written by Kate Spencer
SPOILER WARNINGS ARE IN EFFECT
Another “hero goes evil” episode. Shouldn’t be too much trouble. They have a whole team of supers, they can easily handle one of their own…oh, it’s Sara? They’re doomed.
Sara wakes from a nightmare about a creepy girl and is comforted by Ava, who’s a little curious about the “John” Sara was calling out for in her sleep. Sara tells her about John Constantine (who “kinda looks like Sting”) and Ava gets jealous until Sara refers to her as her girlfriend. They’re interrupted by Gideon calling Sara to the bridge. Nate greets the captain and asks where “Mrs. Captain” is, and Sara doesn’t even snark or miss a beat, she just tells him Ava had to work. This show is getting so gay and I love it.
The time cracks are getting worse, and according to Ray, a complete breakdown of the timeline would result in complete chaos that would make anachronisms seem quaint. Doesn’t sound so bad to me. Mick is missing from the meeting, so Wally goes to fetch him, discovering too late that Mick sleeps in the nude. Sara divides the team up to tackle multiple anachronisms at once. Zari and Amaya are sent to snag the Mona Lisa from the Antiques Roadshow, Nate and Wally will find and return Laika to the Soviet space program, and Sara will get Einstein from the ice age. Mick is voluntold to stay behind and help Ray restore the fire totem after refusing the Laika mission.
SARA: “That’s it. No snazzy sendoff; momma’s got a headache.”
Ray puts the fire totem in a cold fusion reactor that looks suspiciously like a microwave. Mick gets bored and wanders off to drink.
Sara’s headaches are mystical in nature, so she asks Gideon to call Constantine, but he doesn’t have a phone. Sara snarks about how he doesn’t do anything normal, but formerly dead superhero assassins who live in time-traveling glass space ships shouldn’t throw stones. She’s drawn to the death totem, where she has a vision of her former Canary identity, who tempts her with the totem’s power with promises of bringing back Laurel and banishing the creepy little girl from her nightmares. When Sara refuses, the vision instead makes it sound like her responsibility – they need the totems to stop Mallus, they need six totem bearers, and she’s the best one to wield the death totem. This is where it has her number. Sara sees herself as a death machine, and she wouldn’t pass that responsibility or burden onto any of her teammates, so she takes it upon herself. Sara picks up the totem.
Zari and Amaya return from their mission and wake up a drunken Mick. Ray isn’t responding, so they go to his lab and find him badly beaten and unconscious. Gideon’s internal sensors are down, so while Zari watches over Ray in the med bay, Amaya and Mick search the ship. They find a silver-haired, scary-eyed Sara speaking in Mallus’ voice. Death Sara breaks Mick’s flamethrower and Amaya’s leg. Before she can finish them off, Wally comes to the rescue.
Death Sara locks down the ship and disables Gideon as Ava calls via hologram. The Legends tell Ava to contact Constantine. Wally phases through the lock on the med bay door and speeds off to apprehend Sara and wrap this whole thing up.
So after Wally gets knocked out, we–okay, fine. There’s actually a really good scene where Death Sara tries to use a vision of Jesse Quick to distract Wally with their relationship baggage. He sees through it right away, but actually uses it as a therapy moment, describing how the breakup led him to greater things. He also adds that someday he’s going to fall in love with someone and that person won’t be Jesse. As LGBTQ-forward as the show has been lately, I’m going to go ahead and read too much into the use of the gender-netural words “someone” and “person”. As good as the scene is, it ends with Death Sara shooting Wally with an anti-speedster gun. I wonder if they even warned Wally they had those on the ship?
Ava and Gary track down Constantine. Gary brags that he’s a level 9 warlock, but Ava says Dungeons and Dragons doesn’t count. Pfft, says you. Constantine is busy performing a ritual involving a chicken. His life is a disaster, and he’s awesome. He’s been doing some research on the death totem – seems the tribe who possessed it sided with Mallus when the other tribes imprisoned him. Constantine and Ava don’t get along well, with Ava being jealous and protective of Sara, and Constantine being…Constantine. They try a ritual to contact Sara in Mallus’ realm, but Mallus causes a backlash.
Nate splits off from the group to find Wally and save the day on his own. Before Nate can get beaten up, Zari plans to decouple the jump ship from Gideon’s mainframe so they can escape. Anyway, so Zari gets knocked out and then–okay, okay, I’m glossing over another good scene. An apparition of Zari’s brother appears to her and asks her to read him a bedtime story. She shares a touching moment with the false image of her brother, but like Wally, she knows it’s a lie and attempts to decouple things anyway…by hitting it with a wrench. Somewhere, Jax suddenly starts crying and doesn’t know why. Zari is knocked back when she attempts to break the thing and Death Sara attacks. Zari gets through to her briefly before Death Sara punches her out.
