This article contains spoilers for the most recent episode of DC's Legends of Tomorrow – Fail-Safe.
When we last left our heroes in Cold-War era Soviet Union, Martin Stein, Ray Palmer and Mick Rory were prisoners of Vandal Savage and Valentina Vostok and being taken to a gulag so she can try to make a Russian version of Firestorm. The episode continue to develop the team as well as the individual characters. Let's take a look at the important moments in Fail-Safe.
Extra points to the writers for getting Wentworth Miller to say: "This isn't my first prison break." And to have it in relation to him going to break out Dominic Purcell is even better.
1 – At the beginning of the episode Rip shows the potential future that has been created now that Stein has been captured. Star City being attacked by a squadron of Firestorms. This is the extreme consequences for them playing in the timeline. The interesting thing here is at one point Gideon refers to Star City as the center of the resistance… which means that Gotham and Metropolis have most likely already fallen. Is this a foreshadowing to what we see at the end of the episode?
2 – Palmer and Rory are put into the main area where Ray's 'aw-shucks' attitude gets him beaten and Rory does nothing. But later, when they are being tortured in an attempt to get Stein to talk, Palmer antagonizes their captor so he tortures him instead of Rory. This makes an impression on the criminal, enough so that he refuses to leave Palmer behind when Snart rescues him. (Snart is going to leave Ray with his Atom armor at least.) Honor among thieves is strong with Heat Wave.
3 – Rip instructs Sara Lance that if they can't rescue Stein then they have to kill him for the sake of the future. But when the situation comes up and Rip isn't available to make the call, it's Leonard Snart that talks Sara out of it. He's not about doing the right thing, but he is about loyalty and he'd never leave a member of his crew behind (normally) and Stein is part of this new crew as are Rory and Palmer. Snart is becoming one of the most interesting characters in the series and we can see a potential relationship between him and Sara growing… what that relationship will be is anyone's guess.
4 – For the third time Rip Hunter goes toe-to-toe with Vandal Savage and unlike the first time when he was unable to kill him, Rip is getting much better at is. When the met in the seventies, he slit Savage's throat. This time he blew him up. It might be fun to see how many times and in how many different ways Rip gets to kill him in the series. But the key thing here is Rip takes his watch back and stands up to Savage. He's a different man here. Confident and a leader. Rip has been manipulating everything like a chess player… but here he gets into it and acts as part of the team. It takes a while, but he's starting to have faith in those around him.
5 – Once merged with Vostok, Stein is basically trapped inside the Firestorm as the passenger. That is until Jax pep talks him into breaking free. This helps solidify the bond between the two, which has been needed. But it also may have done something else. Vostok didn't revert back when Stein vacated. She went nuclear. This may have inadvertently created the character of Negative Woman, who Vostok is in the comics. Which means she will probably be back and a match for Firestorm if Savage ends up building his own team
6 – Having undid the damage they had done to the future, the team is off into the timestream when plot device and Boba Fett wanna be Chronos attacks and damages the Waverider, knocking it out of the time stream and crashing into a possible alternate reality. They have spent a lot of time on the individual characters in this series, yet poor Chronos is being completely ignored. No backstory, not motivation… just a time bounty hunter who shows up when the plot needs to be moved along. I hope the writer's change that soon.
Now that we've done the past for five episode we can jump into the future as we get to see Star City in 2046… you ever notice it's always 30 years or 50 years when it comes to time travel, never 29 so they're in 2045… it looks like things aren't going well and there is a different Green Arrow.