Isn’t the problem with going back to the start that if they fail he is forewarned for the next 4000 years of their existence/plans to kill him. If they just keep making small jumps backwards from their present position they always have the element of surprise.
Missed this week one, so watched both episodes together earlier this week. The sheer number of characters does cause them each to feel shallow and one-dimensional, but that should straighten itself out as we see more from each over time. Already started, even, with stuff like Jefferson coming around to be a team player and Stein’s self-realizations. It was cool to see that they’re bringing in cameos, like Darkh showing up at the arms deal.
The big problem for me is that making time travel the central gimmick really makes it hard to suspend disbelief. At-will time travel to pretty much anywhere in history is such a powerful thing, even with the various restrictions that they try to slap on it. I do my best to turn off my brain and just enjoy the ride, but it’s not easy.
I really do like some of the little interactions between the various players. A lot of them are fun to have around, but you wouldn’t necessarily build a show around them as a solo star.
Definitely enjoyed the second ep a lot more, and I didn’t dislike the first at all.
Savage is a little “puny” feeling, however. Decent hand-to-hand combat, and obviously lots of resources, but against a full team of people with superheroic powers and tech, he seems like he’d just get blasted through walls a lot. I hope they tap more into his mystical/magical powers as time goes on to up the threat factor. As is, it seems like any reasonable full-out assault from the team would be enough to pin him down long enough for Kendra to pig-stick him Egyptian-style.
In the same vein, I hope to see a little more from Rip Hunter as time goes on. His BBC counterpart the Doctor manages to be pretty fucking awesome despite a lack of any real powers aside from a second heart, so I hope they let Darvill dig into the “I’ve seen a thousand ages and survived countless missions to rescue history from horrid fates time and again” element of the character, as opposed to just having him lurk around the ship and make technobabble quips about the timeline.
All the kvetching aside (it comes from a place of love!), there’s a lot going on I really like. Darvill, of course, is just so fucking charismatic that he probably COULD just sit in the captain’s chair and smarm for the full season and I’d still dig him. And getting new pairings and groupings of the team and exploring the various dynamics that can lead to has a lot of potential for awesome. Capt. Cold/Snart really is fucking awesome, and has already shown he’s great for teamups on [I]The Flash[/I], but watching a little buddy comedy between Heatwave and Atom/Palmer was also fantastic, and the running flirtation gag between Stein and Sara/Canary was also a lot of fun.
Pulling Hawkman/Carter out so early is a little surprising, but I think the show’ll be better for it. His relationship with Kendra needs a lot more earning than the three or four TV eps he’s managed between the CW-verse programs, and of course, he and Hawkgirl are basically rocking the same power-set. I’ll be curious to see if he returns (obviously there’s a pretty easy built in way for that to occur, though I wonder what the effects of disrupting their “temporal pairing” would be) and they reverse the master/student dichotomy with him and Kendra, for instance.
And all that said, across the two-part pilot, it’s proven to be pretty shitty to be a member of the Hawk-family, if Professor Son and Hawkdad are any indication. . .
Holy crap, this show is gonna go old school. And I mean [I]really[/I] old school:
For those not versed in 1940s DC trivia
It’s the original Red Tornado. Who was a housewife who wore red longjohns and a pot on her head. No really.
Very much agreed. And as I mentioned before, Savage might as well be Snidely Whiplash. He has no substance, which I hope they will fix. Damien Darhk would have been so much more fun as the big bad in the show. He had far more charisma in that brief scene than the entire time Savage has been on screen. Not that I think it is necessarily the actor that is to blame, mind you. They haven’t given him a thing to do except be menacing.
Episode 2 wasn’t any better, though since it was just called “Pilot part 2” I wasn’t expecting a big turnaround yet. I didn’t get my complaining out of my system in the first week though, so here’s me ranting.
White Canary, Atom, and Captain Cold are all good enough for me to watch them on their own. Heat Wave and the Martin Stein half of Firestorm also play off those characters well. Jax is fine but unremarkable.
The Hawk Persons are bad. Hawkman has at no point been likable, relatable, or interesting. The most interesting thing about him is the actor once played one of Tobias Fünke’s gang of Hot Cops. Hawkgirl wasn’t quite so bad in her setup with Cisco on Flash, but there wasn’t much time to establish her before she was just part of the doomed lovers across time plot which has been so poorly done it would be hard to salvage with the best of performances.
Between time travel and reincarnation, it’s almost a certainty that some version of Hawkman will be back on the show almost immediately, but at least for a moment, it was nice to see him killed.
Rip Hunter is lame. I don’t think I’ve seen Arthur Darvill in anything; I guess people like him because he was on Dr. Who? So far he’s just a bland exposition device. He has no compelling hook or personality, which is a problem if he’s the reason everyone’s supposed to buy into the mission. It doesn’t help that his costume looks exactly like a costume. Seriously, that duster is the worst. Malcom Reynolds in Firefly (a vaguely similar style) looked like he was wearing clothes he actually owned and lived in, this guy looks like he stole something off the hanger from the wardrobe of a lower-budget sci-fi show on the neighboring set. I know this is a super picky detail, but it just stuck out to me and added to my annoyance with his character.
And Vandal Savage is Ra’s Al Ghul 2.0. Not in a good way, like from the comics, I mean he’s like Arrow’s Ra’s Al Ghul. They’re both supposed to be these effectively immortal, ancient magic-y foes with ambitions of world domination, and neither has the gravitas or presence to pull it off. I have no idea how they can improve this either. Thawne, Darhk, and Slade Wilson were all great big-bads and they were all menacing in different ways, so I don’t know what it is about Ra’s and Savage that’s going wrong unless it’s truly just down to the actors.
