Arrow: Legends of Yesterday (Part 2)
December 3, 2015 6:51 PM - Season 4, Episode 8 - Subscribe

The conclusion of the 2nd Annual Flash/Arrow crossover. The two teams work to defeat Vandal Savage and protect their new Hawk-Friends and lovers.

The Flash and Arrow teams help the Hawk-Persons to hide out while they work out a plan to defeat Vandal Savage. Ollie looks into the kid from two seasons and 10 years ago, and makes some difficult choices. Flash time jumps again and gives the heroes a chance to work together. There are some flashbacks to Egypt and some awful white washing. Merlyn is involved and LOVING IT.
posted by kittensofthenight (22 comments total)
The crossover worked for me with the exception of Hawkman- the actor had a certain smarm that ruined the main plot, and the incredibly lame whitewashing brownface makeup in the flashbacks didn't help scenes that really stretched the budget.

I loved Cisco and Kendra, and enjoyed the farmhouse stuff (and the Age of Ultron meta-joke, although at first I thought they were referencing TMNT because I am somehow that lame.)

SPOILERS: After Barry jumped back in time all of his interactions with Oliver were great, especially how honest he got with Ollie, and it was fun to see the fight twice, even though Laurel's scream still seems silly to me.

Have to say I am less excited for Legends of Tomorrow now, and hope there is a lot less focus on the Hawk-Persons back story, which I found incredibly lame.

Anyone have any comics knowledge of Hawk-Persons or Vandal Savage? I usually like to compare different interpretations as it makes the source and the TV show more fun if there is a kind of dialogue, but I don't know anything about Hawkman.

Wub a lub a dub dub!
posted by kittensofthenight at 7:01 PM on December 3, 2015

Anyone have any comics knowledge of Hawk-Persons or Vandal Savage?

Vandal Savage was originally a caveman bathed in the radiation of a fallen meteor, and made as immortal as comic characters tend to ever be (ie, I am unaware of non-cosmic stuff that can kill him). This version was all right, but as with all things DC, I'm partial to the Diniverse version from Justice League. (I like Vandal Savage cultured and heading big operations, not so much as a knife guy.)

To the best of my understanding, Hawkman is such a walking continuity snarl that this may have actually counted as a comparatively clear backstory for him. (Even the DCAU version was pretty muddled. Like... he was a space cop, but also he's reincarnated, but he's being hunted by a shadow monster, or... I dunno.)

I agree about the actor, that part fell completely flat for me. His confidence felt particularly bad in the face of 'this is a fight I have lost 206 times in a row.' Like, dude, you are bad at fighting Savage. Ease up.

Hm. Other stuff:
* I feel like they did a sufficiently good job of setting up Legends of Tomorrow on the villain front, anyway. Vandal Savage required two full super teams, with preparation and gadgets, and still needed a temporal paradox to defeat. He seems like an okay big bad, despite going down here. Lead Exposition Ninja saving his bacon worked for me, even though I am not an Arrow-watcher, because it fits with Savage's style. (An ally in every corner, contingency after contingency. Also, man, those ninjas are shady, right?)

* Oliver drama felt like a waste of time here. I don't know if that's true for regular viewers, but it seems like that could've waited, in much the same way that they barely touched on Zoom in the Flash portion of the crossover.

* I do like the character development for both Oliver and Barry. And Cisco, for that matter.
posted by mordax at 7:20 PM on December 3, 2015 [1 favorite]

Don't try to understand Kendra's backstory from the comics, it'll make you dumber. The only thing worth knowing, given your interest here, is that they seem not to have diverged far at all from fairly recent approaches. In recent times they've had a Kendra who doesn't have 100% recall of her past life and a Carter who does and is broody over it. Like the rest of Flash, it's very much modern DC origins and things (like orphan Barry, which is pure 21st century).
posted by phearlez at 7:34 PM on December 3, 2015

It's funny. I don't know if it was the difference in make-up artists between the two shows or something else (the actor becoming more confident the longer he was in the role perhaps) but when Carter Hall (it's hard for me not to call him Kaytar, as spacecop Hawkman always seemed like the real character and museum curator Carter the alias, but I digress) first appeared on the screen he just looked so wrong to me.

As described above, I think it was that unshaven, smarmy aura with the (Brooklyn? New York?) accent. But at some point during the Arrow episode he just started looking so right to me. Even the stubble took on a familiar feel--I'd say it was post-Shadow Wars and post Shayera leaving him, but it has been a lot of years since I've read those books, and I could be getting my timelines mixed up. (It certainly wasn't that Jim Aparo illustrated Brave and Bold where Bruce and Carter spent a page talking and I could never figure out which character was supposed to be which as they were identical, good-looking guys in suits.)

That's not to say I like the character or the way the relationship is being portrayed. So Carter always finds the items, or sometimes he finds Kendra and then they find the items together. She never emerges first or finds the artifacts. Okay. So it's that kind of a relationship.

