ORIGINAL AIRDATE: 11.27.17 – 11.28.17
It’s the biggest Arrowverse crossover yet. Crisis on Earth X! All the heroes (almost) come together for Barry & Iris’ wedding, and end up facing evil Nazi doppelgängers. The prize? The very heart of Supergirl.
Preamble to the Crisis
-It’s impossible to just review the Flash’s episode in this without reviewing all four of them. So I shall review them all.
-They finally wised up and made this a real four part crossover, instead of what they did last time. Overall I felt it was enjoyable and fun to watch. There were some head scratching moments for sure. But I think it did what it was supposed to do. Which was make us watch all four shows. And they used the same intro on all four which was awesome as well.
Because they established with both Thawne and Snart that timelines and different worlds didn’t make any difference. So it was kind of glaring that those people weren’t there.
They introduce us to Earth X first, which gives us a firm grasp of the bad guys we’ll be watching during this crossover. And as always, my least favorite guaranteed superhero trope is in play: the evil versions of heroes are all better with their powers. But at least Dark Oliver kills Not Jimmy Olsen right away. I wouldn’t have watched if we had to stomach four episodes of him. Ugh.
So it’s all about Barry & Iris’ wedding. Yah that’s a crisis alright. And my two least favorite characters besides Not Jimmy, FeFe and Virus, are in their respective men’s ears, nagging them about the wedding. Sure they are. Alex and Kara are drowning their sister sorrows over lost love. That’ll become a thing later with Alex.
Remember when dimension hopping in Arrowverse used to be a big deal? Now it’s not an issue for Vibe, Gypsy, or anyone that has a device. Press a button and =click= you’re anywhere you want to be! And I didn’t quite get why the girls at the salon were so cavalier about their men. They might as well have shouted, “Our boyfriends are superheroes!!”
Next thread: Firestorm halves get a cure for being Firestorm. Martin is all for it, but Jax is not. That’s gonna become a HUGE thing before this is over. We also get what is probably the most poignant scene we’ve ever had between Martin and Caitlin. They are bonded like father and daughter, maybe even more deeply than that. They share love for Ronnie, science and family. It was great.
Over at the rehearsal dinner, guess who starts talking? Why it’s Alex-the-brokenhearted and Sara-the-Lesbian-conqueror. Holy COW they make Sara hook up with every woman that comes across her path. Barry and Kara talk and remind us of how good Grant and Melissa are together. And SuperKara’s gonna sing. Martin tells Jax he can be Spider-Man. Except with none of his powers but the sticking to walls part. Sure.
Then Joe launches into his speech. And once again, we are reminded that this Barry and Iris? Are nowhere near the iconic comics couple. These two have no chemistry, and they are step-siblings; they share the same father and brother. I cringed through every minute of this forced speech, as a man congratulates his son for nailing his daughter. Okay then.
And what does Oliver do? Why he’s so moved by all of the atmosphere that he proposes to FeFe. And what does FeFe do? She screams at the top of her lungs that she doesn’t want to marry him. This is why I can’t stand this relationship. Felicity has never done anything but emasculate and humiliate Oliver. And he just keeps taking it over and over and over again. And keeps coming back for more. I want you to notice, that Earth X Oliver and Kara? Actually know how to love each other. I told you, villains are always better at everything.
Day of the wedding and everybody is sad and hungover and full of regret sex. Actually that last part is just Alex and Sara. We also get a surprise cameo from Dawn Allen. At least, that’s who most fans believe it was. She’s gushing with that Allen awkwardness over meeting her dad, because he’s dead in her time. Maybe that’s why she traveled back in time to meet him. None of this is confirmed, but…it puts a whole new spin on Barry’s life if that was indeed his not-yet-born daughter. Maybe Iris is pregnant already. We also have to wonder, why would she come back to the Nazi wedding? And then disappear? So many questions.
So the ceremony starts, and the ever lovely Kara sings. She’s just impossibly beautiful on every level, my lord. And her song just reminded me of how I will never buy that this Barry and Iris have that kind of love. Because they don’t.
