Saturday, January 25, 2020

Legends Of Tomorrow Season 5, Episode 1: Crisis On Infinite Earths, Part Five

It's the fifth and final part of the epic Crisis On Infinite Earths crossover!

Overall I was reasonably pleased with the crossover as a whole. It wasn't perfect (gods no), but the basic story was there, and it contained many wonderful and satisfying moments.

As I've said before, this was definitely Discount Crisis. They would have needed a budget of at least $600 million dollars to do a faithful adaptation of the comic, something that was never going to happen on The CW. 

Because of this, much of the grandeur and cosmic scope of the comic was missing. Unfortunately they replaced it with pointless side quests, and cheap to film Patented The CW Pep Talks®. Why spend money filming planets exploding when you can point the camera at two people talking on an existing set?

That's not to say it was all bad. Part Five may well be my favorite of the entire crossover. It follows the comic very closely, as the heroes struggle to understand their newly restored and merged Earth. The Anti-Monitor returns here as well, growing to kaiju size as he engages the heroes in one last battle, in scenes that look like they were ripped straight from the comic page. 

I also enjoyed the nice sendoff of Oliver Queen, and the formation of the Justice League at the end. Yeah, I know, they never come right out and say it's the League, but we all know that's what it's supposed to be.

Much like the comic, this brave new rebooted world raises many questions and features tons of potential plot holes. Hopefully these will be tacked in future episodes of the various Arrowverse series.

Lastly, I'm still pissed with the way the Crisis handled the infamous "Flash Vanishes In Crisis" newspaper headline, as it handwaved it away in the stupidest and least satisfying way possible. I guess I need to just let it go.


The Plot:
Previously on Crisis On Infinite Earths: Spectre Oliver defeated The Anti-Monitor at the Dawn Of Time. He then created a new Universe, with the help of the seven Paragons.

In this episode, Supergirl wakes in her apartment in front of the TV and looks around in confusion. Her sister Alex Danvers walks in and asks if she's OK. Supergirl looks out the window, but sees no red skies or any other signs of the Crisis. Nor does Alex seem to remember it. Just then Supergirl gets a call from Nia Nal, saying she's late for the Nobel Peace Prize ceremony.

Supergirl speeds to the arena, and asks Nia to interpret her weird Crisis dream. Just then the Peace Prize winner is introduced... and it's Lex Luthor! He gives a short speech about how he's dedicated his life to fighting for humanity. As he does so, he throws a little wink to Supergirl, indicating he remembers the Crisis too. She's flabbergasted, and realizes something's horribly wrong.

At the DEO, Supergirl's stunned to find out that the organization is owned by LuthorCorp, and that everyone believes he's a model citizen. J'onn J'onnz enters and shares her concerns that things aren't right. Supergirl theorizes that the seven Paragons are the only ones who remember how things were.

Suddenly an alarm sounds, and Supergirl flies off to investigate. She finds the Weather Witch terrorizing a pier with her lightning bolts. Despite the fact that Supergirl's 
never seen her before, Weather Witch seems to recognize her. Before she can act, Barry Allen, aka the Flash arrives and captures the Weather Witch. Supergirl asks him why he's on Earth-38, but he looks confused and says they're on Earth-1.

In the sewers of Central City, two maintenance workers find an unconscious Nash Wells lying on the floor. As they call for help, we see there's no longer a secret door (complete with Paragon symbols) on the tunnel wall.

Meanwhile, White Canary finds herself in Star City, with no idea how she got there. She remembers fighting at the Dawn Of Time, but nothing afterward. She calls Atom and meets him in a bar, and discovers he doesn't remember the Crisis at all. 

J'onn arrives and tells Canary that when they restarted the Universe, all the Earths in the Multiverse were combined into one. He says he's been going from place to place, restoring the memories of various heroes. When Atom asks what the hell he's talking about, J'onn telepathically fills him in on the Crisis. Canary asks about Oliver, but J'onn says there's been no sign of him. She runs out to look for him.

Canary goes to the Bunker (formerly known as the Arrowcave), where she finds John Diggle, Wild Dog and Black Canary. They tell her J'onn's already been there and told them about Oliver. Diggle's sad that he wasn't there for Oliver either time he died. Canary says since they brought the Universe back, Oliver may be alive again as well. Wild Dog says Felicity did a global search for Oliver and came up with nothing. Canary refuses to give up hope.

