Legends of Tomorrow Season 5 Premiere Recap: What We Do in the Waverider

Legends Tomorrow Recap

The Legends of Tomorrow are back, and now more than a bit famous. Who’s loving the superhero spotlight? And how did their latest lark — a documentary — jibe with Sara’s somber state of mind?

The Legends be Japanese beverage-hawking celebs in the wake of the Season 4 finale’s publicly broadcast heroics at Hey!World. Nate of course is basking in the buzz, playing up how he was “changed” by his two-minute death — and yet he can’t shake the fact that “something doesn’t feel right.” That of course is an allusion to the erasure of Zari from the Legends’ past, where she was promptly replaced by her brother Behrad (who seems to be quite the stoner). Mona is now acting as the literary agent for Mick aka Rebecca Silver, while Gary had fairy godmother Nora fulfill a wish of his, by making him Constantine’s apprentice. Charlie’s purpose or frequent lack thereof is underscored early in the episode by her decision to flit off in a jump ship, for zero reason other than being bored. Oh, and Gideon is spouting gibberish, having been infected by some sort of “phantom data” while Sara was gone.

With the Time Bureau shuttered by Congress, Ava is trying to get back in Uncle Sam’s good graces by offering “full transparency” into the Waverider’s missions — by allowing a documentary crew on board. When Sara returns from her long mission (the “Crisis” crossover), Ava cues the team to not bring up dearly departed Oliver Queen. Ray, though, does regale his “time bros” (and the doc crew) with tales of fighting alongside Superman, that handsome devil.

Soon enough, a Class 5 time quake springs the reassembled team into action and steers them to Imperial Russia circa 1917, where Rasputin is being laid to rest — until he springs out of his coffin to live another day! Working his underworld contacts with Gary, John gleans that Rasputin was an evil soul brought back topside by Astra, who is now “making money moves” down in Hell. (Nate and Ray debate calling these new baddies “evil do-overs” or “villain-agains,” but Mona chimes in with the far sleeker “encores.”) During their first approach of Rasputin, Nate manages to dazzle the encore with the prospect of TV fame; Grigori in turn leads Nate to remember a woman from his altered past, though her name and face still elude him.

Amid the Rasputin of it all, Ava struggles with how to help Sara mourn Oliver. (Her first stab at a thankfully undelivered condolence card message is just wrong!) When Sara comments that everyone has been too busy playing to the cameras to ask how she is doing, Ava explains that she asked the gang not to remind her of Oliver’s death.

“Don’t remind me? Did you think that I could just forget…?” Sara marvels. “You still have no idea what I saw out there. Countless Earths died. I became a Paragon and traveled back to the Big Bang. We restarted the universe, and now nobody even remembers what we changed. You can see why I’d want to talk to my friends about it. Instead, I get cameras in my face.”

Sara’s outburst sends Ava on a frantic cleaning spree, where she recounts for us the unflattering performance she once got… from herself. But the ladies later smooth things over smack dab in the middle of a melee with Rasputin and his hypnotized goons — climaxing with their tandem takedown of Rasputin, after which they share a romantic near-kiss. (Ugh, Ray!) Ray makes up for his bad timing when Sara lobs the Atom into Rasputin’s pie hole, after which Ray embiggens himself to explode the encore into splotches of goo. “Size matters!” goes the Atom’s camera-ready catchphrase.

Gathered for an end-of-documentary press event, the Legends follow Sara’s lead and proceed to proclaim that their Waverider adventures were mere camera magic and chicanery, that they’re just a bunch of frauds. (“The special effects were kiiinda questionable,” says Mona, the victim of so much so-so CGI.)

Despite “outing” themselves, the Waverider mission shall go on, financed now by a Faberge Egg that Mick pinched while in Russia. Mick later praises the romantic prose Mona crafted for a love letter to Rasputin’s crush, so much so that he invites her to take over as Rebecca Silver. Mona gladly accepts, but says that whereas he juggled two lives to apparently diminishing returns as an author, she needs to focus — and thus is leaving the team. (Sorta. Ramona Abish Young is recurring this season.)

To pay encore-unleashing Astra a visit, Constantine guzzles some of Rasputin’s divvied-up goo (ewww is right!) and uses a spell to transport him to that land down under. Meanwhile, Nate, in the course of fine-tuning glitchy Gideon, gets a fleeting glimpse at a Princess Leia-like recording made for him by a beautiful brunette.

“Nate, if you’re seeing this, you altered my future at Hey!World,” the woman says. “I don’t know where I’ll be or who I’ll be, but I know that I love you. Find me.”

Gee, Zari, maybe leave Nate your name next time?! Help a fella out!