Welcome back to my weekly recaps of DC’s Legends of Tomorrow! To read all of my past recaps of episodes, go here!
The Legion broke reality (but somehow not certain aspects of the timeline) and the Legends put it back together. “Aruba,” minus some issues that have already been built into the show and the nature of time travel that raises questions, was a delightful way to end Legends of Tomorrow’s second season. It even had a semi-happy ending, which, you know, on a superhero show doesn’t always happen.
After Captain Cold brutally murders Amaya in the alternate version of 2017, the Legends, complete with Mick on board, regroup. They concoct a plan to head back to 1916 to steal the spear of destiny at the moment before it’s taken by the Legion. However, they risk running into themselves, which would make their future selves aberrations, and time would cave in on itself. I know the show doesn’t ever really think these things through, but the writers kind of wrote themselves into a corner in this episode with its lack of logic. If the Legion did indeed alter reality, then how does an event which occurred in a different reality remain intact? If the Legends led different lives in their alternate states, then why would their past selves even be in 1916 to begin with? The spear of destiny would have altered everything, erasing their mission to stop the Legion and rendering the risk of bumping into themselves moot.
I should never go in armed with too much logic with this show, I know, but it’s a thought that swept through my mind during the entire episode and rendered many of its events questionable. However, despite the obvious conundrum of time travel and the writers’ need to create events that might not make much sense logically, “Aruba” was well-executed in style, action, and character interaction. The bad guys are defeated, the Legends win the day (which I’d also like to see on the other CW superhero shows), and all of the deaths, of which there are many, don’t stick. The episode finds a way to be both surprising, a bit heartfelt, and fun without having to sacrifice any of its main characters to death. It also sets up another mission the team will have to contend with in season three, but aside from the new problem, the season finale ended in a generally happy place.
One of my biggest concerns was that the show would decide to kill off Amaya or send her back to 1942 permanently. And while the show has dealt with destiny, it was nice to see Amaya allowing her heart to lead her into a new adventure. She accepts that going back to 1942 may be what she’s destined to do, but that perhaps time and destiny will wait (or maybe course correct) for now. I’ve never been more relieved to see Legends of Tomorrow keep a character around. She’s been a wonderful presence on the show and I like the dynamic she has with everyone. There is a sense of power and compassion in her demeanor and she has been one of the highlights of season two.
Rip’s place on the team is brought into question by episode’s end. He spent half of season two with amnesia and with another identity. By the time he rejoined the team, they had moved on, with Sara taking his place as captain of the Waverider. He’s feeling like he no longer belongs and that the team has become a well-oiled machine in his absence. So Rip decides to take his leave. Where he goes or what he’ll do is unclear (I’m not sure he’ll even be back for season three), but his departure doesn’t feel forced. It feels timely. And as much as I like Rip (he has been so much better in season two), it feels like a natural departure as his mission and time on the Waverider has come to an end.
The Legion of Doom proved to be better adversaries and really elevated the season. I’m not convinced that we’ve seen the last of Eobard Thawne (because, let’s be real, which version did Black Flash kill?) and he’ll probably pop back up on The Flash sooner or later, but his run on Legends was a good one. Sara even got to see Laurel again and had to make a conscious choice about altering reality to bring her back.
I wouldn’t have faulted her for this since Sara has had her issues in the past and to want to bring back Laurel would have been a personal choice that would have made sense on a human level. However, she’s made peace with her sister’s death and is no longer as angry as she was at the start of the season. Even Mick has seemingly found his place among his new friends, something he reveals later to Snart. All in all, it was nice to see Legends of Tomorrow end in optimism and not despair. With the team reassembled and a new mission on the horizon (and really, the Legends may as well be in an alternate universe given that none of the other superheroes have noticed any changes), I look forward to season three. Maybe the Legends will finally get penalized for breaking the timeline even more so than Barry ever could.