Downbeat realism may be big in fantasy TV these days (think Jessica Jones and Daredevil) but DC is having none of that. Its new show takes a more-is-more approach. If you like your superheroics big, fast and daft you’ll have a blast.
1. The plot moves faster than a speeding bullet
The show’s opening moments depict the destruction of the 22nd century London before we’re swiftly introduced to the show’s villain – “Vandal Savage, an evil dictator blessed with immortality!” Savage kills a young boy (booo!) and we cut to time-traveler Rip Hunter, who whooshes off to 2016 to assemble a team of eight superheroes to take on Savage.
This he achieves, via kidnappings, before the six-minute mark. Granted, moving at this frantic pace doesn’t leave much room for characterization or, y’know, logic – but if you want fancy-schmancy, go watch HBO.
2. The atom-sized guy isn’t the show’s most ridiculous character
While Atom’s superpower is impressively useless – a fact even he seems forlornly aware of – the most chin-scratching character is Firestorm. He can fly and has the fire for hair but only exists when a 20-year-old black mechanic and a sixty-something white physics professor meld themselves together.
It’s like some weird odd-couple sitcom from the ’90s got reimagined as a superhero.
3. No scenery is left unchewed
It’s fair to say that none of the cast will be bagging Emmys for their roles, which range from ‘kinda wacky’ to ‘swivel-eyed insane’. Particularly ridic are Arthur Darvill as roguish Rip Turner, Casper Crump as sneering Vandal Savage and Prison Break’s Wentworth Miller as campy Captain Cold.
All three are under no illusions what kind of show they’re in and crank up the goofery accordingly.
4 Everyone’s died and come back to life before the show’s even started
Comic books are forever killing off characters before resurrecting them a few issues later – Superman, Batman, Wolverine, Thor and Captain America have all shuffled off this mortal coil before quickly shuffling it on again.
Legends Of Tomorrow is all over this classic trope, as we swiftly learn that five of the characters have previously died and risen again – or, in the case of Hawkman and Hawkgirl, 206 times. Yes, 206 times. Come on now.
5. The dialogue is bananas
“Ever since as a child I first heard the story of Chay-Ara, the high priestess of Horus the hawk god, and her lover Prince Khufu, I hoped and prayed this day might come!” This is not a show begging to be taken seriously.