blogging by Andrew Wickliffe

Legends of Tomorrow (2016) s06e07 – Back to the Finale: Part II

This episode packs in a lot. The action beats are numerous, suspenseful, and intense. The difference between the second two adjectives being “suspenseful” means the plot is engaging while intense means the scenes in the plot are engaging. It’s also maybe got Caity Lotz’s best acting in the series to date. She’s very much the lead of the show in her story arc, which isn’t the norm, but then she’s also like a major guest star in the other story arc.

In the present, big bad Raffi Barsoumian has just dropped a major reveal on Lotz; her reaction to it, which was last episode’s cliffhanger, kicks off Lotz’s strong performance this episode. She does it just right (all of Lotz’s strong scenes this episode involve her opposite someone not in the regular cast or at least not regular with Lotz; she and Lisseth Chavez are going to have Chavez’s best scene in the series so far this episode too). She’s still trying to escape Barsoumian’s planet, which is going to involve Dominic Purcell, Adam Tsekhman, Jes Macallan (not as her regular character but one of Barsoumian’s clones), and a little of Aliyah O'Brien. In addition to Barsoumian, of course, who’s a very fun big bad and really manages to be dangerous while silly and absurd. Because he’s just a future tech bro.

Back on Earth, the team has finally had it with the waiting and Shayan Sobhian gets super-stoned and decides he’s going to travel back in time Back to the Future: Part II style to save Lotz from the aliens. Except the rest of the team gets the idea and goes back to stop him, which leads to it sort of being Nick Zano’s plot line (he’s the most experienced team member so he’s in charge; sort of). They can’t really do too much with the season finale from last season because they don’t have Maisie Richardson-Seller guest starring so they can’t run into her. So there aren’t a lot of hijinks; there are some and they’re good, but mostly it’s the team sitting around being sad and thinking about life while being time traveling superheroes.

There’s good stuff for all the cast, though the least for Tsekhman (because there’s just so much going on) and Macallan (at least as far as her regular character goes). But Matt Ryan and Tala Ashe have good stuff, Olivia Swann gets some good stuff with Sobhian (I had to tell myself not to ship because I can’t handle the disappointment), Purcell, then Chavez too. Lots of nice juxtaposing in the script (credit to Morgan Faust and Mark Bruner); some of it gets highlighted, some of it is just echoes.

The episode’s got a surprisingly relaxed finish, especially since it’s seemingly ending the first act of the season story. But it’s also a very good relaxed finish.

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