• Television 

    Five Thoughts on Legends of Tomorrow‘s “The Virgin Gary”

    By | October 23rd, 2018
    Posted in Television | % Comments

    Welcome back to Legends of Tomorrow, everyone’s favorite comic book TV show. (Don’t try and deny it, I know how many times you rewatched the Beebo vs. Mallus fight.) So, with everyone eagerly anticipating the show now, will Legends of Tomorrow season 4 soar to new heights, or will it start collapsing under the weight of its own ridiculousness?

    1. Mopping up Anachronisms

    This episode was all about Woodstock, but it all begins on the other end of the ’60s with the Legends escorting the Beatles when they arrived at JFK Airport in 1964, when all of sudden, Paul Revere shows up proclaiming “the British are coming!” (Despite Ray pointing out he never said that.) It’s a smart choice not having one of the creatures that broke into our dimension after Mallus escaped immediately show up, instead establishing the Legends spent five months searching for them after Constantine showed up with a dragon’s head, and none came up. It saves money, provides some extra laughs (I do hope Nate remembered to pick up Paul Revere after he fell on the ground), and best of all, it provides a proper explanation for Wally West’s absence (he naturally got bored, the end).

    2. (Hey)woods

    We’re introduced pretty soon to Nate’s parents, Henry “Hank” (Thomas F. Wilson) and Dorothy “Dot” Heywood (Susan Hogan), when Nate proposes to a bored Mick that they break into his family home for fun. Surprise, surprise, Nate does not get on with his dad, whom he tells Mick was a rather cold, distant man, while to everyone else he was this lovable, larger-than-life figure. Still, we get a hint of a reconciliation at the end, which is just as well, given we’re told Hank has got a “cool” new job at the Pentagon – presumably, he’ll be working with the Time Bureau in Washington D.C. next week.

    I gotta say, it’s a little disappointing that Mick’s first thought when faced with the prospect of no more time-traveling adventures was to go back to committing felonies. What happened to working on your novel Mick? Thank goodness the universe is keeping him on the straight and narrow with all these things (anachronisms/fugitives) to preoccupy him instead.

    3. Holy Hell Unicorn

    OK let’s talk about the bloodthirsty unicorn goring Woodstock-goers (I still can’t believe I typed that). I was shocked and amazed by how bloody the scene was the trailer, and they definitely toned it down for broadcast, but the sight of the unicorn leaving hippies with a hole in their chest was still unsettling, as were the subsequent shots of it looking spooked and drooling blood.

    Coming into the episode, I was expecting the Legends to use the virgin Gary to calm down the creature, as I assumed it was only lashing out due to the debauchery at Woodstock. However, it seemed happy to devour the hearts of its victims, so it wasn’t surprising to see Constantine’s spell transporting it back to Hell revealing it was not so much a unicorn as a skeletal horse demon. It would’ve been too easy if Gary’s virginity had tamed the savage beast, and the annoying agent doesn’t get off scot-free when the monster manages to bite off his nipple as it was dragged back where it came. I could only laugh as Constantine remarked a piece of Gary went to Hell before his own damned soul, and Gary realized he had even more in common with the exorcist.

    4. Weirdness at Woodstock

    I loved the whole sequence where the unicorn’s glittery musk caused the Waverider crew to hallucinate – it’s Woodstock, so of course they had to get high. Nate imagines Mick as his dad (paging Dr Freud!), Mick sees Nate as his dearly deceased rat Axl (I well and truly lost it at that point), and Ray fantasizes about Nora (who’s cosplaying as Snow White for some reason) and makes out with a tree. (Was it me, or was that a reference to Thomas F. Wilson’s “make like a tree” line in Back to the Future?) Zari draws the short straw, just commenting on how huge her hands are.

    The writers further had fun incorporating hippie culture into the story by having the Legends steal stuff off Jerry Garcia, Jimi Hendrix and Janis Joplin for Constantine’s concoction needed to banish the unicorn – I love that stealing from Garcia has become a running gag on the show. I wondered if it might’ve been too soon to make light of Joplin’s death with the idea of needing “hair of a doomed woman,” but they had Ray reflecting on her death later on, so it was fine I suppose.

    Continued below

    5. Shoving Constantine onto the Waverider

    There’s so many metajokes on this show now, especially with Ray’s comments about improving their ratings with the Time Bureau being a clear wink at the show’s audience. Similarly, it’s revealed Constantine is quite literally being forced by an unseen, malevolent entity into getting the Legends’ help. I’m glad Constantine is being written as a reluctant member of the group, because as much as we want more of him this show is an odd place for him, and it’s great the writers are acknowledging that. I suppose it’s just as well the show’s basically becoming Justice League Dark this season, but after they sort out the fugitives from myth and legend, what then? Maybe he’ll just learn to chill out.

    On that note, there’s no mention of the death of Sara’s dad, although she acknowledges her loved ones have been hurt while otherwise dismissing his lone wolf act.

    Bonus thoughts:
    – The scene where Zari watches her mother and her younger self was quite touching (though not as touching as the scene with Kyle Reese in Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles), but it did feel rather awkwardly weaved into this week’s storyline.
    – It’s so weird now seeing Ava Sharpe behave like an infatuated teen around Sara.
    – The universe still goes out of its way to deny Constantine a light.
    – The splitscreen in this episode was just dazzling.

    All in all this was a hoot. See you next week folks, when we head to Salem for a “Witch Hunt.”

    //TAGS | Legends of Tomorrow

    Christopher Chiu-Tabet

    Chris is a writer from London on the autistic spectrum, who enjoys tweeting and blogging on Medium about his favourite films, TV shows, books, music, games as well as history and religion. He is Lebanese/Chinese, although he can't speak Cantonese or Arabic. He also writes for Nerdy POC.


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