Friday, 3 March 2017

Legends of Tomorrow S2 Ep4 'Abominations' - review

2016 (USA)

Watched on Cable TV.

Contains spoilers. 

I'll start by focusing on the whole show Legends of Tomorrow; the bastard stepson of the DC's two successful TV series  Arrow and The Flash, and why I'm continually concerned and confused as to why I watch it. Ok, it's not all bad but Greg Berlanti, Marc Guggenheim, Andrew Kreisberg, and Phil Klemmer's time travelling, fantastical and increasingly preposterous action / adventure / buddy / romance spectacular misses the mark way too many times to really ever provide a satisfactory scratch to the in vogue super-hero itch. In many ways doomed to failure, as laden with all the characters deemed superfluous from the above mentioned series, and having a core narrative that is laughably incoherent, the series requires of the viewer a near infinite reserve of perseverance and tolerance for what is in reality scant reward. The writers have also managed, against all the odds, to cobble together a narrative that makes both a man hit by speed-force lighting, and the playboy turned invincible archery bad-ass of Starling City look reasonable and believable concepts with the viewer expected to suspend disbelief to the point of insanity to get anything from it at all. As said, if it wasn't that I feel somewhat invested in the universe I really wouldn't be able to handle the levels of schlock at all.

'Abominations' itself plays out like an average Syfy channel / The Asylum tongue in cheek zombie direct to tv spectacular. Effects are good, the zombies are coherent to the established walking dead trope, and the time travelling troupe's meddling in the civil war undead apocalypse is every bit as self-referential and both deferential and at times glib as you'd want. The team pick up a time aberration, head back to save General Ulysses S. Grant, and as usual somehow fudge their way through to a half-arsed conclusion that saves the day but leaves the larger war; a struggle with the tired and second-hand Flash and Arrow's Eobard Thawne and Damien Darhk across time to find the spear of destiny (the one that stabbed Jesus on the cross); more than hanging. As a discrete episode while it's probably above par it's still really just more Legends of Tomorrow filler, all rather formulaic and strained. As a cheap zombie hour it's not all bad as the undead are presented confidently and the acting is more than up to the job. I guess it all depends how much you liked Abraham Lincoln vs Zombies - 4/10.


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