Friday, February 28, 2020

Starman Plays Fallout 2 - Part 26

Good news! We have video this time!

Bad news! Due to me getting into an impossible fight, the opening of this one was cut off because YouTube's new video editor won't allow you to make multiple cuts to a single file or join together multiple videos anymore. So we enter this video in media res, as we take on the raiders of Vault 15.


Thursday, February 27, 2020

Starman Plays Fallout 2 - Part 25

In which, due to an unfortunate video glitch, we must once again pretend it's the days of old time radio or modern day podcasts, as I battle the raiders of Vault 15 and show you other retro gamer podcasters why it is vitally important you not save over your games until you are SURE you have an episode in the can and complete.


Monday, February 24, 2020

Batwoman Episode Guide: Season 1, Episode 12 - Take Your Choice

For a summary of the episode guide layout & categories, click here.



Plot

A strange affliction threatens the life of both Alice and the Beth Kane from another Earth, as the Crows begin tearing apart Gotham City searching for the escaped leader of the Wonderland Gang. When Mary and Beth determine that both versions of Beth Kane will die unless one of them dies first, Kate will make a fateful decision about which version of her sister she should try to save.


Influences

Batwoman: Elegy by Greg Rucka and J.H. Williams.


Goofs

The Crows in this episode make the GCPD look competent. For instance, the guard watching Mouse at the hospital doesn't ask for Alice's ID when she shows up in a stolen uniform and fails to recognize the woman they are supposed to be conducting a city-wide manhunt for, despite her doing nothing to hide her face or her hair other than wear a ballcap. Also, Alice says she had orders to transport the inmate, yet doesn't show these orders to the guard or attempt to move the inmate after! The guards also fail to monitor Mouse's interactions with Dr. Campbell OR Alice. It's also hard to believe they would raid Wayne Tower based on an anonymous tip OR that they wouldn't have Alice's voice print on file and the means to analyze it.

The episode's take on doppelgangers conflicts with what we've seen in Supergirl, vis a vis multiple dopplegangers coexisting on the same Earth.  There's two Al's in Al's Dive Bar, for instance, and multiple versions of various aliens including Brainiac-5 and two versions of Winn Schot running around. (With the exception of Al, most of those duplicates were dead or gave up physical form before they were on Earth-Prime for more than a day.)


Performances

Again, Rachel Skarsten slays as both Alice and Beth.

Ruby Rose has some great acting moments in the final 10 minutes. Until the grand reveal, we have no idea which way she's going to go in deciding which Beth Kane to save and her torment is perfectly portrayed.


Artistry

The trick photography to put Beth and Alice on-screen at the same time is handled masterfully.


Bat Trivia


When discussing ways to save Beth's life, Luke suggests that they use cryotechnology to freeze Beth until they can find a permanent cure, noting that Bruce knew a guy with a cryogenic tank. This is likely a nod to the Batman villain Mr. Freeze, who cryogenically froze his wife to find a cure for the untreatable disease that threatened her life. This further suggests that Mr. Freeze may have reformed in the Arrowverse, as he did in some realities.


Technobabble

DNA testing proved the flesh mask Mouse was wearing when he was arrested was made of the skin from several deceased people.

A B-42 is the Crow's code for Shoot-To-Kill and Shoot-On-Sight.

Luke has a device set up on his car that changes the license plate to a random sequence of numbers.

When assessing Beth's condition, Mary determines that there is no swelling or pressure buildup and her hearing is fine.

Hemophilia causes nosebleeds, but Beth has no sign of the bruising that coincides with hemophilia.

Migraines are not a side-effect of hemophilia.

Beth's cells are determined to be disintegrating on a molecular level.

Beth is familiar with multiple universe hypotheses, inflation model and the Many Worlds Interpretation of quantum mechanics.

When cells decay, the body goes haywire, resulting in synaptic misfire and the pain receptors going into overdrive until eventually the subject dies. Based on the neurodegeneration program they run, this leaves Alice and Beth with seven hours to live.

Luke suggests placing Beth in a state of cryostasis. Beth dismisses this, saying she doesn't think she could survive a -196 degree bath in liquid nitrogen.

Beth suggests using a hyperbaric chamber to simulate high altitude and increase her red blood cell count. Luke dismisses this, saying she wouldn't adapt to hypoxia in the time they have left.

The Batwoman motorcycle has built-in tow-lines and smoke bombs.


Dialogue Triumphs

Kate: Does alcohol slow down degeneration or something?
Beth: No, but it gives me a buzz while I face my mortality.

(Luke catches up to Kate in the hallway.)
Luke Where are you going?
Kate: If Beth is enemy number one in Gotham, then we have to get her to a hospital outside the city. Maybe a face to face with this new commander can help us get past the checkpoints.
Luke: Sorry. By telling her what exactly?
Kate: I haven't figured that out yet.
Luke: (sarcastically) I have. It's easy. All you have to say is that "An event called Crisis merged an infinite number of universes, resulting in Alice's not-so-evil twin from another Earth ending up on this Earth. Just ask Supergirl or The Flash, and, oh, by the way, I swear I'm not Batwoman."

(Kate enters her office, not noticing at first that Alice is there next to Beth.)
Kate: We need a new plan. Sophie is not messing... Around.
Alice: You weren't going to tell me, Kate? We have a sister!
Kate: You haven't exactly made yourself available.
Alice: Here I am. (To Beth) And Here you are. Smart. Friendly. Adorable.
Kate: Leave her alone!
Beth: No. It's okay. I understand why she resents me.
Alice: (sarcastically) Oh, goody. Let's add blindly empathetic to the list.

Alice: So on your Earth, rather than simply standing by and sobbing, your Kate pulled you from the car before it fell. I always wondered what my life would have been like if you had saved me. I just never imagined that I'd be so basic.

Dodgson: The only thing more dangerous than a corrupt man is one who thinks he's noble.

Dr. Cartwright: It is a father's greatest joy to see his son follow in his footsteps. You could have made me so proud.
Mouse: I thought you were dead.
Dr. Cartwright: As I intended. Meanwhile, I took on the life I deserved. Recognition, praise, prestige... But at the cost of losing you. Because of her. Tell me where Alice is.
Mouse: Why? So you can kill her?
Dr. Cartwright: Tell me where she is, Johnny, so I can forgive you.
Mouse: Forgive me? For what? For standing up to my abuser?
Dr. Cartwright: For being a weak, little boy too powerless to realize a broken girl with a distorted imagination was taking advantage of you.
Mouse: You gave her to me.
Dr. Cartwright: As a playmate, and you let her convince you that she was family.
Mouse: She was my family. She accepted me All of me the scars, the burns, the face you raised me to believe was too repulsive for the world to see. You looked at me, and you saw a monster. She saw the window to the world.

Catherine: The universe must think fondly of Kate to give her everything that she wants... the version of you that she lost.
Alice: You don't know my sister.
Catherine: No. I beg to differ. I've known her almost as long as you've known her.
Alice: Because you're a snake, who slithered her way into my family.
Catherine: I was accepted. By your father and by your sister, and despite all of the mistakes that I made, I showed remorse. You don't have any remorse, Alice. You're evil through and through. And that's why Kate will never choose you.
Alice: Here's what's gonna happen. Mary's gonna take that syringe to Kate and tell her that it will only save one of us. Kate... Kate's gonna pick me.
Catherine: For your sake, I hope that's true. But just in case she chooses otherwise, I'll save you a seat in Hell.

Beth: Why risk your life every night for a city of strangers?
Kate: Well, I think not saving Beth that day on the bridge ignited something in me.
Beth: You couldn't save your own mom and sister, so now you save every mom and sister.
Kate: Guilt can make sane people do crazy things.
Beth: This isn't guilt. This is courage.

Beth: Luke told me about the blood. I'm sorry you're in this position.
Kate: I'm sorry you are.
Beth: Look. Before you make your decision, can I just say after spending time with Alice face to face, her rage, her pain... somehow I understand her. And if circumstances had turned out differently-
Kate: They didn't. I didn't act. I didn't save her. (sighs) I did nothing. And I'm not about to do nothing again.

Alice: You... You have to hurry.
Kate: Alice...
Alice: No, Kate. There's no time to...
(Alice squeezes Kate's hand. Kate is clearly struggling to say something. Finally, she says it.)
Kate: I came to say good-bye.
(There is a long pause as Alice stares at Kate, realizing just why she hesitated.)
Alice: What?
Kate: Good-bye, Alice.
(Kate pulls her arms around Alice and hugs her tightly.) 
Alice: (weakly) No.
(Cut to earlier in the Batcave. Kate is injecting Mary's blood into Beth.)
Beth: Are you sure this is what you want to do?
Kate: Just you asking that is proof that I made the right choice.
Beth: You've always been my hero.

Alice: (sobbing) Why? Because she's pure and good? You don't even know me. Not the real me.
Kate: I know what you showed me. I couldn't save you. And all I can hope is that you find peace.
Alice: ... Stay with me.
Kate: I'm here.
(Kate continues to hold Alice close.) 

(Kate is sobbing uncontrollably now, but she can feel something change in Alice. Alice isn't pained anymore. She isn't even tired. Her voice is cool and firm when she speaks.)
Alice: You... let me die... But I didn't!
(Alice hits Kate in the face with a metal hospital tray and giggles wickedly, back to her old self.)


Continuity

Dr. Ethan Campbell is a respected plastic surgeon in Gotham City and an expert on skin grafts. He is recruited by Jacob Kane and Sophie Moore to testify that it would be possible for Mouse to impersonate Jacob Kane.

Dr. Campbell agrees to consider acting as an expert witness but asks to speak to Mouse first and run a few tests. He notes, however, that the idea of someone being able to craft a mask out of different skins and use that to flawlessly impersonate another man is science-fiction.

With Jacob Kane's permission, Sophie Moore gives The Crows orders to kill Alice on sight.

Beth says the roads in her version of Gotham City are less bumpy.

The Crows have check-points set-up throughout Gotham City. They even stop Mary Hamilton, knowing that she is their boss' daughter.