Too bad he’s the first one the invading Nazis shoot.😐
What follows next is just brawling mayhem which was superhero fun at its best. I have to wonder tho…were the wedding guests only their super friends? Because they all used powers right in front of everybody without hesitation. But I guess Heatwave fixes that with his mindwipe device. They must’ve had every single non-powered guest in one place at one time to do that. Convenient.
There are several wedding brawl scene stealers: Heatwave, who basically steals every scene he’s in, because he’s just so raw and unfiltered. Wally West does the coolest thing we’ve ever seen him do with bullet time. And of course, Caitlin calls on Killer Frost. She just starts whacking them Nazi jokers with a hand grown ice spear. And Kara does a hulk slap and sonic booms her dopple. Mondo gnarly. I loved it.
Dark Oliver and Dark Kara rendezvous with Thawne and reveal themselves. But we knew who they were from the jump.
So they kidnap Prometheus and interrogate him. And we find out that it’s really…
Tommy Merlyn. Not a huge surprise, but a welcome appearance. Unfortunately, he’s gone again right after his talk with Oliver. *sigh* Why won’t they let Tommy live? Ever? So Tommy acts like maybe he’s had a change of heart. But psyche! He’s just playing Oliver. Then he takes some tooth poison and buh-bye.
Wells tells the hero gang about Earth 53. Earth X. The Earth where the Nazis won the second world war. And it gets uglier by the moment. This is also where you get the clear message that this crossover is going to be super preachy. Because it really is.
Thawne is a cheat. Barry does not actually face an Earth X version of himself as Oliver and Kara do. But it’s a welcome cheat. Thawne/Wells steals every single scene he’s in. See, Thawne/Wells is not just evil. He’s unafraid. That’s what makes him so dangerous. He doesn’t take crap from anyone because he’s never scared to die. And “I can end your life before you birth your next thought.” Wicked cool. That’s someone who truly understands what it means to wield super speed. And now I must admit that Kara X and Oliver X have forever ruined me. They may be the villains of the piece, but they actually know how to love. This makes the nausea I feel when I see FeFe go up times ten. This makes Kara’s “I’ll always be alone” crap just infuriating.
The only thing about all of this is that the Earth X invasion just feels like it comes out of nowhere. We learn what their motives are later, but for as long as they’ve had to plan, for as long as they’ve been watching…I’m sorry but they should’ve won.
Cisco is conveniently unconscious. Oliver and FeFe have a moment. Jax and Stein have a moment. Sara and Alex have a moment. And Sara reenforces that casual sex is her thing. Alex and Kara have a moment. And Virus is spinning on her chair, demonstrating how most of us feel about all of this ridiculous relationship drama. The only one that has weight is Jax and Stein, father and son. The rest we could’ve done without.
So the Earth X trio reveal themselves to KarBarOliver. And Team Earth 1 seems stunned by the revelation. It doesn’t have a lot of impact though, because it’s not news to us as the audience. Thawne does the Curly Shuffle about how he’s even alive. But we knew that about time travel. Kara X is the only one that actually spews any doctrine, and she’s committed to it. And Oliver X is committed to her. But hahahaHAH Oliver 1 is ready with a Kryptonite arrow! How do ya like *them* beans Miss Kara X? But Thawne got away with the prism.
So Team Brainiac detects that Kara X has too much solar radiation in her blood. Barry and Iris in the time vault realize that Thawne is a foe outside of time, and they’ll never be rid of him. Which is true in the comics.
So the gang suits up to once again face the Earth X-ers. Lots of slow mo posing here but it was cool. Lots more brawling ensues. Barry takes the first round out himself and then goes after Thawne. Surprise surprise, Arrow X is at S.T.A.R. Labs! And then something impossible happens. Caitlin freezes his arm…and he just explodes her off with no damage to his arm or bow. ….What? This is what I meant about Killer Frost being power reduced. She stopped Black Flash, remember? Okay then Team Arrow shows up. More fighting at both places. Metallo shows up.