So yeah, a lot to not like in the first two episodes, but I don’t know what the overall direction of the show will be or what might improve as we go. As I said originally, I’m still on board for the heroes I like, whatever else happens. And the effects and action aren’t blowing me away yet—the best moments from Flash still easily outdo what we’ve seen here, but I haven’t been [I]unhappy[/I] with the action either. I even liked Atom’s first real small-to-big action scene at the arms deal fight in part 2. For trying to basically recreate Iron Man on a TV budget, I’m okay with the results so far.
I wish I could say this was getting better.
Here’s my 30-seconds-of-thought pitch for how this should’ve worked:
The two hour pilot (which should’ve aired together) has the same setup, but the climax of the pilot is actually “successfully” executing the plan to kill Savage. They track him down, there’s a big fight, they defeat him, but their time ship explodes or some plot device like that, and BOOM! The team is scattered across time. You start with Atom, Canary, and Cold, ideally (or at least those should be the early priorities if you’re only starting with one or two of them), and the rest of the series is trying to reunite and rescue the team. Optionally, they can throw some time-travel-paradox Savage stuff in for the last couple episodes if they want to tie it back to the beginning—maybe they find out they have to let him live to repair the time line, but find another way to at least defeat him in the future—but the important part is [B]most of the series should have nothing to do with Savage.[/B]
This setup would’ve fixed a lot of problems. Savage isn’t compelling; bad performance, uninteresting character. So the less of him the better. Character motivation for the team is likewise improved. We can’t keep rehashing whether this team is committed to stopping Savage, (and they keep landing on yes, but it’s still not really sold as anything other than “it’s what the good guys do because this is a comic book”) but if he’s out of the picture and the bulk of the series is about saving their friends and the timeline they actually came from, everyone’s motivation makes a lot more sense. And it frees up the week to week adventures to be about anything they want in whatever time period they want to have fun with. Maybe Mr. Hawk was captured in soviet 80s Russia, maybe Heatwave started an ancient Mayan cult, whatever!
It would also let us start smaller with the team and actually get to know these characters and care about them more instead of throwing the whole ensemble at us at once.
Eh, I’m definitely more along for the ride after last week’s episode than I had been previously (I’ll leave it to others to postulate about said episode’s lack of Savage vis a vis its quality). It was solid for the most part, had some fun set pieces and character moments, and broadened the scope of things nicely in a few directions. More like that will make for a perfectly fine, Arrow S3-level program!
The show is a mess. The last episode just had them farting them around without any appearance of the main villain. I agree with Wholly Schmidt that they keep harping back to doubts about being on this mission and team fighting Vandal Savage. Enough already.
Also, I thought Constantine cured Sarah’s “bloodlust”? A minor point for this show, but when Thea’s dealing with it in a more life and death way over in Arrow, it’s annoying that the two shows aren’t really on the same page about it.
He cured her incomplete soul fusion (my term, not theirs). The length of time since she’d died made the resurrection less effective; the body they got back was feral, animalistic, because her soul was held by a demon. Constantine freed it and restored it to her body, but that body was still tainted by the Lazarus Pit. So, bloodlust continues. We’ll see whether or not the effects begin to include arrow-holes sprouting from her midsection if she keeps up this nonlethal streak!
I thought that on every episode of Arrow the implication was that the bloodlust was under control too, and that it was even referenced in the last episode again as the difference between Thea and Sarah’s conditions, but maybe I just wasn’t paying close enough attention.
Thea’s was temporarily deactivated by Darkh’s Bad Touch, but has been making a resurgence, culminating in the present mixup with the League. Maybe a little trite to keep going back to this well in the same universe, but the individual shows seem to be doing their own things with it.
Legends has gotten off to a rough start, but I’ve liked the last couple of episodes and the setup for next week looks like a lot of fun. The Soviet gulag rescue this week was well executed, I thought. It helps that Savage isn’t really the threat here - any bad guy getting their hands on an army of Firestorms would pretty clearly be terrible. So the lack of villain charisma isn’t a big deal. And next week we get to see alternate reality stuff, kind of like the last couple of weeks of Flash (future rather than alternate universe). I have hope for another good one.
Maybe Legends will be another slow starter, like Agents of SHIELD or Constantine. Both of those were pretty terrible early on, and got a lot better. Just have to hope it doesn’t lead to the fate of Constantine, too.
I actually really enjoyed the whole Soviet segment a lot. Lots of great character moments from just about everyone except Kendra, who’s definitely the weak link right now. Hoping to see more from her as the series develops.
The [I]Prison Break[/I] call-out between Snart and Mick was pretty fabulous, even as a guy who never really got into that series :-D. Also Ray introducing “yo mama!” jokes about 10 years early in Soviet Russia. Clearly the cause of the disastrous future they just landed in. . .
Agreed, a great episode. I’m really digging the main characters, watching them grow and mature has been a lot of fun.
I did miss the Prison Break call-out though, must have (somehow) sailed right passed me. Spoiler tag it, please, because it’s killing me I missed it!
S01E05 - Fail-Safe Spoiler (Minor)
During the planning phase of the op, Snart eye-rollingly delivers “This isn’t my first prison break!” to Sara and Rip when Rip’s overselling the difficulty of what they need to do. Possibly caused Wentworth Miller physical pain to say that :P.
It seems to be getting better. I am hopeful of the next episode. I wonder when the giant robots are going to play a part.
ah haha thanks Armando, that’s awesome. I do remember that line, I’m so thick it went right over me!