Batwoman saves Mary, Beth and Luke from being found-out at the checkpoint, but determine there is no way to sneak Beth out of Gotham to treat her condition.

The symptoms of Beth's condition include migraine headaches, coughing up blood and bleeding from the nose and ears.

Beth is two credits shy of earning her Doctorate in Astrophysics.

Beth theorized that the various alternate realities were separated for a reason. She guesses that the new universe is literally not big enough for her and Alice and that the longer they attempt to co-exist on the same Earth, the more they will accelerate the deterioration of their bodies.

Alice kills one Crow who corners her in an alley.

Alice is able to disguise herself as a Crow and visits Mouse in the hospital.

Mouse tells Alice about Beth.

The Crows are losing clients; partly because of how they lost Alice and partly because half of Gotham City thinks they are going too far with random searches.

Sophie refuses to cancel the kill order when Batwoman asks her to give her time to try and bring Alice in peacefully.

Dodgson attacks Jacob Kane in the prison showers.

Alice leaves the unfortunate security guard at Wayne Tower, Carl, unconscious in the janitor's closet.

Alice shows up at Kate's office and tries to kill Beth.

Alice figures out without Kate or Alice saying anything that, in Beth's reality, her version of Kate saved her from the car crash before she fell into the river.

Kate catches the knife Alice throws before it hits Beth.

One of the inmates, Reggie Harris, saves Jacob Kane from Dodgson, saying that he figures he can trade that for a favor later.

Alice goes to Mary and her clinic seeking help. Mary is able to knock her out and handcuff her to a bed.

Dr. Campbell visits Mouse in the hospital and reveals himself to be Dr. August Cartwright - Mouse's father.

The details are not discussed, but apparently Dr. Cartwright faked his death after Alice and Mouse turned against him.

Dr. Cartwright injects Mouse with something to make him reveal where Alice is hiding. He is later revealed to have transported him to a secret lair.

Alice tells Mary that the serum from the Coriana Desert Rose in her blood could save her life. Mary decides to test it, but refuses to do so on Alice.

Alice is able to reach a phone and uses it to call the Crows and call in a tip that Alice is in Wayne Tower.

Beth tells Kate that she was never jealous of her counterpart on her Earth, except in one respect - she had found her soul mate.

Kate reveals that she is Batwoman to Beth, hiding her inside the Batcave as The Crows storm Wayne Tower.

The Crows send 50 agents, 10 armored vehicles and one helicopter to search for Alice.

Alice hallucinates Catherine Hamilton taunting her in her final moments.

Mary says they may be able to use her blood to slow Beth's degeneration long enough that Alice dies first. She leaves the decision of who to treat up to Kate, however.

Kate decides to save Beth and gives her the cure. She then goes to stay with Alice as she dies, while Luke uses her motorcycle to get Beth out of town to where she can heal peacefully.

Sophie tracks down Luke and Beth and almost shoots Beth. She hesitates at the last moment, however,

Dr. Cartwright kills Beth with a sniper rifle. She dies in Luke's arms.

At the same instance Beth dies, Alice instantly feels better. She knocks Kate out and makes her escape from the clinic.


The Bottom Line

The strongest episode of the series to date and an utterly gut-wrencher to watch, thanks to a tight-script and some amazing performances. Small wonder this has fast become The CW's most popular show after The Flash.

Legends of Tomorrow: Season 5, Episode 4 - Slay Anything

For a summary of the episode guide layout & categories, click here.




Plot

Freddy Meyers, the infamous Prom Night Slasher of Central City High, is back from Hell, armed with telekinetic powers and determined to kill everyone who ever made fun of him. As Sara, Ava and Mick find themselves fighting to survive the night at Mick's 15th High School Reunion in 2004, Ray, Nora and Nate travel back to 1989 to try and stop Freddy from going bad in the first place. Meanwhile, Behrad tries to quarterback both teams while keeping his sister Zari under control aboard the Waverider, as Constantine returns to Newcastle to find a familiar face squatting in his old home.


Influences

Various 1980s slasher horror movies, various 1980s coming-of-age comedies and comedies based aroung high school reunions.


Goofs

According to this episode, Mick Rory graduated from high school in 1989. While this would be consistent with actor Dominic Purcell's age (he was born in 1970), it was said that a teenage Mick Rory killed his parents after setting his house on fire by accident in 1990 in 112 and the Mick Rory we saw in that episode seemed younger than a high school senior.(Maybe Mick was aged up post-Crisis?)

Why did the Kathy Meyers in 2004 fade from existence at THAT moment, just before she was about to kill Ava and Sara?


Performances

There's something absolute adorable about Courtney Ford and Brandon Routh's interaction in this episode that instantly sells Ray and Nora's romance, despite their having relatively little time to bring it about on camera. It's also oddly sweet that Nora asks Ray to Prom as they're watching over Freddie Meyers given that neither of them had the typical teen life that allowed for going to high school dances.

It's a subtle thing, but Tala Ashe does manage to portray the new Zari while still showing flashes of the genius hacker and survivor we loved for two seasons. This is particularly evident in the fight scene in the limo. Yes, Zari is still vapid and self-obsessed, but she also maintains her cool and closes the window to make it harder for the Prom Night Slasher to get to her and her fellow ride-sharers.


Artistry

Between the music, the jump-scares, the lighting and the set, everything in this episode captures the feeling of of an 80's slasher movie and an 80's teen coming-of-age comedy at the same time.  The best single touch, however, is a light tapping piano tune that is played during all of the action scenes involving the Prom Night Slasher, that sounds like a parody of the famous theme from Halloween.


Trivia Of Tomorrow

The title of the episode is a pun on the 1989 romantic comedy Say Anything, which was about a nerdy guy and his crush on a popular girl and their unlikely romance.

The Prom Night Slasher was believed to be a student named Freddy Meyers. This is a nod to both Freddy Kruger - the murderous school janitor from A Nightmare on Elm Street - and Michael Meyers - the killer from most of the Halloween movies.

There are a number of horror movies based around killings set in high schools on the night of Prom. The most famous of these movies is probably Carrie, based on the novel by Stephen King. There is also a series of four horror movies based around the Prom Night name and a 2008 reboot.

The address on the body bag containing Freddy Meyers' body reveals Central City to be in the state of Missouri, post-Crisis. This is consistent with where the city is located in the comics, where most writers depict Central City as being the DC Universe equivalent of either St. Louis or Kansas City.

Zari uses a social media site called CatChat. This could be a product of CatCo Worldwide Media from Supergirl.

Sara and Ava adopt the aliases of Kelly and Lisa while sneaking into Mick's high-school reunion. This is a nod to the characters of Kelly and Lisa from Saved By The Bell.

A screeching violin plays whenever the Prom Night Slasher appears, in an apparent tribute to Alfred Hitchcock's Psycho.

The bullies plan to dump garbage on Freddy mirrors the plan of the bullies in Carrie to shower her with pig's blood after she's jokingly crowned Prom Queen.

Nate sums up the spirit of the episode, saying that Freddy's night went "from John Hughes to John Carpenter." John Hughes is a screenwriter and director, most famous for the many coming-of-age comedies he wrote and directed during the 1980s, including The Breakfast Club and Sixteen Candles. John Carpenter is a film director famous for the many horror movies he wrote and directed, including the original Halloween and The Thing.

The twist that the real Prom Night Slasher is actually Freddy Meyers' mother Kathy comes from the original Friday the 13th, where it was revealed that Jason Voorhees' mother Pamela was responsible for the first wave of deaths of Camp Crystal Lake.

Kathy Meyers' name may be a tribute to actress Kathy Bates, who played the crazed fan in the film adaptation of Stephen King's Misery.

Ava makes reference to being "the final girl" along with Sara. This is a trope in horror movies,where only one of the teenage girls being stalked by the monster survives to defeat the monster at the end of the movie. Typically it's the most pure-hearted or prudish of the young women.

Mick and his high school girlfriend making out to "Heaven Is A Place On Earth" at the end of the episode is a tribute to a similar scene in Romy and Michele's High School Reunion.

John makes reference to a group of he was part of called the Newcastle Crew. This is a nod to a group of aspiring magicians, musicians and their assorted roadies and groupies that John was part of in the original Hellblazer series. All of them except John were dead by the time the details of how the Newcastle Crew failed to save Astra Logue were explained in Hellblazer #11.

One notable change here from the comics is that one member of the Newcastle Crew was Astra's mother, whom John describes as a powerful witch.  Astra's mother was never described in the original Hellblazer comics.


Technobabble/Arcana

One of the items among John's belongings in the Waverider library causes anyone who disturbs it to be haunted by the ghost of a forlorn mariner.

As a fairy godmother, Nora has a sort of radar to kids wishes. She is instantly summoned to assist the most needy person under 18 within her immediate vicinity and hears their wishes in her head until she answers the call. She is immune to this effect while in the temporal zone, presumably because there are no minors to make wishes.

Fairy godmothers give you what you actually wish for or what you think you want rather than what you need. This leaves Nora having to give various children ponies, regardless of their ability to care for one.

Gary has learned how to work a teleportation spell, but it leaves him walking backwards as a side-effect.

Once assigned to a child, a fairy godmother is bound to them until the child releases them. Fairy godmothers can trick their way into being freed and are not required to tell their charges that they have unlimited wishes until they free their fairy godmother.

Zari is able to hack past the encrypted security protocols Gideon uses to manage the locks on the Waverider.

John knows an enchantment that allows him to break wards. The related chant is "I call upon Hecate, Lady of Keys and Guardian of Crossroads. Sever this seal. By my blood, be open."


Dialogue Triumphs

John: (To Sara) I'm off to research a more lasting solution to your Encore problem.
Ray: (peeking around the corner) Did someone say Encore?
(Ray holds the last syllable like a musical note.) 
John: I also said no musical numbers, so please don't start.
Ray: Listen, I might have a solution to your problem.
John: I can't take you with me on this one, squire. Where I'm going, I need to walk alone. With Gary.