The good guys wake up in chains and power inhibitor collars. Thawne’s still the best thing happening. And finally we see the true motives of Kara and Oliver X. Dark Kara needs Supergirl’s heart to stop her from dying. That makes absolutely no sense if an excess of solar radiation in her cells is the issue. A new heart wouldn’t change that. They’d have to do some type of opposite chemo and de-radiate her cells. And then give her a blood transfusion. All of that might work, but a new heart is just going to keep pumping that over saturated blood through her system. In any event, the good guys realize that they are now on Earth X.
Know what happens in this episode? That would be the least amount of screen time for Barry himself. Ugh. This is also the episode of How Gay can we Make our Characters? Gay gay gay gay.
Everybody on Earth 1 is in the pipeline. Harry is annoying as usual. We still have to wonder what happens when they need to pee.
Wells again slays, he’s (momentarily) back in that tachyon boosting wheelchair. Kara is being tenderized by the red sun radiation being generated by the prism. Cavanagh is brilliant with his Evil Doctor Wells. He has the best lines in the entire episode. And he delivers them with delicious wickedness every single time. I could watch a whole show just about him.
So a junior Fuhrer shows up, and guess who it is, spouting on about Nordic perfection? That would be Quentin Lance X. And he says bye bye bye as soon as Sara says she’s bi bi bi. I thought they were gonna kill all the heroes and time travel to bring them back. I really did. But guess who saves the day?
Snart X. (That sounds like a decongestant spray by the way.) That’s right, the gay gay gay Captain X Cold saves the gay gay gay Ray and crew.
Overgirl AKA Supergirl X talks to our weakened Kara, and gives the most propagandized speech of the entire crossover (even more than the earlier “America was never Aryan” one). She says that she’s everything that people want to be: blonde, white and Aryan perfection. I couldn’t tell if it was a “hate the Nazi philosophy” thing, or a “white folks are truly full of themselves” thing or a “Let’s show how selfless Kara is compared to Kara X” thing. But it was truly heavy handed, whatever their intent. And Melissa is a lot like Amy Acker as Illyria or Caitlin as Killer Frost. So sweet that it’s impossible to hate her even when she’s evil.
Blah blah blah Virus and FeFe are now part of the IMF! That’s right, Tom Cruise ain’t got nuttin’ on our non-powered-but-can-still-beat-everybody girl power tokens. *sigh* Every time I think I can’t dislike them any more. And these Nazi soldiers have worse aim than Stormtroopers, a thing we never thought was possible.
So back at the Good Guy Batcave on Earth X, the heroes find out about the gateway. And we meet General Schott. Man it was SO GOOD to see Winn with a SPINE. This is another character I would love to see more of because I CAN’T STAND whipped-Beta-Boy-Kara-will-never-love-me Winn. And General Schott makes the most sense out of anyone in the whole crew, I kid you not. Alex goes to bargain with him.
And I want you to notice something here.
New school superheroes often take a global situation and reduce it to only the people that they care about. Have you seen how we have slowly been normalized to that way of thinking? The needs of the many now never outweigh the needs of the few, or the one, if it’s someone a super person cares about. Clark had to learn the opposite lesson in Superman II. He had to learn that his desire to be with Lois could not be allowed to trump his responsibilities as Superman. And the price of restoring his super powers was heavy if you watch the Donner Cut.
Not so now. Martha (Man of Steel) tells Clark that he doesn’t owe people anything. Johnathan tells Clark to hide himself. Barry changes time just to give himself a happier life (Flashpoint). Batman stops fighting at the mention of his mother’s name, and Clark only hears when Lois is in danger (Batman vs. Superman). This is why I so enjoy Chris Evans’ Captain America. Because he still has the altruistic value of the sacrifice play. He does it in every movie he’s in; he counts his own life as nothing if it means saving the world. Many of you will disagree with that, so feel free to leave all the counter examples in the comments.
