Tuesday, May 19, 2020

REVIEW: 'Legends of Tomorrow' - Becoming Immortal Doesn't Remove the Lethal Stakes for the Legends in 'I Am Legends'

The CW's Legends of Tomorrow - Episode 5.12 "I Am Legends"

After drinking from the chalice, the Legends have immortality for 24 hours, which gives them time to get to the Waverider and use the Loom of Fate. However, they quickly discover that the sisters have stolen the Waverider and they are stuck at Constantine's house in the middle of nowhere in London during a zombie apocalypse. Gary is left on the ship and once he discovers what is going on, he takes something important to the sisters.

In 2019, the television industry aired 532 scripted shows across numerous outlets. The way people consume content now is different than it used to be. It happens according to one's own schedule. As such, it's less necessary to provide ample coverage of each episode in any given season from a show. Moreover, it is simply impossible to watch everything. As such, this site provides shorter episodic reviews in order to cover as many shows as possible. With all of that being said, here are my thoughts on the next episode of The CW's Legends of Tomorrow.

"I Am Legends" was written by Keah Poulliot & Emily Cheever and directed by Andrew Kasch

The Legends drank from the chalice and became immortal for a day. Is that time well spent? Well, not really. They are mostly stuck in a zombie apocalypse unable to really do anything of much value. Sara encourages Ava to step up as the captain of the Legends because she knows that this mission will end tragically very soon. Zari pushes Constantine to be more vulnerable. That lets them have sex before fighting for their lives against the zombie hoard. Meanwhile, Astra is on the Waverider battling for which side she wants to stand on in this fight. Lachesis shows her how life as a human will always end while Gary wants her to remember all the good times she had with her mother. Those happy memories are powerful. But all of this is essentially building to the entire team dying. That fate will have to be rewritten. Charlie is the only person still alive to make that happen. That will be insanely difficult because the three fates are now the only individuals who can use the Loom. That is the tease at the conclusion of this episode. It feels as if the villains have won. Lachesis and Atropos have succeeded in regaining their control over humanity. They are powerful once more. All it took was calling in one favor from Astra. That was all it took for this betrayal to happen. The Legends are left in the dark about what to think about Astra. They felt like she was becoming a friend and ally in this fight. And now, they fear that she was always playing them. It's a conversation that doesn't have much nuance to it because the characters are separated. The Legends are off on their own adventure. They actually struggle when it comes to living in the real world. That's apparent long before the zombies appear. That makes their journey to London even more dangerous and dire. And yes, it is a fun idea. It's the show paying homage to another successful genre in the fantasy realm. There is added power that the team is immortal at this time. It means that Ava can get shot in the head and survive. It means the team can jump out of a moving truck on the highway and survive with no injuries. But again, those gimmicks are basically the foundation for this entire story. Zari and Constantine get a little more nuance. That mostly just affirms that he has grown quite attached to her. Those feelings are starting to become more personal. He always wants to present as the selfish prick who doesn't truly care about anything. But his loyalties are to this team. He wants them to succeed. He wants people to be safe and secure even when these supernatural forces threaten to destroy their lives. He has to stop Zari's heart for a moment in order to carry her to safety. It's agonizing. It makes it clear that he doesn't want to lose her. The show has absolutely been building up the potential romance between them. It follows through on that promise here. It's clear that some of the Legends can tell they just had sex while others are completely clueless. It may not mean anything in the end either. It just seems inevitable that these deaths will be quickly undone. It's unclear how Charlie will be able to channel the power of the Loom to save her friends without converting her sisters somehow. That makes it an effective cliffhanger. But it also makes it frustrating because Sara props all of this up as a noble sacrifice. Something that had to happen at this point. Something that she was willing to accept because she had complete trust in her team rewriting this fate. Zari has held onto the hope that Behrad could be brought back to life. She has never been willing to mourn his death. That isn't acceptable to her knowing that she can change it. She has had to come into her own as the carrier of the air totem. That only gets her so far though. The same applies to Sara's skills as an assassin. She can only fend off the zombies for so long. Charlie is the only legend who makes it back onto the ship. Gary and Astra are killed as well. The story amplifies the deaths to build the tension heading into the climax of the season. But it also feels a little more forced and clunky than it necessarily should. It's weird. The hour embraces so many elements that usually work so well on this show. However, the characters may just be getting too broad and too accustomed to things always working out in the end despite the screw ups along the way. That is disappointing because that usually brings so much fun and unexpected consequences to the narrative.