At STAR Labs, Caitlin (NOT Frost!) is examining the unconscious Nash. J'onn enters and restores her memories of Crisis. Caitlin's immediately repulsed by Nash, as she realizes he's the one who freed The Anti-Monitor in the first place. Nash wakes and tries to leave, and becomes defensive and cocky when the others won't let him. J'onn restores Nash's memories, and he's horrified as he remembers what he did, as well as being transformed into Pariah.

Barry and Supergirl arrive at the Bunker and tell the others that all the Earths have combined into one. Supergirl happily says everyone was restored as well. Canary informs her that's not quite true, as Oliver didn't make it. Diggle says he figures Oliver must have sacrificed himself to make the merging and restoration possible.

Suddenly an alarm sounds and Barry, Supergirl and Atom rush outside. There they see an unbelievable sight— a gigantic, kaiju-sized Beebo stomping down the street. Canary calls Steel and Director Sharpe on the Waverider, to justify this being a Legends episode. She tells them to stay in DC, as she doesn't want to involve them in a crossover. Sharpe tells her one of the Legends is already there.

Cut to Heat Wave at a book signing, autographing copies of his latest Rebecca Silver novel. He sees Beebo rampage past the store, and joins the other heroes. Heat Wave blasts Beebo with his flame gun, but it has no effect. Flash and Supergirl grab a cable from a nearby utility truck and wrap it around Beebo's legs. They pull it tight, intending to trip him up, but it passes right through him.

Batwoman appears in Star City for some reason, and says Beebo must be a diversion. Heat Wave suspects whoever's responsible is obviously committing a robbery.

We then see Sargon The Sorcerer strolling out of a bank vault. As he loads up a satchel with money and jewels, Canary comes up behind him and says Beebo is off limits. She then punches him unconscious. As Sargon's lights go out, the spell's broken and Beebo collapses into a massive puddle of blue goo.

The heroes celebrate their defeat of Beebo and the restoration of the Universe in the Bunker. Nash enters and tells them not to be so sure they won. He says his gauntlet is detecting a massive surge of antimatter, and says the Crisis may be starting all over. Groan!

Barry finds Canary sitting on the steps, and she tells him that Oliver was the only person who knew her before all the craziness in her life began. With him gone, she feels she no longer has a connection to that world. Barry gives her a Patented The CW Pep Talk®, saying he knows what it's like to lose family, but now she has a new one. Crisis On Infinite Earths, everyone! Come for the cosmic battles, stay for the Hallmark Channel drama!

Suddenly one of The Anti-Monitor's Shadow Demons appears out of nowhere and attacks them, and Barry destroys it by lightly tapping it. J'onn sends them a telepathic message, warning them that the Paragons are being targeted. Canary immediately thinks of Ryan Choi, who has no powers and will be helpless against the demons.

Cut to Ryan, as he barricades himself and his baby in his nursery (I guess they couldn't afford to cast his wife). A Shadow Demon bursts through the door, and just as it's about to attack, it's destroyed by Canary (I guess she breached to Ivy City? Or Barry zoomed her there?).

Canary takes Ryan to the Bunker, where the other heroes are waiting. Nash tells them that Oliver's sacrifice may have united the Earths, but apparently it didn't kill The Anti-Monitor. Atom says that's because The Anti-Monitor is made of antimatter— which can't be created or destroyed. Instead it can only change states. 

Ryan suggests compressing The Anti-Monitor's molecules, so he's basically shrinking forever. Canary tells them to get on it, while the others battle the demons.

The heroes file out to Gardner Pier, where a vast army of Shadow Demons is waiting. They attack, and the heroes begin lightly tapping the Demons and destroying them.

Meanwhile, Atom, Ryan and Nash work on the shrink bomb in STAR Labs, while Heat Wave and Frost guard them. A Shadow Demon flies down the hall, and before anyone can act, it's blasted by a bolt of electricity. Heat Wave and Frost turn to see Black Lightning, whose Earth has also been folded into this one. The Arrowverse shows are now one big happy family, all living on the same world!

Back at the pier, the remaining Shadow Demons converge and form into The Anti-Monitor. He spouts standard supervillain patter, telling the Paragons it's time for them to meet their end. They battle him for a while, and he tells them to surrender. Canary says they'll never give up, and they all charge forward in the name of Oliver Queen. The Anti-Monitor fires a blast of energy that sends them all reeling. He then begins growing to gigantic size, Power Rangers-style.

