Legends of Tomorrow Season 2 Recap And Review – Episode 16: ‘Doomworld’
Let’s face it, in many regards Legends of Tomorrow and The Flash have been running the same race this season, preserve the present and stop the bad guys from creating a dystopian future. However, where Flash has stumbled a few times along the way (Flashpoint, Savitar’s identity, etc…), Legends of Tomorrow has really taken a substantial lead. This is no more apparent than this week’s penultimate episode “Doomworld”.
“Doomworld“ was what a lot of fans were hoping from Flashpoint, a world radically different than our own and in this case, a world where the bad guys run the board with the power to bend reality. So what does a Legion of Doom do with infinite power? They torture their adversaries of course. Every Legend was molded into this reality and of course it was completely humiliating.
Sara and Amaya were turned into classic 60’s henchmen replete with maniacal giggles. Robbed of any agency, the dynamic duo were Thawne’s guard dogs. To play this up, their first onscreen mission was to track down (and ultimately kill) Felicity Smoak. It was pretty shocking but a wonderful way to set the stage as the rest of the Legends began to pop up. Jax and Stein worked in Thawne’s lab wrapped up in a pretty abusive dynamic where Jax tortured his former friend. Ray went from mild mannered astrophysicist to a spacey janitor that cleaned “a lot of toilets”. Nate became a hippie historian that lived in his mother’s basement, though he did pay rent and worst of all Rip was trapped inside of a miniaturized Waverider where he spent the better part of a year baking cakes. Yes that’s right, in the face of overwhelming defeat, Rip Hunter became a baker.
This, like all good alternate universe tales, is to show the viewers why a character/team is so important to the story. Without them, the world can fall apart in weird and unusual ways. It just so happens that the Legends writing team knows how to do this and have a lot of fun playing against type with all sorts of fun little nods. The biggest squee this week has to be the premiere of the Legion of Doom Headquarters. Straight from the cell shaded Super Friends cartoon, it was fully realized and amazing. Seriously, it was so pitch perfect, the rest of the episode could have been horrific and I would have still called “Doomworld” a win.
However, despite the funny little homages and twisted character archetypes, the story was still able to explore some pretty dark spaces. The irony is, because the Legends staff have become so adept at juggling multiple emotions, they were able to get really grimdark without making the audience feel overwhelmed with despair. It’s a wonderful magic trick that the folks over at Arrow and Flash should pay attention to.
In fact, the reason why the dark turn works so well is because it’s centered on one of our most conflicted characters in the Legends pantheon, Mick Rory. In the last few weeks Mick began to regret becoming a Legend and flipped back to team evil. This choice turned out to be the bad call and Mick had to make up for his world altering mistake. This led to a hilarious recurring bit where each character, as they regained their memories, would punch Mick in the face. It was a perfect blend of humor and darkness.
Even better, Dominic Purcell delivered an amazing performance as he had to adjust to each change up, weighing the pros and cons of his choices and accepting the anger of his friends. You gotta feel bad for Mick, you really do. No mater which way he turns, he feels trapped. This was really brought home when Snart killed Amaya, shattering her into a million pieces of ice. I have to be honest, I don’t know how Mick is going to react to this, or if he can recover from the fallout. What I do know is that this finally places Mick and Snart on opposite sides of the fence permanently. Even if Mick returns to a life of crime, he’ll always see the cold, calculated Snart as an enemy.
This all leads to the gigantic showdown between the Legends and the Legion. With Amaya temporarily (we hope) dead, and the Spear of Destiny destroyed, the Legends have to go back in time and change an event they had direct contact with. The Legends have to go back to World War One and stop the Legends from losing the Spear of Destiny. There’s a lot riding on next week’s season finale but I’m confident that the Legends will deliver the goods.