Friday, February 19, 2016

My Review of Legends Of Tomorrow's 1x05: "Fail Safe"

Written by Beth Schwartz & Grainne Godfree
Directed by Dermott Downs

Stein: "I hate to break this to you, Dr Vostok but you are on the wrong side of history."
Valentina: "For now, but you will help us change history."

And the second part of this story turned out to be a lot better than the first part. Is it wrong for me to wish that this show would slightly ditch Vandal Savage and retain Valentina as a primary antagonist? She's just a lot better in the role of crazy villain than Savage happens to be.

In this episode alone, her scenes were primarily with Stein and they were also the best of the bunch. They certainly had a degree of power play, flirting (one sided of course) and even a cheesy moment of country comparing/bashing but they were endlessly entertaining as Valentina managed to deduce without any help that Stein was part of Firestorm himself.

Then we got the merging scene where Valentina decided to make herself a part of Stein's Firestorm in order to fulfill Savage's mission but that didn't exactly pan out so well for her when Jackson entered the fray and for the first time in five episodes, both him and Stein were on the same page. The Russian prison camp might have met an explosive end in this episode but is it really too much to hope that Valentina might have survived? As I said, she was a heck of a lot more interesting than Savage has been.

Speaking of Savage, he didn't really do much in this episode. He watched Vostok work on Stein and then watched both Ray and Heatwave get tortured a bit but the only scenes of substance he had were the brief ones with Kendra and Rip and even then he didn't really do much that was of any consequence. To be honest, this episode easily could've not featured him and it might have worked out for the better.

As for the rest of the episode - once again, the mixing of characters worked beautifully. I liked seeing both Kendra and Jackson work together to save the day (and it really was them stepping in at the last minute that helped things), the various charged scenes with both Sara and Cold as the latter challenged the former's morality (Rip gave her a side mission of taking out Stein if things didn't go to plan - fortunately, they did, right?) and Ray and Heatwave as prison buddies was endlessly entertaining as well.

Then there was the way the episode ended. Having Chronos chasing after them at the end was a bit unexpected but actually having them land in Star City 2046 and then meet Connor Hawke was a brilliant jolt. I literally cannot wait to see what the hell is going to happen next week.

- The amount of Prison Break references in this episode could've turned this into a drinking game. I did love them though.
- A lot of male shirtless action in this episode, which should've pleased both the female audience and the gay/bisexual males too.
- Cisco actually appeared in this episode, albeit as a hallucination courtesy of Valentina.
- Chronology, still mainly 1986 Soviet Union and of course, Star City 2046 at the end.

Easily my favourite one so far. Every character brought their A Game (maybe not Vandal but he wasn't awful either) and every interaction was brilliant, even if the Russian stereotyping did make for the odd cringe moment. Fail Safe certainly hit the right spots.

Rating: 8 out of 10

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