By Thomas Gillen
The television show “The Flash” premiered in October of 2014 and is a spin-off of fellow CW show “Arrow,” starring the Green Arrow. The show follows the adventures of superhero Barry Allen, a.k.a. the Flash, and is based on the DC Comics character. In “The Flash,” Barry and Team Flash work at S.T.A.R. Labs in Central City and attempt to capture various meta-humans who threaten the city. Meta-humans are people who were given superpowers after an explosion in S.T.A.R. Labs, which affected Barry, Team Flash member Cisco Ramon, and countless others. Some of Barry’s powers include super speed, time travel, and super agility.
“Legends of Today,” is the eighth episode of “The Flash’s” second season and functions as part one of a crossover with “Arrow.” It expands on several characters for the newest CW spin-off of “The Flash” and “Arrow,” “Legends of Tomorrow,” which will premiere on Jan. 21, 2016.
In the eighth episode of “The Flash,” which aired on Dec. 1, Barry and Cisco are tasked with protecting Hawkgirl from Vandal Savage, who has journeyed to Central City to find and kill her. With an unstoppable immortal searching for Hawkgirl, Barry turns to the only people who can help him, Oliver Queen a.k.a. the Green Arrow and his team in Star City.
After joining with Team Arrow, our heroes meet Hawkman, who is also trying to protect Hawkgirl as he attempts to free her to unlock her powers and the memories from her past lives. While half of the episode was focused on Hawkgirl, the other half involved other members of Team Flash, including Dr. Caitlin Snow, Dr. Harrison Wells, Joe West, and Jay Garrick. The four had to come together to save Dr. Wells after he was accidentally shot by a police officer.
Since “Legends of Today” will be the first episode in the two-episode crossover between “The Flash” and “Arrow,” it will have big shoes to fill after the high bar of the first crossover last year. Not only was this one of the best episodes of “The Flash,” it also topped last year’s crossover. Once again the high point of this crossover is the interaction between the different characters. It’s always fun to see actors and characters from two different shows on screen at the same time. All of the actors have great chemistry, with Stephen Amell and Grant Gustin as Oliver and Barry and Carlos Valdes and Emily Bett Rickards as Cisco and Felicity as the standouts.
While the fight scenes in “Legends of Today” were fun, the smaller character moments really stood out. One of the best moments is when the heroes are in Team Arrow’s base of operations where Cisco makes fun of Thea Queen’s alter ego and tells her he could give her a better superhero name.
With all of the different story lines in this episode, it had the potential to feel very stuffed with characters and a complicated plot. Thankfully, this was not the case. Each story line was given plenty of attention and enough time was devoted to setting up “Legends of Tomorrow” and continuing story lines in past episodes of “The Flash.” Every character was also given enough material and was able to stand out in some way.