(Ray enters his room, smiling as he hears Nora.)
Ray: Well, look who's finally off the clock.
(Ray's smile fades as he sees Nora.)
Ray: Oh, no, not again.
(Switch cameras to reveal Nora. She's clad in a powder blue jockey outfit, complete with riding crop.)
Nora: Oh, yes, oh, yes. It's the same thing every time. Kid gets a fairy godmother, what do they wish for? (imitating Oprah Winfrey) You get a pony and you get a pony. Everyone gets a damn pony!
Ray: Well, maybe next time, you should say, "neigh".
(Nora blows a raspberry at Ray and wave her wand, as her clothes change into sweats.)

Sara: All right, everyone. Stay sharp. The killer could be anywhere.
Ava: We gotta get everyone out of here.
(Sara, Ava and Mick approach one of the school doors. Suddenly, Nate and Ray stand up in front of the windows and there is a sharp musical sting. Ray is brandishing a small knife. Ava, Sara and Ray all scream as Mick and Nate look ready to attack.)
Sara: Thanks for the heart attack!
Ray: Sorry. Swiss Army Knife usually solves a jam in a jiff, but these doors are telekinetically sealed.

Zari: I knew it! You stole our family's totem.
Behrad: It's not like that, I...I needed to take it.
Zari: I mean, you could've just asked for it. Mama and Baba would've given it to you.
Behrad: What's that supposed to mean?
Zari: Oh, you really don't know? You're never around, you don't do any work, and they still treat you like you're some kind of hero.
Behrad: If you only knew what I've done, what I've survived, without getting any credit. Not that you'd understand, 'cause you only care about yourself.
Zari: Whatever, don't tell me. But wait till they see you've turned it into a stupid stoner bracelet- hey!
(Behrad grabs Zari's phone and begins talking to it as if live-streaming.)
Behrad: (mockingly) What up, Z-listers? Turns out even a sacred totem couldn't reverse the sucking void that is my soul.
Zari: Hey, screw you. I'm not a void. I'm a business.

(Nora chases after Freddy as he storms from the cafeteria.)
Nora: Freddy, wait!
Freddy: Leave me alone!
Freddy: What?
Nora: You don't want to be alone right now.
Freddy: (angry) How would you know that? How would you know what I want? I spent years wanting these kids to be my friend and I couldn't even make it happen with a fairy godmother! I cannot wait to be done with this stupid place and I hope they all get what they deserve!
Nora: (desperate) No, you don't mean that!
Freddy: Yeah, I do!
Nora: No, you don't! Look, I get it. I have given in to my demons. I know what it's like to want to make the world feel your pain, but that is not who you are. I see so much more in you. (softly, crying, touching Freddy's shoulder) Listen. God... Being yourself? That is a magic stronger than any wish. Being truly okay with myself, scars and all, is how the right people truly found me.

Gideon: How did you bypass my encrypted security protocol?
Zari: Oh, just by being a businesswoman, makeup guru, bad bitch, and overall genius.

Zari: So this is what you do? Travel around time and save people using wind? That's... I wouldn't say cool, exactly, but no wonder you're the favorite.
Behrad: The favorite? Mama and Baba only treat me how they do 'cause they're worried about me. I mean, I've been in business school for five years. You were a self-made millionaire by the age of 19.
Zari: (dryly) You're right, I am very impressive.
Behrad: Like, how did you jailbreak your way out of here anyway?
Zari: I was poking around your weird little screens and suddenly I knew how to hack my way out.
Behrad: Right. Yeah, time travel always has these weird side effects.
Zari: Huh. Well, hopefully it wears off because I was thinking of sticking around for a while.
Behrad: Huh. I weirdly wouldn't hate that.


Continuity

Freddy Meyers died in the electric chair at some point in 2004 after being convicted on 7 counts of murder at his high school prom on June 2, 1989. His final words are that he loves his mother, who is the only observer of his death apart from the prison guards.

The guard who was delivering Freddy Meyers body back to Central City was killed after losing control of his van

Sara asks John when he is going to finish moving out of the Waverider, saying they have a box of his stuff labeled "arcana" in the library. John advises her not to move it.

John leaves the Waverider to research a permanent solution to the Encore problem.

Ray suggests that maybe they can reform the Encores before they become damned using Time Travel. Sara is skeptical.

Nora shows up on the Waverider for some downtime from her Fairy Godmother job.

Nate stops Behrad from blanking Zari's memory, fearful it might cause her to forget everything she might remember about being a Legends.

Behrad still doesn't believe what Nate says about Zari being the woman from the message in 502.

Zari's ringtone is a cat meowing. This could be a nod to her being turned into a cat in 408.

Zari tried to get in touch with a social media friend called Blue Ivy.

Zari is locked up in the lab. She complains that she has a sneaker drop to promote and she's releasing a new fragrance for her Dragoness line.

Reference is made to Ava being an expert on serial killer trivia; a fact that first came up in 407.

Ava now runs a podcast on serial killer history called StabCast.

Ava ranked Freddy Meyers #5 on her list of the greatest killers of all time.

Nobody except Nate listens to StabChat, despite Ava sending out e-mails about it. Sara didn't even know it existed.

Ava theorizes that Freddy Meyers has come back from the dead to go after his final girl - Tiffany Harper.

StabChat has some kind of promo-deal to offer a discount on mattresses to its listeners with the code LACERATION.

Tiffany Harper was able to beat Freddy Meyers with a trophy she used as a makeshift weapon.

Mick Rory was part of the Central City High class of 1989.

According to Mick, Freddy Meyers was a loser nobody liked.

Allie was a girl Mick dated in high school. She wrote him when he went to Juvie. He was going to break out to take her to their senior prom but he wound up blowing it off.

Mick lies to Allie when she recognizes him and says his name is Dick.

Central City High's mascot is the Cavalier.

Tiffany Harper is the first person killed at the reunion in 2004.

The Prom Night Slasher has been resurrected with telekinetic powers, which are used to cut the lights and seal the exits at Central City High. This traps Mick, Sara and Ava in the building and Ray and Nate outside of it.

John lived in a house in Northumberland County for a time. This is the same county as Newcastle.

John discovers that the house is been squatted in by Charlie, who has adopted John's face.

John told Charlie about his house while he was drunk once.

Ray carries a Swiss Army Knife at all times.

In 1989, Tiffany Harper asked Freddy Meyers out to the Prom at the last minute.

Nate and Ray, both nerds in high school, immediately realize that Tiffany must be working with the bullies to set up Freddy.

Nate and Ray poses as teachers and try to talk Freddy out of going to Prom. They are not successful.

A woman named Lori is stuffed in a locker by the Prom Night Slasher and the locker is telekinetically crushed with her inside it, killing her messily.

Nora is summoned to help Freddy Meyers, as the most needy teenager on Prom Night in Central City in 1989.

Freddy tells his mother that he won't be staying home for movie night as he's going to Prom. This disappoints her.

Freddy wishes for a stylish new suit for Prom. Nora also arranges for him to get a limo to take him to Prom.

Zari confirms that Behard took the family's Air Totem and turned it into a bracelet.

Mick Rory used to sneak out of the school through a vent in the wood shop.

Allie isn't seeing anyone - boyfriend or girlfriend.

Allie is killed by the Prom Night Slasher.

Tiffany Harper was supposed to be setting Freddy Meyers up to have garbage dumped on him while on the dance floor, but she winds up steering him away at the last moment because Freddy is honestly nice to her unlike most of the guys she hangs out with,

Brad, the lead bully, throws a drink on Freddy when the trick doesn't work. He reveals the truth about Tiffany and Freddy runs off, though Tiffany shows obvious remorse for what happened.

Nora gives Freddy another wish to show off his dance moves to his classmates. She backs this up with a pyrotechnics display and turns the rain of garbage into fairy dust.

Zari has a flash of her past self's memories and is able to hack past the encrypted security protocols to let herself out of the room she is locked in.

Freddy frees Nora from his control.

Freddy, Tiffany and a bunch of her friends leave the party in Freddy's limo. Zari goes with them, thinking it's an Uber Gideon called for her.

Mick is killed when the Prom Night Slasher turns his fire against him telekinetically.

The Prom Night Slasher is revealed to be Kathy Meyers - Freddy's mother.

In the original timeline, Freddy took the blame for the killings to save his mother,after she killed all the teenagers who were trying to take her boy away from her.

Kathy Meyers had a heart attack in Iron Heights the night of Freddy's execution in 2004. She was sent back from Hell and attacked the can transporting Freddy's body so that she could have him with her forever after she finished killing the rest of Freddy's classmates.

Ava and Sara are able to fight back against Kathy Meyers in 2004.

Zari is able to unmask Kathy Meyers in 1989 after using her new perfume to blind Kathy Meyers during the original round of killings. Behard shows up and finishes the fight, knocking Kathy Meyers out with a blast of air, saving the original seven victims of the Prom Night Slasher. This causes the Kathy Meyers fighting Sara and Ava in 2004 to fade out of existence.

In the new timeline, Freddy Meyers and Tiffany Harper got married and are seen dancing together at the reunion in 2004.

Mick runs into Allie again and the two make out in a janitor's closet.

Gary fills Charlie in on everything happening with the Encores and why John came back to Newcastle.

John tells Charlie about the Newcastle Crew and how the ghost of Astra's mother is still haunting the building, sealed in a single room by John before he left the house before.

The episode ends with John breaking the seal on the room holding Astra's mother and going inside.


Location

Iron Heights Penitentiary - 2004
Central City, Missouri, USA - 2004
Northumberland County, UK - 2020
Central City, Missouri, USA  - June 2, 1989


The Bottom Line

Damn near perfect and an instant classic. Easily the best episode of the season so far. One of the top five best Legends episodes ever. Not a beat is wasted and every member of the ensemble gets a moment to shine. The only real weakness is the subplot with Constatnine, Charlie and Gary does feel a bit tacked on, but at least their scenes don't distract from the main plot.

Friday, February 21, 2020

Starman Plays Fallout 2 - Part 24

In which fate conspires to have us fight a ton of giant scorpions, as we avoid an ambush of the damned things only to discover a raider hideout with pitfalls leading to another giant scorpion nest. We also discover a giant stone head with a major attitude before getting killed off, fighting a bunch of bandits, and finally getting to the NCR. Eventually.

