NOTE: Full spoilers for this episode of, “Legends of Tomorrow” are present in this review
It’s great to have the Legends back on the airwaves as of last week, just in time to wrap up their hunt for the pieces of the Loom of Fate! There’s just one Loom piece left to seek out on Legends of Tomorrow at this point, and as one can predict, this last piece will be the trickiest and most treacherous one to find. “The Great British Fake Off” effectively capitalizes on this increased magical trickery around the final Loom piece, standing as arguably one of the best episodes of the current season, thanks to an unexpected, yet highly rewarding team-up between Zari and Constantine. Meanwhile, Sara’s mysterious survival against Atropos starts commanding more questions among the team, particularly when Sara soon after falls comatose during a spell.
This episode finds another interesting way to play with the series’ central time travel hook. This occurs when Zari and Constantine end up being displaced in time while trying to find the last Loom piece, ultimately being dropped into Constantine’s estate circa 1910, when it was a boarding house. This results from the work of an unexpected, but no less awesome addition to the Arrowverse from DC’s comic books, namely Enchantress! Enchantress is a DC villain that you may recall as being the main antagonist in 2016 movie, Suicide Squad, where she was played by Cara Delevigne. In the case of the Arrowverse however, Enchantress is seemingly a more benevolent figure of mythology (one that’s also undergone a race change, as is common for several DC characters being translated to The CW), and no longer appears to have any relation to archaeologist, June Moone. Instead, Enchantress was entrusted with hiding the final Loom Piece outside of Earth-1 by Clotho/Charlie (now Earth-Prime), a task that Enchantress carries out with almost too much aplomb.
Enchantress’ magic leaves the final Loom Piece constantly evading the gaze of Zari and Constantine, despite them being in the correct time period to look for it. Making things even more complicated is that the first guest they encounter at the boarding house is none other than Jack the Ripper, who nearly kills Zari! After it’s determined that Jack is an Encore as well, Zari and Constantine realize in horror that a whole slew of Encores are headed to the boarding house, while the Legends come to the same realization, once they detect the same anomaly on the Waverider. This appears to be the work of Astra, necessitating that Gary take Ava to Hell in order to confront her, alongside Mick. This trip to Hell thus serves as the subplot for this week’s episode, and it’s another story hook that’s just as great in concept as it is in execution.
Despite Sara once again having to be temporarily benched (Charlie and Nate didn’t have much presence in this episode either, in fact), due to her convenient falling unconscious while Constantine tries to invoke the spell to summon the final Loom piece, the Legends didn’t seem to suffer as a team at all, achieving great storylines that were packed with excitement and humour. The implication that Sara has had some sort of ‘powers’ activated after her encounter with Atropos is intriguing as well, though this is clearly a twist that’s being saved for later in the season. For now, the splitting between Zari and Constantine in 1910, and Ava, Gary and Mick in Hell, makes for a healthy duo of plots that easily sustain this episode’s entertainment value, despite a good chunk of the Legends ultimately sitting out this week’s events.
Zari and Constantine being hunted by a whole slew of Encores, including Bonnie & Clyde, King Henry VIII, Black Caesar and Brutus, is already a fun idea, but the episode really maximizes its appeal with lots of enjoyable twists. These include Zari disguising herself as Cleopatra to blend in with the Encores (a cute riff on the fact that Zari is supposed to be the Arrowverse’s version of Egyptian goddess-inspired DC heroine, Isis), the Encores all betraying and destroying each other with Hell weapons to try and find the Loom piece, and the Loom piece only revealing itself to people who stop looking for it. This latter point in particular presented a great opportunity for Constantine to get to know Zari a little better, with Zari demonstrating some superb vulnerability as she opens up to Constantine about never having her emotions taken seriously on account of her fame, before she lost her little brother due to depriving him of the Wind Totem. That said, I could do without the weird romantic tension between Zari and Constantine here, which threatens to bring Legends of Tomorrow back to its over-abundance of tedious, juvenile love stories from last season.
Fortunately, there was none of that during Ava’s, Gary’s and Mick’s trip to Hell. Mick being surprisingly at home in Hell is no surprise, but even so, Astra proves to be a dangerous obstacle for the Legends. That ends up being a bit moot though, since it appears that Astra has been betrayed by Lachesis, who has stolen all of her Soul Coins, including that of Constantine. When Astra then goes to confront Lachesis, after predictably betraying Ava, Gary and Mick, Lachesis offers Astra the chance to become the new third Fate, granting her absolute control and power on a cosmic scale. This is a huge decision for Astra, and one that points her character in a very interesting new direction. Despite the renewed promise of Astra being a big bad for this season however, she ultimately chooses to leave Hell with Ava, Gary and Mick, seemingly betraying the Fates in kind, while potentially setting herself up for her own redemption arc towards the end of the season. This is a fantastic twist, and one that should create some awkward consequences for Constantine in particular, even after the Legends have now found the last Loom Piece, and are well on their way to restoring the Loom of Fate.
Legends of Tomorrow may have had a bit of a sluggish, confused start to Season Five, but the show has since recovered its momentum, and now appears to be hitting a high note once again. “The Great British Fake Off” delivers one of the coolest and most rewarding Encore battles to date, while also providing a surprisingly great team-up between Zari and Constantine, even if it’s slightly dinged by the threat of yet another forced romance subplot. Astra ultimately choosing to place her faith in Constantine once again is a huge turn though, cementing Atropos and Lachesis as the ultimate threats to the Legends this season, that is, assuming that Astra doesn’t have some other scheme in mind to completely seize the Loom of Fate for herself. All the while, Sara’s mysterious new powers appear to allow her to see the near future, which could prove to be very handy for a time-traveling Waverider captain!… Whenever Sara regains consciousness anyway. However long that takes though, the Legends now have everything they need to assemble the Loom of Fate, which is probably good news for Behrad and Astra, even if Atropos and Lachesis also no longer have any reason to drag their feet in the underworld at this point.
- Creative, fun Zari/Constantine team-up
- Encore team effectively mixes up the show's stakes
- Astra placing her faith in the Legends over the Fates
- Do we really need yet another tedious romance subplot?