TV reviews

Legends of Tomorrow 3×05 – ‘Return of The Mack’ – Review

Victorian vampires, Jax with amnesia, the resurrection of Damien Darhk, the return of Rip Hunter, and the first appearance of Mallus. The latest episode of Legends of Tomorrow crams so much into its run time that we’re left absolutely spoilt.

Events kick off this week in Victorian London, where Rip Hunter (Arthur Darvil) is on the trail of an anachronism but ends up stumbling across a dead bodies that appears to have fallen victim to a vampire. Luckily, back on the Waverider, the team has seen that this anachronism is similar to the one that led them to Zari (Tala Ashe) and decide to go investigate, much to the joy of Mick (Dominic Purcell), who reveals that he’s always wanted to kill a vampire as he pulls out a carefully crafted stake that he’s apparently been carrying for years.

With the team and Rip back together, things start to feel a little bit more like the first season of the show, which is never a bad thing. Unfortunately, Rip proves to be less than trustworthy throughout the episode, leading on a particularly sad ending as the character is dragged off by the Time Bureau. It’s unfortunate that Rip won’t be coming back onto the team, but as Sara (Caity Lotz) points out, he’s betrayed every group he’s worked with, and he simply can;t be a part of the Legends anymore. I do like the shift in dynamic that’s been going on since season two, where Sara has been firmly placed as the captain of the ship and the leader of the team, something that will never again be in doubt after this episode.

Whilst the episode begins as a fun vampire hunt through Victorian London, the comedy takes a back seat for the latter half of the episode as it becomes apparent that this isn’t just an adventure of the week romp, but an integral part of the season arc. Whilst I do love the humour of the stand alone episodes, like the previous ‘Phone Home’, it’s great when the show combines that fun humour with the drama that makes up their big stories. Having been promised vampires, the team is more than a little disappointed to discover that there is no vampire, just a time displaced dead body that a cult is trying to bring back to life. Unfortunately for everyone, this body is none other than Damien Darhk, from after his season three appearance and death on Arrow.

I was initially a little skeptical that we needed more Darhk in the show, but thanks to how brilliantly the episode plays his resurrection scene and the massacre that follows I’m actually looking forward to seeing more from him, especially with this weeks guest star Courtney Ford. I won’t say who she’s playing as the episode doesn’t, but it’s going to be interesting when Darhk finds out who she is. We also get some more information on Mallus this week, with some quite frightening hints that he may be some kind of demonic godlike entity, and get to hear the seasons big bad when he speaks through Ford’s character, voiced brilliantly by John Noble. This certainly sets the stage for an interesting, and potentially frightening season to come.

This week also managed to add more preparation to the upcoming departure of Professor Stein (Victor Garber), as Jax (Franz Drameh) and Ray (Brandon Routh) try to sever the psychic bond between Jax and Stein, which results in some amusement when Jax suffers from short term memory loss. Whilst they did attempt this in secret, Stein discovers their plan, and doesn’t exactly disapprove of it either. The separation of the Firestorm matrix, and making the hero into a single entity is sure to be a complex task, one which will surely have an amusing journey over the rest of the season.

Thanks to a tonal shift half way through, this episode manages to blend ridiculous humour and dramatic developments as it introduces the seasons main antagonist, and returns one of its stand out villains to the series. With the episode raising more mystery than it solves, the rest of the season is sure to be an interesting journey across time.

Legends of Tomorrow airs on Sky in the UK. Let us know what you think of the season.

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