Legends Of Tomorrow Tidbits – “Fail-Safe”


Fail-Safe” — the fifth episode of DC’s Legends of Tomorrow saw the team planning and executing a heist to rescue their friends from a Russian gulag.  Well, like all missions performed by the Legends, something seems to always go wrong.  However, in the end they pull it together and succeed, allowing them to have a well-deserved celebration on board the Waverider — that is, until Chronos interrupts their little shindig with an attack and knocks the team into 2046, leaving fans on an awesome cliffhanger for next week’s episode.

Quick Recap of – Legends of Tomorrow – S01E05 – “Fail-Safe”

Jax recovers from his initial battle with Chronos.  He’s consumed by guilt that Martin was captured attempting a solo mission, all because Martin didn’t want to put him in danger.  Rip goes forward with a plan to rescue Martin, Ray, and Mick.  However, he has a contingency plan: Sara is to kill Martin if they’re too late to stop the Soviets from creating another Firestorm.

At the gulag, Vostok attempts to force Martin to give her the knowledge needed to created the next Firestorm.  Ray, against the advice of Mick, tries to crony up to the prisoners to get info — which turns out to be a bad move.  On the Waverider, Jax gives Martin hope by carving a message into his own arm, which simultaneously appears on Martin’s arm

Sara struggles with a moral dilemma, and Leonard actually advises her not kill to Martin.  Vostok, seeing that Martin will not cooperate, forces Martin’s hand by making him witness the torture of Ray and Mick.  Unable to continue watching the suffering of his friends, Martin gives in and completes the formula.  However, Vostok discovers that it’s not the formula that is the key to Firestorm, it’s Martin.

The team arrives, with Sara ready to execute her contingency plan.  Jax and Kendra, defying orders from Rip, also arrive and execute their own plan, which involves turning off the power to the prison.  Rip quickly calls off Sara’s plan to kill Martin when he sees that they have a chance to succeed.  Vostok, in the meantime, accesses the thermacore and joins with Martin — becoming the next Firestorm.

A battle ensues with the team, Vostok-Firestorm, and the gulag guards.  Martin, using shear willpower, takes over the Vostok-Firestorm vessel.  As Jax touches Vostok-Firestorm, Martin and Vostok separate.  However, she becomes unstable.  The team escapes via the jumpship while Vostok explodes in a giant nuclear reaction.

Celebrating a successful mission, the team is suddenly knocked out of the timestream by a pursuing Chronos.  The team ends up in 2046 in an apocalyptic version of Star City.  They soon find themselves face-to-face with someone who is dressed like the Green Arrow, but with hostile intentions.  This, obviously, leaves us on a cliffhanger for next week’s Legends of Tomorrow, aptly titled “Star City 2046.”

Character Highlights

This week, our Legends of Tomorrow top character highlight goes to a villain — Valentina Vostok, played by the very talented Stephanie Corneliussen.  Though her character doesn’t make much of an arc — she’s pretty much driven by power — the actress owns the part well.  It’s that cold hard conviction that will win her a place as the White Queen in Checkmate.  Wink, Wink, nudge, nudge … Know what I’m getting at, The CW?

Runners up are Sara Lance, Leonard Snart, and Rip Hunter.  Sara still has her own bloodlust to contend with and she did a good job handling that situation.  But the strangest soundboard for Sara’s dilemma was Leonard Snart — and it worked!  Who knew that Leonard was the voice of moral reason.  In fact, Wentworth Miller’s performance was so convincing that you believe this type of character arc can happen in as short as five episodes.

Rip gets props for finally realizing that he should just enjoy the moment … of killing Vandal Savage.  They’re going to be meeting quite a bit, so why not just savor the moment(s).  His ability to just detonate the explosive — killing Vandal — without looking back is quintessential “Cool Guys Don’t Look At Explosions.”

Easter Eggs and References

  • Leonard Snart mentions to the team that this isn’t his first “prison break.”  Wentworth Miller, who plays Leonard Snart, became a household name starring in Prison Break.
  • The Bratva — Russian Mafia — that Sara Lance suggest getting help from, first made their appearance on Arrow.  Oliver was chummy with them because he’s considered a high-ranking member due to saving the life of their leader.
  • When Gideon projects an apocalyptic 2046, she shows Star City as one of the main strongholds of resistance.  In many DC stories that show an apocalyptic future, Oliver Queen is the head of some type of revolution and resistance against oppression.
  • The archer who the team initially mistook as Oliver Queen could be Connor Hawke.  Connor Hawke is the son of Oliver Queen and Sandra Hawke — a woman who is of African and Asian ancestry.


  • Will Valentina Vostok reappear on Legends of Tomorrow or Arrow?  It may have been implied that she died due to the instability of her Firestorm Matrix after the separation, but knowing that this is a comic book inspired property, anything can happen.  When she does reappear, will she be on her way to becoming the White Queen, the new leader of Checkmate?
  • It’s already been acknowledged that an armless grizzled older Oliver Queen will appear in the Legends of Tomorrow episode “Star City 2046.”  Will his missing arm be due to Superman tearing it off, just like in the Dark Knight Returns mini-series?  This will mean that Superman exists in the Arrow-verse.  Or will they use another explanation for his missing appendage?

Next: Catch up on Legends of Tomorrow with a recap of 'Fail-Safe'

DC’s Legends of Tomorrow airs on The CW on Thursdays at 8:00PM EST.