In Legends of Tomorrow episode 2x04 "Compromised", Martin Stein tells his younger self that despite all the awards he's won, his wife is the most important part of his life. His younger self briefly asks "Did we win the sixth Carlin?". Although it's difficult to hear, the closed captioning clarifies the spelling:

Legends of Tomorrow Martin Stein "did we win the sixth Carlin?"

However, I can't find an award by that name that would be suitable for Dr. Stein's background. There is for instance the Dorothy Baethke-Eleanor J. Carlin Award for Excellence in Academic Teaching, but that is for a physical therapist, rather than a physicist.

Which award was he referring to (and is it possible the closed captioning got it wrong?).

  • He says it in season 1 pilot too. One site thinks: Martin Stein's younger self brags about being a five-time winner of The Carlin Award. This may be a nod to DC Comics longtime executive editor Mike Carlin.
    – cde
    Nov 16, 2016 at 19:06
  • Like marvel does for Joe q. And Stan Lee award.
    – cde
    Nov 16, 2016 at 19:07
  • @cde why not make it as an answer
    – Ankit Sharma
    Nov 16, 2016 at 19:26
  • Idle speculation. No proof.
    – cde
    Nov 16, 2016 at 19:33
  • @cde Geoff Johns have attributed Mike Carlin before, so maybe he made this attribution and arrowverse kept it that way
    – Ankit Sharma
    Nov 16, 2016 at 19:55

1 Answer 1


No, the captioning seems to have gotten it right. The Carlin Award is mentioned twice in that episode. The first is when Martin is introducing himself to Damian Dahrk:

STEIN: My name is Martin Stein. You may have heard of me. I'm on the negotiating team and was recently nominated for my sixth Carlin Award in physics.

Stein later mentions the award a second time, to himself, as a callback joke to the earlier mention:

STEIN: All of the awards I've won -

STEIN: Did we win the sixth Carlin?

This is not the first time the Carlin award comes up; the first time elder Martin meets younger Martin, in the second episode ("Pilot, Part 2") he also brags about his Carlins:

STEIN: I hold two PhDs, and I'm working on a third. I'm a five-time winner of the Carlin Award.

The award is not a real Physics award; it appears to be just made up for the show, possibly just for this gag.

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