written by Kate Spencer
SPOILER WARNINGS ARE IN EFFECT
Check out this joker. His plan hinges on smartphone users being too lazy to read the terms of service before agreeing to them…okay, yeah, Neron is going to take over the world.
In Washington D.C., a young Zari Tomaz tries to sneak a snack out of the fridge when her pregnant mother catches her. Zari finishes getting ready for school as Ray/Neron appears in a commercial fanning fears of immigration and metahumans. Oof, this is as uncomfortable as Supergirl Season Four. But there’s an important difference that makes me like what Legends is doing. Supergirl largely downplayed or ignored real-world xenophobia while adopting its imagery and rhetoric for the bad guys to use. Legends starts out by giving us the perspective of a Muslim family in America watching these events unfold in fear of the rhetoric, not the fictional threat. It makes the real world plight part of the conversation instead of replacing it.
And it’s not giving its bad guys tiki torches and Richard Spencer haircuts. On that note:
I could watch that all day.
While Neron tortures Mona, Gary is getting a bit frivolous with his wishes and annoying the hell out of Tabitha. He’s even given himself a third nipple because “a spare never hurts”. Y’all just wanted to see how many times you could use the word “nipple” in a season, didn’t you, writers? Gary isn’t all that interested in getting revenge. The Legends, meanwhile, are preparing to storm the Time Bureau when Sara, Ava, and Nora are all wished away to Gary’s office for book club. When that doesn’t work out, he wishes to be Captain of the Waverider.
At Neron’s tech conference, PalmerX 2019, the Legends watch as Neron introduces Eyes, an app to share monster sightings. He brings Mona on stage and forces her to transform, inciting a panic. At that moment, Gary wishes Nate and Mick to the Waverider, making it appear that Zari blasted them away with magic. The crowd turns on her, declaring her a witch, and she narrowly escapes with Charlie.
The duo hide out at Zari’s childhood home. Zari says that when A.R.G.U.S. drummed up fear of metahumans and seized control, her family was forced to move to a ghetto district. “Of course, it didn’t help that we were Muslim,” she adds, and that’s what I was talking about before. Legends might be using fear of magical creatures as an allegory for modern days xenophobia, but they’re not forgetting that Zari’s past is our present, and it wasn’t just fear of metahumans that led to her dystopian future.
Zari finally gets through the padded legalese bullshit of the terms of service for the Eyes app and finds that the user forfeits their soul to Neron. Like that’s a surprise. You think Apple is any better? Sara covertly calls them and gives the order to bust all the magical creatures out of the Bureau’s lockup. Charlie and Zari leave to do just that, but Zari accidentally leaves the dragon egg behind.
Also worth noting: she was carrying the dragon egg in the cat carrier backpack Charlie kept Cat!Zari in during “Legends of To-Meow-Meow.”
On the Waverider, the Legends try unsuccessfully to convince Gary to let them go. As it turns out, Gary has been protecting the Legends from Tabitha. She wants them to burn in Hell, but Gary just wants to hang out with them. He decides to teach them a lesson for being ungrateful and this happens:
Beebo bless this crazy show.
In Hell, Constantine makes a plan to find out what Neron is up to before rescuing Ray’s soul. This brings him before the Triumvirate – Satan, Belial, and Beelzebub – who aren’t too pleased with Neron’s power grab. Constantine offers to stop Neron in exchange for Ray’s soul, but the Triumvirate instead tempt him with the soul of Astra Logue, the girl he failed to save from Hell. He chooses Astra.
Tabitha takes Nora to Mona’s cell and appears to be helping her. Mona is badly injured, so Tabitha tempts Nora with the Fairy Godmother powers, saying she can save Mona with those. Nora accepts the wand from Tabitha and becomes the new Fairy Godmother, leaving Tabitha an ordinary witch. However, Nora can’t heal Mona because the curse leaves her bound to Tabitha’s charge: Gary.
Gary has a change of heart and agrees to help the Legends. He summons his fairy godmother, who appears behind him so he can’t see it’s Nora, then wishes for her to go to Hell and help Constantine save Ray.
SWEARY GODMOTHER NORA: “Gary, you dick!!”
Zari opens all the cells in the Time Bureau and Charlie sends them to the Waverider with a stolen time courier. She tries to get Mona out, but Tabitha and Neron catch her. Zari opens a portal into the cell and grabs Mona, but Charlie is left behind.
Constantine is led to a torture chamber with his name on it. Astra shows up, and she’s all grown up now and full of evil. She likes Hell and doesn’t want to leave, which voids John’s deal with the Triumvirate. He’s tortured by a demon he sent to Hell years ago.
The Legends vow to get Charlie back. In the meantime, Nate is glad that Zari and the dragon are safe, and that’s when Zari remembers. Her younger self greets a hatching dragon with joy and curiosity.
Well this went places. I already touched on the themes and parallels to real-world xenophobia, but “Ray’s” commercial opening, with scare tactics seen in most Republican political ads, was really uncomfortable to watch. Brandon Routh continues to do an excellent job with making Ray/Neron (or “Neray” as Mona called him) disturbingly sinister.
Gary’s arc of realizing just how badly he’s treated by his allies was a good one. At the end of the day I kind of want to say he had a point? The Legends and the Time Bureau treat him like the butt of every joke. That’s not to say I don’t love every minute of comic relief we get from Gary, it’s just that our heroes can kind of be mean-spirited where he’s concerned. The conflict on his face and in his quivering voice as he’s torturing Sara and Ava by forcing them to dance is really well portrayed by Adam Tsekhman. Gary is a dork, a goof, and fucking scary when he’s pushed too far, but he’s got a heart, and the end of the arc shows he’s not so easily corrupted.
Next time: Nate plays Roller Coaster Tycoon to save the world!
Legends Of Tomorrow airs Mondays on the CW at 9 ET/8 CT. Kate can be reached on Twitter @WearyKatie.