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TV Review: LEGENDS OF TOMORROW: Season 3, Episode 1: Aruba-Con [The CW]

Arthur Darvill Legends Of Tomorrow

Legends Of Tomorrow Aruba-Con Review

Legends of Tomorrow: Season 3, Episode 1: Aruba-Con errs on the side of light-heartedness but is nevertheless an effective start for the season.

Granted, an episode that begins with T. rexes running rampant through LA doesn’t exactly scream serious stuff, but the brighter tone does feel a bit weird coming in the wake of the events of the second season. Making it all the weirder is that said T. rexes, along with a litany of other temporal anomalies, are disposed of with unspeakable ease by Rip (Arthur Darvill) and his newly-formed Time Bureau, basically turning Season 2’s cliffhanger into a narrative red herring. Again, perhaps we should be relieved considering the cosmic stakes of the past two seasons, but I can’t help but feel kind of played by the quickness with which the problem is resolved.

None of this is meant to disparage the program or its feel: on the contrary, it gets pretty strong once it embraces the role of a much-needed breather from the excitement of Seasons 1 and 2. We’ve already seen each of the Legends go about their regular lives, but getting to see them return to civilian life after all their adventures presents us with ample opportunities for laughs. Scenes like Ray Palmer (Brandon Routh) going back and forth with his boss about the significance of dating apps for society remind us it’s just as much the writing as the action that make Legends and its Arrowverse sister shows so enjoyable.

As far as superhero/science fiction TV goes, the show and its sibling series have always had impressive graphics and this episode is no exception. While the Waverider and the aforementioned dinosaurs are all obviously computer-generated, they’re about as real as you can expect to see on TV today and the cast really sell it when acting like they’re really there. The effects aren’t quite a focal point of the program (and understandably so, considering its relatively laid-back tone), but they certainly don’t take away from one’s appreciation of it.

One thing is notably absent from the show, however: a real villain. Sure, the Legends have to capture Julius Caesar (Simon Merrells) and return him to his time, but compared to the epoch-spanning evil of Vandal Savage and the Legion of Doom, he’s far too parochial to be a true menace. However, series newbie and Time Bureau agent Ava Sharpe’s (Jes Macallan) distrust of our heroes makes one wonder if she will eventually emerge as one of the big bads of the season. It’s too early to tell obviously, but I anticipate whatever Legends of Tomorrow has next for us in any case.

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About the author

Reggie Peralta

An aspiring writer, longtime film junkie, and former UCLARadio.com disc jockey (where I graduated with a BA in Political Science), I've made the jump from penning book reviews and current events editorials for HonorSociety.org to writing movie and TV news and reviews.

When I'm not working towards my certificate in Radio and Television/Video Production at Fullerton College, I enjoy reading (horror, science fiction, and historical/political nonfiction are particular favorites), participating in my school's TV and theatre clubs, attending movie screenings, plays, concerts, and other events, and trying to come up with pithy things to say on social media. Believe it or not, there are occasions where I find time to write for my own leisure.

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