When they first flashed back to ancient Egypt I thought maybe they'd have different actors play the characters (to avoid the whitewashing problem) with the implication being that with each reincarnation they'd get different bodies (which would make it convenient to replace actors after each character's death) but that wasn't the option chosen.

I know I'm picking nits, but the glowing gemstones in the n-th metal meteorites should have been green not blue. Peridots were mined and commonly used in Egyptian jewellery and (here's the important bit) peridots are the only (as far as I know) gemstones that can also originate in space and arrive on earth in meteorites.

I was a bit surprised that they decided to revisit the Oliver lovechild storyline in these two episodes, and I hate that Oliver made the same, stupid decision in both timelines not to tell Felicity.

I hate jumping back to comments I made in previous posts, but with Johnny having the staff of Horus from Flashback Island, how did Savage end up with it now? And why did it have the Orb of Horus on the top of it instead of the bird that was shown in the Egyptian flashback and in the current episode?

Overall, I felt the pacing on both episodes was a bit rushed. There were many conclusions jumped to too quickly and dialogue that seemed forced to jump from one topic to the next with no flow, but it feels really, really churlish to complain about stuff like that, because we finally get to see live-action JLA on TV, which is something I wouldn't have expected to happen.

(Additionally I love the description of "Exposition Ninjas" from the Flash thread comments.)
posted by sardonyx at 8:14 PM on December 3, 2015 [1 favorite]

I hate that Oliver made the same, stupid decision in both timelines not to tell Felicity.

Yes. I mean, Felicity's not a great liar, but I'm pretty sure even she could handle "if my ex asks, pretend that you don't know about her and my secret love child".

And you know, I don't hate the island flashbacks, but...I sure didn't miss them when they were gone (or replaced with ancient Egypt flashbacks, I guess) in this episode.

I hate jumping back to comments I made in previous posts, but with Johnny having the staff of Horus from Flashback Island, how did Savage end up with it now? And why did it have the Orb of Horus on the top of it instead of the bird that was shown in the Egyptian flashback and in the current episode?

I was under the impression that these were two completely different mystical MacGuffins, myself. I fully expect the one on Flashback Island to prove to be incredibly important for defeating Damien Dahrk and completely useless for everything else except maybe as a paperweight or doorstop.
posted by mstokes650 at 8:33 PM on December 3, 2015

Constantine definitely called it the Orb of Horus in the earlier episode (I just went back and checked the video). And since the staff part was the important bit (the ancient spell book) and the "orb" just the sparkly bit, I figure it has to be related to the Staff of Horus, which was what Merlyn called the item Savage was seeking in Central City. Given how tightly these shows are interwoven and plotted, I figure they have to tie together somehow. Although you could be right, and it just could be the magical item that is going to defeat Dahrk.

The other thing I really can't figure out is this: if it was only Thea who was successful in putting an arrow (or multiple arrows) into Savage, presumably because of her mystical Lazarus-pit energy (or anti-energy or whatever it is that is able to keep Dahrk from working his voodoo on her) why didn't Oliver put her front and centre in the fight against Mr. Immortal?
posted by sardonyx at 8:58 PM on December 3, 2015

Ugh. Nobody, but nobody wants to see another plot where Oliver keeps secrets. NOBODY. I don't give a shit about his kid anyway, but seriously, they're just seeding this for a dramatic breakup in the future that again, nobody wants to see. We're all sick of sad/mean Oliver, please don't bring that dude back.

Also, Hawkman was...lord, he wasn't good. He and Hawkgirl have all the sexual chemistry of a couple of dead trees and I do not buy them at all as eternal reincarnating soulmates. Which sucks since apparently that's just like, the entire point of them + wings. Ugh. I kinda liked Kendra but that plot was bad in so many ways and doesn't look like it'll be a good aspect of the new show either. I knew she and Cisco were doomed by canon, but they still had more chemistry than she did with her "soulmate."

Malcolm Merlyn comes along and sweeps up that dude's ashes? LOL.
posted by jenfullmoon at 10:42 PM on December 3, 2015 [6 favorites]

My husband and I are both annoyed at the "I have a kid" wrench thrown into the mix.

Also, I'm all for suspension of disbelief in superhero stuff, but when they were walking away from the pile of Valdal Sav-ashes I said, "Uhhh, anyone gunna sweep that up or.....?" Then of course Malcolm is all up in those ashes doing some black magic biz and I literally said, "See! I told you!" ... Because really, you leave dead guy ashes just laying around when you don't know if he's really gone? Sweep that into a box and keep an eye on them or somethin'.

Anyway, I loved the cross overs. I'm sad for Cisco and I really hope he gets a good relationship soon. The banter in the crossovers is fun but overall I'm still a bit more of a fan of The Flash even though I've watched Arrow from the beginning.
posted by Crystalinne at 11:17 PM on December 3, 2015 [1 favorite]

Also, Hawkman was...lord, he wasn't good.

Yeah, him mansplaining everything to her and saying "trust me" a million times got on my nerves.
posted by Crystalinne at 11:18 PM on December 3, 2015 [2 favorites]

Yeah, him mansplaining everything to her and saying "trust me" a million times got on my nerves.

