While the burgeoning DC movie universe will officially attempt to win the hearts of minds of audiences all over the world with 2016’s Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice and Suicide Squad, the DC television universe has already moved past its “safe and comfortable” phase and into its “totally batshit can you believe this exists” phase. When Arrow premiered back in 2012, no one imagined that The CW would soon house its own bonkers comic book universe that would win over nerds and norms alike. But here we are – just as The Flash was officially establishing itself as the geekiest show on television, Legends of Tomorrow is here to dethrone it.
Set in the already jam-packed Arrow/Flash universe, Legends of Tomorrow borrows recurring heroes and villains from those two series, introduces a lot more, and sends everyone on a time traveling adventure to take down the immortal DC comics baddie Vandal Savage. It looks insane. And very fun.
Watch the new and totally crazy Legends of Tomorrow trailer after the jump.
In addition to its DC comics roots, this trailer contains shades of Star Trek, Doctor Who, and Quantum Leap. It’s just a whole bunch of insane concepts you love, stuffed into a single glossy package. If the first trailer had our curiosity, this one has our attention.
That this show exists at all is fascinating. Here is a relatively expensive-looking show on a relatively major network that features a superhero line-up consisting of the Atom, White Canary, Firestorm, Hawkman, Hawkgirl, Captain Cold, and Heatwave. How did this happen? Who approved it? Let us know so we can thank them.
The set-up for this series is simple enough: time traveler Rip Hunter recruits a team of heroes and anti-heroes from the present day to help battle the villainous Vandal Savage, who has literally taken over the entire world in 2166. And since he’s an ancient, undying menace who has lived for eons, the team must jaunt through time to attack him when he’s weakest (this trailer suggests that the pilot will mostly take place in 1975). It’s the “Would you kill baby Hitler?” question that has been plaguing the internet as of late with a superhero twist.
Created by Greg Berlanti, Andrew Kreisberg, and Marc Guggenheim, Legends of Tomorrow looks to do what Arrow and The Flash did so very well: make a mountain of pebbles. Denied the use of major DC comic book superheroes like Batman, Superman, and Wonder Woman, these shows transformed their weaknesses into strengths, taking the B and C-level characters that were available to them and making them sing. Here is a fully realized DC universe that functions without the big guys. Somehow, it works.
Of course, this trailer does feature a line that should be of incredible interest for DC aficionados:
I’ve seen men of steel die and dark knights fall.
While we probably won’t be seeing Batman and Superman on the small screen anytime soon, little references like this make the CW’s DC universe feel like the part of something much bigger. If the movies are the “main” continuity, than these shows are Earth 2, an alternate dimension where the likes Atom and Captain Cold can be the center of attention. That’s just plain spiffy.
Legends of Tomorrow will premiere on January 21, 2016 on The CW.
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