The heroes then attack The Mega Anti-Monitor, flying around him as they punch and blast him with energy. Canary radios STAR and asks how the shrink bomb's going. Atom says they could use some fast hands, so Barry speeds to the lab. They show him what to do, and he assembles the device in a split second.

Barry and Atom arrive at the pier, where the battle's still raging. The Mega Anti-Monitor snatches Superman out of the sky and begins crushing him in his mighty fist. Supergirl sees her cousin in trouble, and seemingly comes to a decision. She begins flying toward The Mega Anti-Monitor at superspeed, intending on sacrificing herself (I guess?) to save Superman.

Suddenly Atom flies up and stops her. He uses his powers to shrink Superman, so he can wriggle out of The Mega Anti-Monitor's fist. This enrages the behemoth, who roars in anger. Atom then hands the shrink bomb to Supergirl, and she hurls it at The Mega Anti-Monitor. It lands squarely on his chest, and he instantly begins shrinking. Eventually he shrinks out of sight, and his Shadow Demons disappear as well.

That night, the President gives a televised speech, thanking the heroes for saving the world from the Crisis. She commends Oliver— the world's first superhero (?)— for sacrificing himself. She calls for a moment of silence to honor him.

Diggle and Lyla (who's now been de-Harbingered) watch the address— with both their children. Apparently Crisis corrected Flashpoint and restored their daughter. Batwoman, Alex and Supergirl watch from her apartment. Elsewhere, Superman flies over Metropolis. Lois calls him and says she needs help with their sons. This surprises Superman, and he speeds away.

We then get a voiceover from Oliver, explaining how the Universe was formed. Apparently even though many of the Earths merged into one, the Multiverse is still out there. Wait, what? We then get a montage of heroes on various Earths. Finally we see all the Arrowverse heroes, who are now located on Earth Prime. Confusing!

The heroes gather and stand solemnly as they stare at a memorial to Oliver, complete with his costume and an eternal flame. Barry, Supergirl and Canary all say a few words, noting what an inspiring hero he was.

Black Lightning then asks why they chose to house the shrine in an abandoned building. Barry smiles and says it's not abandoned— it's the old STAR Labs facility we first saw in the Invasion! crossover. He says they can use it as their HQ whenever they need to gather, and shows them a large table with a place (and customized chair) for each of them. There's even a ceremonial chair for Oliver.

The heroes all take their seats and smile at one another. Suddenly they hear the chattering of a monkey overhead. Cut to a storage area, where we see a cage labeled "Gleek" that's been opened. We pull back to reveal the Hall Of Justice.

• This actually belongs in Crisis Part Four, but I didn't think about it until now, so I'm including it here.

At the end of Part Three, Pariah teleports the seven Paragons away, seconds before the antimatter wave wipes out all reality. They end up in the ruins of the Vanishing Point, the former home of the Time Masters. In Part Four the Paragons spend several months in the Vanishing Point before they're visited by Spectre Oliver.

There is no Vanishing Point in the Crisis On Infinite Earths comic. There is a precedent for it in this crossover though.

In the comics, the Vanishing Point was the home of the Linear Men, who were similar to the Time Masters. They played a major role in Zero Hour, a 1994 comic miniseries that was meant to fix the many continuity errors caused by Crisis On Infinite Earths (which, ironically, was meant to streamline and simplify the DC Comic Universe). 

In Zero Hour, a new villain named Parallax wanted to— what else— destroy the universe and replace it with one of his own design. The Linear Men gathered a team of superheros and brought them to the Vanishing Point, where they could plan their attack.

The Arrowverse writers took this Zero Hour plot element and grafted it onto their Crisis crossover.

• As regularly happens in the Arrowverse, this episode featured battles two locations named after prominent DC Comics creators: Gardner Pier and Perez Landing.

The Pier's named after Gardner Fox, the writer who co-created many Golden Age heroes like Hawkman, Doctor Fate and of course the Flash. He also co-created the Justice Society Of America (precursor to the Justice League, natch). Fox also wrote the classic 1961 story The Flash Of Two Worlds, which kicked off the whole concept of the Multiverse! Fitting that he should be mentioned here!

Perez Landing is named for George Perez, the artist who pencilled the Crisis On Infinite Earths comic.

