[Review] Legends Of Tomorrow Episode 2×17: “Aruba”

written by Kate Spencer

SPOILER WARNINGS ARE IN EFFECT

The Time Has Come Today for the Legends Of Tomorrow Season 2 finale. There’s no place to run, we might get burned up by the sun, but we’ve had our fun. Who will be loved and put aside? Who will be crushed by the tumbling tide? Whose soul will be psychedelicized?

The episode begins with a nice little Season 2 montage set to the Chambers Brothers’ “Time Has Come Today” – see what I did now with that opening paragraph? Eh? Clever Kate. One of the clips gives us the episode title when Mick asks why aberrations can never be in Aruba. Maybe they’ll finally get that vacation.

Rip and Gideon fire up the Waverider. Rip is confused by their surroundings until he spots a large object out the front window, which Gideon identifies as a desk lamp. Rip takes it in stride and has her plot a course for the nearest open window. This makes perfect sense. With the crap Rip has been through, being shrunk down and displayed on a desk like a model is nothing new.

The other Legends are trying to contact the Waverider. Well, all but Mick, who’s just sitting around eating. Honestly, as many scenes as there are where Mick is eating something I’m amazed Dominic Purcell is in as good of shape as he is. Rip shows up behind them in the Waverider and explains that it was likely the Atom suit which shrank the Waverider, not the Spear Of Destiny. They break into S.T.A.R. Labs and Ray has a pretty disturbing reunion with his suit. Darhk ambushes Ray and Jax with magical Force Chokes and in one of the funniest scenes of the season, the tiny Waverider shoots at Darhk to no effect. Mick knocks Dahrk out, then Ray enlarges the Waverider.

What? No! Why would you even try that indoors?! That should have killed every single one of you and demolished half the building! Maybe the Waverider too! But no, the Waverider flies through the roof and into the night sky. Somewhere the Doomworld version of Cisco Ramon is pissed off and he doesn’t know why.

They return to 1916 France (good thing Thawne didn’t alter the past at all) and set out to help the past Legends destroy the Spear before the Legion can get their hands on it. Rip warns that interfering too much with their past selves could destroy all of time. No pressure. There’s a time limit too – they’re racing against a reality wave originating from 2017 which will alter reality and set it permanently. They also realize since they’re technically aberrations, they will cease to exist when their past selves destroy the Spear. Mick votes for getting drunk in Aruba instead, but he’s ignored.

Ray heads out to the battlefield and recovers the blood, but Doomworld Thawne has followed them to 1916 and steals the blood from Ray, crushing it. Thawne then rips Ray’s heart right out of his chest in the blink of an eye. No seriously, he finally did something like that after having the opportunity all those times. Ray is dead…except that he’s not. We just heard that the Doomworld Legends are going to be erased anyway. We know they’re expendable. Still, just with Amaya’s death last episode it’s extremely unsettling to see one of the Legends suddenly die. The Legends are understandably shaken, but press on with the mission – they have to get the Spear from themselves and take it somewhere/somewhen else.

Doomworld Thawne meets with the rest of the Legion and tells them about the other set of Legends. Thawne then leaves to “get backup”. Uh-oh…

Doomworld Rip, Jax, and Nate go to the past Waverider to steal the Spear. They try to blend in, but they’re obviously acting suspicious. Nate delays them because he’s stunned to see Amaya alive. They can’t leave the ship now (thanks, Nate) because their past selves are already on their way back. Doomworld Sara and Jax try to delay past Rip, Ray, Jax, and Mick, but they’re even worse liars. The past Legends on the Waverider are suspicious and call the others, revealing Doomworld Sara and Jax as “imposters”. Oh god this is confusing to recap. A fight breaks out and in trying to hit Doomworld Sara, Ray hits Rip – okay, now I’m convinced the writers think Rip getting punched is funny. Doomworld Sara and Jax are knocked out and Rip figures out they’re from the future. They decide to question them…because Past Rip doesn’t have a problem with them interacting with their future selves?

Speaking of interacting with past and future selves, didn’t Barry Allen do that? Different time travel rules apply to speedsters, I guess.

