blogging by Andrew Wickliffe

Legends of Tomorrow (2016) s06e15 – The Fungus Amongus

“Legends” ends this season with a cast change-up—ten main characters were too many, so they’re reducing to eight. One of the goodbyes is more surprising than the other, though only one of them gets anywhere near the attention it deserves. The other receives a rush job. Can’t really get into details without spoiling. There’s also a little bit of next season set-up, but barely any. Certainly not like coming back to find you broke time or unleashed demons or aliens. It’s a mellow finish, which is appropriate because it’s a rollercoaster.

Last episode ended on three big cliffhangers. One of them turns out to be fine immediately. The other two get wrapped together in the solution, which has the team trying to save Earth from invading aliens by going into the future to find a not-yet-evil version of Raffi Barsoumian to help them. Meanwhile, they’re also trying to figure out how to help ailing Lisseth Chavez and recovering from Matt Ryan betraying the team to get his magic back.

So the episode’s got to find time to resolve evil Barsoumian turning off Earth’s “keep the aliens away” defense system, Chavez’s relationship with her newly rediscovered and alive in 1920s Texas mom Alexandra Castillo, Dominic Purcell’s relationship with babies mama Aliyah O’Brien, Ryan and Tala Ashe’s relationship, and Caity Lotz and Ava Sharpe’s nuptials.

Starting with Shayan Sobhian’s return to a broken time and spaceship, it’s pretty clear Ashe and Ryan aren’t going to get the emphasis. Ryan’s arc is in its epilogue stages, but for all the hard stuff for Ashe, the show just puts her in her room and closes the door. Even after she gets some attention, it’s so slight and so pointless a scene… they could’ve just left it out. It’s just too much going on at once, and I’m all of a sudden worried it means Ashe might be one of the next cast members to go.

Lotz and Macallan have some nice scenes together, with Adam Tsekhman and Nick Zano stepping up to help out with pre-wedding jitters. Since neither of them have arcs to resolve, they’re just support, and it’s an uncompleted nice. The way the plot shakes out, Sobhian goes from doing a bunch at the beginning of the episode to very little by the end. No arc for him either.

Barsoumian’s fantastic as the not-yet-evil version of himself (he’s just a really fun egomaniac to have around).

David Geddes’s direction is more middling than not, and when he does find some good insight into a scene, he’s got to rush through it. Just because it’s a time travel show doesn’t mean there’s not a set runtime. The episode could’ve used another ten minutes.

Some charming work from Olivia Swann for her making friends arc, though they hopefully give her better-looking magic powers by next season.

There’s also a really big, really sappy moment, and it works because it’s “Legends” and “Legends” always manages to find sincerity in its absurd, silly, epic contrivances. It’s a perfectly solid season finale. Outside Geddes’s direction, all my gripes are because the show just doesn’t have time and space to fully utilize its cast. There are worse problems to have.

And it’s the first time in ages we’re going into a new season with no idea what to expect. Maybe first time ever?

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