This week’s episode started off with a bang, rarely losing a beat and keeping us glued to the screen. Other than a few unnecessary sub-plots and poor CGI, ‘Night of the Hawk’ proved to be quite entertaining and gave Season 1 the push it needed.
At the start of the episode we find ourselves with Rip’s crew (minus the supposedly murdered Rory) in 1958 Oregon. And the writers didn’t hold back on how severely ‘un-enlightened’ the 1950 era was regarding interracial marriage and African Americans. The parody of the era proved to be quite funny, but might not sit well with some viewers. I especially enjoyed the banter between Sarah, Jackson, and Doctor Stein in the malt shop. You could tell that the cast had genuine chemistry between each other and enjoyed their roles. The short but sweet romance between Jax and Betty was also quite organic, playing a pivotal role in the episode’s story progression. However, I wish I could say the same for Sarah and her brief affair with nurse Lindsey. It was forced, and really didn’t do anything for the plot or even for Sarah’s character development.
Vandal savage proved to be a much more menacing villain this week. For the past few episodes he lacked the charisma and terror of other CW villains (ie…Deathstroke, Zoom, Reverse Flash). But he delivered quite well; maybe ‘creepy small-town serial killer’ should be his full-time job instead. His plan with the paradeamon-esque monsters was weak, but not as weak as the blend of CGI and practical effects used to make the creatures. However the graphics seemed to improve in the third act of the show, where Jackson was restored to his normal self. As a side note, I got several Super 8 vibes in the first act of the show, let me know in the comments if I stand alone on that!
One thing I did wish had better closure was Rory’s death. Jackson and the crew hinted at his fate, yet it seemed like it wasn’t a big deal. I’m sure we’ll have a better explanation in a further episode, but for now we should hope that Ray, Kendra, and Sarah survive being marooned in the 1950’s.