Heatwave has delivered information of his time with the Time Masters.

Heatwave: Why does this stupid station play nothing but reruns?
Jax: Don’t even bother trying to explain.
White Canary: Am I the only one on this ship who could really use a drink? I say we go get weird in the ’70s.
Captain Cold: Excellent idea.
White Canary: I got the perfect outfit.
Gideon: Perhaps Captain Hunter was unclear with his instructions to remain onboard.
Heatwave: Shut it, metal mouth.

– Pilot Part 1

Heatwave: Ah. Dollar beers. You got to love the ’70s. Who wants to listen to some Captain and Tennille? My mother played it. A lot.

– Pilot Part 1

2. Firestorm
Victor Garber as one-half of Firestorm (Martin Stein). I remember him from his Alias days and of course Titanic. He was excellent in both as he is in this TV-show. He seems to have so much fun playing Martin Stein, which really shines through. I just wish they would put some spotlight on his relationship with Jax (the other half of Firestorm played by Franz Drameh) because the pair seem underdeveloped and have no time on screen together. They are mostly paired up with others during missions, but when they do have a scene it heartwarming. I guess they do this for budgetary reasons as Firestorm is expensive to make. Oh, I do not condone drugging anyone and dragging him or her on an adventure without his or her initial consent. Maybe the writers should have delved more into that problem since it is kind of big.

Stein: Are you coming?
Jax: I’ll stay put.
Stein: You’d rather stay with them?
Jax: They didn’t drug me.
Stein: Point taken.

– Pilot Part 1

Gideon: Captain Hunter told me you’d try to do this, and he also told me not to listen to anything you say.
Jax: Well, you are a computer. You have to listen to me!
Gideon: You seem overwrought, Mr. Jackson. If you’d like to go to the MedBay, I’d be happy to prescribe you a sedative.
Jax: I do not need another roofie!

– Pilot Part 1

3. Gideon and Waverider
Gideon is giving J.A.R.V.I.S. and Friday (from MCU) a run for their money. I love the A.I. and her quips. The Waverider is awesome – and it actually looks very cool inside. However, I am a little confused about the layout of the ship.

Gideon: I am unversed in modern American colloquialisms. Is “Whoops” slang for “Oh”…
Rip Hunter: Yes, Dr. Palmer seems to have thrown a spanner in the works for the entire timeline.

– Pilot Part 2

Honorable mention
The dialogue is sometimes very on the nose, hidden easter eggs only the savvy will recognize, zingers and references to other media. Especially Leonard Snart is the master of sass, but the others are not far behind. Maybe I should post another blog containing my favorite quotes from this show because there are many.

Rip Hunter: This mission doesn’t require your particular skill set. Yet.
Captain Cold: Meaning you don’t need anyone killed, maimed, or robbed.

– Pilot Part 2

Rip Hunter: Now, in order to capture him, I require the services of…
Heatwave: A killer, klepto, and pyro?
Rip Hunter Bingo.

– Leviathan

Top 3 things I dislike

1. Casper Crump as Vandal Savage.
The role is not suited for him or maybe I am just tired of seeing the Legends fail repeatedly when having the opportunity to kill him. I have to compliment his English though – it is way better than Mads Mikkelsen*. I hate to put down someone from my native country, but I will take Vincent D’Onofrio’s portrayal of Wilson Fisk (Kingpin) from Daredevil any day. That is a sinister villain, who is not overpowered, but savvy enough to run a criminal empire from prison. Maybe my other problem with Vandal Savage is that he really is only connected to people on the team (Kendra “Hawkgirl” Saunders and Captain Rip Hunter), and I do not really care about the former and the latter is growing on me.

2. Kendra & Carter/Kendra & Ray
I did not tune in to watch a superhero show to see a romantic plot take center stage. It probably does not help that I find Kendra (Ciara Renée) very bland and boring as a character. The romance plot is dragging the show down and taking focus from other aspects I find more interesting such as Firestorm and the odd friendship between “the Rogues”. Carter (Falk Hentschel) was a creeper and kind of a stalker towards Kendra, and Ray (Brandon Routh) is just a lovesick puppy. I do not think it helps of my perception that Kendra is the only one who can kill Vandal Savage – I do not really like that when the TV-series is about a team.

3. The CGI
It seem very hit and miss to me. I know they have a TV budget to work with and good CGI is expensive. Sometimes it is great and sometimes it is just plain bad. A little consistency would not hurt. Kendra’s wings especially looks wonky at times. It looks like most of the budget is going to make Firestorm look cool (pun intended), which he to their credit does.

Honorable mention
Time travel. How does it work? I am so confused about the concept works. The characters interact with their younger/older selves without any consequences and in one episode Sara tells Ra’s al Ghul to name his unborn daughter Nyssa. How can she do that? I am baffled and I would like to get a more in depth explanation of how it works.

——-

*Side note
Casper Crump isn’t the only Dane gracing or have graced the silver screen in America. Actually, it has teemed with Danes in various roles (mostly villains). Here is a list on the top of my head:
Nikolaj Coster-Waldau (Jaime Lannister in Game of Thrones)
Ulrich Thomsen (Kai Proctor in Banshee)
Mads Mikkelsen (Hannibal Lecter in Hannibal and among other movies roles including Le Chiffre in Casino Royale)
Birgitte Hjort Sørensen (Ingrid in Vinyl)
Stephanie Corneliussen (Joanna Wellick in Mr. Robot and Valentina Vostok in Legends of Tomorrow)
Pilou Asbæk (Euron Greyjoy in the new season of Game of Thrones)
Jesper Christensen (Mr. White in the James Bond franchise)