Doomworld Rip and Past Rip are irritated in stereo as a timequake rocks the ship – yep, their stupid meddling is already destroying reality. GG, Legends. The Micks threaten each other, the Saras tell them to knock it off, and it’s all very fun until Mick tells them where the missing Legends are. Past Sara goes off to think and Rip sends Doomworld Sara to talk to her because…well, I guess the damage is already done? Doomworld Sara tells her past self that she was right not to use the Spear when she had the chance because it would be too tempting. Doomworld Nate gives his past self advice, too – to admit his feelings for Amaya.

The Legion attack the ship, so Sara – defying Rip’s suggestion – makes a desperate attempt at a time jump, but get caught in a time storm as a result of trying to jump with their future selves. The Waverider crashes and is critically damaged, so Doomworld Sara sends the Past Legends to the other Waverider with the Spear. The Doomworld Legends are staying behind this time…wait, hang on. If the Doomworld Legends are going to disappear as soon as history is altered, wouldn’t the Doomworld Waverider? Also, if the other Waverider doesn’t disappear and is a stable paradox, then what happened to the Waverider Rex Tyler crashed at the end of Season One? Did they ever explain where Rex got that Waverider? I assume from Mick Rory at some point in time from what Rex said, but when? How? Why? THIS SHOW MAKES NO SENSE!

Both teams of Legends charge the Legion, but Past Ray and Past Firestorm are shot down by Merlyn. Merlyn tries to shoot Stein, but Doomworld Jax jumps in the way and takes the arrow for him and dies. Doomworld Mick corners Darhk, but Leonard shoots that Mick in the back with the cold gun, putting an icicle through his chest. Remember this – I’m going to be mad about it later. Ray is horrified, but his Mick saves him from Leonard. Darhk stabs Doomworld Nate with a sword. He has the best death scene ever.

DOOMWORLD NATE: “Don’t be a douche.”

PAST NATE: “I won’t, bro.”

That’s not a joke. That’s really what he says. Nate is 100% nerd-bro and I kind of love it. Also, wow, three down in just a few minutes. This is turning into a bloodbath. It’s kind of fun seeing what happens to our heroes when their protagonist invincibility is turned off.

They continue the run to the Waverider, but Thawne suddenly speeds in, running circles around them but not ripping their hearts out because…reasons? Maybe he has to grandstand. Is he going to grandstand?

MICK: “I hate that guy.”

THAWNE: “Not ‘that’ guy…” [raises arms as dozens of Thawnes appear] “These guys!”

HAHAHAHAHAHA! Oh god, Matt Letscher gets the Season Two acting MVP award for the delivery on that one line alone. That was such a supervillain delivery. Holy crap, I’m a little lightheaded from laughing. So yeah, Thawne gathered versions of himself from all throughout history to aid him against the Legends. Also, I’m not 100% sure on this, but I think they may have a few Tom Cavanagh Thawnes mixed in there. It’s really hard to tell because they blur the Thawnes in the background, but a couple look like they have darker hair and different faces. With the Legends dropping like flies, Past Sara is forced to use the Spear.

Sara finda herself in her sister Laurel’s apartment watching The Wizard Of Oz. Laurel comes in with two glasses of wine, saying they should have movie night more often. Sara sees through it immediately and knows the Spear is tempting her. Laurel tells her that this can be real and she can rewrite reality how she wants, and that the Spear doesn’t need someone pure, it just needs someone strong enough to do the right thing. After a tearful goodbye, Sara comes out of the vision as Thawne takes the Spear from her and starts chanting the magic words to use it and erase the Legends from existence. The Spear doesn’t work, though, because Sara made one tiny alteration to reality – she rendered the Spear powerless. Clever birdie. Thawne is about to run her through with the Spear, but Black Flash arrives on the scene and kills Thawne, erasing him from existence permanently this time. The other Thawnes evaporate and Black Flash snarls at Sara before running off. Well, glad he got that out of his system. Doomworld Sara fades into non-existence with a parting “Legends never die.”

The Legends return Merlyn to 2016 and Sara goes to visit Leonard and Darhk in the brig. You know, if either Len or Darhk wanted to get in a petty victory by fucking with time, all they would have to do is kill the other one. Is it really smart to put them in a cell together? Sara can’t return either of them to the present since they’re both dead.

