Legends of Tomorrow: 2.12 Camelot/3000
Well this is the Legends of Tomorrow I know and love! This weeks offering is suitably goofy, stupid and nonsensical.
The gang chase Bad Rip to the year 3000 (a room with some computer monitors) before heading to Medieval England (a room with some swords). It seems that before he went bad, Rip, with the help of the JSA – timeline wise, after Amya left but before Rip met the Legends… I think… - scattered the bits of the Stick of Power throughout time and the JSA members stayed around to help keep them safe. Obviously they do a bad job. After killing Dr. Mid-Nite in the year 3000, Bad Rip steals the piece of Magic Stick he was guarding and pinches some of the neural control devices he just so happened to be working on. Team Legs get there just too late to stop Rip or save Dr. Mid-Nite so they set off to Camelot, where they know the last piece of the Spear is being hidden.
There is some great fun this week as Nate bemoans the fact that people cannot differentiate between History and Legend, explaining to Ray that King Arthur wasn’t a real person and berating the team for dressing like they’re going to a Renaissance fair instead of time period appropriate. Ray, of course, was an Arthurian legend nut as a kid. Ray was a busy boy it seems. He was a fan or everything! Star Wars, the Old West, King Arthur. What wasn't he a fan of as a little boy? Seems lots of things inspired him, maybe he was just really impressionable?
Much to Nate’s annoyance he finds a historically inaccurate Camelot, complete with Arthur, round table and Guinevere. This is explained, fairly off handedly, by the fact Star Girl has been there posing as Merlin and apparently molded a small nothing of a kingdom in to the Mythical Camelot. I like the idea of an insignificant kingdom being manipulated into the Arthurian legends, that's a fun concept, similar to Robin Hood in Doctor Who, the idea it was real but was allowed to fall into legend for its own safety. Though its never really explained why Star Girl molded things to be like the legends or what the benefit was?
Star Girl really is awful, she’s incredibly bland and there’s no discernable emotion when she speaks. Amya, as a character, is all over the place this weeks and I’m finding it hard to like her. She seems irrationally angry so much of the time. This week she just flip flops all the way through the episode; early on she’s being plane nasty to Nate, challenging Sara and generally being unpleasant. I know she’s just lost a friend, in Dr. Mid-Nite but still, last week she was enjoying SpaceChristmas with her new family, this week she’s ready to leave them in the past and fly off.
In all the goofiness this week, Ray, of course, puts on a suit of amour and decides to be a knight because knights are heroes who fight for a greater good etc etc etc We get it, Ray wants to be a hero, he wants a calling but we also know he’ll be back on the ship by the end of the episode. There was some good stuff with him and Nate this week, after the two of them becoming such buddies it was good to see them disagreeing. There is no specific tension, they just don’t agree and don’t feel the same way about things this week, which is good because their characters were beginning to merge a little.
Stein and Mick stay on the ship this week, I guess its their turn? Stein has pinched one of Dr. Mid-Nite’s mind control devices from the future, which is a good thing it turns out because BAD RIP STOLE ONE TOO! Bad Rip. So Bad Rip skulks around in black and takes control of first Arthur then an army of knights, while Damian Darhk runs about in a suit of black armor, wise cracking. Neal McDonough is so good in this show, he really makes the screen pop. More than any other DCTV show, Legends has a lot of film actors – or at least actors with extensive film experience. It doesn't always mean quality but it feels like actors who, at least cut their teeth in cinema, bring a level or performance to the show that really shines.
Guinevere, who in this version of events is Arthur’s Queen and lead warrior, and Sara almost immediately have a bit of a spark. I love how this show treats sexuality, I thought the warrior Gwen being a lesbian felt a touch on the cliché side but the show does a great job of treating Sara’s sexuality very casually and normally, which is great for a show about heroes that is going to have plenty of younger viewers.
So Bad Rip attacks the castle with his army of mind controlled knights, Ray decides to ride into battle and Amya, after finding the last bit of the Spear of Whatever hidden on the sword in the stone, just wants to run off. There is a great squabble scene on the ship when Sara doesn’t know if they should leave with the Spear pieces, or go back for Ray. Nate stands up to Amya in this moment and, frankly, someone needs to. She literally wants to go and leave Ray then stay and save him, seconds apart, with no apparent catalyst for her change in mind? I think she just chooses what other people want to do and takes an angry, apposing opinion. The team, of course, go back for Ray and take down the army, save the day, release Arthur from Bad Rip’s mind control AND capture Bad Rip!
There are some cool moments this week like Ray using his atom suit to electrically charge his broad sword, causing it to glow blue light and a nearby serf to comment; “It’s like a saber… made of light!”. Also, an intriguing moment when Sara mentions YAHTZEE and Mick asks what the hell is a YAHTZEE. Sara’s brief reaction made me think it a bit odd Mick wouldn’t know what YAHTZEE was and left me wondering if that was some kind of clue to a thing later on… or maybe not? The guy playing Arthur, Nils Hognestad, although not in the episode much, was pretty good and I enjoyed his performance. The actress paying Gwen, Elyse Levesque, not so much. She was fine but her accent was pretty weak. There is some fun stuff with Stein trying to master the mind control device only to find Mick has a stronger mind than him, poor old Martin.
The ep ended nicely, with villainy vanquished and Star Girl staying with Arthur who she had fallen in love with. Sara got to kiss the girl (along with the vague suggestion that she was Lancelot, Sara Lance get it?) and Team Legs were triumphant. The show then gave us one of it best cliffhangers; Bad Rip, now captured, is being held in the ships brig and Jax – who didn’t do much this week – pops in to tell him he won’t escape and he’s not the captain anymore, except when Jax leaves, Bad Rip calls out to Gideon for her assistance… and she replies! Gideon! Noooooooooooooo!