'Legends of Tomorrow' Showrunner Explains Anachronisms vs Aberrations

On The CW's Legends of Tomorrow, the time-hopping misfit heroes don't exactly have the tidiest approach to saving the world and those messy methods create problems in the timeline. Now, we’re finding out the differences in the Legends’ temporal problems.

Both last season’s aberrations and the third season’s anachronisms are errors in the timeline, but what's the difference between the two? Showrunner Marc Guggenheim recently spoke with Entertainment Weekly and explained that while the two are similar, the difference comes down to whether the misplaced thing is supposed to exist — or not.

"The way we describe anachronisms is its people, places, and things that are displaced in time, which is different from aberrations, which was like something happened, it wasn't supposed to happen, or something didn't happen that was supposed to happen," Guggenheim explained. "We did that last year. This is people, places, and things that shouldn't be where they are."

And if the Legends are just having to deal with getting people, places, and things – like Julius Caesar, who happens to show up on the beach with Mick — back to where in time they belong this season fans might think the heroes will have an easier time of things, but Guggenheim goes on to explain that that might not be the case in part because anachronisms can cause bigger problems.

"I wouldn't say that they're [anachronisms] are harder or easier," he said. "I would just say that they are very different, because what makes the stories more interesting is it's not just about whether or not Julius Caesar is removed from his time and you've got to put him back in the box, it's what did he do when he was displaced that has screwed things up? So now there's multiple problems to solve."

The Legends won't have the luxury of solving those multiple problems on their own, though. While Rip Hunter left the team at the end of last season he hasn't left the time business. Hunter returns with a new team, the Time Bureau, that isn't exactly keen on the Legends methods, especially since they're the ones who broke time in the first place. Guggenheim said that the two teams may have the same goal, but they go about it very differently.

"We say this a lot in the premiere, the Time Bureau is the scalpel, whereas the Legends are the chainsaws," Guggenheim said. "They fix time, but they're not pretty about it and they break a lot of eggs on the way to their omelets, whereas the Time Bureau is much more proper and they turn sharp corners and they do it without all the consequential damage to property and time, but probably also with a lot less fun."

Legends of Tomorrow returns Tuesday, October 10th following new episodes of The Flash on The CW.

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