Legends Of Tomorrow Showrunner Talks Crisis On Infinite Earths Crossover, Season 5 And More

legends of tomorrow nate heywood season 4 finale
(Image credit: The CW)

Warning: spoilers ahead for the Season 4 finale of Legends of Tomorrow on The CW, called "Hey, World!"

The Season 4 finale of Legends of Tomorrow was tasked with finding a way to get rid of Neron, bring Ray back from Hell, convince humanity that monsters aren't necessarily to be feared, and end on a note that will keep fans invested until Legends returns for Season 5 in 2020. "Hey, World!" saw the Legends decide that the best course of action would be to open Heyworld as a way to show the world that monsters aren't all vicious and deadly.

Of course, being controlled by Tabitha and Neron (in Ray's body) guaranteed that some creatures would get a bad rap for actions against their will, but the Legends were on the case. Sara, Nate, and Gary even dressed up as Supergirl, Green Arrow, and The Flash to film a commercial hyping Heyworld.

Meanwhile, Constantine and Nora found a way to yank Ray out of Hell, where he was bonding with Vandal Savage, who was supposed to be torturing him but wound up playing Jenga with him. Unfortunately, the only way to get Neron out of Ray's body was for Neron to break the deal he'd made to take over Ray's body: killing Nate.

Following Nate's wishes, Constantine tricked Neron into killing Nate, which got rid of the demon but left Nate dead. Panicking, Zari left the temporal zone, where she was staying to protect her memories while the changes to the timeline were altering her history. Thanks to a timely musical number that harnessed the power of goodness, Nate was brought back after a confab with his dad in the afterlife.

Sadly, Zari disappeared due to the timeline and memory changes. The Legends lost Zari, but none of them know it.

There was also more going on in the episode than any of them had time to realize. While the Legends were busy trying to stop everything from falling apart, The Monitor showed up and frowned at the turn of events. He had less of a role in the Legends finale than he did in the finales of Arrow, The Flash, and Supergirl, but he was there to keep viewers' minds on the coming "Crisis on Infinite Earths."

Legends of Tomorrow showrunner Phil Klemmer chatted with CinemaBlend about the Season 4 finale, and he weighed in on "Crisis on Infinite Earths," what's coming in Season 5, and more. Read on to learn what he had to say!

legends of tomorrow season 4 finale sara lance

(Image credit: The CW)

Crisis On Infinite Earths

The Arrow-verse crossover of the 2019-2020 TV season will be of unprecedented size and scale. For the first time, it will involve five shows, run for five episodes, and be broken up by a hiatus between the first three episodes and the last two. Since Legends of Tomorrow isn't returning for Season 5 until midseason in 2020, I asked showrunner Phil Klemmer if the Legends episode of "Crisis" would be the show's season premiere. This was his response:

That's kind of a philosophical question. I think the way we're looking at "Crisis" is it is something unto itself. You know, when we first started doing crossovers, every episode sort of contained the DNA of whatever its individual show. But I think this monster crossover that's coming up this year, we want it to feel like five chapters of its own thing. So philosophically you could say that Legends will begin afterwards, but our goal with doing the crossover is that it doesn't feel like individual episodes of any show, and it feels like a five-hour movie madness.

Legends of Tomorrow may be one of the shows contributing an episode to the "Crisis on Infinite Earths" crossover, but it won't feel like a normal episode of Legends. This likely means that the tone will be more serious than Legends usual goes for, as it will have to blend with the other four shows of the Arrow-verse and deal with some heavy subject matter.

Oliver Queen in particular is in for a tragic twist, even if it's not quite as tragic as it could have been. Whatever happens, it will be great to finally get to see the Legends again after more than half a year without any new episodes of their show.

As fans undoubtedly remember, Legends of Tomorrow missed the "Elseworlds" crossover that actually set up the "Crisis on Infinite Earths" crossover, which at least made for a great gag in "Hey, World!" when Nate noted that Kara, Oliver, and Barry probably declined to help them promote Heyworld because the Legends skipped helping them out in "Elseworlds."

Phil Klemmer addressed Legends' absence from "Elseworlds," saying this:

I guess it's good that we had a year off to strengthen ourself for everything that awaits, but yeah! It's good. It was nice to have a breather but we're ready to join the gang again.

Considering the size and scale of "Crisis on Infinite Earths," the crossover is likely going to be an all-hands-on-deck situation. The Legends are more than capable of rising to the occasion and fighting the good fight, even if they do get up to some zanier shenanigans than generally go down in Star City or Gotham.

Since the season finales of Arrow, The Flash, and Supergirl all ended with significant teases about "Crisis on Infinite Earths," Arrow-verse fans began to wonder if the Legends finale would also finish its latest season with The Monitor up to something. Phil Klemmer explained that wasn't the case for Legends:

No, no. We had to stick the landing on Season 4 before we knew what was in store for us. But for whatever reason, things tend to work out. For instance, we had no idea that "Legends of To-Meow-Meow" would be the sort of accidental midseason finale. That couldn't have worked out better, so again, I think you always have to take a big swing because you always have to presume that it could be your last episode. We're like shows like Veronica Mars, where you just like pretty much treat every season like your last. No regrets. Whatever. Leave it all in the field. Some sports analogy that I don't understand, but that's what we do.

