LOT- SEason II – Ep. 9 “Raiders of the Lost Art”: A Review

Posted: 01/27/2017 in Uncategorized

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This was just…fun. The Legends in the 60s, George Lucas…LOT continues to be the most comic booky series ever, paying due homage to the man who launched two franchises indelibly etched in the collective world consciousness to this day. Keeping my opening brief, on to my review.

We open with a recap of former Waverider, and time master, Rip Hunter’s (Arthur Darvill) actions after saving his crew at the season’s beginning. We learn that his plan was exceedingly reckless and desperate. His awareness of such is presented by his shutting down Gideon, the ship’s A.I. We also learn exactly how powerful the “spear of destiny” truly is, hearkening to Thawne’s (Matt Letscher) earlier proclamation that it is an object that can rewrite reality. Hunter’s fate  shows that it can assuredly rewrite the life of one man.

Darvill’s Hunter who has long been my least favorite character on the show actually has a decent run with this episode. Now essentially ‘rewritten’, he is an American film student working with prop master and future film god, George Lucas (Matt Angel). There is a lot of fanboy love in this run. The notion that at heart you can’t change who you are plays well as Rip now “Phil” works on his student film project essentially working through his lost identity via making his friends and enemies his movie characters. A good stab is taken at Vandal Savage (Casper Crump) via Phil stating he is as “menacing as a weiner dog”. Though Savage was initially well received in LOT’s first season, he quickly became a leering caricature that really needed the multiple ‘ends’ to reward fans for their patience.

There is a sub arc involving Mick Rory (Dominic Purcell) reaching out to Martin Stein (Victor Garber) to “cure him” of his visions of Snart (Wenworth Miller) but the revelation of what is truly happening comes as no surprise really despite the red herring implant and silly surgery moment that follows. Snart’s presence is plainly an illustration of Rory’s emotional evolution and this plot angle works just fine as despite the man’s harsh demeanor and questionable stability, Rory has grown as a  character becoming of value to the team and to himself.

“Phil” is a tool and Darvill seems to be having an excellent time playing him. He whines, shrieks and completely falls apart with frequency. His reinvention seems total as he seems to have no vestige of who he once was. What really killed with this run were the moments that made it up. The trash compactor scene, Sara’s “hope” pronouncement, the “stormtrooper” tactics and weaponry used by the Legion of Doom members, Damian Darhk (Neal McDonough) and Malcolm Merlyn (John Barrowman),  played to terrific effect.

The notion of how pervasive sci fi is as a formative element in the lives of so many is earnest. Though the notion of such genius level intellects as Nate/Steel (Nick Zano) and Ray/Atom (Brandon Routh) being reduced to dunderheads without proper inspiration plays for laughs, the message is clearly received. Film when made well can truly elevate and inspire. The insight that both men were inspired by Lucas endeavors, Nate by “Raiders of the Lost Ark” and Ray by “Star Wars” give proper homage to both the genre and the man who helped popularize/revolutionize the science fiction genre. Nate’s pronouncement about being “a yoga instructor” is haplessly mirrored by Ray’s “I’m a heart surgeon…”

The action was not to the usual level but it was a playful episode and the idea of exactly how dangerous two non methahumans can be is keenly demonstrated as MM and DD dismantle most of the team with sheer skill. The Steel transformation never gets old, nor does the humor that permeates the series. Led by Sara (Caity Lotz), the team scores a great victory considering the involvement of Thawne/Reverse Flash. The end sequence battle reveals that there is still some of Rip left in “Phil” as he makes a pretty dangerous play. Next week’s run “Legion of Doom” is nicely set up with the final moments and the revelation of the cost the team has paid for their victory.  Despite this, a movie night sequence maintains the spirit this show generally lives by.  LOT remains fun, loose and assuredly simply outstanding and well worth your time.

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