Feb 25, 2018
Mama Mia! Here I Go Again! It’s Hedgehog Day, again. Hedgehog Day? You told me you would know what I meant if I said Hedgehog Day! This time loop is driving me crazy. I don’t know if I can keep doing this.
Zari remained on the Waverider while the rest of the team rescued a Waterloo recording from Napoleon. She takes full advantage of the Captain being away and in addition to performing maintenance, she uploads a program she designed to find a loophole in history that will save her brother. Unfortunately, it had a few unintended consequences, including frying Gideon’s cortex. When the team returns, they find out Zari has uploaded the program and Sara orders her to fix the ship. As Ray trips over his platforms (for the first of multiple times), Zari storms off to try and fix Gideon. During her repairs, she loosens a hose and a highly volatile substance that fuels the time drive sprays into her face. Moments later, the Waverider explodes.
Zari finds herself exactly 1-hour earlier, just finishing her argument with Sara, again. Confused, she walks off to fix the ship, and the first of hundreds of time loops begins again. At first, she tries to involve Ray, explaining what is happening to her, but he gives her a sedative, several times in a row, before she develops and stumbles (literally) into Nate. When she explains the time loop, he tells her to find him the next time around and say “Groundhog Day.”
Well, she gets there eventually (Hedgehog Day?) and the two are able to slowly investigate the entire team of the course of several one-hour loops in which Nate dies a number of different ways. Despite their efforts, they cannot stop the Waverider from exploding, but Zari learns a number of fascinating things about her team members.
Having investigated the whole team and coming up short, Zari takes Nate’s advice and does “the fun montage” on her next several loops. Eventually, Zari can’t take it anymore and tries to shoot herself to end the time loop. Unfortunately, there are no bullets in the gun. A broken Zari brings the team up to speed and they form a plan to search the ship. At that exact moment, Mick tosses a beer bottle in the trash shoot and it comes flying back out. They head down to the trash compactor to investigate and discover… Gary!
We think that Gary is the source of the time loop, but as it turns out, he is a literal plot device, trapped in a trash compactor just because it’s funny. (We see what you did there writer’s room.) Rory destroys the “chronorepeater” and the team has five minutes to find the bomb. Rory suggests they picked it up in Waterloo and they find the bomb in the one place Zari never looked: the Waterloo recording. They discuss how to diffuse it and Zari realizes there is only one thing she can do. She takes the bomb and locks herself in Sara’s office, hoping to shield the team from the worst of the blast so she can finally save them all.
Just as the bomb should explode, everyone disappears and Gideon walks onto the bridge. We learn everything in this episode has been a simulation. Zari’s body is recovering in the med bay from her encounter with the mysterious time sludge and her consciousness has been in Gideon’s own version of the Matrix. She adapted her own program to force Zari to bond with the team. You see, the only way for her to save her brother and her home, she has to work with the Legends, but her fight with Sara would have led to her leaving the team. So Gidon stepped in and used Zari’s history hack to hack Zari. And it works!
Zari explains everything to the team, who think she’s still being affected by the time sludge, but she shows them it really happened by telling each of them things only they could know about themselves. Sara and Zari bond over coffee, where she suggests Sara finally ask out Ava, and work out the loophole that will allow Zari to save her family.
To close us out, Zari plays the violin as we see each team member gain closure. The episode ends with Rip tracking down Wally West in the Yunnan Province. He explains he needs Wally to save the universe.
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