First, let’s get one thing out of the way: this show is bananas. No other show on television can match the frenetic energy and madcap plots featured each week on DC’s Legends of Tomorrow. And when I say bananas, I don’t mean that as an insult — it’s almost always non-stop, relentless fun. The Season 2 premiere, ‘Out of Time,’ is thankfully no exception.
The episode begins with Dr. Nate Heywood racing through city hall in Star City to get to Mayor Oliver Queen. As a historian (or “time detective” as he calls it), he has been able to deduce that the Legends are in trouble. There are a number of new aberrations in time, but the biggest is an atomic bomb that went off underwater near New York City in 1942 — three years before the a-bomb was invented.
Ollie and Nate head to the New York harbor and find the Waverider resting on the ocean floor. They find Mick in stasis and, after waking him, demand he tell them what happened. It turns out to be a long story.
First, we get a fairly hilarious look at the team in action in their new roles as de facto Time Masters. They’re in 16th century France, attempting to ensure that King Louis XIII consummates his new marriage. He does, but not before Sara “warms up” his bride (as Jax puts it), and the rest of the team fight off a team of laser-gun toting assassins.
Back on the Waverider, a “timequake” rattles the ship. Rip discovers the cause: an atomic bomb has destroyed New York City in 1942 — something that most definitely should not have happened.
There’s only one problem: as we saw at the end of the Season 1 finale, Rex Tyler (aka Hourman) arrived to warn the Legends that they must never travel to 1942.
When Ray and Martin discover that Albert Einstein disappeared just before the bombing, they deduce that he must have been kidnapped and forced to build an atomic bomb. Ignoring Rex’s warning, they tell Gideon to set course for 1942.
Rip, Martin, and Rory head to a cocktail party to abduct Einstein, while Sara sneaks off to confront Damian Darhk. Concerned, Ray secretly follows her. (Jax is left onboard the Waverider against his wishes, in order to enact some repairs on behalf of Rip).
After a quick fight (that also involves Martin punching Einstein in the face), Rip, Martin, and Rory secure Einstein onboard the Waverider.
Ray confronts Sara, who confesses she’s attempting to kill Darhk in the past to prevent him from killing her sister Laurel in 2016. But before they can do anything, they overhear Darhk selling uranium — a surefire clue that he’s connection to the impending atomic bomb.
When they discover the timeline remains unchanged, Einstein reveals that his ex-wife, Mileva Maric, has the knowledge to build an atomic bomb, as well.
They track down Damian Darhk and Mileva Maric to a dock, where Darhk is attempting to load the atomic bomb onto a submarine. After an epic fight, Ray is unable to difuse the bomb and the team has to fall back. They do rescue Maric, but have to leave the bomb. Rip is able to track it via the Waverider, but asks Jax to install a failsafe onto the ship called a “time scatter.”
The team takes the Waverider underwater to confront Darhk, but when he launches the atomic bomb at the time ship, the gig is up. Rip activates the time scatter, which literally scatters the time throughout time. All except for Rory and himself, that is. Rory is too injured to survive time travel, so Rip puts him in stasis.
Back in the present, Oliver says that he doesn’t have time to travel through time (irony!), but convinces Mick that Dr. Heywood is the perfect person to track down the rest of the team.
After a series of hilarious time-travel vignettes, Rory and Nate do indeed manage to rescue the rest of the team. Once they’re all back onboard the Waverider, they ask Gideon where in time they can find Rip. She says she can’t find him, but agrees to play his “final message.”
Rip essentially concedes that, as captain, he went down with the ship. He does say, though, that he will never abandon hope of seeing them all again someday.
The team decides the best way to prevent Darhk from trying again is for Einstein to publically acknowledge his ex-wife’s role in his research. (Which he reluctantly does.)
Back on the submarine, Darhk’s Nazi collaborators turn on his now that he’s failed to secure the bomb for them. Fortunately, Darhk’s “parter” shows up to kill them all. Who is this mysterious partner? Eobard Thawne, aka Reverse-Flash.
As the Legends prepare to leave 1942, they’re confronted by a group of costumed superheroes. They’re the Justice Society of America, and they have a few questions for the Waverider crew…
Dr. Heywood is somehow able to figure out that Oliver Queen is Green Arrow simply because they both showed up in Star(ling) City at the same time. If that’s all it took, then why the hell hasn’t anyone else put two-and-two together? (Actually, they have, but Oliver disproved them all back in Arrow Season 1).
How great are the new Waverider sets? The library is a nice addition and the bridge (is that what they call it? Control room maybe?) was long overdue for an overhaul. It was amusing to see what appears to be another subtle Doctor Who reference on the show, though — the new console on the bridge(?) looks shockingly similar to the longstanding TARDIS console on that series.
Here’s a bit of nerdy trivia: that stuff about Mileva Maric knowing all of Einstein’s research is based on a real-life controversy. It has been speculated for decades that Maric co-authored Einstein’s famous Theory of Relativity.