More moments. Then Oliver is taking point about the assault on the complex. Oliver comes through looking the best in this whole crossover (except for his Whipped Arrow with FeFe). Kara is now cooked and ready to be carved. Oliver X & Kara X are so loving. One mention of the missing Superman, and Thawne says that he’s faster. Wow, we need to see THAT fight. FeFe shuts the power down, and again, they should’ve planned for this. But Agent Double O Virus and Lady FeFe are still no match for Metallo.
Oliver infiltrates the complex by pretending to be Oliver X. But burnt-face Quentin X smells a rat almost immediately. So he tests him by telling him to kill Felicity X. He doesn’t, but Oliver pulls his best Batman yet. He takes out a room full of armed guards without catching one bullet. I loved that! And holy smokes, they’re sending the Waverider X through to Earth 1. And General Schott’s plan? Is to send Red Tornado to blow up the gateway to ensure none of the Earth X metas get back home. Yeah, Winn’s still right.
Thawne/Wells blessed near kills Felicity. She’s the safest character in the entire Arrowverse, we know that for sure. They’ll kill Oliver before they’ll kill her. But Thawne/Wells says that in his time, no one has ever heard of Felicity Smoak, and was about to hand vibrate her into oblivion. I was SO HOPING AGAINST HOPE he’d do it. It was my favorite moment of this whole episode, watching those red eyes light up, intending death to one of the most despised characters since Lana Lang. But nope.
So Barry and The Ray go up against Red Tornado. I didn’t quite understand that fight, but that’s because I’m used to the comic versions. None of the three of them were operating at full capacity, so the whole fight felt kind of subdued. Barry didn’t even try to just vibrate a hand through his chest or something.
And then….holy crap, Martin Stein gets shot. Multiple times. He still manages to flip the switch he needs to but…yikes.
Legends of Tomorrow
Martin’s clearly bleeding out. And then gets hit again right before he flips the switch. But the breach is opened. Barry and Ray finally stop Red Tornado by combining speed lightning with a light burst. Our heroes escape back to Earth 1.
Kara is right back where she started, underneath Thawne/Wells’ knife. He tries to cut her but he can’t. And why? Because the Atom is there! I’m sorry, I’ve grown to really like Brandon Routh more and more, but he is just not Ray Palmer. And that suit is just not the Atom suit. It’s Diet Iron Man. They’ve should’ve let Routh play Ted Kord/Blue Beetle as was originally intended. Then everything about his role would make a lot more sense. But Kara is saved. And Atom uses a Ms. Marvel word: he “embiggens.” Hahahha so he’s Diet Giant Man now too. Hahahah okey smokey then.
Felicity squares off against Oliver X. He was about to kill her too(I told you she’s the safest character ever) but Earth 1 Ollie shows up with a knife to Kara X’s throat. I guess she’s still too weak to fight him off. Also elsewhere a whole gaggle of heroes face off against Metallo and blow him to smithereens. That was awesome. And funny. So Thawne snatches Kara X & Oliver X away.
So holy cow, Stein is only barely alive. And Jax is tethered to him, so he’s hurt too. And who’s there to save them? That would be Caitlin. Coming through in the clutch again. But this time, even her skills aren’t enough. Lots of reunion moments happen. Next time we see Caitlin she’s got on this really sexy backless top and I’m like, is she going out after this or something? I guess that’s what she was wearing under her blue KF jacket. Mr. Terrific is in Geek Heaven. He also figures out that Overgirl is actually going nova.
*sigh* Then there’s this huge goodbye scene between Stein and Jax. And it was heartbreaking. So Stein convinces Jax to disconnect from him so he can go on. “Let me die so that you may live.” So, SO painful. Without a doubt, the heaviest moment yet. I don’t know what comes next. Will they go back in time and save Martin? Is Jax still Firestorm? Lots of questions from a very moving death. And then we see the scenes of everyone getting the news. Even Martin’s wife and daughter. Ugh. It hurts.
