Speaking of interesting pairings: Ray bonds with Charlie, one of the band members, after she defends him when his credibility comes into question because the other bandmates found a newspaper with him and the other Legends in disco garb, a callback to the lost disco adventure in last season’s “Here I Go Again.” By this point, Ray knows Charlie is the fugitive, but he still listens to her tale of woe about being wrongfully imprisoned. He even opens up about how his crew lost their moral compass, a.k.a. Amaya. Ray’s compassion convinces Charlie to reveal that she’s a shape-shifter.
Ray decides that Charlie shouldn’t be sent to hell, but the Legends disagree and believe that Ray has been compromised; Zari, knowing what Ray did for Nora, is the deciding vote in the matter. So in the mission’s climactic sequence, it falls on Ray to talk the Legends out of sending Charlie, whom he believes deserves a second chance, to hell. In the process, he becomes the team’s new moral center, which feels rather fitting given what we know about this sweet, innocent character. Ray’s case is bolstered by the fact that Charlie engages in some emotional manipulation and transforms into all of them, including Amaya, which convinces the Legends not to send her down under. But Constantine won’t share a ship with a shapeshifter, so he casts a spell that removes her powers and traps her in the form of Amaya. And thus, Maisie Richardson-Sellers returns to the show as a completely new character.
Back on the Waverider, Ray still seems determined to prove that he’s not entirely good and reveals that he’s the one who let Nora Darhk escape, which is news to Captain Sara. Again, he makes the argument that they should give her a chance to be a good person, especially since most of the team received a second one, and so Sara acquiesces.
One of the things I loved about the episode is how it had a sense of history. There were so many callbacks to past episodes and events that made the entire episode incredibly richer. Not only did “Dancing Queen” allude to the lost disco adventure, but Ray also quoted Stein when he said “astonishing!” after seeing Charlie shapeshift for the first time, and the whole idea of Mick walking Nate through stealing the corgis felt like a callback to their brief partnership in season 2. Four seasons in, it’s good that the show recognizes that one of its greatest strengths is all of the history it has built up over the past few years.
While the Legends were off in punk rock London, Nate was busy getting used to life at the Time Bureau. Spoiler alert: It finds it quite boring and eventually lures Gary out on an adventure with the prospect of becoming of time bros. The mission doesn’t go as planned, and Gary ends up bringing back a Little Shop of Horrors-esque plant that terrorizes the entire office.
In the process, though, Nate realizes that he decided to stay at the bureau because it was hard to be on the Waverider without Amaya. He shares this epiphany with Sara right at the end of the episode, which convinces Sara to not tell him about Charlie and to suggest that he stay at the Bureau for a bit because she’s invested in his growth (which might the least convincing thing she’s ever said).
Wall of Weird:
- Ramona Young made her debut as Alaska Young Mona, who delivers lunch to the Time Bureau. Gary is forced to wipe her memory after she finds out about the Time Bureau’s existence on Taco Monday (#daretodefy).
- Apparently, Charlie-as-the Queen moons the crowd at a Smell concert. The Crown would never!
- “Are you being serious or racist?” “Both, love.” – Zari, to Constantine, after he assumes that the Irish-looking member of the Smell must be a leprechaun.
- In the episode, Constantine revealed that he used to perform with a band and that he has hurt plenty of people. That second revelation was paired with a flashback to his dramatic scene at the end of the premiere. This feels like the show is drawing on Ming Doyle and James Tynion IV’s run on Constantine: The Hellblazer, which executive producer Phil Klemmer recommended people read ahead of the season.