• I loved the little wink Luthor threw to Supergirl as he accepted the Nobel Peace Prize, letting her know that he remembered the way things were before Crisis as well.

I wonder... did Luthor deliberately make this change in the previous episode, when he and the other Paragons were "sending their energy" to Spectre Oliver so he could reboot the Universe? Seems likely. It's entirely up Luthor's alley to alter reality to benefit himself.

• Supergirl's repulsed to find the DEO is now owned by LuthorCorp.

I have a feeling this is going to be the first of many, MANY changes to her show. While Arrow tended to fight street-level thugs, and the Flash battled evil metahumans, Supergirl generally fought alien threats. 

See, a spaceship from a Kryptonian maximum security prison crash-landed on Earth-38, spilling out a ton of alien prisoners— some good, but most bad. Supergirl spends most of her time dealing with these extraterrestrials. Her world featured many other differences as well.

Will those aliens still be a thing now that the various Earths have merged? Who knows?

• Superhero Landing!

• Weather Witch uses her lightning rod to terrorize a pier in National City. Not sure why, as it doesn't look like there's any places of value to pillage or rob, but whatever. Maybe she just gets a kick out of scaring tourists.

Anyway, take a look at the pier and the buildings in the background.

They look a LOT like the Burrard Dry Dock Pier in Vancouver!

• After Barry dispatches Weather Witch, he and Supergirl are approached by an autograph hound named Marv. In a fun little cameo, he's played by Marv Wolfman, who wrote the Crisis On Infinite Earths comic back in 1985! Cool! 

I'd seen photos of Marv back in the day, so I was a bit surprised to see him looking so old here. Then I did the math and realized the Crisis comic came out a whopping 35 years ago! He was 38 when he wrote it, which makes him 73 today.

It was great that Marv got a cameo, but why didn't comic artist George Perez get one too? He pencilled every page of the entire twelve issue Crisis miniseries, and contributed just as much. If not more!

• We then cut to Star City, which as always looks a LOT like downtown Boston here on our Earth.

• In a Star City bar, J'onn restores Atom's memories of the Crisis. He then remembers meeting Superman-96, who inexplicably looked just like him. As he thinks about the Man Of Steel, he subconsciously puts his hands on his hips and adopts a standard Superman pose!

• Inside the Bunker, we see that Oliver's mannequin, but his Green Arrow costume is conspicuously missing.

So why wasn't he restored with everyone else when the universe was rebooted? Is it because he died at the Dawn Of Time? Did it have something to do with him becoming the Spectre? Or was this part of his deal with The Monitor, to sacrifice his life for that of Barry and Supergirl's? Would that deal still be in effect once the entire universe was destroyed?

These are all good questions, but the answer's apparently none of our business, as the episode never goes into any of this.

• At one point a jubilant Supergirl enters the Bunker and says everyone was restored when the universe was rebooted. Yeah, slow down there, Supergirl— there's no way that's true.

We know for a fact there were seven or eight billion people who lived on Supergirl's world of Earth-38. In Part One, half of them boarded a fleet of ships and were sent to Earth-1. They were no doubt wiped out when the antimatter wave destroyed the planet. Were those people restored when the universe was rebooted? If so, does that mean there's now an extra three billion people on Earth Prime?

And what about Black Lightning's world? Was its population saved? Were they all erased? Were they folded into Earth-Prime? Again, are there 50 billion people on Earth-Prime now? How does any of this work?

• At one point we get an establishing shot of STAR Labs. I can't be one hundred percent certain, but based on this angle it looks like after six years the damaged pylon may be fixed! Maybe while the Paragons were thinking good thoughts toward Spectre Oliver and restoring the universe, Barry took a second to repair the roof?

Annnnd then Beebo attacks Star City. Oy. 

So one minute everyone's in the Bunker sobbing and mourning Oliver. Then we immediately cut the extremely silly sight of Beebo terrorizing the city. Was that really a good idea? They took their heartfelt tribute and instantly undercut it with a dumb joke. Talk about whiplash!

• While Atom takes a selfie with Beebo, Barry and Supergirl try to figure out how to stop the rampaging behemoth.

Gosh, it's too bad Atom was so busy with his phone that he forgot about his powers again. At no time does he even consider shrinking Beebo to doll size. 

Granted, Atom's shrink ray may not have worked, since Beebo's a magical construct. The point is he didn't even try.

