Legends Of Tomorrow Zari Review
Legends of Tomorrow: Season 3, Episode 3: Zari comes short when it comes to introducing its title character.
On its own, adding a team member who is on the other side of the law isn’t a half bad idea. Indeed, the Legends already had two in the form of Captain Cold (Wentworth Miller) and Mick (Dominic Purcell), but with Cold long gone and Mick effectively domesticated, perhaps it was time for a new bad boy – or bad girl, as it were.
The only thing is, Zari (Tala Ashe) doesn’t comes across as bad so much as she does desperate. Sure, she doesn’t entirely trust the Legends and they don’t entirely trust her, but given that she comes from a dystopian future where ARGUS patrol the streets like stormtroopers and her religion is illegal, it’s not hard to understand why she’d be wary of joining a team of time-traveling misfits she has never even heard of before. In that sense, she reminds me not of any character on the show but rather Nirah Ahmad, the antagonist from last week’s episode of The Blacklist. Both are morally-gray characters with tragic backstories that are meant to humanize them and both end up feeling defanged as a result.
Of course, this is all resolved by the end of the program, but it never feels quite like it earned it. After all, 42 minutes is an incredibly short amount of time to introduce a new series regular, have them seemingly betray the other, already-established characters, and then make up with them and join the team. If anything, it probably would have worked much better as a two-parter, with the first half ending on her apparent betrayal and the second concluding with her becoming a Legend.
Where the episode succeeds, conversely, is building on already existing characters and relationships. Namely, it succeeds in developing Agent Sharpe’s (Jes Macallan) role as a recurring antagonist to the group in general and a nemesis of Sara (Caitlin Lotz) in particular. Although she and the time Bureau aren’t as much of a nuisance as they were in the seasons’s first episode, she has an exchange with Sara that solidifies her antagonistic credtinials, sneering that Rip (Arthur Darvill) is no longer there to protect them and that she fully intends to take them down. I wouldn’t be surprised at all if she ended up being the big bad of the season.
It’s hard to tell where Legends of Tomorrow will go from here, but I hope that wherever it is involves more memorable interactions like the one between Sara and Sharpe and less clumsily-handled introductions like Zari’s.
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