- TV Show
- Action, Sci-fi
- run date
- Victor Garber, Brandon Routh, Caity Lotz, Arthur Darvill, Dominic Purcell
- The CW
- Current Status
- In Season
As much as I like to poke fun at how ridiculous this show gets, I have to admit that tonight’s winter finale accomplished something special, something that I feel like it’s come close to achieving before — particularly with Sara — without really getting there: It captured exactly why we like stories of time travel so much.
Yes, focusing a show on the device of time travel can mean fun costumes and wacky historical scenarios, but stories like these can also be…soothing. It’s a matter of wishful thinking — if you could travel to the past, what would you do? What would you fix? If you had more time, what would you say to the people you love?
Stein’s death is unlike other deaths on the show, or really on any Arrowverse show. There’s no one, nothing to be angry at. You could say it happened because of Nazis on another planet, but the Nazi who shot him was a faceless character and was destroyed seconds later, unlike Damien Darhk (a physical reminder of what Sara lost), Reverse-Flash (the same to Barry), and, to be honest, everyone Oliver has ever faced on Arrow, from the moment he returned to Star(ling) City and made a list of names to target.
But what’s more, time travel not only gives Jax closure, but also grants it to Stein. Will he eventually hate the fact that Jax has revealed a key date in his future to him? Maybe, but maybe not. And will Jax one day be compelled to return to the Waverider, take the drop ship to a younger Marty, and spill the beans once and for all? Maybe, but at this point, probably not.
All of this is to say that I ultimately loved the way they handled Stein’s death. I thought it had been glossed over too quickly in the crossover, but here, it really did get room to breathe.
Even if that breathing room began with an eyebrow-raising visit to some Vikings who landed in North America long before Christopher Columbus sailed the ocean blue, and who, in the world of Legends, wind up worshipping a Furby-like toy named Beebo because a young Stein gets torn out of his time and into 1000 A.D. It’s…a lot, so here’s a summary: A young Stein is at the mall trying to make off with the last Beebo toy when he becomes an anachronism captured by Vikings. They use his genius to conquer North America instead of returning to Greenland, because they’re convinced Beebo is a deity. Worst of all, the clan leader Leif Erikson’s sister Freydis has been using Beebo’s words to enforce their rules.
And so, enter the Legends — and Agent Sharpe, who had called to offer condolences and then got recruited to help give the team an outsider’s perspective on the situation. The team goes undercover to the Yuletide Feast, only for Mick to ruin it when he goes snooping around Beebo’s offerings and tries to steal some mead. (Leo, see, has turned the Waverider into a dry ship to try to make Mick control his drinking.) Just as he’s about to be burned alive, Leo saves him, and the Vikings believe Beebo to have forgiven Mick — only to then spot Amaya and Nate god-napping their precious Beebo. A fight breaks out between the Legends and the Vikings, and Beebo gets hot-potatoed between members until…Mick blasts the toy with his gun and sets it on fire.
Just as the Legends think they’ve accomplished their mission, Damien Darhk arrives to offer the Vikings a new God to worship: Himself, dressed as Odin, the God of War and Death and Glorious Blond Locks. (Next: Welcome to the Upside Down, Sara!)