Earlier tonight, The CW released the first trailer for DC's Legends of Tomorrow, and it's blown the doors off the joint.
The series, which features Rip Hunter leading a time-traveling team of heroes including some fan-favorites from The Flash and Arrow, will air on Thursday nights starting on January 21, 2016.
And this trailer is loaded with Easter eggs, DC Comics references and sly winks and nods you might not have caught. You can check out our analysis here, and let us know what we missed in the comments!
When heroes alone are not enough… the world needs legends. Having seen the future, one he will desperately try to prevent from happening, time-traveling rogue Rip Hunter is tasked with assembling a disparate group of both heroes and villains to confront an unstoppable threat — one in which not only is the planet at stake, but all of time itself. Can this ragtag team defeat an immortal threat unlike anything they have ever known? DC’S LEGENDS OF TOMORROW stars Victor Garber (“The Flash,” “Alias”); Brandon Routh (“Arrow,” “Superman Returns”); Arthur Darvill (“Doctor Who”); Caity Lotz (“Arrow”); Ciarra Renee (“Pippin”); Franz Drameh (“Edge of Tomorrow”); with Dominic Purcell (“The Flash,” “Prison Break”); and Wentworth Miller (“The Flash,” “Prison Break”). Based on the characters from DC Comics, DC’S LEGENDS OF TOMORROW is from Bonanza Productions Inc. in association with Berlanti Productions and Warner Bros. Television, with executive producers Greg Berlanti (“Arrow,” “The Flash,” upcoming “Pan”), Marc Guggenheim (“Arrow,” “Eli Stone,” “Percy Jackson: Sea of Monsters”), Andrew Kreisberg (“Arrow,” “The Flash,” “Eli Stone,” “Warehouse 13”) and Sarah Schechter (“Arrow,” “The Flash,” upcoming “Pan”).
It seems unlikely there's any specific DC Comics references in the 22nd Century, but here's a rundown of that era, courtesy the DC Wiki:
Alternate Future Realities
- Space Ranger: Rick Star uses his wealth to become a vigilante space policeman, protecting Earth from alien threats and local criminals.
- Terra Obscura: Lance Lewis, Space Detective traveled from the 22nd Century to fight alongside the Allies in World War II.
- Ultra-Man: Gary Concord was placed in suspended animation in 1950. When he awakes in 2174, he discovers he has super-powers, which he uses to oppose the dictator Rabborizon.
Here, we get our first look at Vandal Savage as he appears in DC's Legends of Tomorrow.
We know he'll be in the forthcoming The Flash/Arrow crossover, but by the time Rip Hunter comes into the picture here, we see a dictatorial version of Savage with an army at his command (more on that later).
Wht's the deal with the robe and the staff? Well, aside from looking kind of vaguely biblical, we have to wonder what that staff might actually be. Is it the Staff of Ra, as seen in Arion, Starman's Cosmic staff?
It kind of looks like the latter if anything...but obviously the TV series have a different design sense than the comics for the most part.
COLD WAR SAVAGE
We also get a look at how Vandal Savage looked at a younger and more vulnerable time -- probably during the Cold War, as he stands over a missile that likely belongs in the Soviet nuclear silo we'll see later.
The robe look familiar? Well, maybe what we earlier thought was Savage in the future, was in fact Savage in the past.
We'll stand by our initial assessment for now, just because the staff he's holding in that first image still looks kind of futuristic to us.
That said, here we see him using magic -- and what's that in the foreground? Some ancient artifacts, including one that appears to bear a likeness of Anubis.
That ancient deity has ties to John Constantine and Dr. Fate as well as the Hawks, who are known to be targets of Savage in the present day.
In the first appearance of Hawkman in the comics, his enemy Hath-Set worshiped a statue of a god named Anubis, but it had a hawk for a head instead of a jackal. In Egyptian mythology, the hawk-headed god was Horus, who has his own DC ties, notably to Black Adam.
Also: Look at that light outside. It could be anything, certainly, but what if it's a spacecraft landing? It could be either a Thanagarian craft, explaining the ties between Savage's powers and the Hawks, or it could be Rip Hunter's team.
Is that a new staff, or the same one? It's hard to tell, but in this case it definitely looks to be a magical and not technological one.
And, again, the bird atop the cane is interesting. Could that be tied to Horus? It doesn't realy look like Horus.
Arguably, a more viable candidate could be the Ibistick, but that particular item has already been seen in the Constantine series, which shares a space here. Since it was on a different network, by different showrunners, and has since been cancelled they could easily ignore any elements of the show they don't want to use, but it would be an odd choice to redesign something from the comics which has already been seen looking basically just like its comic book self on the air.
Whatever it is, it sure looks like he's sporting a totem of a pagan god inside of a church, which can't be popular.
