Jack Rowand/The CW
December 04, 2018 at 12:05 AM EST

Now that’s more like it. This week’s Legends balanced its trademark silliness with affecting character work around a central theme of doomed romances — John and Desmond, Mona and Konane, Mick and Garima — and then wrapped it all up with a reality-bending cliffhanger. Plus, there was no Hank Heywood griping about the Time Bureau’s budget. What a gift!

Sort of — this episode was still mostly about John Constantine sending the love of his life to hell. He’s plagued with memories of Desmond, the man he had a vision of a few episodes back, and he’s jolted awake from his latest Des-related dream by Charlie, who’s eager to have him reverse his spell on her. She’s begun to be able to shapeshift parts of herself again; he tells her no, but she assures him that one of these days, he’ll need her for something — and that’s when they’ll be able to make a trade.

They’re not the only ones squabbling aboard the Waverider, though. Sara’s fine with Mick continuing to conjure up Garima via the Book of Brigid, but Ava’s not, so she confiscates it. Before they can settle their score, Ray notices that the cereal they’re eating has a quiz about serial killers (why? who cares!) that lists Marie Laveau (lookin’ at you, American Horror Story fans) as the most high-profile criminal in New Orleans in the 1800s. Ava, who studies serial killers on the side — I bet she listens to a lot of podcasts — questions the fact. She’s right to do so: As it turns out, there’s a monster loose in New Orleans murdering wealthy blonde ladies from inside locked rooms, the MO of a killer named Mike the Spike, Ava says.

And so, the team separates and heads to 1856 Big Easy. There, Charlie and Zari lose John, who wanders off to Royal Street, where he had lived with Desmond before Des’s demise. A man called John by name before knocking him out with a purple powder and bringing him to Marie Laveau herself, who interrogates John about his medallion — a relic of her family imbued with protective magic that Desmond had given John months ago. (Desmond is Marie’s great-great-grandson and, she points out, “must have loved” John very much to give it up.)

Because Sara had placed trackers in all of Constantine’s underwear — a very Legends joke — Charlie and Zari find John just as he finishes explaining what happened to Desmond to Marie. She tells him he must save her kin, then informs the team that she’s sensed the spirit of a dead person around New Orleans…

…which is how the B-Team ends up joining the A-Team, at a party hosted by the first would-be victim. There, Ray follows a suspicious man upstairs, where he overhears a girl crying as she clutches her doll. “This doll is going to kill my mama,” she sobs, as Ray pries her doll from her hands. But as he examines it, another doll approaches from behind — and knocks him out with a shovel. Just another Monday for the Legends!

Good thing Sara, Mick, and Ava are there, too. Sara finds Ray unconscious and fights the doll when it goes full Chucky at her face, and Mick arrives just in time to torch the thing. Ava, though, says they’ll have to keep a close eye on it — they need to find out if the doll’s spirit really is Mike the Spike.

New Orleans isn’t done with the Legends yet, however. John has concocted a plan to fix everything he’s being tormented with: He decides to recruit Charlie into posing as Amaya to distract John six months ago so he never meets Desmond, falls in love, and ruins his life — which means he’ll never join the Legends and take away Charlie’s superpower. Charlie’s in; after all, it sounds like a win-win. For now.

Back at the Time Bureau, Nate also thinks he has a win on his hands. After watching Gary fail epically at flirting with Mona, he offers him a little dating advice and agrees to help Gary out. Mona, though, has eyes for someone else: the kaupe, a caveman-esque creature she’s caring for in the Time Bureau’s cells. (They connect in a Tarzan-esque scene that was… weird, to say the least.) So, when Mona runs into Nate and confesses that she has a crush, Nate thinks she’s talking about Gary. He encourages her to tell him her feelings, and she happily runs off to do so in another classic case of Legends hijinks.

Speaking of which, the team has finally brought the doll into the lab, and Gideon reports that New Orleans’ history has gone back to normal, even if Mick robbed the party they attended. Sara convinces Ava to stick around for dinner, but as they leave the room, the doll’s hand begins to curl its fingers…

NEXT: Return of the Stein puppet

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