Rip turning from Waverider captain to member of the Legion of Doom has been one of the better moves in a very smart season 2 of Legends of Tomorrow. Arthur Darvill did as fine a job as the original Rip, but as evil Rip, he has been at a whole new level of engaging. Rip’s days as a villain were always limited, though, and this episode, “Land of the Lost,” makes an effort to restore the status quo in more ways than one.
Mind Melding: Extreme Edition
Legends of Tomorrow could easily do an entire episode on the last cliffhanger with Rip wreaking havoc while being imprisoned on the ship. It would be a better version of season 1’s “River of Time,” essentially. In true Legends fashion, “Land of the Lost” rips through the story and does it all in the cold open.
Rip overrides Gideon and ends up sending the crew all the way back to the Cretaceous Period, aka the time of the dinosaurs that don’t have movies dedicated to them. Fortunately, the chaos allows the team to knock out Rip and prevent him from doing more harm. Unfortunately, the Waverider is damaged and the necessary part to repair it flies off into a T-Rex’s den.
While Ray, Nate and Amaya go off the ship to find this part — more on that in a bit — Mick comes up with an idea. After the customary (and repetitive) jokes about Mick being an idiot subside, the team listens and agrees with him. Mick tells everyone that he believes that they can go into Rip’s mind and unscramble what the Legion scrambled. They can bring back the real Rip. It will require at least two members of the team. Sara and Jax volunteer that it must be them.
While the reason why it must be Jax and Sara is rather arbitrary, the two are the perfect options from a narrative standpoint. Legends of Tomorrow has done a wonderful job of exploring the two as of late and their big sister and little brother dynamic. They are probably the two who have been hit the hardest by Rip flipping the morality switch too. There is no better team-up to fix Rip than Sara and Jax.
Behind Enemy Brainwaves
Once inside Rip’s mind, Sara and Jax learn that it is conveniently just the Waverider with different lighting. There is some actual explanation for it on the show, but we all know the real reason: budget restrictions. It does work on an emotional level, as Sara and Jax scramble around in a familiar setting in a totally unreal circumstance. They are hunted and have to battle manifestations of Rip’s memories and evil versions of themselves that Thawne programmed into Rip’s brain.
The one person that Thawne didn’t touch is Gideon, who Rip imagines as a very hot woman. Granted, this woman is the actual actress who voices Gideon. But Rip’s idea of Gideon as a sexy lady suggests a lot of disturbing things about his relationship to the ship and its AI. With the help of Sexy Gideon, Sara and Jax find the real Rip trapped inside himself and convince him to break free. Rip is back.
There’s not much of an emotional catharsis to the whole ordeal. (But Rip does kiss Sexy Gideon upon discovering himself for reasons that are left unexplained.) It doesn’t truly matter that Legends doesn’t earn Rip turning back to his old self because they never did earn him going evil. Legends does make the relief and joy felt by the team of having their old captain back be felt and not just because they now know the location of the last part of the Spear of Destiny.
The Vixen Paradox
As mentioned, though, it is up to the trio of Ray, Amaya and Nate to repair the ship so the team can actually retrieve that Spear fragment. The adventures of the three in Jurassic Cretaceous World are mostly played for laughs. There is no real threat. A T-Rex is encountered at one point … and quickly neutralized. Amaya’s animal amulet powers extend to dinosaurs, apparently, which should single-handedly make her the most impressive person on the team.
It’s Amaya’s impressiveness that gives the adventure some emotional heft, however. Amaya tells Nate she wants to continue their romance, and Nate is all too eager to go along with the idea. Ray realizes what is going on and becomes a big buzzkill. Ray reminds Nate (and the audience) that Amaya has a future. She is meant to go back to her own time, get married and eventually have a granddaughter who will inherit her powers, become a hero in her own right (and have her own animated series on The CW Seed).
Ray warns Nate that he can’t jeopardize that fact and get too serious with Amaya. Nate sees the logic, but his groin heart is pulling him in a different direction. These problems could be solved with Nate becoming Amaya’s husband and the second Vixen’s grandfather, which no one mentions, but for now things are left in a state of flux. If Nate does start a life with Amaya in the 1940’s, Legends could lose both of its really likable season 2 additions, and that’s a fate worse than the timeline being ripped part.
Do you agree? Could Legends lose both Nate and Amaya?Do you think Nate and Amaya should and will end up together? How long should and will Amaya stay on the team? Are you happy to have the old Rip back? Do you wish he stayed evil longer? Let us know what you think in the comments section below.