Also of note: we're now like 20 seconds in and we've seen basically nothing but Vandal Savage.
Vandal Savage's soldiers appear in what seems to be the dystopian future, but we see a lot of these guys -- including some who don't seem to be in the future, or in formation.
No clue at the moment as to who or what, if anything, these characters might represent from the DC canon, but they've got a look that feels a little bit like Deathstroke's Mirakuru army, and handy energy weapons.
It's worth noting at this point that Rip Hunter's origin on this show -- that he's come from a future dominated by a metahuman dictator and gone to the past to stop him before he can rise to power -- is basically the same one used by Waverider (remember that name -- it will come up later) in Armageddon 2001.
A crossover event that ran through DC's annuals in the early '90s, Armageddon 2001 was done by comics legends Archie Goodwin, Dennis O'Neill, Dan Jurgens and Dick Giordano. It featured Waverider, a hero from the future (created for the story) whose life had been saved by a superhero when he was a child. When he eventually gained powers, he used them to travel through time in an attempt to stop a dictator called Monarch, a former superhero who lost his mind and killed his way to controlling the world.
The name of the spaceship/time machine that the Legends of Tomorrow move around in?
That would be the Waverider.
Named after a DC Comics superhero (remember him?),
RIP HUNTER'S TIME LAB
In Vanishing Point, a place beyond time in the DC Universe where Rip Hunter generally holes up (often with either Waverider and the Linear Men or with fellow Time Masters like his father, Booster Gold), Rip has a study.
In that study? All manner of treasures, from the extraordinary to the mundane. From Green Lantern rings to a bottle of Coca-Cola from one of the first batches off the line, Rip has all kinds of cool stuff.
And that's what that little warmly-lit living space you can see behind the team is.
Ohhhh, the Easter eggs we could find in that room...!
WHO'S THAT KID?
Who's this kid Vandal and his shock troops are looming over?
It could be anybody, really. A guess we heard early on was the child we later see with Captain Cold, although that seems unlikely since this scene seems to take place in the dystopian 2166 timeline. That would make any kid who's been hanging around with Cold, seemingly in the present, quite old himself.
Given the similarities between Rip's backstory in the show and Waverider's in the comics? That could very well be Rip Hunter, Time Master, as a child.
Now that The Atom actually grows and shrinks like...well, The Atom...how does one avoid the problem of being tough to differentiate from Ant-Man, who has a big-budget feature film and looks to be in the next Avengers movie?
Well, remember how the first time Atom shrank, it took out the top few floors of an office building?
Apparently there's still some explosions on the way when he uses his size-changing powers.
SHADOWS AND LIGHT
Not only does Canary become White Canary, complete with a new costume, but she also appears to be the spy of the group. We see her in like six different outfits, and at least two that are explicitly undercover, in this trailer.
Fans will also likely note that the League of Assassins, of which Sara was a member, is sometimes referred to as the League of Shadows in other media, so the idea that Sara has "lived in the shadows for too long" has a nice, symbolic ring to it.
That big hunk of green rock might have stuck out to some fanboys as potential Kryptonite, but it's a bit more mundane than that.
The Maxmillian Emerald is a real thing -- although in life it's not quite as big and chunky as that, unless we're missing something.
It seems the Smithsonian has one...
The "Maximilian Emerald Ring" gets its name from its one time owner, Ferdinand Maximilian Joseph, the archduke of Austria and the younger brother of Emperor Francis Joseph (1848-1916), who was installed as the Emperor of Mexico in 1864 by Napoleon III, whose forces captured Mexico City in 1863, with a view of occupying Mexico and colonizing it. Initially the invasion of Mexico was carried out by the French, British and Spain under the pretext of safeguarding their investments, from a government controlled by Liberals, who even suspended the payment of all foreign debts. But, later the British and the Spanish withdrew their forces after learning of Napoleon's plan to colonize the country. During this period the United States was in the midst of a devastating civil war (1861 -1865). But, soon after the end of the civil war in 1865, the U. S. demanded the withdrawal of the French troops from Mexico, as it violated the Monroe Doctrine, and amassed troops at the Mexican border. The French withdrew their forces, but Emperor Maximilian decided to stay on supported by a group of staunch Conservatives. Eventually, the Liberal forces headed by Benito Suarez captured Mexico City, and Emperor Maximilian surrendered to the forces of Benito Suarez on May 15, 1867. Subsequently, Emperor Maximilian and two of his top-ranking generals, were court martialled found guilty and sentenced to death by firing squad, on June 19, 1867.
THE FASHION OF FIRESTORM
The trailer reveals that Firestorm has not only got a new host -- he's also got a new, more superheroic-looking costume.
You can see it above.
