Legends of Tomorrow: 4.11 Séance and Sensibility
This is more like it Legends of Tomorrow!
After a couple of slightly slow burners to kick the season back off, the show delivers a perfectly mad and weird episode that also manages to be touching and sweet while progressing characters and plot.
Nate spends the episode preppering for a speech at his Dad’s funeral, and he’s conflicted since he loved his Dad but also knows he was up to no good. We get some fun interactions with Nate and Ray, who doesn’t know how to deal with the issue since he is the hots for Nora, Hank’s perceived murderer but the two show that they are still best buddies. I like this friendship because they’re actually sort of different but very similar and it’s been nice for Ray to have an anchor in the core cast.
Of course Nora turns up and confides in Ray about her innocence and they head off to find Hank’s real killer. The rest of the team pretty much head off to hang out with Jane Austen, as you do.
The focus of the time part of the adventure and the episode as a whole is all on Zari. She’s been struggling with her developing feelings for Nate and her sense of belonging for a little while. When she was first introduced her character felt a little like a standard, too cool for school type who didn’t bring a lot to the mix. But if her first few episodes on the show were her teenage years, she quickly matured - in a big way via her Groundhog Day episode - and she’s now become one of my favourite Legends.
Jane Austen seems to be at the epicentre of an early sexual revolution, with people confessing their love and lust for each other all over the county. The Legends soon pin point the cause; the sexy coachman who made a a pass at Zari when they arrived is actually an Indian fertility God (well, possesses the powers of) turned up to spread a little love. Zari is initially resistant to his magically induced charms then she embraces them, snorting the powdered bones of the long dead Kamaveda to induce a crazy loved up euphoria. Then they sing a song.
I love Legends of Tomorrow for being so barmy and when I realised we were about to get a full on Bollywood song and dance routine in Regency England I couldn’t have been happier. The song and dance sequence isn’t just for show, it does serve a narrative per pose and allows the characters to express themselves more openly and move forward... it just does it in style. The song also gave me my first moment of finding Nora interesting. She ends up resenting Jane Austen for her broken heart, since it was her writing that made her a hopeless romantic but during the song she comes to terms, a little, with her loss and it was a far more engaging moment and performance.
I was glad when the drugged up Zari finally ditched Karmaveda because there is a fine line being trod with the subject of consent when sex and magic gets involved. I think the show managed to keep everything on the right side of that line.
Nate and Hank’s story has a touching conclusion, Constantine channels Hank’s ghost to get some info about who killed him and why and Nate finds a home movie in his Dad’s secret study, a video that shows his pitch for a magical theme park based on Nate’s childhood dream. It’s goofy and doesn’t make much sense and you till have to question a man who captures magical animals to basically put in a zoo but it turns out Hank was a big silly goof who just wanted to make his son and the kids do the world happy with a kind of Jurassic Park with Dragons. This was a fun, silly but touching episode which pushes several relationships and the core story forward well and it’s absolutely what I expect - nay, demand - from Legends of Tomorrow.