Cut to Central City 2014. Mick takes Leonard to the warehouse where Thawne first recruited him. Before wiping his memory, Mick tells him that he dies a better man, and because of that Mick is a better man too. Sara returns Darhk to Miami in 1987. He tries to taunt her over Laurel’s death, but Sara has made peace with that, knowing Laurel is okay with her not changing history. She erases Darhk’s memory.

Amaya prepares to leave the Waverider for her own time, and Nate decides to go with her. Predictable, but boooooo! I like these two; I don’t want them to leave! Oh wait, Amaya changes her mind. She’s going to stay on the Waverider with Nate and the Legends because for now, her destiny can wait. Um…I don’t know if that’s a good idea, but yay, they’re staying around.

Rip isn’t! He’s got his bags packed and he’s heading out. BOOOOO! He feels like the Legends function better without him and there’s nothing more he can teach them. He leaves Sara in command and asks her permission to leave, which she grants.

The Legends gather on the bridge and Sara tells Mick to chose a destination. They’re finally going to Aruba, 2017–LOLNOPE! A time storm rocks the ship – there’s more fallout from their meddling in 1916 than they thought. The Waverider exits the temporal zone, spinning out of control.

JAX: “Oh, come on! Can we please go five minutes without crashing the Waverider?”

Jax, you already know the answer to that. They destroy a building or two as they crash and Gideon informs them they’re in Los Angeles in 2017…where there are futuristic buildings, a clock tower, and dinosaurs. Sara think they’ve broken time. Nice job breaking it, heroes.

Well, that was interesting. As season finales go, that was pretty decent. We got some closure on a lot of story arcs like Sara’s revenge against Damien Darhk, Mick trying to figure out his alignment, Rip’s place on the team, Amaya and Nate, and the end of the Spear Of Destiny storyline. Despite wrapping up so much, the episode didn’t really feel cluttered or rushed. If anything, it felt like more of a two-hour episode than a single one-hour episode.

There were a lot of deaths in this episode (not to mention Amaya’s in the previous episode) and even though all but one of those really stuck, they had a lot of weight to them. None of them felt like they were rushed or they were just to take a certain character off the board. All had some emotional impact…except maybe Doomworld Rip, because I couldn’t tell when or how he died or if he just faded from existence like Doomworld Sara.

Speaking of Rip, it’s sad to see him go but not entirely unexpected. The reason Arthur Darvill was missing much of this season is because he had another acting commitment and the Legends crew worked around that. I’m not sure why he’s leaving now, though, but I’m sure we’ll find out soon enough. I was actually hoping Rip would stay on – not as captain, since that job has been filled, but in an adviser capacity. Oh well.

All right, I said I had some anger coming and I’ll expand on this in a Season Two wrap-up article next week, but Leonard Snart is just way too over-the-top evil here. I was right in that Thawne plucked Leonard from the timeline not long after he became Captain Cold, but even then he’s a little too vicious in this and the previous episode. Yes, Leonard was a killer. He killed people on The Flash and I can even believe that he would kill Amaya because past Leonard was a complete bastard. But not even past Leonard would have killed Mick. With everything we learned about their partnership and their past in Season One, Leonard wouldn’t so readily shoot Mick in the back. Hell, he had the opportunity to kill him in Season One and didn’t take it. It just seems like bad mischaracterization.

The Spear Of Destiny storyline had a nice little conclusion, and I like that Sara was the Legend to finally use the Spear and neutralize it. She had to make a hard choice, but in the end she came out of it more at peace with the past. I still would have liked to see each Legend tempted by the Spear: Jax tempted to bring back his dad, Rip finally saving his family, Amaya being tempted to choose a destiny for herself…it would have been good to see how each would react and how they reject the Spear’s power.

I can’t say the season-ending cliffhanger has me as excited as last season’s did, but it’s something. Maybe next season will be all about the Legends fixing the aftereffects of the time storm.

Next week: the Season Two retrospective!

…eh, what the hell. One more “Rip Hunter is a bad babysitter” for the road.

Legends Of Tomorrow airs Tuesdays on the CW at 9 ET/8 CT. Kate can be reached on Twitter @WearyKatie.

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