Mick Rory: How Legends of Tomorrow Made Heat Wave a Hero

Mick Rory Arrowverse

Much like his comic book counterpart, the Arrowverse's incarnation of Mick Rory (Dominic Purcell) began as the Flash villain Heat Wave, a criminal with an unhealthy fixation on fire. Following his defeat along with his partner-in-crime Captain Cold, the duo became unlikely members of the time-traveling Legends of Tomorrow, recruited by Rip Hunter to protect the space-time continuum. While he was initially more interested in misbehaving his way through history, the pyromaniac has grown into one of the most enduring heroes on the team.

Now, CBR is taking a look at the surprising evolution of the Arrowverse's Heat Wave, from his inauspicious beginning as a Central City criminal with a gimmicky heat gun to one of the toughest members on the Legends of Tomorrow.

Continue scrolling to keep reading Click the button below to start this article in quick view.

RELATED: Ronnie Raymond: How the Arrowverse Killed the First Firestorm


After showing up on the first season of The Flash and teaming up with Leonard Snart, his longtime supervillain partner Captain Cold, Heat Wave and Snart tried to defeat the Scarlet Speedster by cutting a fire-and-ice-based path across the city, plundering all in their wake. Armed with a heat-based gun that can fire beams of extremely high temperatures and incinerate everything in its path, Mick and Snart are eventually outsmarted by the Flash who inadvertently pits the two element-based villains against each other.

Freed by Snart's sister Golden Glider, the trio begin to take over Central City's organized crime scene and force Cisco Ramon to construct new elemental-based guns for them. The criminals were cornered by the Flash once again, but Snart bought their freedom bu threatening to go public with the hero's identity. However, as Mick and Snart were carrying out a massive heist in Central City a year later, they were incapacitated and whisked away by a new character: the time-traveling Rip Hunter.


Dominic Purcell as Heat Wave on Legends of Tomorrow

Rip recruited the criminal duo into his rag-tag team of Legends to prevent the immortal villain Vandal Savage from conquering the Earth and eventually killing Rip's family in the future. Enticed by the idea of stealing various treasures across time, the two partners agree though Mick proves himself surprisingly helpful in his own heavy-handed and rough-around-the-edges way. Upon learning that he was recruited entirely because of his association with Snart, an angry Mick betrays the team to time-traveling pirates. In retaliation, Snart abandons his estranged partner in the time stream.

RELATED: Legends of Tomorrow Core Character Falls Victim to Neron

Mick is ultimately discovered by the Time Masters governing the space-time continuum and trained over the course of several lifetimes in the Vanishing Point, a realm outside of conventional time and space, to become the relentless time-traveling bounty hunter Chronos. After being brainwashed to hunt down and kill his former team, Mick is subdued by Sara Lance and eventually reconciles with the team including Snart while helping them elude the Time Masters. Having defeated Vandal Savage and the Time Masters at the expense of Snart's life, Mick decides to remain with the Legends and help them repair the timeline.


By accompanying the Legends on their subsequent missions, Mick proved himself time and time again as a vital, if somewhat gruff and bull-headed, member of the team, facing such threats as Eobard Thawne's Legion of Doom and the omnipotent Mallus. Surprise encounters with George Washington and his own father, Dick Rory, during the Vietnam War help solidify Mick's commitment to heroism though he remains characteristically easily distracted by his more base instincts.

RELATED: Caitlin Snow: Is the Flash Hero Doomed to Become Killer Frost?

One of the more unlikely members of the Legends, Mick Rory has helped the team time and time again in fixing the space-time continuum and battling against overwhelming threats. When the time-traveling ensemble has been called to help the other Arrowverse heroes in repelling threats like an invasion of Earth by the Dominators or alternate universe villains from Earth-X, Mick has been right alongside his teammates as a reliable, if self-centered, hero in the Arrowverse. From a small-time criminal with a cheap gimmick and fancy gun to one of the most well-trained members of the Legends, Heat Wave has evolved into the time-saving hero that nobody ever assumed he could become.

Airing Mondays at 8 pm ET/PT on The CW, DC’s Legends of Tomorrow stars Caity Lotz, Dominic Purcell, Brandon Routh, Nick Zano, Maisie Richardson-Sellers, Tala Ashe, Matt Ryan, Jes Macallan and Courtney Ford.

Green Lantern: A Deadly New Corps Broke DC's Cosmic Tyrant Like a House Pet

More in CBR Exclusives