LOT – Season II – Ep. 11 – “Turncoat”: A Review

Posted: 02/09/2017 in Uncategorized

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LOT continues to run hot after the Legion of Doom arc. “Turncoat” presented a now turned Rip Hunter (Arthur Darvill) and the end result is superb. Funnily enough, Rip is a far better villain than hero. His awareness at what he was and now is plays incredibly well, causing the viewer to ponder what exactly they removed from him to make him so. Honestly, had Rip 1.0 been as exceptional as this latest version, LOT season 1 would have been a far better series. My opening volley delivered, on to my review.

This ep was a Christmas episode which added to the ‘festive’ atmosphere of the run. Now working with Thawne (Matt Letscher), Rip causes epic ‘time aberrations’ with gusto to draw the Legends to him that he might grab the piece of the spear of destiny. I use the term “gusto” because it is apt. Rip as a bastard works amazingly well. He arms the red coats with machine guns, shoots George Washington and uses modern tech to just overrun the American revolutionaries.

Now this show is assuredly tongue in cheek and having mvp of the night be Mick Rory (Dominic Purcell), as he helps protect the future President of the US, while mildly corrupting him, was simply awesome. Despite serious moments, this is not a serious show. Now that the show runners embrace this ideology, a superior product is being provided. That Mick opens the show’s narrative usually reserved for Sara, and previously Rip, is funny as hell up to his “who writes this stuff?” sign off.

Sara (Caity Lotz) knowing full well that they are being baited for a trap breaks up the team into segments to save Washington before his deadly meeting. Amaya/Vixen (Maisie Richardson-Sellers) and Nate/Steel (Nick Zano) pose as a married couple, while Rory poses as one of Washington’s men. Ray (Brandon Routh) operates covertly as the Atom having shrunk to a toy like size.  Sara of course takes the lead. Jax (Franz Drameh) and Stein (Victor Garber) remain behind in the Waverider as back up should they need the intercession of Firestorm.

The chemistry between Nate and Amaya comes into play along with a slight ‘swipe’ from Marvel’s Avengers in which “flying monkeys” are referenced with Vixen “getting the reference”. Zano’s Nate is what Ray should be. He is funny, bright and engaging. We know what will happen between him and Vixen early on and yet the journey is no less entertaining. The demonstration of each of their abilities as always plays well, with her calling upon an underwater animal totem. His using his steel form to shield her during Rip’s initial incursion was also a cool visual that does not wear over time. Ray is relegated to comic relief in an actual chase sequence that did deliver as a punch line, based on his earlier criticism of Rory’s neglectful habits with food consumption.

The running gag at Rory’s expense upon his capture killed as both Stein and Nate earn the zinger when stating their heroic objectives. “We need to save the president, Christmas and America…” “And Rory…” ‘It’s implied.” When speaking of comedy, however, all sequences involving the man who would be president and the career criminal pyromaniac were gold. Rory’s calling General Washington (Randall Batinkoff) “Georgie, and encouraging him to act rebelliously and fight dirty, as the “American way” – made for some superb moments.

The ep from a purely action based perspective delivered quite ably. Pitting Rip against Jax and seeing him attempt to both break into his former vessel as well as break down his former mentee was top tier. His immediate reaction to Sara upon seeing her for the first time after his LOD ‘reboot’ was brutal. His later action with her on the ship was disturbing. Rip’s telling Jax plainly that he plans to ‘burn down’ time for all it has cost him is delivered with cold malice. Honestly, I hope they never bring him back to the Rip that was as the evil Rip is far better. Seeing him match and outplay his former allies showed for the first time exactly how capable a leader he could have been.

The end segment Christmas dinner takes the edge off the episode as the team comes together acknowledging they are family and that ultimately this factor will help them surmount their formidable adversaries. Ray’s “drunk uncle” joke about Rory is capped off nicely with a proper monument to the man as a result of his ‘inspiring’ methods with Washington. The stage is set for the next battle and the knowledge that LOT is well on course to remaining simply outstanding and well worth your time.

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