Arrowverse Roundup - Week 21 Review
The Flash sat out again this week, but Black Lightning, Legends of Tomorrow, and Arrow are full steam ahead. Out of the three, Black Lightning might have been the best. Legends was gloriously ridiculous, and Arrow was....a show that was on this week. As always there will be spoilers throughout if you have not seen the episode.
You can see all of this season's reviews right here.
Legends of Tomorrow - Episode 3.17 - "Guest Starring John Noble"
I reiterate how absolutely ridiculous this show is every week. Well, no other episode proves me correct more than this one. I love this show!
John Noble is the voice of Mallus in the show. They needed to trick Nora Darhk into thinking that she is hearing Mallus. So what do they do? Go back to 1999 when John Noble is filming Lord of the Rings and have him record Mallus dialogue for the Legends. That is insane. Only this show could pull it off.
If that wasn't enough, the show had a giant sentient gorilla attack a young Barrack Obama. Which, when the Legends came to rescue him, lead to the very meta-Arrowverse line of "Run, Barry run!" from Ray Palmer.
Most of the episode however, was focused on Damien Darhk teaming up with the Legends. This was being built up for a while now. It was still unsettling. But the old adage "The enemy of my enemy is my friend" was very true here. The redemption of Damien Darhk has been in the cards now for a long time, and I am not sure how I feel about that quite yet. Of course - it didn't last long. Darhk got the death totem, and then betrayed the Legends and released Grodd. It was all to save his daughter still, but at least it kept in line with his character. Next week might be the last time we ever see Damien Darhk, so redemption might still be coming.
The other story line that seems to be coming to an end is Amaya going back to her village. We got a piece of that, and with the finale being next week, it wouldn't be all together surprising if Amaya left the Legends. I hope she doesn't, but the writing seems to be on the wall. That could mean that Nate is ready for an exit too.
A lot of business was handled in this episode. Ava confronting Rip about being a clone was another thing to check off the list. The best part, was Ava being the twelfth clone - meaning Rip worked with eleven before her. (Arthur Darvill who plays Rip Hunter was a companion of the Eleventh Doctor on Doctor Who. I love this show.)
This has been the best season of Legends yet. The finale is bringing a lot of people back too. I look forward to seeing how it all comes together, and am excited that the show got renewed. What could they possibly do next?
Black Lightning - Episode 1.11 - "Black Jesus: The Book of Crucifixion"
Every superhero show uses the same tired trope at least once - having the protagonist accused of being their alter ego, and then them having to use trickery to prove otherwise. This week, it was Black Lightning's turn to do that, and surprisingly, they turned that old story into something fresh and compelling.
Vice Principal Fowdy, we found out, is actually an ASA agent. She was tasked with framing Jefferson so he could get arrested and they could find out if he was Black Lightning or not. The relevance of an innocent black man being arrested because of corruption was profound. It was really effective, I got a bit emotional during the scene where he was being escorted out of the school.
Anissa and Gambi used a hologram to show Black Lightning out in the street while Jefferson was in jail. Gambi has gone above and beyond to make things right with Jefferson, and he is slowly coming around. Anissa is also learning how to be patient and use her brain as much as her strength. That evolution has been fun to watch.
The most satisfying arc of the episode though, was Inspector Henderson becoming Deputy Chief Henderson, after uncovering the dirty cops that framed Jefferson. His arc is very similar to that of Commissioner Gordon from Batman.
I mentioned earlier that the Principal aspect of Jefferson was forgotten. Well it came back with a vengeance this week. The kids sticking up for him was so powerful. Even as he was being lead out of the school in handcuffs, he was still mentoring, teaching, and showing the better path. It was the one scene that showed who Jefferson Pierce truly is.
Lynn didn't react to Henderson the way I thought she would. He asked her if she trusted him. She said no. That surprised me. I hope they play with that dynamic more.
There are only two episodes left. Everything that has been going on, the ASA, LaLa, and Tobias will all coalesce soon. The show did get renewed for a second season, so I'm hoping there are some seeds planted for that as well.
This was one of the best episodes of Black Lightning yet. I hope it continues on this upward trend for the rest of the season.
Arrow - Episode 6.17 - "Brothers in Arms"
It took me a while to crack how to tackle this weeks Arrow review. Even now, as I type this opening paragraph, I am not sure how to proceed. The foundation of the show is the brotherhood between John Diggle and Oliver Queen. Take that away, and what does the show become? I apologize in advance if this review is all over the place.
It seems we are about to find out. I am not sure what the end game it - they drove all of his newer teammates away, and now Diggle and Felicity look like they are on their way out too. They want to reduce him to a loner again but why?
I do not like the direction this is going. If it is a long game of manipulation by Diaz - then all will be forgiven. If it isn't, then I just don't know. The fight scene was well coordinated, but it hurt so much to watch that I couldn't enjoy that. Maybe I am not seeing clearly.
Other things happened too though, Oliver tried to fire some dirty cops and lawyers, but that backfired. The whole "you've already lost a game you didn't even know you were playing" thing was already done last year with Prometheus. I don't mind it being roughly the same, but they need a few new tricks to make it work again.
One good thing about the whole Diggle/Queen fight though is that it brought Lyla back to the show. Audrey Marie Anderson is great on the show, and she was used to perfection here, to help Diggle through things.
Rene is still MIA, but things are happening for his partners. Dinah arrested Anatoly, but got fired soon after. Curtis has a new boyfriend, who is also a newly fired cop, and he found out that Curtis is Mr. Terrific.
But, as mentioned previous, the episode focused on Oliver and Diggle. They are brothers. Brothers fight. The word "Brother" is in even in the title. I have a brother. I've fought with him. When we were kids it would even get physical. But after our physical confrontation, we'd be playing video games together 10 minutes later like nothing happened. I am hoping beyond hope that Diggle leaving doesn't last long. Brothers fight, they will be back together. It is perfect (or horrible) timing for this to happen after Thea is gone. She could have mediated that whole thing much better than Felicity did.
I'm in this for long haul. I am hoping there is an end game that I don't see. But Arrow is turning into something that I don't recognize, and I had such high hopes for it at the beginning of the season, that it is severely disappointing.