Tuesday, February 18, 2020

The Flash Episode Guide: Season 6, Episode 11 - Love Is A Battlefield

For a summary of the episode guide layout & categories, click here




Plot

It's Valentine's Day and love is in the air, but Barry and Iris' plans for a romantic evening are ruined by the return of Amunet Black and a gang war between the metahuman crime-boss and her old boyfriend, Goldface. As Team Flash's resident lovebirds try to figure out a way to stop the battle without risking Barry's secret identity being exposed, Frost tries to follow in Ralph's footsteps as a life coach and help Allegra get back together with a lost love.


Influences

The Flash comics of Geoff Johns (characters of Blacksmith and Goldface.) and John Broome (confirmation of the existence of Mirror World)


Goofs

Hopefully Amazon paid a pretty penny for the Alexa smart house commercial they set into the middle of Iris and Barry breakfast scene.

The script for this episode is also annoyingly meta, with Iris making reference to the villain of the week and Barry scheduling two Valentine's Day dinner dates because he knows one of them is bound to be interrupted by a super-villain.

On the one hand, Katee Sackhoff's performance as Amunet Black is so hammy it's been condemned by both the Rabbinical Council of America and the Muslim Council of Elders as unfit for consumption by anyone keeping Kosher or Halal. On the other hand, she seems to be one of the few actors making an effort to get this material to work on any level.

Barry can't go into an underworld bar because he's afraid be recognized as a cop, despite largely working behind the scenes. (Of course he did just get honored alongside Elongated Man in the press.) Yet there's no similar concerns about Iris, who has reportedly been a popular local blogger famous for writing about superheroes for five years, and is the daughter of a noted cop. In fact, Iris seems to be recognized up until she changes the subject by hitting a bouncer over the head with a bottle.

The bartender at the underworld bar is happy to give out information on where a notorious metahuman crime-boss is about to steal something. Ignoring how he has this information in the first place, why would he hand it over to some random woman he is suspicious of even before she disables his bouncer?

The security guard seems oddly reluctant to actually fire his gun on the two metahuman robbers. Nearly as reluctant as Goldface and Amunet are to do something about the man with the gun threatening them both.

It is said that the pollen of Rappaccini's Daughter can be synthesized into a narcotic drug that causes telepathy. Yet inhaling the regular pollen seems to work just fine on Goldface and Amunet.

It's unclear if Goldface and Amunet are arrested at the end of the episode or if Barry and Iris just let them work out their aggression.

The episode doesn't resolve the core problem of Amunet knowing the secret identities of every superhero in Central City and Barry not being able to move to stop her from committing any crimes with her threatening to expose him.

The episode's message of Barry learning to trust Iris and not be so protective of her and to let her build her own life outside of supporting him is severely undercut by the fact that this more confident, assertive Iris is an evil clone from Mirror World.


Flash Facts

The episode title comes from a Pat Benatar song, which plays during the fight between Goldface and Amunet.

In Geoff Johns' run on The Flash, Blacksmith (as Amunet Black is called there) was established as an ex-wife of the Green Lantern villain Goldface, who had stolen his formula and augmented it to give herself the power to merge organic and inorganic material, giving herself metal skin.

Despite being established as former lovers, this is the first time Goldface and Amunet have appeared in an episode together.

Amunet's second target is Ivo Labs. This is the same company that built the Amazo android during Invasion! and the same lab run by Anthony Ivo - the main villain of the flashbacks during Arrow Season 2.

The opening and closing scenes of the episode suggest that Iris has become trapped in The Mirror World; a fourth dimensional space that exists "behind the looking glass." It first appeared in The Flash #126 (February 1962) and was discovered by the original Mirror Master, Sam Scudder. It's history in the Arrowverse is so far unknown.

Frost enjoys some Naltorian Mead she says was left behind by one of the Wellses besides Nash. Naltor is an alien world in the DC Comics universe and the home planet of Nia Nal aka Dreamer.


Technobabble

Porca miseria is an Italian curse, literally translated as "pig misery."

Ryan Choi identifies the first item Amunet stole as a specialized UV projector. The second item is a biome simulated storage unit. Together, they can be used to transport delicate plant-life.

Nash claims he needed to give Allegra a nano-dimensional bucket auger.

Rappaccini's Daughter is a rare orchid that only blooms once every 25 years. Properly heated, its pollen can be synthesized into a telepathic narcotic. It apparently also has an aphrodisiac effect based on Amunet and Goldface's response to it.


Dialogue Triumphs

(Allegra has arrived at work to find Frost decorating the Citizen's office for Valentine's Day.)
Allegra: Did you just let yourself in?
Frost: Relax. I'm not some whack job meta-killer with crazy good aim and ulterior motives. (She thinks about this for a second.) Anymore.

Amunet: Darlings! Long time no see. Did I interrupt date night?
Barry: CCPD. Amunet Black, I'm placing you under arrest for robbery and aggravated assault.
Amunet: So very official, Mr. Allen. But aren't you just a CSI?
Barry: I'm still a cop. Who can arrest you.
Amunet: (agreeable) Oh, okay. Well, by all means, let me help you with the first bit. (clears throat) I have the right to remain silent, which will come in handy if you don't want me letting that little secret identity cat out of its flashy red bag. So why don't we just call this a warning? I'll be on my way. No harm. No cowl.
Barry: I'm supposed to just let you leave?
Amunet: Bloody right. Don't think of coming after me, 'cause if I see you, or your onesie, or any one of your frigid or bendy superhero friends, I will hold it against all of you and tell the world your real identities. Savvy? Hmm?
(Barry hesitates but clearly knows he's beaten.)
Amunet: That's right. Because behind every great man is a woman. Rolling her eyes.

Nash: Black and white, that's just for death and taxes. Everything else, everything else happens in the grays.

Joe: No. Neither one of you are ever gonna stop growing. I mean, marriage is like a tree. I mean, bear with me. Look, the branches, they grow from the center. They grow farther and farther away from the center, but what you have to remember is underneath, the roots? They're mirroring the branches. They're growing just as much. So you're growing your foundation. Now of course, you gotta tend to the soil, communicate with each other, take care of each other, look out for each other, but as the branches grow, so does your foundation. So you grow together.

Amunet: Keith and I were like fireworks when we were together. We shared the same ambitions, and it ignited us both. We inspired each other. Rappaccini's Daughter was meant to be our greatest score ever.
Iris: Even though it only blooms every 25 years?
Amunet: What can I say? We were optimists, making plans for the future. We knew that it was set to bloom this year, and once we had our hands on its mindreading powers, no one would be able to stop us. We would run this town together. I felt like I could be myself when I was with him. He's the only one who ever saw beyond all this. He saw me for me.
Iris: So what went wrong?
Amunet: Hmm, as business boomed, our relationship didn't. Our passion wilted and died.
(As Amunet says this she bends the stem of one flower and breaks it.)
Iris: I don't know, Amunet. The way you two were trying to kill each other...
Amunet: It's a fine line between love and hate, my dear.
(Amunet smiles and offers Iris the broken stem.)


Dialogue Disasters

Iris: Let me surprise my hubby before some crazy meta-of-the-week strikes.

Amunet: I'd rather date Norvock than you!
Goldface: That makes two of us! Your American accent sucks!
Amunet: So does yours!
Goldface: I'm from Connecticut! I went to Yale!

Most of Amunet and Goldface's fight dialogue and the make-up sex after. But especially...

Amunet: I should take off my gauntlet.
Goldface: Leave it on, girl. Daddy likes the metal.


Continuity

In the opening scene, Iris awakens on the floor in the AV3 office at McCulloch Technologies, where she was pulled into a mirror in 610.

Iris fixes Barry pancakes instead of his usual  breakfast banana. It was revealed that Barry usually has his favorite fruit in the morning in 605.

Iris' pancakes are good, to Barry's shock. It has been a running gag throughout the show's history that Iris is a lousy cook. Her pancakes are notoriously awful, as noted by Nora West-Allen in 504.

Iris bought an expensive juicer.

Barry made reservations for a restaurant called Giovani's on Valentine's Day at 7 pm. He decides to make an appointment for that night as well, to double their chances of having an uninterrupted Valentine's dinner.

Barry and Iris have an Alexa smart house system.

Allegra once dated an emo musician named Emerson Fairweather. Frost decides to help the two get back together.

Iris is suddenly capable of speaking Italian; an ability she's never shown in all the time Barry has known her. She claims it's because she picked up a few phrases while working on a story on Central City's Little Italy.

Amunet Black was last seen in 421.

Amunet steals a piece of technology from a man named Saul Frankel, who is eating at the same restaurant as Barry and Iris.

Amunet Black has apparently been off the grid in Central City since she was last seen before the final battle with The Thinker.

Iris goes undercover at an underworld bar.

Frost and Allegra spy on Emerson at Jitters, after finding out he'll be there on his social media. Allegra is ready to approach him until she sees him with another woman with whom he is clearly affectionate.

Lars, the bartender in the underworld bar, tells Iris that Amunet is heisting some tech from Ivo Labs.

Goldface was last seen in 513.

Goldface claims Amunet stole his Radiohead vinyl albums.

Amunet claims that she introduced Goldface to NWA.

Barry uses his powers to phase the security guard out from under the sphere he's trapped under during the fight between Amunet and Goldface.

Iris steals the second piece of equipment Amunet was taking from Ivo Labs during the fight.

Amunet and Goldface limit their attacks to criminal-run locations when their gang war breaks out.

Ryan Choi guesses that the equipment Amunet is stealing could be used to preserve a delicate plant.

Barry says that Iris is acting different - more assertive.

Iris argues with Barry about her new attitude and says he's scared because she won't be his damsel in distress or the voice cheering him on anymore.

Iris says learning how to make pancakes was her New Years' Resolution.

Iris also confesses to sneaking out in the middle of the night to check on a lead without telling Barry where she was going.

Nash is still checking up on Allegra in a clumsy fashion.

Frost is drinking Naltorian Mead when Nash finds her at the Central City Citizen's offices.

Nash advises Frost not to give up on trying to help Allegra.

