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Supersized CW Superhero Cast Gets Doublewide Premiere
January 21, 2016  | By David Hinckley  | 1 comment
 

PASADENA, CA -- You don’t just need a scorecard to keep track of the players in the new CW series DC’s Legends of Tomorrow. You need a 64GB flash drive.

The long-awaited new series launches Thursday at 8 p.m. ET and here’s the tipoff: The cast is so large the pilot that sorts them out and sets up their situation requires two episodes. The second will air next Thursday.

The opening chapters, which have roots in the comic books though they quickly dash off on their own, provide some good clean fun, some ominous foreshadowing and a lot of snappy one-liners.

They don’t break any new superhero ground except for the size of the team.

It feels as if Legends held an open casting call for every comic book character with superpowers and then said, “You’re all hired!”

The story starts in the year 2166 with Rip Hunter (Arthur Darvill, right), a time traveler who is responsible for history. He feels bad because the subtly named Vandal Savage (Casper Crump) has conquered the world and just plain isn’t treating its citizenry very well.

Rip asks the Time Masters for permission to go back and see if he can change history, “just this once.” That sounds like a slippery slope, but this Vandal Savage really is a nasty piece of work. He arranged to launch World War I, for instance, simply as a distraction so he’d have a couple of free years to further his personal conquest plans. Lotta collateral damage there and old Vandal didn’t care.

Vandal also has a couple of advantages over those who try to stop him. One, he’s immortal. Two, even if you do kill him, he can regenerate from a single cell.

Now that’s a superpower, and it explains why Rip figures it’s going to take a village to stop him.

The team includes – take a deep breath here – Firestorm (Victor Garber), The Atom (Brandon Routh), White Canary (Caity Lotz), Heat Wave (Dominic Purcell), Captain Cold (Wentworth Miller), Hawkman and Hawkgirl (Falk Hentschel and Ciara Renee, right) and Firestorm (Franz Drameh).

If you’re saying wait, that’s two Firestorms, you’ve been paying attention. That’s the deal. He comes in two halves. And once we start time traveling, we get a younger version of Garber’s half.

The time traveling begins almost at once, because if you’re going to change history, you can’t wait until today.

Rip wants to send the team back to 1975, giving the show’s costume department a chance to break out all those iconic 1970s looks again.

Meanwhile, comic adaptation master Greg Berlanti and his team clearly realize their maximum fun will come from the interactions among the characters, few of whom inherently get along.

Captain Cold and Heat Wave, for instance, seem much happier using their powers to instigate and win a barroom brawl than they do in saving the world.

So it may take a while to get everyone on the same page even if Rip can wrestle them onto the same team, and Legends clearly sees conflict as an opportunity.

It’s still a gamble to have a battalion of featured characters, if only because there won’t be enough time to give each of them a decent story every week. That might be good for Purcell and Miller, who have signed up to relaunch Prison Break over at Fox, but the question remains whether viewers will embrace all the inevitable mix-and-match among characters who often have only a loose resemblance to their comic book versions.

On the other hand, the show might do just fine in the ratings if all it draws are the immediate families of the cast.

 
 
 
 
 
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1 Comments
 
 
kevin
except for the lovely, fun, smart, and talented agent carter, I'm not really into comic book characters, their shows, movies, etc. thought I'd give Legends a chance.

One word: "sucks." can I have an hour of my life back???
Jan 22, 2016   |  Reply
 
 
 
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