With three episodes left, you had to wonder how the show was going to keep the tension and story up. Thankfully, though not the most epic episode, “River of Time” really did nail some key beats and show how this story is far from wrapped up.
I truly appreciate how this episode addressed the lingering issue from last time, the fact that Kendra spared Savage because of a brainwashed Carter. Hearing Snart and Rory talking about how “the plan was always to kill Savage” was very on point, and furthermore that as long as Savage was on-board, they were in all in danger.
An unexpected twist was what they did with Savage not a few minutes into the show. As Ray and Jax found out that Savage made his Leviathan from materials not of his time period, but of the future. Meaning, he broke Time Laws that the Time Masters could not ignore. And once they saw it, they would be forced to remove Savage from the timeline.
Of course you knew it wouldn’t be that simple, and as we saw, the journey was just as important as the regeneration. From Rip pushing the ship beyond its limits, to numerous members of the team calling him out for his sometimes nonchalant attitude towards everyone’s safety, there was a lot to go around.
Truly though, this was the episode that Vandal Savage had been needing. His manipulation of the Legends crew (those that went to him anyway) was perfectly Savage. He basically an immortal version of Hannibal Lecter from behind there, and it worked. Yes, his conversations with Ray were very telegraphed, but hey, sometimes that’s how people work. Simplest solution and all that.
Another fascinating tidbit was seeing most of the crew flashback to their time just before they accepted Rip’s invitation. It led to some very touching moments with family and loved ones. Sara’s was a personal favorite as she reconnected with Nyssa for a brief time.
Sadly, other parts didn’t work. While the Jax “injury” was nice, it felt a little forced, as was the convenient “cure” for him, which we’ll likely not figure out if it works until the end. Also, some of Rip’s scenes, while good for the character, didn’t reflect the growth we know he’s gone through in the series.
Finally, while i appreciate Carter coming too, it too felt forced, and for a second I thought he died…again. Thankfully he’s not. Hopefully he gets more to do next episode.
I will say this, that ending was good. to find out that the Time Masters were not only corrupt, but were working with Savage from basically the beginning was incredibly shocking (to me). On the other hand, this does reveal why Legends of Tomorrow can continue into another season. The showrunners have said that the Time Masters story will be done by this season, and thus they won’t be a villain next go round. This leads to that event happening, which will no doubt free the show from some of its weight.
“River of Time” was a good episode. Again, not the best, but certainly very capable. Two episodes are left, Savage has all the power, and we are out of time.