Brandon Routh Talks Legends of Tomorrow Developments

Brandon Routh talks about Ray Palmer, the evolution of the Atom, and the future of Legends of Tomorrow

This article contains some Legends of Tomorrow spoilers if you aren’t caught up.

The cast of DC’s Legends of Tomorrow was at WonderCon for a panel last weekend, and we caught up with them for some roundtable interviews. Brandon Routh updated us on the present and future of Ray Palmer.

Before the hiatus, we last left Ray, Sarah (Caity Lotz) and Kendra (Ciara Renee) in the ‘50s watching Rip Hunter’s ship leave without them. Looking ahead we’ll see Jewel Staite appear in episode 10 next week as Rachel Hunter. 

Does seeing the ship take off and leave them behind sort of shatter Ray Palmer’s illusions about being part of a superhero team?

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No, I mean, I think he probably thinks it’s a mistake and they’ll be back. He’s probably being very rational about it at first. There’s nothing to be alarmed about.

It is kind of shocking but I think he has faith in Rip to this point. I don’t think he thinks there’s anything that can’t be fixed about it. As time progresses, he gets a little bit worried, even him, which is what we’ll see in Thursday’s episode.

In the future, why was Ray so surprised it became Smoak Technologies? He signed the company over to her!

I know. It’s a good question. I think the question is more that oh, we’re in Star City. The surprise becomes it’s Smoak, oh, this is where we are. It also might be the fact that even though he signed over the company, he didn’t necessarily know that it was going to change the name. There’s no reason to change the name. It’s a good name. Palmer Tech’s good. Why does it have to be Smoak Technologies? My legacy.

It’s also another thing of the legacy is not continuing, so I think he’s kind of passed that moment. In his brain he’s moved past that but part of his ego’s still trapped in “Oh, you had to change the name?” There really is no legacy for Ray.

Could Ray ever visit his own timeline to the night Anna died and try to fix it?

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We don’t quite get there but we do see a little bit. There’s a little bit of a dip into the past for some of our characters in episodes that come up. We still haven’t covered that night yet but some day.

We know Ray fancies himself a superhero. When Ray returns to the present after all these adventures, will he feel like he’s on the same tier as The Flash and Green Arrow?

I think at the end of the journey, he’ll probably have a broader understanding of what it means to be a hero so he won’t be so narrowly focused on competing with anybody. And I truly don’t think, when Ray talks about “I don’t feel like I left a legacy or made a difference,” it wasn’t about being a hero and people remembering that, and Ray Palmer for Ray Palmer. It was about really leaving a legacy of change, making lives better for people and securing safety and happiness for people, not jus the selfish egotistical like people know Palmer Tech even being in existence.

That’s a thing but it’s not the big thing, which is how have I made the world better? That’s what he hopes to attain. So I think when he comes back, he’ll have a much broader understanding of what it is to be a hero, and then it doesn’t matter if anybody ever knows your name but that you’ve made life better for a few people.

What advice would you give people in real life if they want to try to make a difference?

It’s important to work on yourself. You can help other people but we all have our own issues. We all have our stuff. The more you can do self work, understand where you’re tripping up, the lies that you’re telling about yourself that aren’t true anymore. Any time you’re beating yourself up or thinking you’re stupid for this or thinking that you can’t do this, that’s a tape playing in your head from some past experience you have. You don’t need that anymore. We all have the ability to be superhero like.

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I think that’s what’s great about these shows. We can all be working to attain that. You can help people. Obviously, you can do great work without that but you can do even greater work by working on yourself. Then you can give back even more.

Could Rachel Turner end up being related to Ray Palmer?

Well, I can’t say for sure or not but we do have some scenes together and it was awesome to work with Jewel. I’ve known her for quite a few years now just at conventions and things like that. So it was fun for us to work together and have some fun scenes. I would say you’re not far off.