Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Everyone Punches Mick Rory In "Doomworld!"

The Good: Good performances, Well-paced plot, Decent special effects, Good mood
The Bad: Fairly light on character
The Basics: "Doomworld" brings the second season of Legends Of Tomorrow to a pretty powerful climax (even before the season finale)!

In the week since the Legends Of Tomorrow episode "The Fellowship Of The Spear" (reviewed here!), I have given the episode and Legends Of Tomorrow remarkably little thought. The truth is, given the cataclysmic nature of Mick Rory's character shift in "The Fellowship Of The Spear," I was tremendously disappointed in Legends Of Tomorrow. As a result, I went into "Doomworld" less enthusiastic than I usually would as, truth be told, I truly enjoy Legends Of Tomorrow.

Fortunately, "Doomworld" is enough to justify any fan's faith in Legends Of Tomorrow!

It is impossible to discuss "Doomworld" without some allusions to where "The Fellowship Of The Spear" ended. After all, "The Fellowship Of The Spear" saw Mick Rory reunited with a temporally-displaced Leonard Snart and betraying the Waverider crew. The Legion Of Doom found itself in possession of both the Spear Of Destiny and the "owner's manual" which would tell them how to use the artifact, putting all of existence in jeopardy. "Doomworld" follows very closely on the effects of the climax of the prior episode. In fact, "Doomworld" leaps right into the altered universe created by the Legion Of Doom using the Spear Of Destiny.

Opening in Star City, 2017, a villainous Black Canary and Vixen capture the vigilante Felicity Smoak for Damian Darhk, who is the mayor of the city. In Central City, Eobard Thawne is visited by Malcolm Merlyn, who wants to use the Spear Of Destiny more. Thawne denies him the favor and asks Jefferson Jackson to speed up his work in his lab. Elsewhere in Central City, Mick Rory is jaded over how he and Snart essentially run the streets without the police impeding them. When Nate Heywood appears at Thawne's lab, Thawne tasks Snart and Rory with killing Heywood, who seems aware of the changes to reality.

When the bored Rory opts to save Heywood's life, the pair flees to Ray Palmer's makeshift lab in Star City. There, they discover that Palmer (a janitor in this reality) has manufactured a prototype for a gun that restores the memories of those who were scarred by the changes in time and space. The Legends are slowly reunited using the prototype weapon, with Jackson revealing that Dr. Stein has been building a reactor for Thawne . . . one that might be capable of incinerating the Spear Of Destiny and cementing the new, horrible, reality.

"Doomworld" has all of the potential to be a pretty basic "alternate reality" episode much like Star Trek's "Mirror, Mirror" (reviewed here!). And "Doomworld" gets off to that type of start. There is a lot of novelty to seeing the actors portraying the Legends playing altered versions of their characters. Jefferson Jackson is a complete dick of a boss, Dr. Stein is browbeaten and at his mercy, Rip Hunter is a drunken cake-maker, and Felicity Smoak is an ill-fated vigilante; all of the performers play their altered selves well and there is still a freshness to it considering that only Arthur Darvill's Rip Hunter has been played as an alternate version before now.

The thing about "Doomworld" is that it does not dwell too much on the alternate version of each character. Instead, the episode is a bit plot-heavy, but it quickly pushes toward a showdown and another big moment for Mick Rory. Dominic Purcell again lives up to his potential by taking a somewhat obvious character moment and absolutely rocking it. Purcell - after Mick Rory is punched repeatedly in the face - performs silently opposite Maisie Richardson-Sellers for a very compelling moment of character.

As a reviewer, there are a wide array of media works that I take in that are easy to watch and review. Arguably one of the best compliments I can give an episode of television is that it was so engaging that I found myself more captivated by the work than analytical of it. "Doomworld" is that. It takes a pretty overdone in genre film and television premise and makes it feel fresh again. "Doomworld" manages to illustrate the world Eobard Thawne would make given unlimited power and plays with the premise in a delightful way.

For other works from the DC Television Universe, please visit my reviews of:
"Invasion!" - Arrow
The Flash - Season 2
"Distant Sun" - Supergirl

[Knowing that single episodes are an inefficient way to get episodes, it's worth looking into Legends Of Tomorrow - The Complete Second Season on DVD or Blu-Ray, which is also a better economical choice than buying individual episodes. Read my review of the sophomore season of the time traveling hero team here!


For other television season and episode reviews, please visit my Television Review Index Page for an organized listing!

© 2017 W.L. Swarts. May not be reprinted without permission.
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