Title: Legends of Tomorrow: “Phone Home” Review
Release Date: October 31st, 2017
Network: The CW
Genre: Superhero, Drama, Action
Legends of Tomorrow has to be the most fun show currently on television. Despite having little care of its continuity sometimes, it also delivers amazing episodes filled with humor and a surprising amount of heartwarming stories, none more so than its homage to E.T, “Phone Home.”
The Halloween themed episode centers around the Legends going back in time in order to save kid Ray from being killed. As a result, not only do we get to have the Nostalgia of the late 80’s wash over us, we get to see Ray interact and relive his childhood. Thanks to an anachronism though, the very one that kills Ray in the past, the boy scout’s younger self-performs some un-Ray like duties, enough so to make even Mick proud.
It is revealed that the creature that kid Ray saw in the pipe at the end of last episode is none other than a baby dominator and that the younger Palmer is skipping school to take care of him in secret. Not only is this the first time a Dominator has been seen since the invasion crossover arc last season, “Phone Home” is the first time a baby one is displayed. And damn is it oddly cute.
The connection between young Ray and Gumball (the name given by young Ray) is apparent immediately, as the two each candy and popcorn while watching Singing in the Rain. It’s all freaking adorable. We also get a fun scene where Ray shrinks down in his Atom suite to the size of a toy, one which Gumball plays with instantly, if not a bit roughly.
Ray is certainly the centerpiece of the episode, but there’s plenty of fun stuff going on around the main plot. It’s revealed Rory loves musicals (Fiddler on the Roof), Nate does his best to hit on Ms. Palmer, and something is up with Professor Stein.
From the outset of the drama with the Professor, I thought it was pretty clear that Martin was using the ship and his invention as a means of visiting his pregnant daughter, but the reasoning for hiding it actually made sense considering everything Legends of Tomorrow has been building up to regarding his departure.
While there is a bit a flawed logic in thinking that he had to go immediately to visit his daughter, even though they are on a time ship that could simply travel back in time if he missed the birth, I’ll forgive it because it resulted in Rory offering a stogie to a newborn baby.
Regardless of whether I liked them as antagonist in the crossover event, I do love the fact that Legends of Tomorrow tied the Dominators back into the series for an episode to recreate so much from Steven Spielberg’s classic. Gumball in the closet and the flying bicycles, so many great things “Phone Home” paying homage, along with a lot of things unique as well that would only make sense when done by the Legends.
While Nate getting seduced by a dominator is up their, Gumball’s mind controlled FBI agents rendition of “Singing in the Rain” is currently my favorite moment in Legends of Tomorrow (feels like I am saying that a lot recently for CW shows). All episode the Legends were worried that Gumball is what killed kid Ray, constantly reaffirming how dangerous he was, so when he takes control of the agents we expect he’ll take his anger out on them. Instead, they all start dancing with confused looks on their faces. It may have worked on me as well actually, as I found myself bobbing my head too. Absolutely brilliant.
Couple all this with the fact that it’s Halloween, making the Dominator and the Legends presence in their costume fit perfectly, and it makes for the perfect episode timing wise as well. “It’s like stealing candy from a baby, just not as fun.”
Verdict: “Phone Home” hits home on every level, paying homage to a classic, creating its own adorable and hilarious moments, and using a previous antagonistic race as a great tie-in. Just like Ray, I for one will miss Gumball and the musical hijinks he can perform with is mind. But I can’t wait for more Legends of Tomorrow, that’s for sure.
What did you think of the most recent episode of Legends of Tomorrow? What scene or scenes did you like the most? What are your predictions for the rest season three as things begin to unravel? Be sure to let us know in the comments below. Also be sure to check back next week for the third episode of the season, “Return of the Mack,” immediately after it airs on The CW next Tuesday 9 PM ET.
- Perfect timing for Halloween
- Singing in the Rain
- Nate and Ray's "Mom"
- Mick offering a cigar to a newborn
- Stein's secrecy and logic