Franz Drameh and Victor Garber will team up to become the new Firestorm, as seen in a recent episode of The Flash. Previously, the "other half" of Firestorm had been played by Robbie Amell, who left the series when his character apparently died in the season premiere while saving both the city and Garber's Professor Stein.
In this ad, we see Hawkman and Hawkgirl fly a few times. It's officially the first look we've seen of Hawkman in action, but I picked an image (above) that features both even though last week's episode of The Flash actually gave us a better look at Hawkgirl.
There are few superheroes who have spent as much time with a bare midriff as Hawkgirl.
And while that isn't the look they go for her superhero costume (probably a wise idea), we do get a nod to that look in the trailer, as Ciara Renee's character is seen in civilian clothes...
...that mirror a classic Hawkgirl look from the books.
Maybe it's just me, but those overhead harness things that hold the crew of the Waverider in place in their seats kind of resemble the armor/vest thing that Rip Hunter wore for a while...
ST. ROCH UNIVERSITY
The city of St. Roch, Louisiana (originally called LeMoyne) was a setting during Geoff Johns's run on Hawkman.
In 1868 rodents carrying Yellow Fever arrived from Europe. Earlier, in the late 1300's/early 1400's, St. Roch, the person, disguised himself as a Mendicant Pilgrim and encountered a plague in a place called Aquapendente.
There he first used his "power" to cure the plague using the sign of the cross (he had been born with a red cross on his chest). He proceeded to cure the plague wherever he went. In 1414 the city of Constance, which also had been affected by plague, ordered public prayers in honor of St. Roch and the plague was cured. Thus, in La Moyne, when the Yellow Fever plague occurred, the city also performed public prayer to St. Roch and, again, the plague was cured. The city of La Moyne renamed itself St. Roch in his honor.
Potentially another big stretch on my part, but worth noting...
In Rip Hunter's time lab, we see him standing with Sara Lance, chastising someone for messing with time.
Behind them, on a shelf? It looks like an overturned pot.
With a triangle cut in it?
Well, I posit this could be the helmet of Ma Hunkel, the Golden Age Red Tornado.
This is funny, of course, since Red Tornado will appear in next week's episode of Supergirl. Just not the same Red Tornado.
Let me know if you agree!
BACK TO THE FUTURE
Like the Back to the Future family photo, there's an element here where we can actually SEE time changing.
Something happens to time and suddenly Professor Martin Stein and his wife Clarissa apparently never got married anymore.
Could this have to do with the team going back to the '70s, when Stein would have been a younger man? It would be eerily familiar if somehow he and his crew messed up the relationship...!
FRIEND OR FOE?
In one shot, we see Rip and Heat Wave, out of costume and carrying futuristic weapons. There's a man standing in shadow in the foreground...and you can't tell who he is.
From Rip's body language, I'm guessing it isn't Savage -- even though the menacing way he's standing seems like it could be, and so does the odd clothing. But with the high collar and the shoulder pads it's almost more reminiscent of a Monitor.
Could this be another Time Master, meeting up with the pair to discuss the mission?
Who's this in the Green Arrow costume, making his way behind somebody (White Canary?) through a decimated area that looks like it could have been a superhero lair?
Could it be Connor Hawke?
Well, we know Connor will be making his way to DC's Legends Of Tomorrow. Following reports that the show is casting an African-American or biracial male who decides to put on the uniform of a missing hero who once stood for justice and hope, we decided to dig a big deeper on who the character might actually be. Our sources pointed to Connor Hawke and we have confirmed what we found with Warner Brothers.
Beyond confirmation, Warner Brothers offered no other details beyond his appearance on the show, but did say that this iteration of Hawke will not be the son of Oliver Queen and Sandra Hawke.
More than Connor in particular, it's worth noting that there are plenty of legacy heroes on this series.
We get White Canary, we get a new Firestorm, and even that Red Tornado thing, if that's what it is, could be taken as a nod to the fact that there were heroes earlier in this universe.
Legacy heroes have all but evaporated in the five-years-young DC Universe of the post-Flashpoint era...but it's exciting to see they live on somewhere.
SUPERMAN and BATMAN
"I've seen Men of Steel die and Dark Knights fall," Rip Hunter says in the trailer.
And with those words, Batman and Superman are officially part of the DC Universe as told by The CW's Arrow and The Flash.
Prior references to the Man of Steel had been left on the cutting room floor, and the series premiere of The Flash had an Easter egg about Bruce Wayne.
Up until now, The CW series have not explicitly referenced DC's biggest heroes, with the general assumption being that those characters were off the table for Arrow and The Flash. With the rise of DC's Legends of Tomorrow, though, it seems everything is on the board -- even if it's unlikely we'll actually SEE those characters right away.
