Legends of Tomorrow 2×02 Roundtable: Discussing 'Justice Society of America'

A new season of DC’s Legends of Tomorrow means a new season of roundtables where Fangirlish writers Alyssa, Lizzie, and Lyra discuss the hot topics from every Legends of Tomorrow episode.

In Legends of Tomorrow’s second episode of season 2, our Legends found themselves face-to-face with another super group known as the Justice Society of America. While tensions initially flared, both units worked together to defeat a common enemy.

What were your overall thoughts on “Justice Society of America?”

Alyssa: Legends of Tomorrow feels like an entirely different show this season in the very best way. In its first season it fell victim to its own narrative and the producers even admitted that they messed up. But this second season was a new opportunity for excellence. And damn, I am loving it. Legends of Tomorrow is embracing the quirky time travel aspect of its show while never taking itself too seriously. And this episode was the perfect example. The whole scene with our Legends undercover in a Nazi Germany club blended the elements of action, narrative, humor, and spunk that made me sit just a little taller in my seat. There’s something very personal about the show this season where I finally feel like I’m watching the show Legends of Tomorrow was meant to be. Please don’t stop anytime soon.
Lizzie: I think it was a good episode following on the heels of a good episode, something Legends of Tomorrow hardly ever managed in season 1. It was a bit cheesy, yes, and it bordered on ridiculous at times, but at least they owned it, and had fun with the fact that this whole thing was a tad ridiculous – and that helped sell it. I’m especially enjoying the new people – something I never, ever said about Kendra, Carter or Vandal Savage. God, how I wish I could erase them from my consciousness. The JSA was fun – especially because they were the most serious group of people ever – and I enjoyed the Nate/Commander Steel connection. I’m actually more excited about Legends right now than any other DC show, save perhaps Supergirl. Imagine that.
Lyra: Justice Society of America was a fun way to introduce the next step in the Legends evolution. It showed us what was missing from the team and how they could make it better/survive the disappearance of Rip Hunter, who we still don’t know what happened to him. Most importantly, it wasn’t overwhelming. Often times the introduction of new characters becomes the central focus on shows like this. That didn’t happen here. The Justice Society of America was only part of the mission with the Legends still front and center.

Sara Lance has been appointed team leader now that Rip Hunter is missing. What are your feelings on Sara leading the team?

Alyssa: Honestly, Sara is exactly what this team needs. We’ve seen firsthand just how far Sara has come in her journey since Arrow. She’s lived through hell and back and has come out the stronger for it. Despite everything she’s gone through, Sara has never lost what makes her the character we love: her humanity. There might’ve been times when it felt like she was losing it, but the sheer fact that she was concerned about it in the first place proves it was never really in jeopardy. Sara Lance is someone who can kick ass and take names, but she’s also someone who cares very deeply. This team is her family, and you bet damn well she’s going to do right by them. That doesn’t necessarily mean she’ll be perfect—no one is – but she’s going to lead her team in the way they need.

Lizzie: It’s been a long time coming – not just because she’s clearly the most qualified, but because she was the better known character. She’s the only one who always keeps her head on when in the middle of a crisis, and she has actual combat training. I think the LOT are clearly a team, and they all bring someone to the table, but Stein couldn’t the leader any more than Ray could. It had to be Sara.
Lyra: Sara’s not perfect, by any means, but she’s what they need right now. She has the most experience working with a group of people and knows how to think on her feet because if not, it’ll cost her life. I also think that she acknowledges everyone’s strengths and weaknesses. That right there is the most important part of a leader, knowing how to wield your team.

We got to formally meet the Justice Society of America in this episode. What did you think of this super team?