Joe gives Barry some advice on coping with change in a marriage.

Joe makes reference to Iris taking down a Black Hole assassin (610), leading the charge to find Ryan Choi (609) and figuring out that Bloodwork hadn't completely taken over Barry's mind. (608)

Allegra tells Frost that she ghosted Emerson after a few dates because she was afraid he wouldn't be interested in a metahuman.

Frost convinces Allegra to go to Emerson and be honest about ghosting him.

Iris goes to Amunet with the stolen equipment and tells her what she figured out about her trying to steal Rappaccini's Daughter and why. She says she wants to help because she doesn't trust Barry anymore and wants to read his mind to make sure he isn't cheating on her.

Iris and Amunet are ambushed by Goldface as they go to steal Rappaccini's Daughter.

According to Goldface, Amunet's American accent is terrible, This suggests she honestly is British.

Goldface is originally from Connecticut and went to Yale.

Amunet lied about liking Goldface's dog and is a cat person.

Amunet and Goldface wind up having sex and forgiving each other after being exposed to the telepathic pollen.

Allegra and Emerson decide to just be friends.

The drummer in Emerson's band is bio-luminescent.

Frost seems to have deduced that Nash was Allegra's father in a pre-Crisis Earth.

Nash has a momentary vision of Harry Wells from the former Earth-2.

The episode ends with Iris, trapped in a mirror, helplessly watching as Barry kisses the fake Iris.


Untelevised Adventures

We are told that Goldface and Amunet's forces are tearing apart various gang hideouts in Central City as an all-out war breaks out, but don't see any fighting. Or any henchmen.

Iris calls Ryan Choi to identify the scientific equipment Amunet is stealing.


The Bottom Line

Easily the weakest episode of the season and perhaps the worst of the various "filler" theme episodes shot to preserve the special effects budget in the show's history. Between the illogical plot that can't be bothered to hide its tropes and everything that's left unresolved at the ending, this is easily one of the Top 5 worst The Flash episodes in history, with the only good things about it being the bad things that inspire laughter.

Starman Plays Fallout 2 - Part 23

In which we start brokering a deal between the leaders of Gecko and Vault City, earn our citizenship and finally get into the Vault City Vault. We also have a terrible date. And lest you think this episode is all talk, we also fight some slavers.


Sunday, February 16, 2020

Black Lightning Episode Guide: Season 3, Episode 13 - The Book of Markovia: Chapter Four: Grab The Strap

For a summary of the episode guide layout & categories, click here




Plot

Jefferson and his hand-picked team head into Markovia to rescue Lynn and recover Tobias. But can this powerful yet conflicted team overcome their own traumas to strike at the heart of a hostile nation and overcome everything they have protecting their own metahuman creation program? Not if the man known as Gravedigger has anything to say about it!


Influences

The Outsiders, Men of War (character of Gravedigger) and Checkmate comics (character of Gravedigger II)


Performances

Cress Williams nails the opening monologue where a drunken Jefferson looks back on his past and talks about it, seemingly to the audience, but eventually it is revealed he is speaking to Gambi.

After just one appearance, Wayne Brady makes Gravedigger into one of the best villains in the show's history. In fact, he may be one of the best villains in the history of the Arrowverse.


Artistry

The opening scene with Jefferson's monologue looking back on his past is a great one, in terms of the music balance and direction of Cress Williams' performance.

This episode has the single-best fight choreography and effects work of any Black Lightning episode to date.


Trivia

The codename Gravedigger has been given to two soldier heroes in DC Comics.

The first Gravedigger was Ulysses Hazard and first appeared in Men Of War #1 in 1977. A victim of polio as a child, Ulysses was able to overcome the disease with a specialized exercise regiment and enlisted in the Army at the first opportunity. However, even at the height of WWII, the Army was segregated and Ulysses was assigned to work detail alongside other black soldiers rather than combat duty. Frustrated, Ulysses stormed the Pentagon single-handed to prove that he was being wasted . Rather than being drummed out of the service and spending the rest of his life in a military prison, Ulysses was given a special designation as a one-man-unit. Since he was currently assigned to dig graves in a military cemetery, he was given the codename Gravedigger.

 Later, he would earn the rank of Captain and became the only man apart from Sgt. Frank Rock to lead the Easy Company. He received a cross-shaped scar across his face while fighting a Nazi soldier. One story revealed that Ulysses survived to see the end of WWII. He had a son, Achilles,Hazard, who followed in his father's footsteps, though he joined the Marines rather than the Army. Ulysses' grandson, Perseus Hazard, also joined the military and became head of Project K - a special government unit designed to bring down Superman should he ever go rogue.

The second Gravedigger was Tyson Sykes, who first appeared in Checkmate #24 in 2008. An agent of the spy organization Checkmate, with the rank of Rook Alpha, Tyson gained telepathic abilities after being injected with Apocritic - a drug made from the DNA of the alien Starro the Conqueror.

The Arrowverse version of Gravedigger seems to be a combination of both versions of Gravedigger from the comics. He is said to have been around since WWII, unaging thanks to the same serum that stopped Tobias Whale from growing older and has the same cross-shaped scar on his face. Like the second Gravedigger, he is a metahuman with a telepathic ability to "push" people into doing what he tells them to do. He also has enhanced strength and reflexes.

Gravedigger is played by Wayne Brady, best known for his work on the improv comedy show Who's Line Is It Anyway?


Technobabble

Gravedigger's mind-control power works through auditory stimulation and effects the front lobe of those he targets.

The hyperactivity that is a side-effect of Glimmer use can override Graverider's mind-control power.

In covert operations, it is generally a no-no to exit through the same means one uses for entry in a rescue or retrieval mission.

The door to Lab A is grounded against energy attacks and resists 100 million volts. It cannot, however, resist Erica Moran charging it after being repeatedly hit by Thunder.

Erica's power is organic in nature and follows the Fibonacci sequence, with her power growing exponentially every time she is hit and holds the kinetic energy.

Due to his brain functions being run almost entirely through the Painkiller chip, Khalil is immune to Gravedigger's mind control powers.


Dialogue Triumphs

Jefferson: Black Lightning. (chuckles) Black Lightning! Never particularly cared for that name. The news... News called me that, twenty-two years ago and it stuck. Twenty-two years. Feels like a thousand and then some. (sighs) All the blood, broken bones, (laughs softly) broken hearts and death. All the death. There was Lynn, witness to it all.  We, we...we tried to balance a normal life, you know, kids, career. (chuckles) But nothing... Nothing mixes well with Black Lightning. So, we fought. We made up. Got divorced. Got back together. Just couldn't stop loving each other. I grew up around drug dealers and drug addicts. You know all that.... Man, I've seen drugs devastate people. Families. I know the depth of addiction. I also know that Black Lightning's powers are useless in that fight. (determined)  But they are not useless in the fight in front of me right now. This war for Freeland....This war for Freeland took her from me. If I have to break bones, burn skin, draw blood ...If I have to kill, I will. I'm getting her back.

(Gravedigger asks Lynn politely to make the metahuman stabelization cure so that the people Makovia has in pods can be free.)
Lynn: You think I'm stupid? You're weaponizing them!
Gravedigger: Freedom ain't free.
Lynn: Spare me the rationalization. I'm not open to persuasion.
Gravedigger:  (chuckles) It's... It's interesting that you'd say that. (Gravedigger looks at Lynn seriously, his voice deepening as he speaks next.) Make the cure as fast as you can.
(To Lynn's horror, her body begins moving despite her face showing she doesn't want to be moving, going to a different work station and starting to pour one chemical into a dish. Dr. Jace looks at this with a mixture of fascination and horror.)

Jennifer: I know the timing's really bad, but our rescue team ain't looking so good. I need to ask you a favor.
Khalil: No. No. No, the last thing I need to do is go on another kill mission again.
Jennifer: Khalil, you know I'm not asking you to kill anybody. This is to get my mom back. Please. You have more training than all of us put together.
Khalil: J, I want you to get your mother back. Really, I do. But I am more of a liability than I am an asset.
Jennifer: What are you talking about?
Khalil: He's still in my head, Jen. I can't be trusted.
Jennifer: We've both killed for the ASA. But I lied to my family about it. They've lied to me, Odell lied to you. At least you've been honest. So, as far as I'm concerned, I trust you.
Khalil: I killed my own mother, Jen.
(There is a long pause as Jen sees... truly sees...how pained Khalil is. About what happened to him but also feeling like he is failing her.)
Jennifer: Then help me save mine. Please.
Khalil: No.

(Jefferson finds Khalil in the Sanctuary, packing a bag.)
Jefferson: Really? Does Jen know you're leaving?
Khalil: No. I'm not too good with goodbyes.
Jefferson: I think you owe her more than that.
Khalil: Yeah. I do, too.
Jefferson: Where are you gonna go?
Khalil: I don't know, but I gotta get out of Freeland, for good this time.
Jefferson: Why?
Khalil: Why would I stay?
(There's a pause as Jefferson considers his next few words.)
Jefferson: I wanna apologize to you.
Khalil: You wanna apologize to me?
Jefferson: Yeah. I feel like I didn't do enough for you.
Khalil: Look, it's like I said at the hospital the night I died. You did what you could. So, apology not accepted.
Jefferson: You won't be hunted. I had your name removed from the ASA register. You'll have a chance at somewhat of a normal life, free from them.
Khalil: Thanks. That means a lot. But I'll never actually be free and clear from Painkiller. I can't even trust myself. What good would I be to anybody?
Jefferson: Well, you You'd be a lot of good to us in Markovia.
Khalil: There is enough blood on my hands, Mr. P.
Jefferson: Look, Khalil. We can't We can't undo our past mistakes. All we can do is just move forward and try to do better. Look, I just want you to know that you would be a big help. But I respect your desire to.. To take off. If you ever find yourself this way again, you'll find our door open.

Gambi: I'm proud of you, you know that?
Jefferson: I haven't done anything for you to be proud of.
Gambi: But you have. Over, and over, and over again, ever since you were 12 years old. And now you're not only a hero, you have the stature to lead other heroes. I am proud of you, and Alvin would be, too.
Jefferson: What is a hero these days?
Gambi: You are.
Jefferson: Thanks, old man.

