If last week’s episode of DC’s Legends of Tomorrow didn’t make a fan and believer of you, then this is obviously not the show for you. That’s ok, because there are plenty of those who are already on board with the CW’s latest superhero serial. It’s done well enough that the network has officially ordered a second season. Of course, that could be because it would be messier to cancel it at this point, when so many well-loved characters from The Flash and Arrow are bound up in the show. But either way, it’ll be interesting to see where the series will go in its second round.
Last week, we journeyed to the Old West and met Jonah Hex, a fan favorite in the DCverse. This week, the Legends are on the run from the latest weapon of the Time Masters, a ruthless bounty hunter known as The Pilgrim. She is out to kill the Legends before they joined forces, at various points in the timeline. Can they save their younger selves in time? Read on to find out, but only if you’re ok with SPOILERS. You’ve been warned.
The episode, “Last Refuge”, opens on the Time Masters Council. A man seems to be held on trial, but it is quickly revealed that he is actually awaiting his death sentence. The Pilgrim has made contact with the man’s younger self, and after she eliminates him, the current version begins to die as well. As he writhes on the ground, the Time Masters give The Pilgrim, a darkly beautiful and intense-looking woman, her next assignment: the Legends.
Next we are taken to Central City circa 1990, while the Legends try to put out a house fire. Turns out teenage Mick was playing with fire and set his home ablaze. While they dart in and out of the house searching for the little pyro, it turns out he is sitting in a field, watching the flames burn. Just as The Pilgrim finds him and takes aim, Ray jets over in his Atom suit and saves him. After they have him safely in custody, Ray wonders what the point of this is, because the bounty hunter can just go back a few days before that incident and try to kill Mick again. Rip explains how that isn’t how it works. She only has one shot to take them out, because multiple attempts would wreck havoc on the timeline. So as long as they can continue tracking her via Gideon and get there first, all will be well.
Before the next update on The Pilgrim, Kendra and Sarah take advantage of the moment of down time to practice their combat skills. Kendra is improving and is nearly as skilled as her teacher. They also engage in some girl talk, and Kendra confesses that she hasn’t told Ray the truth regarding her former self. Sarah tells her she should, but also feels she should ignore the other Kendra, because what was true for one may not necessarily be true for the other.
Gideon pipes in with a new probable location for The Pilgrim, so away they fly to Starling City 2007. Sarah Lance is with her father in the police stations for Take Your Daughter to work day. Their cute bonding moment is interrupted by the savage bounty hunter, who seems to be shooting everyone in her path. If she is that blatant, no wonder she only has one shot. Current Sarah and Mick storm in to save teenage Sarah, and the young one is very impressed by the woman she doesn’t realize is herself. Sarah kicks butt and holds her own, while Mick shoots the hunter with his heat gun and saves the girl. They bring her back and put her in with young Mick while they wait to see who the next target is. Only, The Pilgrim is nowhere to be found. If they can’t locate her, they can’t save themselves.
While he tries to narrow down the possibilities, Rip fails to throw his own name in the ring, which Leonard points out. Rip is insistent that she will not go after him, because killing a younger Rip would be too detrimental to the timeline. This infuriates Leonard, because they’ve been kept in the dark about their leader’s life for this whole time. Meanwhile, Ray is anxious that they’re all going to die, and decides it’s as good a time as any to propose to Kendra. Before he can get the final words out and present the ring, he is thrown to the ground by some unseen force and begins sporting bruises here there and everywhere. Looks like he’s the next target. Rip and Firestorm are able to save him at Star Labs in 2014, but while his fate is uncertain, Kendra tells him she wants to spend the rest of her life with him. When he is out of the clear, he assumes she has found the ring and this is her saying yes. It isn’t, and the thought of marriage terrifies her, but she eventually comes around because she loves him and wants to be with him.
After the attack on Ray, Rip decides they need to steal their younger selves, the ones not already captured, one the day their born. This is risky, because until they’re put back in the timeline, their loved ones will not know them. It will be essentially as if they never existed. But it is their only option if they want to live. Rip mandates that no one can participate in their own abduction, but that rule is bent slightly when it comes to stealing baby Jax. Jax admits to Professor Stein that he never got to meet his father, who was deployed to Somalia and killed in action right after Jax was born. The professor arranges a chance for the young man to meet the father he never knew, and see how proud and thrilled he is to witness the birth of his baby boy. Jax almost warns him about his fate, but stops himself at the last minute, a decision that clearly upsets him.
After all the babies have been kidnapped, Rip takes everyone to The Refuge, a boarding house for young Time Masters at a secret location in history. The Legends meet Rip’s adopted mother, who clearly has a very large soft spot for him. She explains that while she works for the Time Masters, her first loyalty is to her children. She also tells everyone that Rip’s given name is Michael. How very ordinary!
Once The Pilgrim realizes what the gang has done, she kidnaps their loved ones and issues a warning. They can turn themselves over or she will kill those they love. Before they can do anything rash, Rip offers to hand himself over in exchange for the safety of his team and those they love. At first she doesn’t seem willing to bite, until he explains he’ll turn over his younger self. If she eliminates him, there will be no Legends of Tomorrow. She agrees to meet and have a hostage exchange. The meeting place is an abandoned Time Masters Outpost where Rip and his crew have staged a sting for their bounty hunter. While she is able to hold off all of the Legends with her awesome pause button skills, Young Rip runs up and stabs her. Turns out little Rip had quite the rough upbringing and can be depended upon to do whatever it takes to survive.
After defeating The Pilgrim, the gang saves their loved ones and administers amnesia pills. Mick talks to his younger self and tries to get him to straighten up his life. Stein is concerned when he realizes his wife doesn’t know him. And actually, she doesn’t. Because he has been removed from the timeline currently, she has never met him. Even more worrisome is the fact that the timelines are starting to set. If they can’t defeat Savage in time, and return their younger selves, the timeline will become permanent. So off they go to the future, to when Vandal Savage has already conquered the world.
A LOT happens in this episode. Between the back and forth between the present and each individual character’s past, it’s a lot to absorb. Somehow, unlike the first few episodes, the show handles this pretty well. A few areas, like the “young” Sarah are a little shaky (why does the actress think talking in a high pitched whine is the only way to make her seem like a teenager?), but for the most part this is a fun and interesting episode. The casting for Young Rip greatly makes up for the fiasco that was Old West Kendra, we finally get a look at Mick and Rip’s pasts, which had previously been pretty shrouded in mystery, and Vandal Savage is not present at all. You can’t ask for much more.
It was all kinds of wonderful to see some of the walls come down for both Mick and Rip. Mick has obviously changed a lot as a character, after being trained by the Time Masters, but some of the essential bones of his personality are there. He clearly wants to be a better person, though, and tries to impart that feeling onto his younger self. Rip, on the other hand, seems to have completely changed from when he was a troubled youth. It is nice, however, to see that he had a home and a parental figure, and to have some pieces of his puzzle laid out on the board.
They are setting up a lot of ways for the Legends to fail, what with confronting Savage in the middle of his tyrannical reign and the added peril of having kidnapped their younger selves. This is actually good for the show; it gives the potential of creating a kind of alternate timeline or reality, separate but still connected to The Flash and Arrow. There are endless possibilities of where the characters and show can go.
That said, tune in for next week’s episode, “Leviathan”, where it can be assumed they do not successfully eliminate Vandal Savage. How could they? There are still four more episodes left until the finale. DC’s Legends of Tomorrow airs Thursday nights at 8pm EST on the CW.