"There really isn't anything we've asked for that was not given to us, you know? The show's call Supergirl and it's about Supergirl. It's not like we've been jonesing to have Superman on it," explained Supergirl executive producer Andrew Kreisberg, who also works on Arrow, The Flash and Legends of Tomorrow, in a recent ComicBook.com interview. "We also didn't want to...you know, if you're going to cast Superman, you've got cast Superman right! Just like when yout hink about all the time and effort and energy that's gone into finding the cinematic Superman over the last thirty years."
It's also interesting to note that, given the exact quote, it calls to mind the The Death of Superman and Knightfall storylines, which took place in close proximity during the early '90s.
WHAT THE HECK IS THAT?
Again, this kind of looks to me like something from Rip's own backstory. Could this be the TV version of Vanishing Point?
Certainly he looks to be "on trial" here. Is it by Savage's crew, or by the Time Masters, with whom he's said to have a complicated relationship?
FUNERAL FOR A FRIEND
Even in the original teaser, shot as a proof of concept and not actually made up of footage from the show, Rip Hunter told the team that not all of them would survive.
Here, it looks as though they're burying not one but TWO members of the Legends (or at least somebody close to them) fairly early on.
Who could it be?
Well, in the shot, we see Ray Palmer, Hawkgirl, Rip Hunter, Jax and Stein. That leaves Hawkman, Captain Cold and Heat Wave left on the table (assuming one or both of these plots is for teammates).
Here's hoping it's Hawkman, since he'll reincarnate...!
CHANGE OUR OWN FATE
"We have the power to change the world," Sara says. "Don't you think we have the power to change our own fate?"
It's not clear what she means here, but it could be that she doesn't believe Rip Hunter knows everything he thinks he does. It could be that they've seen a death on the horizon and she wants to avoid it. It could be any number of scenarios...
...but it's an interesting theme to explore in a time-travel story, especially since Rip seems very much in Linear Man mode here, where there's basically ONE timeline and that's what they have to "preserve."
CAPTAIN COLD...A DAD?
The obvious thing here seems to be the suggestion that Captain Cold is this kid's father.
I propose that it's actually Captain Cold as a younger man, and he's imparting some kind of wisdom to the kid that will make his traumatic childhood a little more bearable, tying into Sara's "change our own fate" line, which ends just as the kid appears onscreen.
In a scene that seems to take place in a world where cars haven't yet been invented, or at least are uncommon, one of Savage's shock troops (or somebody who shares their fashion sense, anyway) chases the team with a gun.
So it's not just he good guys who have time travel!
There's been a suggestion here at the office that this guy could be the Black Beetle -- and certainly he looks "special" in that his mask seems different from the rest, but I'm not sure I buy him as a major Time Masters foe without any other evidence.
IS THAT A GOATEE?
The trailer features a look at Green Arrow -- sporting what, in its in-motion and in-the-dark quality, appears to be the character's trademark facial hair.
Certainly, it's more of a mustache than Stephen Amell's perpetually-stubbly hero has sported up to this point on Arrow...and if you look at the image above, you'll notice that the facial expression almost looks like a wink and a nod to a popular Green Arrow comic book cover.
Even within our ComicBook.com office, there's some debate as to whether we're seeing what we think we're seeing...but certainly, given recent comments from Amell that suggested we might see the goatee on Legends of Tomorrow, it wouldn't be a surprise.
We've reached out to The CW for confirmation.
THAT'S GOTTA HURT
Your guess is probably as good as mine what's going on here.
It looks to me as though Stein is attempting to use his Firestorm powers on...whatever that thing is.
Could he be trying to use the matter transmutation powers that have been teased but not yet used to render whatever that thing is, inert?
BIRDS DO IT...
The question of whether the Hawks would end up together drove much of Geoff Johns's run on the Hawkman series, which seems to be inspiring most of what we know of the characters on The Flash and DC's Legends of Tomorrow.
But in this trailer, we see Hawkman call Hawkgirl "my love," and then we see them making out...which seems to leave very little doubt.
Of course, things can change...!
DUEL TO THE DEATH
Rip Hunter squares off with Vandal Savage in a brutal duel near the end of the episode, which Hunter seems to get the better of, plunging a knife into Savage.
What happens next? Well, we're going to guess he doesn't kill the Big Bad right in the trailer...so probably something bad for the team.
Or perhaps this is the defeat that hardened Savage's resolve, and now Hunter has created his own worst nightmare.
When ComicBook.com spoke with Dominic Purcell at Comic-Con International: San Diego this year, the man who plays Heat Wave suggested that it would be hard for hardened crooks like the Rogues to travel back in time and not do some kind of heist for which they couldn't be prosecuted.
Take a look at the van outside this Bullion Exchange they seem to be robbing: it looks late '80s, early '90s to me. Could this be just such an excursion?