Legends went all-out in delivering a twisty cliffhanger at the end of Season 4, and I think it's safe to say that it didn't need a big "Crisis" tease in the finale moments to keep fans hooked until midseason. At least fans don't have to worry if Legends will go the way of Veronica Mars (prior to the movie and revival, anyway) for a while. Season 5 is happening!

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(Image credit: The CW)

What's Coming In Season 5

Season 4 came to a much more bittersweet conclusion than Season 3, when the giant Beebo saved the day, Amaya willingly chose her fate, and an Aruba beach outing went well until Constantine showed up to crash it. "Hey, World!" erased Zari the Legend from the other Legends' memories as well as her own, although her family did get a happier ending in the rewritten timeline than the original. Phil Klemmer teased some of what to expect when Legends of Tomorrow returns for Season 5:

Next season is going to have a slightly new configuration. I guess the way I would tease it, the same way that Maisie Richardson-Sellers got a chance to play someone quite different than Amaya, we're going to afford that opportunity to another Legend, which should be fun. Hopefully we'll be continuing Constantine but we'll be picking up sort of a new chapter in his backstory. We'll be spending a little time in Hell. I think we'll be getting back to the world of classic time travel adventures. We did a lot of fun monsters and horror movie genres, I think we want to get back to history a little bit. I guess we never want to do the same show twice. If we keep doing the show, every season should find a new group of Legends. I just want to change up the dynamic.

The showrunner of course wasn't going to spoil all the big details about Season 5, but my money is on Zari as the character who turns up in a very different way. Maisie Richardson-Sellers was playing an entirely different person in Season 4; I could see Tala Ashe still playing Zari in Season 5, just not the Zari fans came to know and love.

Season 5 will also take the action back to Hell, explore more of Constantine's past, and get back to some of its time travel roots. The ending revealed Astra up to some bad behavior, so she could well have a part to play. Let it not be said that Legends of Tomorrow is ever boring! Phil Klemmer elaborated on the need for Legends to change:

Again, I feel like the Legends have slowly been growing up over these past four years, and I think we're approaching a point in the lives of at least one of the Legends where, I really liked the way they said goodbye in the past to people like Jax, where you have this realization, like 'You don't need this ship anymore! You can live life on the outside.' I think we want to challenge some of our Legends with with actually having to [live]. Hopefully Sara and Ava, that feels like a real adult, real world relationship to people. We want to keep them growing. It's a funny thing. You want the show to evolve but you want the characters to evolve too. It's hard, because we love them the way they are, hopefully. But you can't really stand still in life or on network television. So yeah, I hope everybody got their fill with 16 magical creature stories, because we're going to take a sharp left turn and I think we're going to find at least one new Legend next season. And who knows what happens after that?

Who knows indeed? Fans won't find out for quite a while yet, but it's only right that the show continues to grow and change. Legends of Tomorrow Season 4 has evolved a great from Season 1, and not just because Sara and Mick are the only two original Legends left. The show that was once dark and packed with gloom and doom is now arguably the lightest and more adaptable series in the Arrow-verse, and fans have responded well to it.

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(Image credit: The CW)

How Legends Picked The New Trinity

The biggest and best-known superheroes of the Arrow-verse are Oliver Queen as Green Arrow, Barry Allen as The Flash, and Kara Danvers over on Earth-38 as Supergirl. As altruistic as the big three generally are in fighting the good fight, all three apparently refused to film a commercial for Heyworld for the Legends. Not to be stopped by something as minor as missing superheroes, the Legends finally switched up their costumes, and viewers got Supergirl Sara, Green Arrow Nate, and The Flash Gary.

The Legends switching superhero costumes was teased long ago with trailers and promo photos. Phil Klemmer said this when I asked how he chose which Legends to dress up as the Arrow-verse trinity:

I don't think we had a choice. I think Nick Zano was already changing into the Green Arrow costume. Sara is Supergirl, again, no brainer. I'm not sure how Gary managed to get the Flash suit on, but I mean, I think if we took our resident geek and cut him out of the DC Trinity of Arrow-verse superheroes, it would be a dream come true. And I don't know if Mick Rory could have fit into The Flash, and I think Dom Purcell might have punched me in the face if I even suggested that he do that. That was probably the math on that one. [laughs]

As funny as it would have been to see Mick's reaction if somebody tried to get him to dress up as The Flash, Gary was the perfect choice to pretend to be the Scarlet Speedster, and not just because Gary and Barry both have somewhat lanky builds. Mick Rory dressed as The Flash would have looked like... well, he might have looked like Oliver Queen did when he switched lives with Barry in the "Elseworlds" crossover.

Sadly, the Arrow-verse is done for the 2018-2019 TV season, but there's a lot to look forward to in the 2019-2020 season, even if Arrow is ending after a shortened eighth season. Batwoman will premiere to expand the Arrow-verse on The CW temporarily to five shows, and Legends of Tomorrow will kick off midseason on an undoubtedly thrilling note in 2020.

Laura Hurley
Senior Content Producer

Laura turned a lifelong love of television into a valid reason to write and think about TV on a daily basis. She's not a doctor, lawyer, or detective, but watches a lot of them in primetime. CinemaBlend's resident expert and interviewer for One Chicago, the galaxy far, far away, and a variety of other primetime television. Will not time travel and can cite multiple TV shows to explain why. She does, however, want to believe that she can sneak references to The X-Files into daily conversation (and author bios).