TV REVIEW – ‘LEGENDS OF TOMORROW’ (2016)

The CW Network has once again offered up a new superhero TV show in Legends of Tomorrow. The team-up series featuring DC Comics characters joins Arrow and The Flash in The CW-canon that’s been semi-unofficially dubbed ‘The Arrowverse’

Legends-of-Tomorrow

(image courtesy of The CW)

But how does Legends of Tomorrow measure up to its predecessors?  Read on to find out!

–NOTE: AS OF THIS WRITING, ONLY PART ONE OF THE PILOT HAS AIRED. REVIEW IS TO BE CONSIDERED PRELIMINARY AND MAY NOT NECESSARILY REFLECT THE ENTIRE FIRST SEASON–

First, it’s important to point out that Legends of Tomorrow is a show set in the Arrowverse, and comprised almost entirely of characters previous featured in both Arrow and The Flash. Viewers new to the show should really probably watch/catch up on those shows before watching this one… especially if you want to completely avoid any possible spoilers for anything.

arthurdarvilldc

(Arthur Darvill as Rip Hunter – image courtesy of The CW)

Legends of Tomorrow opens up with a look into a possible-future Earth, where immortal super-villain Vandal Savage (played by Casper Crump) has taken over the world. In an attempt to stop this and re-write history, time-traveling rogue Rip Hunter (played by Doctor Who alumni Arthur Darvill) goes back in time to 2016 to assemble an intentionally-rag-tag team of would-be heroes who must work together despite their many differences. Among them are billionare/scientist/supersuit-techno-hero Ray Palmer/The Atom (Brandon Routh), assassin-turned-vigilante Sara Lance/White Canary (Caity Lotz), hi-tech thieves/mercenaries Leonard Snart/Captain Cold (Wentworth Miller) and Mick Rory/Heat Wave (Dominic Purcell), reincarnated magical Egyptian power-couple Hawkman (Falk Hentschel) and Hawkgirl (Ciara Renee), and the dual-person entity of Dr. Martin Stein (Victor Garber) and Jefferson Jackson (Franz Drameh) who when merged become Firestorm. Fans of Arrow and The Flash will undoubtedly recognize all of these characters from one/both of these frequently-crossed-over shows.

Legends-of-Tomorrow-Captain-Cold-and-Heatwave

(Dominic Purcell as Heat Wave [left] and Wentworth Miller as Captain Cold [right] image courtesy of The CW)

The pilot episode is, as you’d probably expect, mostly an origins/team-assembling story setting the stage for the reported 16-episode first season, with cameos by Arrow‘s Stephen Amell (as Oliver Queen/Green Arrow) and Katie Cassidy (as Laurel Lance/Black Canary) to further reinforce the fact that this all takes place in the same universe and that fans should expect crossovers. When the newly-assembled team takes on their first mission – a trip back in time to the mid-1970s – they start to uncover some clues about their purpose, learn a few startling truths about the way things are, and find that they may have more enemies/threats than they previously knew of.

The Bottom Line:
Overall, Legends of Tomorrow looks like a very promising new addition to The CW‘s ‘Arrowverse’. It sports a very strong cast of established characters, many of whom went noticeably underutilized in both Arrow and The Flash, and bringing in Doctor Who fan favorite Arthur Darvill to play his own special blend of the quirky, British time-traveler (only this time as the lead, rather than the 2nd tier sidekick, of course) was a very smart casting move, as he seems very comfortable/natural in the role. The visuals, camerawork, effects, and general feel are all on-par with the other two shows it shares a universe with, and the time-traveling dynamic really opens up a lot of possibilities for some great storylines. Do remember, however, that this is a CW show, so it will likely have a very heavy-handed emphasis on romances scattered throughout, and will likely at-times push the action/adventure to a backseat role – something often complained about by the comic book faithful, but I digress. It’s really too early to tell on anything else, or obviously give it a solid rating yet (although I will try my best here), but it’s definitely a very promising addition to The CW’s growing superhero resume, and definitely has a lot of potential for, well, the future. – (early/projected) 8.0/10

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-Dave Harlequin
Editor: Nerd Nation Magazine
@DaveHarlequin

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