I’ve watched the new trailer for Legends of Tomorrow’s sixth season twice now, and I’m still not sure I have much of a grasp on what’s going on for the Waverider team this year. And I kind of love that.
Best I can tell, Sara “White Canary” Lance has been abducted by aliens, and that means that the titular Legends are going to have to travel through time to save their leader. And for this team, the linear path to accomplishing their goals is never the path taken. But the season six trailer manages to capture the sheer breadth of slapstick nonsense these heroes will find themselves in over the course of the season. The first episode premieres on Sunday, May 2 at 8 p.m. Eastern.
For those that don’t know, Legends of Tomorrow is one of CW’s on-going DC Comics shows airing right now, meaning it’s part of of the Arrowverse the network has been spinning since Arrow’s debut in 2012. And while yes, that might carry a specific connotation of melodramatic mediations on what it means to be a hero, Legends of Tomorrow is so, so much more than that. At least, eventually it is. Its early seasons have some of that same angsty, brooding hero tone that propelled the franchise forward. But eventually, the whole thing shifts in tone into something so goddamn delightful I recommend it to even the most cynical of superhero haters.
That’s because Legends of Tomorrow isn’t really a superhero show. It’s more like a variety show that happens to star superheroes. Several members of its cast are relatively obscure compared to the Batmans and Wonder Womans of the DC universe, but that’s because the titular Legends are made up of a lot of the b-tier heroes that made their way through the other shows over the years. Rather than just being another villain of the week show among the several the Arrow has already spun off, it’s delightfully cheesy, full of fun homages to both television history and also DC’s own lore, and when it commits to a bit like a stuffed toy named Beebo taking on a season’s villain in a big kaiju face-off, it really commits.
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On top of all this, Legends of Tomorrow also has probably my favorite depiction of a live-action superhero right now in Matt Ryan’s John Constantine. Green Arrow is my favorite superhero generally, but I’ve never been a fan of how Arrow made him into a broody Batman clone and then also a cop. Meanwhile, Constantine goes from absolutely having none of these antics to buying into it all as seasons go on, and even as he brings some darkness with him (he’s an exorcist and warlock, after all), it’s been really satisfying to watch him turn to the light and find camaraderie with these other weirdos.
Plus there was that time where the bisexual king saved the timeline by kissing his boyfriend.