• Turns out the giant Beebo was conjured up by Sargon The Sorcerer, who used it as a diversion so he could rob a bank vault.

I was under the impression that Sargon was a good guy in the comics, so why's he a villain committing grand theft here? I looked him up, and it turns out he was sort of both. 

Sargon first appeared in All-American Comics #26, way back in 1941 (!). At that time he was a stage magician named John Sargent who secretly fought crime as Sargon The Sorcerer. He derived his power from the mystical Ruby Of Life, but eventually it had an evil influence on him and turned him into a villain. He ultimately became a hero again, and was made an honorary member of the Justice League.

• Let's talk about Canary's wardrobe in this episode. When Beebo appears, Canary stays in the Bunker and shouts orders to Barry, Supergirl and Atom. Note that she's wearing an olive green tank top here.

A few minutes later Canary and Barry zoom to the scene of Sargon's crime. Note that Canary's now wearing her off-white superhero costume!

So let me see if I have this straight... apparently once they figured out someone was using Beebo as a diversion, Canary told Barry to return to the Bunker. She then got her costume from somewhere (the Waverider maybe?) and took the time to change into it, before she and Barry zip away to capture Sargon. Got it.

• After defeating Beebo and Sargon, the heroes take time out to celebrate. Wild Dog pours Heat Wave (aka Mick Rory) a glass of champagne and says, "Rory, huh? We had a Rory once on our team."

He's referring to Rory Regan, aka the Ragman. He was a member of Team Arrow for a while, but retired after the magic suit of rags he wore lost its power after containing the force of a nuclear bomb in Arrow Season 5. No, really!

• I loved the scene between Canary and Barry, as they shared their thoughts about Oliver, loss and family. I said it in the previous episode, but we don't get to see these two together much. That's a shame, as there's a real chemistry between them.

• Canary stares at a tree across the street, and tells Barry how she and her sister Laurel used to climb it and see who could get to the top first.

Really? THAT tree? It's on a sidewalk in the middle of downtown Star City! Is that a thing? Do they really let kids climb trees on public streets? Wouldn't you get arrested if you tried something like that?

• Barry and Canary's heartfelt talk is interrupted by a Shadow Demon. Canary then realizes the Demons have returned and are targeting former Paragons for some reason including Ryan Choi.

Cut to Ryan barricading himself and his baby in his nursery, as he desperately tries to hide from an approaching Shadow Demon. 

Why's Ryan so terrified of the Demon? We've seen numerous times now that they pose absolutely zero threat, as even a light tap causes anywhere on their bodies causes them to disappear in a puff of smoke. Heck, we saw Ryan holding his own against a horde of them in Part Four, destroying dozens of them with nothing but his fists!

• Atom meets Atom!

This image makes me sad and angry, because I know that within just a few weeks, the producers of Legends Of Tomorrow are going to force Brandon Routh, aka Atom, off the show and replace him with Ryan Choi, the new Atom

This is bullsh*t, because Routh is the heart and soul of Legends. So much so that I'm honestly not sure if I want to keep watching after he's gone.

And just why is Routh and his real-life wife Courtney Ford being given the heave-ho? Because according to the producers, "their storyline has run its course." Is that so? Sounds like instead of dumping the actors, they need to get rid of the old, worn out writers instead, and bring in a crew of new ones with fresh ideas!

Anyway, kudos to Brandon Routh for being professional enough to agree to appear in this scene with his replacement.

• During their brainstorming session, Atom and Ryan discuss The Anti-Monitor:

Atom: "It's just a little tricky. The Anti-Monitor is made of antimatter, and, like its opposite, it can neither be created nor destroyed. It can only..."
Ryan: (interrupting) "Change form and move from place to place!"

That's actually true for matter, so I guess it would probably hold for antimatter as well. Good work, writers!

• The two Atoms then come up with a way to stop The Anti-Monitor:

Ryan: "What if we could set off a chain reaction that will destabilize his form? Compressing his molecules so he's essentially shrinking for eternity."
Nash: "Is that kind of reaction even possible?"
Atom: "Sure it is. I did it a bunch of times by accident when I was developing my ATOM exosuit."
Nash: "So you think you can keep him shrinking indefinitely?"
Atom: "Essentially, we'd be sending him to the "Atomverse."
Ryan: "I like to call it the Microverse."
Atom: "Ah, that's better. Possible trademark issues, but that's better."