So we’re down to the final battle. And Kara and Oliver X still remain the best couple we’ve met this episode. So it’s DC metas assemble! For the professor! Understand now, that the Nazis have actually stated two goals as Thawne said: one was to invade and conquer this Earth, the other to capture Kara. And holy Moses Killer Frost coming in on her ice slide was STILL the best entrance. So all manner of ground and air fighting ensues. Many of the Nazis were walking up on their targets when they could’ve been firing, but whatever. Kara calls out her dopple with Superman’s line: “General, would you care to step outside?” Hahahhaah. And who gets aboard the ship to take out the shields? Killer Frost and her Ice Team!!! I tell ya nothing beats that ice slide, man. Nothing. Iris pretends she’s useful, and Vibe bamfs Team Frost back to the good Waverider. Thawne and Barry super speed tussle, Olivers regular and X fight, and Girls Super keep going at it too.
Barry has a chance to kill Thawne. But doesn’t. He just lets him go. He doesn’t even think to imprison him. It really seriously felt like a Batman and Joker vibe, like Barry doesn’t really want to end Thawne. Like he gets off on their battles as much as Thawne does. Yah he’s gonna live to regret that.
Kara X starts blowing up, so Kara regular has to fly her up, up….and away. She does, and Kara X explodes. Her husband sees it and drops his guard. And then Oliver does what Barry wouldn’t. He kills his dopple. Once again, Oliver has the right idea. Supergirl falls to Earth Superman Returns style and Commander Steele catches her.
So, it’s time for goodbyes. And there are a lot of them. And dudes kissing. And Snart stays here. I thought Ray was gonna stay. But I guess they have to get Snart back on all the shows some kind of way. Then we have Martin Stein’s funeral. So, so sad. SO sad. Just wow. I seriously hope they bring him back.
And then the piece de resistance. We have a wedding in the park. Barry and Iris want to keep it simple and get it done. Barry snatches I-hate-moving-at-super-speed Diggle to perform the ceremony. Yeah they need a certificate and it needs to be signed but okay then. Ollie and FeFe are now the best man and maid of honor. Bye bye Caitlin. Guess that new friendship with Iris was worth a bag of Jitters coffee beans, eh? Then Barry and Iris trade vows that literally made me cringe. Just was not buying one single forced word of it. Especially Iris’ ballerina story. That’s. her. brother. supporting. her. Ugh. And she did not “know from that moment” because she was in love with Eddie. She saw her name as Iris West-Allen on the newspaper and said “screw the future,” remember?
And then…of course FeFe hasn’t gotten any attention for the last five minutes so she jumps in before Diggle can pronounce them hitched. And in less than sixty seconds does a complete about face about what she so passionately believed in before, no marriage. And Oliver, like the trained puppy he is, goes with it and agrees to marry her on the spot. So now we’ve got two lovely CW super hero weddings with the worst pairings we’ve seen on these shows. Okay then.
It’ll be interesting to see what Iris Allen and Felicity Queen do on their shows next. Oh yeah maybe their husbands will show up occasionally too.
I thought the whole Crisis crossover thing was generally fun. The highlights for me were definitely Thawne/Wells and Kara and Oliver X. Reverse Flash is just so wickedly wicked. Cavanagh says every word like he’s savoring it, as if it were a slow-chilled glass of fine red wine. And Kara and Oliver X? They should us what a devoted couple would actually look like. Even though their Nazi philosophies were pure evil, their devotion to each other was true.
So, where do we go from here?
Well, they play with canon as they see fit. Oliver is with Felicity and not any version of Dinah. That means that Barry could’ve been with Caitlin. Wally certainly could’ve found their version of Linda Park that we’d already met. And Firestorm is now without Stein. So however things play out, we’ll just have to see. I have to admit tho, I am no longer really emotionally invested like I once was. This is why I’m making my own comics. I’d rather write my own stories.
Join us next Tuesday for #FlashChat at 1 PM CST on Twitter. We’ll be talking about all four episodes of the Crisis crossover because how could we not?