Features TV

REVIEW: Legends of Tomorrow 1×12 “Last Refuge”

Written by Alex Reale

 

Any show that opens up with a Terminator reference can’t be that bad, can it?

Meh. This episode of Legends of Tomorrow wasn’t exactly extraordinary (just like the rest of the season), but it was entertaining for the most part. “Last Refuge” upped the stakes for our heroes as they are once again racing against time to stop a deadly foe. This time, if they don’t beat the bad guy soon, they’ll risk being erased from existence. What ever will they do?! (spoilers ahead!)

It seems the Time Masters are getting tired of Rip and his gang slipping through their fingers, so they decide to hire the Pilgrim, a lethal bounty hunter with a thirst for blood and a knack for controlling time, to track down the team’s younger selves and eliminate them. Rip leads the Waverider across various time periods, gathering the younger legends before the Pilgrim can get her hands on them.

I liked the introduction of the Pilgrim this episode, but I can’t help wondering why the Time Masters couldn’t hire her right from the beginning. She’s obviously more qualified and talented than Chronos; why waste all that time instead of sending in the big guns right away? Faye Kingslee delivers a great performance as the villain; unfortunately, she suffers the same issue as many antagonists do on these shows: lack of development. All we see is a relentless assassin with almost no motivation or sense of direction. She’s about as one-dimensional as Boba Fett. I would’ve wanted SOMETHING to shed some light on her background; maybe they could’ve showed her actually killing someone major and giving an evil speech about herself while she does it (the one time I actually welcome monologuing). I wanted to learn more about her so that we knew just what the team was up against.

It was fun watching the team encounter their younger selves throughout the hour. We saw a sassy teenage Sara Lance, an unstable pyro Rory, and a cute little baby Snart (possibly possessing invisible horns). Kudos to Caity Lotz for her performance as both her younger and older self in this episode. It’s amazing how much of a difference there is between the two personas. However, I gotta say that the idea of giving her bangs in order to make her look younger just seemed uninspired. This was almost as bad as putting a backwards cap on Mark Wahlberg to make him look younger in that photo in Transformers: Age of Extinction.

I give Franz Drameh a lot of flack for his performance as Jax. Frankly, I’ve only seen one or two instances where he didn’t suck in the role. I give him credit for trying, especially in this episode. There are a few moments where he has a heart-to-heart with his father, who had passed away shortly after he was born. The two characters convey the bond between them so well that you truly feel a sense of family among Jax and his father, despite having never met before. The only problem is that Jax gives his father advice on how to avoid his destined death. This could possibly disrupt the future timeline, but it seems like the team has bigger things to worry about.

The legends gather the younger versions of themselves and drops them off at Rip’s adoptive mother’s house for protection. But this doesn’t stop the Pilgrim, who decides to go after their loved ones. Soon enough, she has a nice batch of hostages consisting of Lisa Snart, Quentin Lance, and several others. Rip offers to hand over his younger self (a young Time Master-in-training) in exchange for the hostages.

The Pilgrim meets the heroes at a warehouse to conduct the exchange. Thanks to the team’s ingenuity, they pull off an elaborate trap that involves surrounding the bounty hunter and attacking her at the same time. The Pilgrim is able to freeze everyone’s attacks in place, and we’re treated to a neat (albeti drawn-out) 360-shot across all our heroes. Having frozen all their attacks, the Pilgrim assumes she’s won, but the young Rip Hunter sneakily stabs her, causing her to lose focus and allowing the team to turn her to ash.

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While this episode kinda failed with its villain, it at least offered some background on Rip Hunter, the main man himself. We learned a bit about what his childhood was like, and how he was essentially trained to be a killer from such a young age, making the adult Rip resent himself in the current day.

We also found out a lot more about Rory and why exactly he’s such a grumpy prick. I was always “meh” about Dominic Purcell performance because I thought the growling shtick was overdone. But watching him interact with his younger self was a delight. The moment where he reminds young Rory that the fire that killed his family wasn’t his fault was almost as touching as Jax’s first reunion with his dad. Yet again, I’m curious about what the future timeline will be like now. Will Rory grow up to be a completely different person now that he no longer has the guilt of his family’s death over his head?

At the end of the episode, Rip informs his colleagues that, since their younger selves have been removed from their timelines, they are severely impacting their own existence. It’s now up to the heroes to had back to 2166 to stop Vandal Savage at the height of his power once and for all.

There are a few more episodes left in the season, so I doubt Savage is going down that easily. It’s obvious there will be a couple more fillers before we hit that grand finale. Honestly, I’m just about ready to see the season end. This finale better be worth it!

Final Grade: B –

+ The Pilgrim was a pretty good villain.

+ Some great acting from various cast members as they encountered their younger selves/family members.

+ I’m glad they’ve raised the stakes; now there’s a true sense of urgency for the team.

– I feel like they just keep making up time rules as they go along.

– Why didn’t the Time Masters send the Pilgrim after the team earlier?

– Ray and Kendra drama… Zzzzzzz

Extra Thoughts:

– I wonder how the team’s actions will impact the original timeline. Will Rory avoid the life of crime? Will young Jax follow a different path now that he possibly had his father around?

Did you enjoy the latest episode of Legends of Tomorrow? What were your thoughts overall? Tell us what you think in the comments or on Twitter!

About the author

Alex Reale

From a young age, Alex knew he was destined to be a writer. He also harbored a deep infatuation with superheroes and comics. Luckily, he was able to combine these two passions through his role with A Place to Hang Your Cape, where he works as Junior Sidekick and Social Media Hero.

When he’s not writing for AP2HYC or working full-time as a content manager for a small business website, Alex is diligently at work on other creative projects including a fantasy novel collection and an independent comic series.

You can find Alex's first book, Dodger's Doorway, on Amazon!