The Chicago Way was a solid midseason finale in Legends of Tomorrow’s occasionally bumpy sophomore season. Typically, the CW shows have a marked improvement in quality by Year 2. The creative teams have a better sense of how to further develop the characters and have a much stronger season long arc.
Legends has been different as half the first season cast is gone and the team frequently wanders around time aimlessly. Chicago Way definitely steered the season in the right direction that should hopefully provide a better sense of purpose.
Clearly the episode’s most noteworthy reveal was Malcolm Merlyn joining up with Damien Darhk and Thawne. Uniting some of the DC CW’s top villains to battle the Legends has a ton of potential. I’m a sucker for superhero teams versus supervillain team fights. I grew up on Challenge of the Super Friends.
In all of my excitement, I ignored some significant questions like which era Merlyn this is and more importantly, why he’s signed on for the team up. Hopefully that motivation gets explained in further episodes. It didn’t take long, but this trio’s chemistry was so much fun the episode could have just focused on their passive aggressive bickering and questioning their skills.
The trio got their hands on a compass to help lead them to the Spear of Destiny, one of the more important artifacts in the DC Comics Universe.
Originally it was the power cancelling device Hitler used to prevent the Justice Society and All-Star Squadron from coming to Germany and ending World War II in a matter of hours. I’m curious to see what its purpose will be in Legends and Thawne’s end game once he gets it.
The trip to 1937 Chicago was a lot of fun. Traveling to different time periods occasionally puts the show into this dress-up mode, but the team dynamic here paid off. Even the interactions with historical figures was handled well.
Al Capone is a fairly respectable villain and his partnership with Darhk, Thawne and Merlyn made sense without making Capone look like a chump. Elliot Ness didn’t get nearly as much screen time, but at least his presence allowed Ray and Nate to dig in with The Untouchables jokes.
There was some strong character bonding moments. The Nate/Ray bromance could fall into corny territory, but Brandon Routh and Nick Zano are doing a commendable job establishing more of a sibling dynamic.
Sara and Stein also had some nice moments. Thankfully, Sara didn’t get on her Time Masters high horse too long. Given how irresponsible the entire team has treated the time stream it’s shocking they haven’t created hundreds of aberrations. Stein’s meddling resulting in a genius daughter is getting off easy for this crew.
Rory’s bonding with Amaya kept getting interrupted as he was having hallucinations of Snart trying to get him back full heel. I really hope the timing of these hallucinations is not coincidental and is more scheming by Thawne.
I’m glad Jax opened up the secret arsenal with its speedster equalizer. The team doesn’t have a speedster to match up with Thawne (is Jesse Quick busy?) so a special gun will have to do the trick. Thawne’s fights with the team were well done as they relied on outsmarting him to compensate for his speed and viciousness. The gun was a good obvious weapon, but Ray going small with ATOM was a very clever move.
But definitely the episode’s biggest what the heck moment was Rip in 1967 Los Angeles directing a Rip Hunter movie. And no British accent in sight. I’ve always viewed Rip more as a Indiana Jones type time traveler so the British accent kept throwing me off. Is he in hiding? Or has Thawne stolen his memory? The answers should prove very interesting.
Rating: 8.5 out of 10
Photo Credit: The CW