I think my absolute least favorite incident of that was when Kendra started looking for loopholes and asked, "What if we kill ourselves?" (a perfectly reasonable question if only to understand the parameters of the whole mystical deal), and he was all, "I guess that's why *I* come up with the plans every time!"

'Cause again, he's led them to failure on 206 consecutive occasions. If I were a fanfic writing man, I'd write a fixfic where he throws the fight each time because the only way Kendra can put up with him anymore is as an amnesiac.

He's no Hawkman. He's Dunning-Kruger Man.
posted by mordax at 12:06 AM on December 4, 2015 [7 favorites]

Forget collecting the ashes. Take half of them to a windy place and chuck half of them in the ocean.
posted by idb at 6:33 AM on December 4, 2015 [1 favorite]

Generally I thought this held together really well considering how overstuffed it was, and despite some serious groaner moments. The two casts have great chemistry and the light-hearted bits really work well. I've been watching Agents of SHIELD (season 2) lately and I find their characters' casual conversations and one-liners feel a lot less natural in comparison. I think the Hawkman actor was cast well in terms of how the character is usually portrayed in the comics, but is going to need better writing to become really interesting. It would be better if he was also more sceptical about being romantically entangled with Kendra, rather than being such a stalker.

I know Barrowman is a fan favourite but I think this show is weaker for having to constantly find ways to make him relevant; these episodes really highlighted how dumb it is to have the ninja horde just stepping out of the shadows to deliver exposition on a regular basis. Also, the writers are going to need to be careful about not making "go back in time" a get-out-of-jail-free card for Flash.

The kid may introduce some story potential down the road but I hope it doesn't take too much of a soap opera approach with regard to Oliver and Felicity's relationship. This plotline provides another strong candidate for who ends up in the grave we saw in the flash forward.
posted by sevenyearlurk at 7:53 AM on December 4, 2015 [1 favorite]

posted by adrianhon at 7:56 AM on December 4, 2015 [9 favorites]

I really wanted Kendra to tell both Hawkman and Savage to take a hike and go off with the only one who respected her, which was the dude she was leaving behind. The iTunes extras for this pair of episodes referred to Savage as being "in love" with her. No, he's a rapey stalker and reincarnated boyfriend is not much better. Here's hoping Hall gets better writing on LoT.

As for Arrow stuff, I've been wondering when the baby bomb was going off. It's been a while since that flashback. I'm meh about the choice Oliver made both times, but I like it better as the price he's paying for restoring the timeline. Having said all that, I like that the only flashback we got in this really busy episode was "FLASH BACK" after the, you know, massacre of the entire team that we fortunately knew was not going to stick. (Also I notice that adding ex-GF and Conor Hawke to the show gives us more possible people to die in the future for the flash-forward.)

Last but not least, go Captain Jack Exposition Ninja for rescuing the bad guy. Savage is a pompous scenery-chewing jerk and, despite his rapey tendencies, I'm really looking forward to enjoying him in LoT.
posted by immlass at 2:23 PM on December 4, 2015 [1 favorite]

Vandal Savage is like the 1955 Biff Tannen of the Arrowverse. "When are you gonna get it through your thick skull, Shayera, you're my girl!"
posted by Servo5678 at 6:02 PM on December 4, 2015 [1 favorite]

I didn't check the writing credits but The Flash half played like it was written by people who had never seen Arrow and vice versa.
posted by DirtyOldTown at 8:09 PM on December 4, 2015

Additionally I love the description of "Exposition Ninjas" from the Flash thread comments.

this is my new favorite thing about these shows.
posted by numaner at 12:56 PM on December 6, 2015

I only watch Arrow when it crosses over with The Flash, but Arrow reminds me of every dude I have ever known who took ren faire way too seriously. I'm guessing the Earth 2 Oliver makes leather bracelets for a living and spends way too much time mansplaining who would really survive in the zombie apocalypse.
posted by kittens for breakfast at 7:38 AM on December 7, 2015

I think one of the things I am maddest about with this episode was expecting me to remember a dropped one-off scene from two years ago about a pregnant ex-girlfriend of Oliver's. ARE YOU FUCKING KIDDING ME

It was mostly a lot of fun but Shepherd and I are now actively feeling sorry for Cisco. Hawkman's a jerk and god, Kendra just tell him to get bent already.
posted by Kitteh at 9:08 AM on December 7, 2015

I really don't understand why they couldn't have had Kendra say wait, romantic with captain aggro jackhole over there? No, no, but I have a 4 thousand year old history I need to understand and explore and he's the person I am tied to, better or worse. But no smooching. Instead they had lines that made it sound like she's going eh, guess we're fated so whatchugonna do? ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
posted by phearlez at 11:04 AM on December 7, 2015 [3 favorites]

The hawk hats looked pretty doofusy.
posted by amtho at 6:25 PM on December 10, 2015

It's official. Hawkman is an asshole in every continuity.
posted by Karmakaze at 10:46 AM on December 11, 2015 [2 favorites]

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