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Spoilers for the Arrow-verse's five-part "Crisis on Infinite Earths" crossover.
Legends of Tomorrow will soon make its long-awaited return to time travel shenanigans with a game-changing Season 5 on The CW. Although the fifth season technically launched with Part 5 of the Arrow-verse's mega "Crisis on Infinite Earths" crossover, the January 21 episode will be the Legends' first chance to get back to business as usual. Given that "Crisis" ended with the death of Oliver Queen (which is really going to stick this time) and a multiverse reset, the shenanigans won't be quite as "fancy-free" as usual.
Legends showrunner Phil Klemmer shared how the show will deal with Oliver's death in the Season 5 premiere:
In previous seasons, [they've] all kind of been on the same page at the top of the season, but this year, [some of] our legends lived through some very dark stuff. The premiere is [about], how do you come back to this fancy-free, fun-time gang when Oliver Queen has died.
Ever since Legends of Tomorrow went through its "growing pains" to shift from the dark and dour first season to its current goofy and self-aware state, the Legends' adventures have been largely the most lighthearted of the Arrow-verse shows. While the villains and challenges were very real and deadly, the Legends themselves are generally pretty funny in how they handle them. Since Legends returns for Season 5 on the heels of "Crisis on Infinite Earths," however, they can't just go back to goofing their way through the timeline.
This is bad news for fans who are ready for some lightheartedness after the heartbreak of watching the Arrow-verse's first superhero die not once but twice within five episodes and then the multiverse reset to create an Earth Prime, but it makes sense that the Legends of Tomorrow heroes aren't ready to jump into shenanigans right off the bat. At Phil Klemmer noted to TV Guide, some of them just went through a lot of "very dark stuff."
In fact, of the three Legends who had important roles in "Crisis on Infinite Earths," two are among the characters who have known Oliver the longest outside of Arrow. Sara has technically been around since the Arrow pilot (although she was originally played by a different actress) and knew Oliver before he was ever marooned on Lian Yu, and Ray made a sort of frenemy out of Oliver in Arrow Season 3. Sara was by Oliver's side both times he died in "Crisis," and she wouldn't have become the hero she is if not for Oliver.
Basically, if Sara and Ray (even though Brandon Routh wasn't always playing Ray in "Crisis on Infinite Earths") aren't at least a little bit traumatized in the Season 5 premiere after the events the crossover and Oliver's death, it'll be the most unrealistic thing on Legends of Tomorrow since... well, since the Season 4 finale. Still, I'd argue that a genuinely sunny Sara and rambunctious Ray would be unrealistic in an unfortunate rather than fun way. They don't need to be traumatized from beginning to end of the Season 5 premiere, but some sadness wouldn't be out of order!
The Season 5 premiere of Legends of Tomorrow is called "Meet the Legends" and will see Sara, Ray, and Mick shocked to discover that the Legends are famous after the "Crisis" reset to Earth Prime. The Legends, who are enthusiastic apart from Sara, invite a documentary crew on board the Waverider to film an investigation into a blip in the timeline.
Tune in to The CW on Tuesday, January 21 to catch Legends of Tomorrow's Season 5 premiere at 9 p.m. ET, following the backdoor pilot for Arrow's potential Mia Smoak-centric spinoff.