(Disclaimer: This article contains spoilers for Legends of Tomorrow. Continue at your own risk!)
Legends of Tomorrow's premise allows it to pay homage to certain time periods in a way that we don't usually get to see on other television shows. So far, we have seen them journey to the '50s, feudal Japan, the old west, and The Civil War. The show's streak continues its time-hopping with the mid-season premier, which focused on the college years of one of the most iconic directors of all time.
The mid-season premiere of #LegendsOfTomorrow, titled 'Raiders of the Lost Art', marked this first time the name 'Legion of Doom' was used to refer to Malcolm Merlyn, Damien Darhk, and Eobard Thawne. This episode also was steeped in Star Wars references, mostly due to the person they had to save: George Lucas.
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Raiders of the Lost Art
'Raiders of the Lost Art' picks up from where the mid-season finale left off, and the Legion of Doom are still searching for the Spear of Destiny. They track the spear to 1967, where Rip Hunter is living as a director name Phil Gassmer, who does not remember his past life. The Legends attempt to get to Rip before the Legion of Doom finds him; however, they are unsuccessful, and a fight breaks out.
During the altercation, Rip's prop master is shot in the arm by laser fire. He decides that he is done with the film industry, and promptly quits film school. This prop master happens to be the visionary filmmaker George Lucas. The episode explores a scenario where where Ray Palmer and Nate Heywood never reach their full potential, because Lucas never directed Star Wars and Indiana Jones.
The Legends end up saving the day, and inspire George Lucas to become a director. They secure the Spear of Destiny from the Legion, but the Reverse Flash winds up grabbing Rip Hunter in the process. This episode was a great return for the show, although there was very little progression of the over-arching plot. On the bright side, we did get a ton of Star Wars references, that are sure to make any nerd smile.
Maisie Richardson-Sellers, who plays Maya on Legends of Tomorrow, also appeared in Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens. She is shown prominently on-screen for a moment before her planet is destroyed by Starkiller Base. This isn't so much an Easter Egg as it is a connection between the 2 properties, but it's worth noting.
Channeling Han Solo
During Sara, Martin, and Mick's escape from the jail where Rip was being held, Sara asked Ray to pilot the ship. Upon jumping in the captain's chair, Nate asks Ray if he knows how to fly the ship, and then Ray replies, "Yeah, I just have to channel my inner Han Solo".
Storm Trooper Aim
Merlyn and Darhk shoot their laser pistols throughout the episode, and cannot hit a goddamned thing. These scenes are reminiscent of the Storm Troopers, who famously have shitty aim. It is of note that Merlyn and Dahrk are trained assassins who easily kill people all the time, so for them to miss this much has to be a nod to the Star Wars theme of the episode.
A Female Hero
During one of Rip and Sara's conversations, Rip explains that the hero of the screen play he wrote is a female, which wasn't all that common at the time. Sara questions this choice, and Rip defends the idea of a female lead. This is a reference Carrie Fischer's iconic portrayal of Princess Leia, that was groundbreaking at the time, and led to other badass female heroes in film such as Ellen Ripley in Alien, and Sarah Conner in Terminator.
The Garbage Compactor
The Legion of Doom capture the Legends at George Lucas's dorm, and search it for the Spear of Destiny. When they learn that Lucas has thrown the spear away, they make all of their captors jump into a giant garbage compactor to find it. This is a nod to the classic scene in A New Hope, and they even used the classic Star Wars line line, "Don't just stand there, try and brace it with something!" during the scene.
You're My Only Hope
While Maya, Nate, Ray, and George are in the garbage compactor, Maya has to inspire George to commit to becoming a director. While convincing Lucas, Maya tells him that he is their "only hope". This is an obvious nod to the iconic Princess Leia quote from Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope.
One Left Behind
During the Legend's escape from the junkyard. Rip is taking by the Legion of Doom. This is an homage to the scene in Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope, when Obi Wan is struck down by Darth Vader, and our heroes are forced to retreat. Sara even cries out for Rip, much like Luke cried out for Obi Wan.
These Star Wars references and Easter Eggs were a nice way to honor George Lucas's work, in an episode that was about how much his films inspired an entire generation of people. This episode was also a great introduction to the rest of the season, that has turned out be the Legends vs. Legion of Doom match-up we were all hoping for. We don't know what it next for our heroes on Legends of Tomorrow, but we know that we'll keep tuning in on Tuesdays 9PM/ET on The CW!
Sound Off! Which Star Wars reference was your favorite? Let your voice be heard in the comments section below!