Gravedigger: Stand down, son.
Khalil: Yeah, I'm not your son.
(Gravedigger just stands there and looks at Khalil, assessing him slowly.) 
Gravedigger: By the way you're standing, your respiration... you're not all there. Bionics, lots of them. Not enough nervous system for me to push. Not enough sense to run. Clearly, you're what they call a "millennial."
Khalil: You talk too much.
(Khalil goes for his guns but Gravdigger charges forward and knocks them out of Khalil's hands.  The two begin fighting hand-to-hand. Khalil does okay at first but Gravedigger is able to get a good hit in and knocks Khalil into the wall.)
Gravedigger: Not bad. You don't wanna do this.
Khalil: (pulling himself up and raising his fists) Like I said - you talk too much.




Continuity

Jefferson first appeared as Black Lightning in 1998 - 22 years ago.

Jefferson didn't choose the name Black Lightning for himself. It was given to him by the media.

TC is running all the members of Jefferson's team through VR simulations to get them ready for the invasion.

Major Grey gives Jefferson the ASA's file on Painkiller. She also asks him to reconsider taking a team of ASA commandos with him, but Jefferson insists on sticking with his team of chosen agents.

Gravedigger is put in charge of the project to stabilize Markovia's metahumans due to the project not moving quickly enough under Mosin's command for the liking of their bosses.

Gravedigger was one of Dr. Jace's patients at one time.

Gravedigger is on the same formula as Tobias that stops him from aging.

There are 94 metahumans in cryogenic suspension in Markovia.

Jennifer asks Khalil to join the team, but he refuses, saying he's still coping with the idea that he killed his own mother. Jennifer says he can use what he was given to help her save her mother.

Jennifer is still holding a grudge against Anissa for not telling her that Khalil was alive.

Anissa, in turn, is holding a grudge against Khalil, believing he'll snap and become Painkiller again, sooner or later.

Sgt. Grayle attacks Brandon verbally, calling him the weak link of the team.

Jefferson asks Khalil to join the team, but discovers him packing up to go somewhere outside of Freeland.

Jefferson apologizes for not having done more to help Khalil and tells him he'll always have a place in Freeland if he ever decides to come back.

Lynn lies and tells Gravedigger they need a simple of his blood to speed up production on the stabilization formula. In truth, she's planning to give herself his mind-control power.

When planning their mission, Major Grey says they have to rescue Tobias as well as Lynn.

TC begins flirting with Erica Moran, eventually giving her a pair of boots to increase her speed.

Khalil joins the team at the last minute.

Gambi tells Anissa he has a way to shut Painkiller down in order to get her to stop complaining about Khalil being a danger to the mission.

Grayle tells Jefferson about the kill order he was given and Erica being programmed to kill Lynn should they prove unable to rescue her.

TC reveals that he already knew all this and that his flirting with Erica was a cover for him to get close enough to shut down the chip controlling her thoughts.

Brandon has a fear of flying. Gambi says this is a psychological side-effect of his power, which requires he be connected to the earth.

Khalil is able to knock Brandon out with a Kyushu Jitsu touch; part of his martial training rather than his superpowers.

Khalil reveals that he discovered that with the Painkiller program locked away in his mind, he can no longer use his poison-generation powers.

The final plan is that TC and Gambi will handle comms and monitor the computers at the Markovian base as two teams move in, once Grace takes over the security center by disguising herself as one of the Markovian leaders. Team 1, consisting of Jefferson, Anissa and Erica, go after Tobias. Team 2, consisting of Jennifer, Brandon, Sgt. Grayle and Khalil, go after Lynn.

Brandon runs off on his own, with Sgt. Grayle chasing after him, after he learns that Dr. Jace is in Lab B along with Tobias.

Tobias reveals that he knows Jefferson is Black Lightning.

Khalil stays behind to hold of Gravedigger, leaving Jennifer to go find her mother on her own. This happens to coincide with Lynn making her own escape attempt using her temporary mind-control power.

Sgt. Grayle stops Brandon from killing Dr. Jace.

Gravedigger fights Jefferson with an energy weapon that seems to negate his powers.

Grace retrieves Erica

Gravedigger is immune to his own power, as Lynn discovers when she tries to order him to leave her alone.

Lynn agrees to return with Gravedigger if he'll let her family go.

Jefferson shocks Gravedigger into submission and rescues Lynn.


Location

A military base in Markovia


Untelevised Adventures

How an American soldier came to be working for the Makorvian government is unexplained and hints at one hell of a story to be told eventually.


The Bottom Line

Possibly the single-best episode of the series to date. Easily the best episode of the season.

Legends of Tomorrow: Season 5, Episode 3 - Miss Me, Kiss Me, Love Me

For a summary of the episode guide layout & categories, click here.




Plot

With Astra firmly committed to releasing Encores upon the Earth, Constantine starts seeking an alternative means of fighting the undead. As he, Sara, Ray, Ava and Mick travel to the Golden Age of Hollywood to deal with the return of infamous gangster Benjmain "Bugsy" Siegel, Nate travels with Behrad for a visit home to his parents... and his annoying older sister, Zari.


Influences

Film Noir gangster movies, with a specific shout-out to Chinatown and the music of Bell Bev Devoe


Goofs

If mortal souls in the service of demons are capable of turning anyone they kill or corrupt into a new recruit for their demonic master, why aren't more demons sending armies of serial killers back to Earth? (It isn't a widely known fact or most demons would rather horde the souls they have than risk losing them.)

Mickey Cohen is depicted as a rival of Bugsy Siegel. In the real world, Mickey Cohen was one of Siegel's subordinates and had worked with him on establishing the Flamingo Hotel. (It could be they were rivals in Earth-Prime. There's also a theory that Cohen might have undertaken the hit on behalf of the other mafia families due to Bugsy's skimming off of the properties meant to be managed to the benefit of them all.)

Ava apparently lost her apartment in Washington DC and all her belongings are now in a single duffel-bag. Given how controlling Ava was, it's a little hard to believe she wasn't similarly meticulous regsarding her finances and didn't have money put aside for emergencies and is now, in her words, a vagrant, who has to live on the Waverider.

It's a minor point but where was the real Moore of "Webb & Moore" while all this was going on?


Performances

Tala Ashe slays as the new Zari. She's not a completely different person, showing plenty of the steel and intelligence we associate with the character, but she's different enough in her seemingly vapid persona to her followers and her general demeanor for it to be startling. The low-cut top and mini-skirt she seems to favor would have been all but impossible to imagine on the more Tomboyish Zari from pre-Crisis.

It must be said that Caity Lotz plays the femme fatale quite well and she'd do quite well in an actual Film Noir thriller.

The VIP performance of the episode has to go to Jess Macallan, who gets a chance to show off her singing skills and steals the scene with her dream sequence and the comedic aftermath. Yet she also gets some great pathos conveying Ava's clear discomfort with the loss of control she's feeling as a member of the Legends in the wake of losing her job with the Time Bureau.


Artistry

The sequence in which Ava sings a torch-song version of "Poison" is a perfect blending of light, blocking, setting and costume. You almost forget how impossible it is for a 1940's band and back-up singers to know the song up until the gag

The costuming overall is quite good.


Trivia Of Tomorrow

This was the first episode to feature a new animated title-card sequence showing the core members of the Legends

This also marked the first episode where a new font was used for the credits.

The title of the episode is based on a lyric from the song "Poison" by Bell Bev Devoe, which Ava sings in the episode.

The detective office which Sara, Ray and John investigate belongs to Webb & Moore.  The name Webb could be a nod to actor Jack Webb, who made a career of playing detectives and lawmen in Los Angeles, most famously as Sgt. Joe Friday on Dragnet.  The name Moore could be a nod to John Constantine creator Alan Moore.

Benjamin "Bugsy" Siegel was one of the gangsters who founded Murder Inc. and held considerable influence in the Jewish Mafia, the National Crime Syndicate and the Ameican Mafia. One of the most famous of the so-called celebrity mobsters, he's been depicted in a number of popular films and television series; most famously in the 1991 film Bugsy, where he was played by Warren Beatty.

Though most of the media portrayals of Bugsy Siegel focus upon his time as a crime-boss, most of his criminal career was spent working as a hitman or hired muscle for other bosses. Known for being handsome and charismatic, he worked as a bootlegger in New York during the Prohibition era. When alcohol was legal in the USA once again, he headed west and began running his own rackets in Hollywood while taking a hand in establishing Las Vegas.

The character of Jeanie Hill seems to be partly based on Virginia Hill; a female gangster and one-time girlfriend of Bugsy Siegel, who never went by the name Jeanie in our world. Once described by Time Magazine as the "queen of the gangster molls," Virginia Hill was an equally legendary figure in the history of the American Mafia, having been romantically connected to many men in the Chicago Mob, for whom she also acted as a courier and a spy.

Virginia Hill eventually settled on Charles Fischetti, a cousin and bodyguard of Al Capone, but was dispatched to New York where she became involved with Joe Adonis in order to spy on the Luciano family. It was here that she met Bugsy Siegel, with the two openly becoming a couple after they both wound up in Hollywood years later.

In our world, Bugsy Siegel was killed on June 20, 1947, at the Beverly Hills home of Virginia Hill. It is believed that Hill was warned about the hit, as she took a sudden trip to Paris four days before Siegel's death.

In the Arrowverse, things play out differently, with Hill being present for Bugsy's murder and it apparently taking place somewhere besides her house, as she makes reference to Bugsy coming by her place later being perfectly fine.

The Arrowverse version of Bugsy Siegel secured his place in Hollywood using blackmail material, often entrapping his victims, make and female, using Jeanie Hill as a honey pot. While there is no record of Siegel operating in this capacity with Virginia Hill, it can't be completely discounted given their pasts, as Siegel did depend heavily on extorting various movie studio bosses and would not have been above using his moll to arrange for incriminating photos to be taken.

