Holy Helen of Troy!
The Legends made their way to the 1930s this week, and boy did they have a mess on their hands. A time displaced Helen of Troy had somehow made her way into the world of Hollywood, and caused a studio war between Warner Brothers and K&G Pictures. Complete with retro title card and all, the episode fully embraced the meta setting and provided us with the just the right balance of campiness for the proceedings. Warner Brothers must have loved all of that product placement huh?
Right from the start I loved the idea of “Helen Hunt”. It fully capitalizes on the creativity that the time displaced anachronisms present, and this episode delivered in that respect (really the first good example since Caesar in the premiere). It was great watching Helen’s almost supernatural sway over men, and having them essentially all be useless whenever she was nearby. Not only did that attraction lead to the fantastic idea of a studio war as a fun nod to Troy, but it also led to the female half of the team taking the lead in their quest when it came to protecting and returning Helen.
Also throwing a wrench into the Legend’s plan was the reappearance of Damien and Eleanor Darhk. It was revealed that Damien had become Helen’s talent agent for unknown reasons. Damien also continued to tease the importance of the time anachronisms, but failed to give any further information. When it comes to his daughter, I’m really enjoying Courtney Ford as Eleanor. She has a fantastic presence that is evil and threatening on it’s own, but also elevates Damien himself. The two are a power duo, and the relationship is a fantastic way off also adding something new for Damien, who has been in the Arrowverse spotlight for quite some time now.
Now in regards to Helen, I wish that they had gone the supernatural route with her. The attraction that men had to her was clearly unnatural. They easily could have made her cursed, and could have tied that into both the totem storyline and Damien Darhk’s return. Instead, they decided to give us a haphazardly put together message about men’s gaze towards women. It’s a subject matter that easily had a place in the episode, but could have been integrated in a better way.
What I really appreciated about “Helen Hunt” was how well the episode was structured, and how it had multi-layered plots that integrated and worked really well with each other. This was best showcased when they flipped the script and made Stein’s attraction to Hedy Lamarr—something seemingly only intended as a recurring joke—a major factor in their mission succeeding. It was a nice surprise, and really gave the episode some meat as it juggled the three conflicts (Helen, Damien, and Hedy Lamarr/Firestorm) surprisingly well.
Firestorm was center stage again this week, and their storyline continues to shine. In their first attempt to solve their Firestorm dilemma, Ray ends up accidentally body swapping Stein and Jax. This provided a fantastic avenue for the actors to have fun, and provided plenty of immensely amusing scenes when the two were involved. While Victor Garber was good, Franz Drameh as Jax was a clear stand out who genuinely had me laughing out loud on several occasions. Drameh seemed to really enjoy the change of pace, and I hope he gets more freedom in that regard more often. Now when it came the the two finally merging, I don’t know why they didn’t think to even try before the episode’s final act. At the very least, it provided a place for Hedy’s elevated importance, having her be the one to give the Professor and Jax the information they needed (even if her knowledge on their particular situation was rather sudden and convenient).
Amaya also has a big week, as she finally had Kausa’s identity revealed to her. Kausa is in fact Amaya’s granddaughter, and is the sister to modern day’s Vixen. While this is something most of the audience knew already, it’s good that Anaya is now informed. I was unimpressed with Kausa’s introduction to the show, but I’m happy that her feud with Amaya is coming to the forefront. It makes Kausa an all around more interesting character, and hopefully the show will continue to focus on the personal conflict between the two. I do wish that they had capitalized more of the Ray’s withholding of the knowledge of Kausa’s lineage. It would have provided him with a little more to do this episode than simply oggle at Helen.
“Helen Hunt” provided us with one of the most creative and fun episodes of the season. It’s strength certainly showed when it came the episode’s structure and multiple conflicts being weaved back and forth. While some of the episode’s message could have been done better, Firestorm continued to be the star player this season. While Helen of Troy was saved, Damien placed Sarah out of commission, leaving the team one member short for whatever comes next.
- Helen seemed to adjust to “modern” times REAL fast. She also seemed to speak English extraordinarily well (a note I could make for Julius Caesar as well).
- Damien’s reaction to the Firestorm body swap was golden.
- You ever watch shows and movies and wonder when they have ever time to go to the bathroom? Props to Legends for giving us a peek at just that.
- Zari is becoming the nuisance character that says all of the annoying, preachy, or out of place lines.
- Nice surprise trip to Themyscira! Even though we still won’t see Wonder Woman likely ever—much like that missing Ferris Air pilot or the rich billionaire Bruce Wayne.
You can catch new episodes of DC’s Legends of Tomorrow when they air on The CW network every Tuesday at 9pm EST