|HE HAS RETURNED TO SAVE US ALL.|
Luke Cage: "Who's Gonna Carry That Weight" (2% Stupid)
All I'm going to ding this episode for is the overuse of the Pop Catchphrase, "Always Forward" / "Forward Always". This episode is chock full of street justice, with Cage spending most of the episode flexing his abilities to accomplish his goals, and then, in the last few minutes of the episode, learning a harsh lesson about his limitations, and the limitations of demonstrating your full power set to your enemies. I expect episode four to contain the "you're bulletproof, but Harlem isn't" line from the trailer.
Agents Of SHIELD: "Let Me Stand Next To Your Fire" (15% Stupid)
This 15% rating is due entirely to two very stupid things, both required to forward the plot, but both super-dumb. First is Simmons falling for Daisy's apartment e-mail trick. I mean, come on. But then there's Radcliffe, building a robot speecifically designed to pass as human, and programming it not to lie, then trying to bypass that programming by explaining helpful lies. BAD SCIENTIST. NO BISCUIT. I'm not going to add on points for trusting James, even though it was the second "come to this place" they walked into this episode, because I refuse to rate this dumber than Flash.
On the plus side, we got a cracking episode full of plot and action, snappy lines, Simmons being right about everything else, Daisy coming reluctantly back into the fold, and GHOST RIDER FIRE CHAIN. And the cliche of an LA River car chase was balanced by Invisible Quinjet Roadblock, so that's a wash.
The Flash: "Magenta" (15% Stupid)
By recent Flash standards, this was an outstanding episode. Getting Wells back was the shot in the arm the show needed, especially a Wells unburdened by a captive daughter. What we end up with is something closer to a first-season Flash episode, with banter, the lightest of angst, hints towards the larger plot regarding Anarchy.
Oh, sure, there's a healthy amount of dumb shit. But it was mostly small-scale shit like the show thinking it's romantic to have Barry strand Iris on an offshore island, hitting the Overprotective Dad stuff harder than they need to, and of course attributing any change they want to make to THE TIMELINE. But the characters weren't as dumb as they usually are, except for Wally, who has an in-character reason.
Arrow: "A Matter Of Trust" (20% Stupid)
This was a solid episode of Arrow. You know how I know it was a solid episode of Arrow? I've seen a LOT of solid episodes of Arrow just like it. I've seen the trope where Ollie doesn't trust his team. I've seen them fight a minor supervillain with minor powers. I've seen the sad reveal of a long-held secret. And I've seen a problem develop over the course of the episode that Ollie solves with a speech at the end. This episode did not break any real new ground, which is why I'm docking it points even though it handled things well.
Bonus points for minor criminals trying to recreate the accident that gave one of them superpowers, and for giving a pro wrestling origin to the "Mr. Terrific" nickname for Curtis as a parallel to Michael Holt taking the Mr. Terrific mantel from the original Mr. Terrific, Terry Sloane, whose motto was "Fair Play".
Legends Of Tomorrow: "Justice Society Of America" (30% Stupid)
Kudos to "Legends of Tomorrow" for making an episode that merely frequently annoyed me instead of constantly infuriating me. There was only one instance of time travel wankery (apparently, if Commander Steel is killed, his dogtags will vanish instantly but his grandson will hang around to notice), and some of the worst CGI in CW show history. Oh, and mostly squandering the JSA by putting their first fight completely in the dark.
That said, I appreciate both that the show spent the entire time pointing out what an awful superteam the Legends are and, more importantly, only earning the slightly grudging respect of one JSA member for one Legends member. Kudos on that one. Your team is bad and you should feel bad.
Oh, and apparently Rex Tyler was trying to keep the LoT out of 1942 so that he wouldn't get surprise-killed by Thawne, but according to the show, they ALL would have gotten surprise-killed if they hadn't come back to 1942, so who the fuck knows what his warning was about. I think it's obvious they wrote "I'm Rex Tyler, from the Justice Society of America" at the end of last season and then spent all summer coming up with a dumbass reason for it.