Legends of Tomorrow has always been the weirdest of the CW DC programmes, with mid-tier to minor characters making up the crew, no set location or supporting cast, and a rotating roster of heroes, it is immediately very different from the other shows it shares its world with. That’s even before you consider its comedic and often downright bizarre tone and sense of fun.
This is the series where our heroes intersect with their own pasts, allowing characters to hit on their friend’s mothers. It is the series that can have Julius Caesar rile up a load of frat boys into his gang of thugs. It is the show where vikings worship a furby. Nothing is too far for Legends of Tomorrow, no idea too ridiculous. Despite being the funniest and weirdest show in the Cw DC Universe, it’s also able to pack in drama, action, high stakes, and even some of the most heartbreakingly emotional moments from all four shows.
The biggest difference so far in season three has been its cast. Less than ten episodes in, we’ve seen the introduction of a new hero in the form of Zari Tomaz (Tala Ashe), who is the Captain Marvel/Black Adam connected character Isis from the comics, though who will never be called that on screen for some very obvious reasons. We’ve also had the return of a classic character in the form of Leo Snart (Wentworth Miller), another version of Leonard Snart from another version of the main universe, having stayed on Earth-1 following the events of the ‘Crisis On Earth-X’ cross-over.
The biggest casting change, however, has been the loss of one of the series’ staple characters, a character that has been around since the very early episodes of The Flash, Professor Martin Stein (Victor Garber).
It was announced early on that Garber would be leaving midway through the season, and preparations were made for this very early on. It had given Stein his first grandchild and the characters were pushing to find a way to sever the link between him and Jax (Franz Drameh) so that Stein could go back home and enjoy his old age. However, what I and many viewers failed to anticipate was his sudden and devastating death during the cross-over event.
The show was setting up his departure; the writers had given him a good, happy life and were getting ready to let him go. No-one was expecting him to die instead. His death was easily one of the most heartbreaking and emotionally devastating moments, not just in Legends of Tomorrow, but across the whole four shows. The acting from both Garber and Drameh made the final scene almost unwatchable; and the follow-up scenes where Jax has to tell Stein’s family, and the funeral scene, honestly made me cry. For a series that regularly embraces the ridiculous, I never expected it to make me blub.
This is one of the best things about Legends of Tomorrow and why it’s one of the best in the whole CW DC Universe. It can do the crazy episodes, it can go to the distant past and have dinosaurs, it can travel into the future and have the Atom (Brandon Routh) fight a giant robot, but it can also tell these much more intimate, emotional stories.
This season has also built a very engaging main storyline, with a mysterious new threat looming on the horizon, and the use of some classic villains, including bringing in more characters from the Vixen animated show. With so much of this main story arc left untold, mysteries to be solved, and a surprise guest appearance from the amazing John Constantine (Matt Ryan) in the next episode, the second half of season three looks set to play out as one of the best the series has given us yet.