One notable difference between Jeanie Hill and Virginia Hill is that Jeanie Hill makes reference to being from Shaker Heights, Ohio and heading to Hollywood with dreams of becoming a mvoie star. Virginia Hill was from Lipscomb, Alabama and played at being a Southern Belle from an old money family when seducing her marks in Chicago and New York before she made her way west.

Virginia Hill also did not die because of  a car bomb in California in 1947. In 1950, she married Austrian professional skier Hans Hauser and spent the rest of her life after 1954 in Europe in order to avoid charges of tax evasion in the United States. She died of an apparent drug overdose in 1966, but some believe she was murdered and it was made to look like an accident for fear of what she knew.

As Sara is trying to lure Bugsy Siegel out to where she and Ray can subdue him, she and Bugsy are attacked by men Bugsy says work for Mickey Cohen; boss of the Cohen crime family and a major player in the Italian American mafia through the 1960s. Curiously, Cohen had worked under Siegel during most of the 1940s and one Mafia legend says he attempted to kill the men he believed were responsible for killing Siegel before being scared off by the arrival of police. It is believed he was honestly avenging Siegel's murder rather than trying to cover the tracks of the hit himself.

Clayton Chitty, who plays Officer Sullivan in this episode, previously played Vigilante on Arrow.

Ray attempts to search Bugsy on his way out of the LAPD precinct office, citing the authority of Police Chief Wiggum. This is a nod to the bumbling police chief from The Simpsons.


Technobabble/Arcana

By the laws of Hell, any human killed or corrupted by a damned soul released upon Earth goes to the demon that owns the chit of the damned soul.

John has a magic spell that allows him to track Encores by detecting magical energy and infernal residue.

Ignis Inerni is the Latin term for hellfire.

John can identified the victim of a hellfire attack by tasting their ashes.

Hellfire cannot be generated by mortal mages - only by an infernal being or an object made by demons.

Bugsy Siegel is revealed to have a pistol infused with hellfire. Siegel also seems to have some degree of telepathic control over the bullets the gun fires, as he is able to wound four gangsters with a single shot as the bullet weaves around to strike them all. The body of a mortal struck by the hellfire bullets disintegrates into a pile of ash and their soul is sent to Hell. A damned soul or demon struck by a hellfire bullet is permanently killed.

As powerful as the hellfire gun is, it does require compatible ammunition from Hell to work. This becomes a factor later when John storms Astra's club later with a limited number of shots.

According to John, only a weapon born of Hell can eliminate the Encores.


Dialogue Triumphs

(John appears in the circle of ash on the Waverider, seemingly only moments after he disappeared. Ava and Sara are still there. John coughs as the two women crowd him.)
Sara: John!
Ava: What happened down there?
(Gasping for breath, John straightens up and steels himself. He then pushes his way between Sara and Ava.)
John: I need a drink.
(As John says the words, Sara mouths them as well and shrugs triumphantly at Ava as if to say, "See? I told you I knew how this would go.")

(Sara. Ray and John go chasing after the female silhouette they saw in the hallway. They find a woman holding a pistol.)
Jeanie Hill: Don't come any closer!
Sara: All right, easy. You can put the gun down. We're here to help.
Jeanie Hill: Where's Webb?!
Ray: Uh, we are the "and Moore" of Webb & Moore. We work with Moore. (correcting himself) Webb.
Jeanie Hill: (looking at John) You must be Moore.
John: (speaking in an American accent) Suuure, that's me. Johnny Moore. Sara is my secretary.
(John points to Sara, who briefly makes a face suggesting there will be hell to pay for this later.)
John: (looking to Ray) And this fella here-
Jeanie Hill: Has got a cop face.
Ray: (not realizing that's an insult) Oh, thank you! (chuckles) Sergeant Palmer at your service. (winks) I'm undercover.
Jeanie Hill: Tell Webb to call me when he's back.
(She turns around as it to leave but stops when John starts speaking.)
John: He's, uh, on holiday vacation, which leaves me handling your case, Miss...?
Jeanie Hill: Hill, Jeanie Hill. I hired your partner to protect me from my boyfriend.
Ray: Oh, well, you're in good hands, ma'am.
Jeanie Hill: Oh, give me a break, Johnny Law! Half the PD is in Bugsy's pocket!
Sara: (recognizing the name) Bugsy as in...
Jeanie Hill: Benjamin Siegel. Doesn't like it when you call him Bugsy. But here's the kicker, He died last week.
John:And now he's back from the dead.
Jeanie Hill: And he's more dangerous than ever.

(Bugsy Siegel approaches Sara after she goes walking past his table.)
Bugsy: I couldn't help but notice you, and I gotta tell you, I like the way you walk.
Sara: I learned to do it all by myself, Mr. Siegel.
Bugsy: Oh, please, Benjamin.
Sara: Hmm, Sara Lance, at your service.
Bugsy: Lance, huh?
Sara: What's the matter, you don't like it?
Bugsy: Well, I don't know yet, just trying it on for size. You know, even if it fits, I'm a little curious about the price tag.
Sara: Well, if you have to ask, it's probably too expensive.
 Bugsy: (chuckles) I take what I want.
Sara: Does that make you a thief, Mr. Siegel?
Bugsy: I am a lot of things, Ms. Lance. And I am especially a thief.
Sara: Well, then let's stop all the tiddlywinks and get straight to the big reveal, shall we? Now, I'm a reporter for a new gossip rag, and I've got some dirt on half the city councilmen and the new archbishop. It's in my car. What do you say we go out back and you can take a peek what's in my trunk?
 Bugsy: I say, you keep talking like that, I just might follow you anywhere.

(Ava sighs as she gets off the comms with Sara, having been told to sit tight and watch the bar.)
Mick: What?
Ava: Hmm? (laughs) You wouldn't understand.
Mick: That you were the boss of a massive government organization, and now you do diddly-squat?
Ava: Wow, take it back, Rory. You just summed up my life perfectly.
(Ava looks depressed at this realization and downs her drink in one shot.)
Ava: (to the bartender)
Can I get a double?

(John is sitting in the office of Moore & Webb. Jeanie Hill comes inside. John smiles as he puts on his American accent, clearly relishing playing a private eye, trenchcoat and all.)
John: So you got my message.
Jeanie Hill: Look, if this is about the money your friend gave me, I already spent it.
John: I knew you were on the grift from the moment I laid eyes on ya.
Jeanie Hill: And I never once fell for that Yankee accent of yours.
John: (laughs and goes back to his normal voice)  Well, all right then. Well, now that we've dropped the charades, tell me, what is your angle?
Jeanie Hill: I wanna take Bugsy down. Free this town from his sway. The only way to do that is to destroy his blackmail stash. Webb said he'd found it, but I'm guessing Bugsy killed him for snooping too close.
John: Well, that's bad news for Webb and good news for me, because I know where the stash is.
Jeanie Hill: (smiles wide and steps in closer to John) Well, aren't I the luckiest girl in the world. What do you want in exchange?
John: (inhales deeply) I want Bugsy's gun.
Jeanie Hill: You lookin' to ice Bugsy?
John: No, that bloke's not worth it. I'm aiming at the person who brought him back.
Jeanie Hill:  Then we have a deal. You get your guy, I get my freedom.
John: Now, how exactly are you planning on stealing Bugsy's prized weapon, eh?
Jeanie Hill: When we kiss I'll press my hand against his chest.
(She steps closer and runs her hand along John's chest.)
Jeanie Hill: And then I'll run my hand all the way down his body, and then I'll grab it like this.
(John grunts as Jeanie grabs something that is definitely not a gun. She presses her lips to his and he grabs the back of her head as he spins her around. They sink to the floor as jazz music swells as we hear the sound of furniture crashing.)

(Bugsy Siegel comes into the Blue Iguana to see a drunken Ava singing.)
Bugsy: What is all this? You bring me all the way down here just so I can watch some no-name dame humiliate herself on stage?
Sara: First of all, she is not a no-name. That is my girlfriend. And second, she is not humiliating herself.
Mick: (deadpan) Yes she is.

(Nate is in a sitting room by himself. He is looking at a framed copy of Mini Traders Magazine. The cover story is ZARI TARAZI IS DRAGON GIRL!" and shows a picture of a young Zari taming the dragon at Heyworld. Zari walks in.)
Zari: So embarrassing.
Nate: Dragon girl. Is this when you became famous?
Zari: Yep, first agent when I was 11. He was a real piece of work. Eventually, I took control of everything.
Nate: Can I ask you something?
Zari: Hmm?
Nate: When you first saw me, did you feel like we met before?
Zari: Maybe. I meet a lot of fans.
Nate: No, I mean, we met in another life.
Zari: Oh. Yeah, I totally got that vibe.
(Zari rushes to Nate and kneels on the couch opposite him.) 
Nate: Oh, so it's not all in my head! I feel like I've been living out this Taylor Swift song, but it feels crazy good.
(Zari takes Nate's hand) 
Zari: We're definitely connected somehow, but something feels off. I think the you I remember wasn't a professor.
(Nate hesitates, clearly not wanting to blow his friend's cover.)
Zari: (rolling her eyes) Come on, I know Behrad's been lying to my parents about business school for years. I only wanna make sure that he's been taking really good care of our family's totem. Which he has been, right?
(Nate mutters something indistinct as Zari leans in close. Naturally, it is at this moment that Behard walks in.)
Behard: Yo, dude, we're cutting the cake, and they're asking for the special guest.
Zari: Come on. Chill, B, your friend and I were just talking.
Behard: (guiding Nate out of the room) Sure you were. Let's go.

(Jeanie is holding John at gunpoint, stopping him from burning Bugsy's blackmail stash.)
John: You told me you wanted to destroy that stash so that you and everyone else in the town could be free.
Jeanie Hill: Yeah, but I figured why destroy it when I could just use it for myself? I'm sick and tired of people taking advantage of me. With this briefcase, I'll finally have some real power around here.
John: Look, I understand your anger, but as soon as you touch Bugsy's dirt then you'll have a target on your back just like him. But if you leave now, you can start over, have a new life. Look, you don't have to do this, Jeannie. Just walk away.
Jeanie Hill: Walk away? Do you really expect me to give up this power after being so powerless my whole life?
(John looks at her. He knows what it is to be powerless and he can't say that she's wrong. Though it's clear he's also thinking about another powerless woman lashing out now that she has real power that he was trying to stop for his own selfish reasons.)
John: You know what? You're right. (picks up the briefcase and hands it to her.) Who am I to tell you what to do anyway?
Jeanie Hill:  See? It's working already.