Constantine can’t get to Sara in Mallus’ realm and he’s not having any luck locating the Waverider either.
CONSTANTINE: “My business card says ‘Master of the Dark Arts’ not ‘Doctor Woody-What’s His Face’.”
I don’t know if I love or hate this episode. Gary has an idea! The Legends remind him of his D&D group. There’s a monk (Wally), a druid (Amaya), a half-orc rogue (Mick), a bard (Nate), a gnome wizard (Ray), and a sorceress (Zari). They were trying to get a death sword and the only way to defeat its wielder was with one of the other five swords. Gary’s D&D campaign ended with a TPK, but he reasons that if the Legends don’t split up, they’ll be fine. Meanwhile, the Legends keep doing that exact thing. Gary concludes that the best way to find the Waverider is to track the death totem itself. This earns him a kiss from Constantine that Gary seems really happy about. Oh cool, we learned something new about Gary. Also he has Beebo socks. Gary properly respects our lord and savior.
Sara talks to Nora Darhk in Mallus’ realm. Nora blames the loss of her childhood innocence on Green Arrow killing her dad. Sara calls bullshit, and Nora says the darkness was in both of them all along. She then shows Sara a flashback to her time in the League Of Assassins when she killed a man in front of his daughter (the girl from Sara’s nightmare). It’s telling that stuff like that still haunts Sara. It shows she’s a better person than, say…someone who has spent an entire season trying to evade justice for multiple killings he committed. Sara refuses to absolve herself of guilt, and also refuses Nora’s attempts to recruit her to Team Mallus.
Nate goes for the earth totem because totem vs. totem sounds like a good idea and Zari is down. Hooray, Nate’s going to bond with the earth totem, defeat Sara, and wrap this whole thing up bef–yeah, fine, he gets beat up before he can use the totem. But first he has a vision of his grandfather accusing him of letting him die and being relieved when he did. He calls Nate a disappointment and starts beating him up, but it’s really Death Sara doing the beatdown. Constantine, Ava, and Gary arrive to save the day and…well, you know. Death Sara tries to get to Constantine through the voice of Astra, a woman he failed to save from hell. He tries to exorcise Mallus from Sara but fails.
Amaya and Mick check on Zari and lose contact with Nate, so they go after the fire totem instead. After considering it for a moment, Amaya thinks Mick is the perfect fit for the fire totem. Mick is reluctant. He’s not a hero, Sara is a hero, and look at what the death totem did to her. However, Mick continues to grow. It wasn’t too long ago he would use the word “hero” as a pejorative. Now he sees it as something better than himself. Amaya has faith that he’s a good man, so Mick dons the totem. It immediately activates, drawing Death Sara’s attention. Mick throws some fireballs and Death Sara is down.
Ava rips the death totem off of Sara. Nora continues to try to lure Sara to the dark side by playing on her doubts concerning her past and her future with Ava. Ava tearfully pleads for Sara to return to her, and she does, reverting back to her non-evil look. Sara rejects Nora’s offer a final time, saying she won’t bring more death to the world – that she owes the little girl that much. Constantine lights a cigarette on the fire in Mick’s hands. Never change, John.
Ugh, now for that annoying superhero cliché of “I need to break up with you so I can protect you” and “I’ll never be free of the darkness” – blegh. Sara is happy with Ava, happier than she’s ever been, but she doesn’t think she deserves Ava. Ava leaves in tears. Then the writers further twist the knife when Sara lays down and finds a note in her bed which reads “This spot reserved for the girlfriend of Sara Lance.”
Dungeon Master Gary closes us out by welcoming a new player to the campaign: Constantine.
This was a great episode. Death Sara is a really scary and really credible threat. Sara has the training to wipe the floor with a lot of people, but Sara with supernatural powers? This is one time when I don’t mind the entire team getting flattened by a single foe. Certainly more credible than Vandal Savage defeating them. The way Mallus or Death Sara got into everyone’s heads presents frightening implications for the final showdown of the season. It’s hard to fight a literal demon when you’re also fighting your figurative internal demons.
The end of the episode looks to be more than a cute scene of Constantine playing D&D. Before this episode aired, it was announced that Matt Ryan would be joining Legends Of Tomorrow as a regular if it’s renewed for Season Four. That’s very good news.
Next time: Ava’s dark secret revealed! This is going to hurt, isn’t it?
Legends Of Tomorrow airs (temporarily) Mondays on the CW at 8 ET/7 CT. Kate can be reached on Twitter @WearyKatie.