DC’s Legends of Tomorrow: EP Phil Klemmer Says Zari is Central to Season 8 Plans

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Last night marked the Season 7 finale of DC’s Legends of Tomorrow, featuring the Arrowverse’s first appearance of Booster Gold and the departure of Nick Zano, who played Nate Heywood/Citizen Steel on the series for six seasons. The episode ended with the Legends (along with Booster) being arrested by a dark-clad, unidentified soldiers who are likely some new version of the Time Masters, Time Bureau, or maybe DC’s Linear Men, a team with a similar purpose and a hard-nosed approach who were introduced in the ’90s by Booster Gold creator Dan Jurgens.

So it seems the team will start next season in a pretty bad place. Actually, it seems they will start the next season in jail.

“The good and bad thing about [the cliffhanger], it just keeps you honest,” executive producer Phil Klemmer told ComicBook. “It does constrain what next season is going to be about, but sometimes constraint — especially on Legends — is the best thing that you could be offered. Yeah, Constantine showing up with the dragon head or Hourman showing up and saying ‘Justice Society’ or whatever is exciting. You make these decisions when you’re the most exhausted, and so you do have this worry that like, ‘Oh God, are we going to oblige yourselves to tell these stories that we don’t want to tell?’ But then at the same time, it’s going to make it easier when we do sit down in that room. I think we know it cuts off the narrative potential in a way that creates constraints that sometimes are good. Seeing blue skies can sometimes totally paralyze you.”

“They’re starting at the bottom; there’s really nowhere left for them to fall,” Klemmer added. “They are imprisoned, accused of time crimes. All of the things that they thought that they were doing that were so groovy and beneficial for the world, clearly somebody doesn’t appreciate them. We really love to humble the Legends, because it’s fun to challenge people’s ideas, their notions of themselves. I thought in a microcosm, just for Zari, she spent a lot of time in these last couple episodes really soul-searching, and wondering like, ‘Is that all? Is this the end? I thought I’d have more time. Do I need a totem? Was it enough that I helped one guy with his speakeasy back in 1925? Is that all that I have to contribute to the world?’ I think keeping our characters restless and riddled with self doubt is the sweet spot.”

So, what can we expect, assuming there is a season eight, and assuming that there are no big changes between now and then? Booster Gold (Donald Faison) is expected to be a series regular, for a start. Next? Expect big things for Zari Tarazi (Tala Ashe), the Legend who had the worst reaction when it looked like the team may be forced to retire. He explains her season 8 role by looking back to the beginning of season 7.

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“Zari didn’t come in as a punchline, but she could be dismissed as being vacuous, and I think what we all really liked was that there was a ferocious intelligence beneath that,” Klemmer said. “We really wanted to introduce her as one thing, and then pivot away as fast as possible, and we felt that people maybe had forgotten about that intelligence, and maybe it was a joke that she got high for the first time, but when she popped out of that, once she was unburdened from having to present her public image to all of her adoring followers, she’s got this tremendous intellectual horsepower that then she applied to the mythology of our show, which is granted, super complicated at this point. She was able to master it and Ava — that’s her defining personality trait, is her attention to detail — so it made sense she would be awed by Zari. What little we’ve spoken about next season, Zari is incredibly central to that, because she was doing some real soul searching. She felt unfulfilled when she was looking at the specter of being unceremoniously, prematurely retired, and that one episode, where she was running point with the speakeasy, was a test balloon. She is at the point where, not that Sara or Ava have to take a backseat because of the baby, but I think the fun of the show this past season was that everybody got to try their hat on as the captain. Sara and Ava weren’t abdicating, but they were just like, ‘Look, we’re a little out of our depth. We’re all out of our depth. So all ideas are welcome.’ And being stranded in 1925, Texas is way more comfortable than what they’re facing now, that they’re imprisoned and headed off to some sort of, God knows what incarcerated or reeducation experience. I feel like Zari is destined to be the firebrand next season, because she’s found her north star, and I don’t think she’s in any mood for somebody to try to tell her that she’s been doing it all wrong, when she’s just discovered for the first time in her life, what she really wants to be doing. I can’t wait to see Zari kick some ass, and I don’t think that’s necessarily just in a superhero way. I think she’s a formidable woman who, when she redirects her powers, she’s unstoppable. Now that she doesn’t have followers to attend to, I think she’s going to be a force of nature.”

You can see the season finale of DC’s Legends of Tomorrow on The CW‘s website, or buy it on SVOD platforms like iTunes and Vudu.

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