Alyssa: I really loved how well this team worked together. It was a nice parallel to the kind of team that the Legends ultimately want to become. But it was also a reminder that this isn’t something that happens right away. It takes time; it takes experience; it takes trust. But the JSA are ultimately superhero squad goals. I loved each of them as individuals, and I especially loved that there were two badass women on the team that no one even thought twice about whether they should be there. I’m also really curious to see what impact they’ll have this season. We know Vixen is slated to join the Legends, but what about the rest of the JSA? With Hourman’s murder at the end of the episode, it really makes you question what role the JSA will play. Especially considering Hourman came to the future to warn the Legends about a threat in the season finale. But consider me hook, intrigued, and #dying.
Lizzie: They were a well-oiled machine for sure, too well-oiled, it seems at times. That makes them a tad more boring than our messy group, but it was nice to see the contrast. However, the fact that they were so professional and so in sync with each other probably means they’d make for a lousy TV show themselves. Where’s the fun in seeing a team that always does everything perfectly? They do have the best costumes though. Way better. When it comes to costumes, retro is cooler, I keep saying it.
Lyra: They were super cheesy and I loved it. Sure they were efficient, capable, and well organized, but I couldn’t take my eyes off how cheesy they were. Everything looked like it came straight out of a comic book, from their outfits to their base. I loved it all! One notable difference between this team and the Legends, is that their strict rules restrains them. It doesn’t allow them to think outside of the box. With Vixen becoming part of the Legends team, I think they could all learn something from each other and become better.

One of the cool things about this episode was the connection between Nate Heywood and Commander Steel. What did you think about that relationship?

Alyssa: I feel like this episode and that relationship between Nate and his grandfather, Commander Steel, was exactly what I needed to really get to know who Nate is. Nate is the newbie, he’s someone who I feel like we should trust but I don’t know him well enough to do so. But getting to see his connection to Commander Steel and learn a little about who he is – a hemophiliac who will still do whatever it takes to protect what he believes in, even if it means the threat of him dying – was what I needed as a viewer to care. The really cool thing about a time travel show is that you can do things like meet your grandfather in the past and get to know him. But I really liked how we saw there were certain consequences, as well. When Nate met him at first (which wasn’t pretty) we saw that history changed in a way that Nate’s father was never born, thus Nate was never born. But once the Legends were able to preserve history as it should be, everything went back to the way it was. It was a nice progression.
Lizzie: It was probably my favorite part of the episode. I like Nate. I like Nate a lot, which again, is very surprising, considering I had a hard time getting attached to any character I didn’t previously know in Season 1. And yet, Nate has been here for two episodes, and I already like the guy. How did that happen? And why didn’t it happen last year? I especially liked the contrast between the idea Nate held about what being a hero was and the message Commander Steel had for him – which was basically that heroes come in many forms. I think Nate more than proved that later on. And, in a way, I think, as Ray learned in this episode, superpowers or not, all of these people ARE heroes.
Lyra: In a couple short scenes we got backstory and established the kind of man Nate Heywood is and could be. It proves that you don’t need long and winding arcs to establish the kind of person someone is, looking at you Kendra, in a show with so many characters. You need simple, poignant stories that anyone can relate too. They did that with Nate and Commander Steel.

Reverse Flash is one of our big villains for the season, and he played a significant role in this episode. What do you think about Reverse Flash as the big bad?

Alyssa: I feel like it was kind of a genius move on the producers’ part. We didn’t get to see nearly enough of Reverse Flash on The Flash, but what we did get to see was sensational. Reverse Flash makes things personal. It’s what he does. So watching him kill the Justice Society of America’s leader Hourman was something that no doubt will have repercussions throughout the season and drive the JSA to vengeance. I like Eobard Thawne and Damien Darhk as our big bads because I have no idea what they’re really after. Are they really after destruction of the world? Cause that’s just too broad. I feel like there’s something larger at play. And that mystery should be part of the fun this season.
Lizzie: I like it  – mostly because he’s got bad-ass powers and it gives a credibly reason as to why they just can’t catch up with him, something that was sorely lacking from Vandal Savage, who should have died 7 times before he actually died. Also, I think the actor brings a certain charisma to the role that you really need for a bad guy. We have to hate the bad guy, but understand why other people would follow him. That wasn’t’ really working for Vandal Savage, at all. 
Lyra: I kind of feel like it’s lazy writing. Instead of coming up with something original, a villain from The Flash has come over to cause trouble for the Legends. And at what point is this Reverse Flash in his timeline? Pre-Barry? So that means he won’t die on Legends, right? He’ll just cause a lot of trouble like Damien until he reaches his final destination? But didn’t Eddie kill himself so the Reverse Flash would never exist? I’m confused and need help.

Legends of Tomorrow airs Thursdays at 8/7c on The CW. Stay tuned for another Legends of Tomorrow Roundtable next Wednesday!

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