Tuesday, November 27, 2018

REVIEW: 'Legends of Tomorrow' - Hank Teams Up with the Legends for the Latest Mission in 'Tender Is the Nate'

The CW's Legends of Tomorrow - Episode 4.06 "Tender Is the Nate"

When Hank Heywood confronts Ava about the spending habits of the Legends, Nate steps in to try and smooth things over by inviting Hank onto the Waverider. The Legends then show Hank what they do by visiting 1920s Paris, trying to capture the newest fugitive. Mona is trying to make a good impression with Ava, but her overeagerness gets her and Ava stuck in a cell instead.

In 2018, it has become very difficult to keep up with every television show out there. It's even more difficult to provide adequate coverage on this site about the episodes that air every week. Not every show can get full coverage because of my busy and hectic viewing schedule. As such, some reviews will now be condensed to give only some summary thoughts. But it also affords a space for me to jot down my thoughts on the various episodes. And so, here are my thoughts on this week's episode of The CW's Legends of Tomorrow.

"Tender Is the Nate" was written by Phil Klemmer & Matthew Maala and directed by Dean Choe

There is simply too much going on here. It's not the best episode for Hank Heywood to judge the efficiency and necessity of the Legends. Zari and Ray don't even do anything in 1920s Paris. There is a moment where Charlie believes she has to pretend to be Amaya in order to continue with the team. And yet, that never goes anywhere. It's just good for one joke about her being unable to do an American accent even though the audience saw Maisie Richardson-Sellers do so for two seasons. Moreover, it was always going to be a huge deal when Nate showed up on the Waverider and saw Charlie for the first time. That moment happens here. And yet, it's mostly just brushed to the side. He is very understanding. It's ultimately not a big deal at all. As such, it makes the audience question why Sara and the team needed to keep it a secret from him in the first place. He has been with the Legends long enough to know that it's not crazy for a shapeshifter to assume Amaya's identity and subsequently be trapped in that body. It's pretty commonplace for the team. In fact, this episode tries overly hard to drive home the mission statement of the show. Each story features an abundance of craziness to the point where it seems impossible for it all to come together in a way that makes sense but miraculously does. But again, the full team doesn't go out on this mission. It's mostly just Sara, Rory, Nate and Hank out in the field. Hank isn't really observing and seeing how the Legends conduct business and whether they deserve to receive the same amount of funding moving forward. Of course, the logistics that come from this sudden focus on the financials aren't all that consistent with what the show previously established was possible for the team and their ship. Hank doesn't even know that Gideon is an artificial intelligence who can heal almost any injury while also being able to create whatever outfits the team needs for their missions. But this story aspires to point out the destructive energy that Hank exudes as a man in a high position of power. He believes that because he has obtained a certain position in life that entitles him to order around anyone he sees as below him. That's such a toxic quality. The audience is already aware that he is up to something shady with his fellow contacts within the government. They have nefarious plans for these magical creatures. That tease isn't further fleshed out here. Instead, it's mostly about Hank interacting with Ernest Hemingway and then singing a minotaur to sleep. That's crazy and ridiculous. But it's not the most outrageous thing the show has ever done. Moreover, it doesn't really hit any new notes when it comes to Hank's interactions with anyone on the team or at the Time Bureau. As such, all of this runs the risk of becoming repetitive - especially with Nate making the choice to stay in 2018 because things are running smoothly on the Waverider despite changing so much. Elsewhere, Ava, Nora and Mona get trapped in a cell at the Time Bureau. It's a story that overindulges Mona way too much. She is a very specific quality that needs to be utilized in the right amount. Here, she is a little too overbearing and forced. The show is trying to get the audience to like her and see her optimistic and upbeat perspective on all things. It's just much simpler to feel for Ava and Nora because they embody struggles that the audience genuinely cares about at this point. That's the more effective angle of this story.