‘Legends of Tomorrow’ 3×12 Review: “The Curse of the Earth Totem”

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YO HO YO HO, Legends of Tomorrow sets off to the seven seas as the back half of season 3 continues the follow the path to the buried gold of being the best DC show on the CW.

*Warning : This review is going to contain some pirate puns. Read at your peril, matey.

This week’s Legends has three different stories going at once, but all feel exciting and fresh. If you are a fan of romance, well Sara Lance and Ava Sharpe have their first date. If you are looking for some swashbuckling good times, then avast ye friends as the rest of the team travels to the 1800s and meets up with Mr. Blackbeard.  If you are a fan of buddy films, Rip Hunter and Wally West’s scenes were exactly what the doctor ordered. “The Curse of the Earth Totem” gives you all of this and more. Now I ask you, what more could you want?!

Now all hands on deck as we raise the mast and delve into the treasure chest of goodies that  “Curse of the Earth Totem” delivers us landlubbers.

THE DREAD PIRATE JIWE

Shiver Me Timbers, the Legends can finally cross off “Pirate Adventure” to the list that included: space, alternate timeline, WW II, etc. Now while not the best episode of the season, I still enjoyed this little side trip most of the team takes. I say “most” as Sara takes a little time off so she can get her date on with Agent Sharpe (More on that in a bit). So instead of Sara, we get the Legends doing their best Pirates of the Caribbean impressions here. Best one goes to Amaya or as she becomes known as “The Dread Pirate Jiwe”.

It was enjoyable hearing Maisie Richardson-Sellers get to speak with her natural English accent and from the way she played it throughout the episode, she was having just as much fun playing pirate as we did watching it. For me , that is always a key to a successful TV show. When the actors look like they are enjoying their roles and having fun, it translates onto the screen. That is one reason why I think Legends of Tomorrow works well. They have fun making it so we have fun watching them having fun doing their jobs. Now that’s off my chest, let’s talk about how a few characters almost made that jaunt into Davy Jones’s Locker.

Without Sara, the team goes searching for the totems that give them a fighting chance against Mallus. The Earth totem the team is looking for belongs to one Blackbeard…who ended up giving to a ex-girlfriend who turned into a plant monster. Add in  Damien Darhk and daughter dearest Nora looking for the totem themselves and arrgggh me mateys things don’t look to good for the Legends.

Alright I’ll stop with the puns.

After a little fun on the high seas and dispensing of earlier mentioned plant monster, all this leads to a showdown between Captain Jiwe and the Darhk family over the earth totem. Now this leads to one flaw I have had with the season. Damien Darhk is a awesome villain but wow can the Legends please get the advantage on him once this season? This time around, Amaya is almost killed by Daddy’s Little Monster if not for being saved by Ray and his magic killing gun. What a stroke of luck that it all of a sudden works perfectly!

Now this could be a great advantage for the Legends as they just got rid of one of their main nemesis as the gun works with Nora down for the count. Except we forgot one thing: For all his genius, Ray Palmer is a kind-hearted idiot. He remembers young Nora and he goes back to save her. He offers a exchange for Amaya’s totem with Damien snagged earlier. Sadly for Ray, his efforts to reach out to Nora only get him captured once Nora is revived by the antidote Ray created.

To recap: Instead of having gotten rid of one villain and having gained a major advantage in the battle versus Mallus….Now the Darhks have the totem and Ray Palmer as bargaining chip as well. Oh Ray I thought you had done the smart thing with the gun but when I saw you worry about Nora….

Oh Raymond.

CARELESS WHISPER

Jack Rowand/ The CW

Romance is a fascinating and scary thing. So is being normal. Sara Lance hasn’t really had a whole lot of both in her life. Yes, she had both Nyssa and Oliver in relationships but both have been the opposite or normal, if you think about it. Going from cheating with your sister’s BF to finding a GF while training with a League of Assassins. Neither looks like it could be groundwork for a solid , loving relationship.

So with Ava Sharpe, does Sara Lance have a chance at a solid, loving, healthy  and normal relationship? The answer is…..still to be determined I think.

AvaLance have their first “real” date in “Earth Totem” and it’s the most into the relationship I think I’ve been. Instead of being forced, they let the actresses do their thing and feel the chemistry instead of having everyone around comment on it. Show us, don’t tell us, show. Caity Lotz and Jes Macallan are damn good at this job, let them show us the chemistry building between Sara and Ava.

The date goes well…until it’s interrupted a lot. First by everyone’s favorite moron Gary who has lost his Time Courier (more on that in a sec) and then the Waverider shows up to take Sara away before Ava can return. This leads to a little argument that highlights Sara’s fear of having a normal relationship. You can want something, strive for something and still be afraid of that something you want.

This leads to a lovers quarrel which leads to Ava and Sara’s first kiss which leads to them fighting pirates on the bridge of the Waverider. So while things will never be “Normal” as Sara thinks, what Sara and Ava are right now is. Normal is being in a relationship with someone through up, downs, pirates, time aberrations and everything in-between. Love is Normal.

FRIENDSHIP

Rip Hunter and Wally West’s budding friendship during “Earth Totem” was honestly my favorite part of the episode. I’m a Rip fan so seeing Arthur back was joyful but also their scenes were fun. Wally got to have more fun and character growth in just these scenes than most of his time on The Flash it felt like.

Seeing them bond over their statuses as the lone man out of the group was insightful and showcased both very well. Rip misses the Legends deep down I believe and is still hurt over hurting Ava’s trust in him. Wally feels left behind and alone; Not just by Jesse dumping him but having no room in Team Flash

(Don’t worry though Wally, your replacement isn’t holding a candle to you right now)

So what do two hurt guys do when they have troubles? In the time honored TV trope tradition, THEY DRINK, OF COURSE! After ingesting some of Wally’s rocket fuel, the boys take that time courier from Gary (With a pantsing to boot)., Rip also gets his trademark trench coat back and they jam out to a little “Careless Whisper” by George Michael.

Once the morning comes up and the hangovers dissipate, Rip once again asks Wally to join him in joining the Legends. This time around however, Wally agrees because he knows he is tired of being alone. Wally on the Legends is going to be a wonderful fit I truly think. We all want to be a part of something, for Wally West – that leads to the Legends of Tomorrow.

OTHER THOUGHTS:

  • New Hair styles rankings time : Zari >>>>>> Amaya
  • Sara played Peter Pan as a kid? You know the team is going to find that footage someday.
  • I wonder which Pirates of the Caribbean movie the writers watched before working on this episode?

Legends of Tomorrow airs at 8 pm on Mondays on the CW.

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