(John looks at the burning car, knowing there is no way Jeanie Hill survived. Ray walks up.)
Ray: They killed her!
John: Forget it, Ray. It's Burbank.

(Sara and Mick have Bugsy in the Waverider brig. John and Ray enter. John is livid. )
John: I should blast you straight to oblivion, you damn bastard. You made Jeanie's life miserable and now she's dead because of you.
Bugsy Siegel: (smirks) I may have corrupted a wannabe starlet. But you? You created a real monster. Astra Logue.
(There's a long moment as John regards Bugsy. He then grins wickedly as he pulls a bottle from his pocket and begins forming a circle on the floor.)
John: You know what? It's funny that you mention her. I was just about to go and see her.
Sara: John, if you're about to do what I think you're gonna do, then you'd better be sure.
(John nods as he steps into the circle. He looks to Mick, who is still holding Bugsy.) 
John: Hand him over, big man.
Mick: (pushes Bugsy into the circle) Go on.
John: Yeah, that's it, big boy. See, you're my ticket to Hell.
(John pistol-whips Bugsy across the forehead with the hellfire pistol. It draws blood. John sticks his fingers in the wound and applies it in two vertical marks under his eyes before sucking his fingers clean and taking a deep breath. Ray looks disgusted.)
John: (chanting) Flesh become my flesh, soul become my soul. Hades, firstborn of Cronus and Rhea, I call upon you. (John looks up to Mick)  Light her up, big man.
(Mick, for once looking disturbed, pulls out his heat gun and ignites the circle. The flames immediately go  blue as John and Bugsy disappear.)

(John enters into Astra club, hellfire gun drawn, pushing the bound Bugsy before him.)
Astra: You just can't stay away, can you?
Bugsy Seigel: Careful, he's still got one bullet left.
Astra: Oh, I appreciate your concern, Benjamin, but I'm not worried about him. We're old friends, aren't we, Johnny? So why don't you tell me what you came all the way down here for?
John: I came all the way down here to tell you....
(John holds the gun on Astra and looks at her.  He lowers the gun.)
John: That I'm not giving up on you. And even if it takes me till the end of my days, I promise you that I will find a way.
Astra: Another meaningless promise made by the great John Constantine. You've gone soft.
(Astra laughs wickedly and Bugsy joins in. John smiles sheepishly for a moment before his bastard grin emerges.)
John: Not that soft. This one's for Jeannie!
(John draws the gun and fires it directly into Siegel's heart. He has just enough time to look stunned before screaming and disappating into a cloud of green fiery smoke. Astra honestly looks surprised.)
John: I'll be seeing you around, love.
(John throws the gun to the ground and walks out.)

Ray: Hey, whatever really happened back there with Astra, I'm sure it wasn't easy.
John: What are you talking about, big man?
Ray Just so you know, if I had taken care of Nora back when we all thought she was evil, we wouldn't be happy and together right now.
John: Oh, I had the chance to pull the trigger, to end all this. (sighs) But I couldn't do it.
(Ray just nods and smiles widely.)
John: What's all your grinning about?
Ray: Just happy there's still good guys out there. Even if one of them is a master of the dark arts.
John: You know, you're wrong about me, Ray. But I will save Astra, and you should know it's just as much for me as it is for her, all right?


Continuity

Astra refuses to bring her souls back to Hell when John asks her to do so nicely. She says the only way she'll ever stop is if John kills her, but points out that's pointless as she'll just wind up in Hell again.

Astra has taken control of Masher and is punishing him for squealing on her to John Constantine.

Nate is now seeing flashes of Zari when he looks at Behrad.

Ray suggests that Astra could be redeemed but John says that her lust for power has overtaken whatever humanity she had left.

With no better plan for containing the Encores, Sara says they'll keep them on the ship until they can figure out a way to send them to Hell permanently or stop Astra from sending them back to Earth.

Behrad asks for shore leave to visit his father on his birthday. Nate agrees to come along and pretend to be one of his business school professors.

Gideon detects a time quake in Los Angeles in 1947 just as Nate and Behrad are leaving.

Sara, John and Ray head into LA to investigate the disturbance. Ava and Mick QB from the ship.

According to Mick, QB means stay on the ship and do nothing.

Behrad and his parents speak Farsi.

In the new timeline, Zari is a social media influencer who became world famous after the incident where she tamed the dragon at Heyworld in 2019. She built that fame into a social media empire

Zari has an entourage that includes one media person and two people to help her with hair and make-ip touch-ups.

Zari has 51 million followers on-line.

Nate recognizes Zari as the woman from the video in 502. She has no idea who he is, however, and he thinks he's a creep based on how he stares at her.

Nate tells Behrad about the video he found in Gideon's memory. Behrad is skeptical, however.

John tracks the Encore to a detective agency belonging to one Webb and Moore. He goes on to impersonate Moore, using the name Johnny Moore, after finding a pile of ashes on the floor he figures was Webb.

John finds a matchbook for the Blue Iguana club on Moore's desk. It has a sequence of numbers written in it, along with the word Elysium.

John is capable of faking a reasonable American accent.

Ray impersonates a plainclothes police detective, saying he is Sgt. Palmer.

Sara, to her annoyance, has to play the role of John's secretary.

Webb was hired by Jeanie Hill to act as a bodyguard and protect her from her boyfriend, Benjamin "Bugsy" Siegel. "Johnny Moore" agrees to take over the job.

Apparently, Bugsy Siegel died a week earlier but came back from the dead. This sets the episode sometime in late June in 1947.

Bugsy Siegel just took over a club called the Blue Iguana on Sunset Boulevard. John finds a matchbox for the Blue Iguana on Webb's desk in his office.

Ray gives Jeanie the money to get out of town. John thinks she's playing him for a sap and is proven right when he finds Jeanie on Bugsy's arm later, though she justifies this saying that she wasn't able to get out of the city since Bugsy has eyes everywhere.

Ava and Mick go into the Blue Iguana undercover as customers, separately Sara and John.

Ray continues to pose as a policeman, but this time in a standard uniform, outside the Blue Iguana.

Jeanie Hill claims she wants to get all the blackmail photos she posed for before she gets out of town to save her reputation and ruin Bugsy.

Sara tries to seduce Bugsy, playing at being a gossip reporter who can help him with getting information on blackmail targets.

Bugsy kills four of Mickey Cohen's men who were sent after him.

Ray arrests Bugsy almost immediately, but a different group of cops take over the scene immediately.

Zari manages a multi-platform, multimillion dollar brand and is about to put out a line of dressy sneakers.

It is immediately clear that Zari and Behard do not get along. Behard sees Zari as annoying in flaunting her success. Zari is jealous of the attention Behard gets as the baby of the family and how her parents don't seem to care about her accomplishments compared to his going to college.

Behard's parents want him to settle down with a nice Persian girl and worry about him being too enveloped in his studies.

Behard's parents have a painting of the Zambesi Air Totem in its original form as a necklace.

Behard's parents think the Air Totem was stolen, being completely ignorant of Behrad taking it to become a superhero in the new reality.

Ray determines that Bugsy really does have the LAPD in his pocket, with the cops bringing him a gourmet lobster dinner and wine and questioning him about the shooting in a nice office rather than the cell block.

Ray befriends a seemingly honest cop named Sullivan.

John contacts Jeanie Hill and convinces her to help him steal Bugsy's gun. The two wind up having sex in the Webb & Moore office.

Ava has turned in the keys to her apartment in Washington DC and sold most of her belongings. Everything she owns now is in a single duffel bag.

Ava is able to clear out the Blue Iguana with her drunken singing.

Zari knows that Behard has been lying about going to business school and suspected that he took the Air Totem.

Based on the information in the matchbook, John determines that Webb hid the blackmail information he stole from Bugsy Seigel in a graveyard. Due to his spending a lot of time in graveyards, he knows that Elysium is a common name for graveyards (after the Elysium Fields of Greek Myth) and from there it was a simple guess to figure out the numbers referred to a grave marker.

Webb hid the blackmail information in a graveyard in Burbank.

Jeanie double-crosses John and plans to run off with the blackmail material. She does, however, keep her word and gives him Busgy's gun, telling him there are five bullets left in it.

Officer Sullivan turns out to be crooked and turns on Ray, after he refuses to go along with the plan he and some other mobbed-up cops have to kill Jeanie Hill and destroy the blackmail material with a car bomb. They also plan to frame Ray for the killing.

Jeanie Hill dies when the car explodes.

John takes Bugsy back to Hell and destroys his soul with the hellfire gun in front of Astra. He then leaves the gun in Hell, telling her that he is not giving up and will find a way to save her.

John lies and tells Sara he lost the gun after being overpowered by Astra's minions.

John later confesses the truth after Ray calls him on it and admits he couldn't kill Astra. He does, however, deny that he's the good man Ray thinks he is and says he's just as concerned with easing his conscience as he is saving Astra's soul.

Mick recorded Ava's singing. Sara bribes him to lose the recording.

Zari recognizes Nate as the superhero in the star-spangled outfit at Heyworld when she was a girl and tamed the dragon. She also recognizes Behrad from a video of the incident.

The episode ends with Behrad sending Zari through a time portal into the Waverider to stop her from telling their parents about what he's been up to (even though she's not sure what he's up to.) and Zari having a breakdown on the deck of the Waverider.


Location

Hell
Los Angeles - 1947
Washington D.C. - 2044.
Burbank - 1947


The Bottom Line

An instant classic, there's not a redundant storyluie or subplot for the first time in a goodly while. Putting John Constantine in the role of a private eye is a brilliant idea, as John was one of the first detective heroes in the now overdone urban fantasy genre and the production team perfectly captured the feeling of 1940s Los Angeles and the film Noir genre.