Atom's last line there is a meta-joke about a real-world trademark issues. It's complicated, so get comfortable.

In 1976, Mego produced the Micronauts toy line, and coined the term "Microverse." In 1979, Marvel Comics was contracted to produce a book based on the toys. They began using the Microverse name in many of their other comics as well, including The Fantastic Four, The Incredible Hulk and Ant-Man

The comic eventually wound up outlasting the toy line by several years. The rights to the Micronauts and Microverse reverted back to Mego, although Marvel was allowed to keep the characters they created specifically for the comic.

Eventually the Micronauts and Microverse rights passed to Hasbro, who's currently trying to make a movie based on the property. Because of this, when Marvel produced their Ant-Man movie, they were prohibited from using the term "Microverse," and had to rename it the "Quantum Realm."

DC Comics either doesn't know or doesn't care about this convoluted legal mess, as the comic book Atom has been exploring his own Microverse since 2016!

• Canary orders Heat Wave to go with the nerd team, and protect them from Shadow Demons while they work on the shrink bomb. 

I love Heat Wave's look of utter disdain here. It's pretty much the same expression I have at work whenever one of my sixty four bosses (not an exaggeration, by the way) tells me to change the design of an email.

• As Atom, Ryan and Nash work on the shrink bomb, they discover they need "a reinforced core to contain the reaction." Nash suggests using depleted promethium.

In the New Teen Titans comic, Victor Stone, aka Cyborg, has a semi-robotic body that's composed of depleted promethium.

By the way, promethium is real, and is classified as a rare-earth metal. It's also highly radioactive, so they got the "depleted" part right. It's extremely rare though, as there are only 500-600 grams of it naturally occurring on the Earth.

• J'onn gets a new costume in this episode— and starts wearing it in his human form.

• Attention To Detail: As the Shadow Demons gather in the vacant lot, you can see their reflection in the mud puddle at the bottom of the screen! Well done, FX Team!

• It's comforting to know that no matter what Earth the heroes are on or what fictional city they live in, the Harbour Centre Tower will always be there in the background.

• Black Lightning now lives on Earth Prime along with all the other Arrowverse heroes. 

I've not had time to watch his series, but I'm aware of it and I know that he and his cast lived on a completely different Earth that was unconnected to the Arrowverse. No doubt the fact that his world has now merged with Earth-1 is gonna have major and far-reaching consequences for him and his supporting cast.

Speaking of which, back in Part Three, Black Lightning was visibly distressed and distraught when he found out his family perished along with his entire world. He damned Pariah for saving him instead of his wife and daughters.

In this episode he doesn't say boo about the fact that his family's (presumably) been restored.

I get that there was a lot going on in this episode already, so there likely wasn't time (or enough money in the budget) to film a reunion scene. But a simple line of dialogue establishing they were back was definitely in order.

• Oddly enough, Frost doesn't seem to seem to know who Black Lightning is here, even though she met him back in Part Three. J'onn presumably restored her memories of the Crisis, so there's no reason she shouldn't recognize him.

• For years now, the Arrow writers have been teasing the possibility that John Diggle might someday become a Green Lantern. These hints reached a head in the Elseworlds crossover, in which the Flash of Earth-90 appeared, looked quizzically at Diggle and said, "You're not wearing your ring. Things must be different here."

Welp, if they're gonna turn Dig into a Lantern, they'd better hurry! As of this writing, there's only one more episode of Arrow left!
Turns out that may be exactly what happens. In a recent interview with David Ramsey, who plays Dig, he said, "You are absolutely going to get your answers. And well-deserved answers. We’ve been talking about this for years, and I think everyone by series’ end will be very happy."

That pretty much confirms he's gonna have some sort of connection to the Green Lantern Corps, but I wouldn't expect to see him in full costume, brandishing his power ring. If I had to guess I'd say it's likely there'll be a scene at the very end of the episode in which a spaceship crashes, and a dead Lantern's ring flies off and chooses Dig as its new owner.

• I'm not a woman, so maybe I just don't understand. All I know is if I was going into battle against a cosmic being like The Anti-Monitor, I probably wouldn't wear long, dangly earrings.

Seems like a torn earlobe just waiting to happen.

• Once The Anti-Monitor returns, the heroes form a tight circle around him and start firing away. Note that some are shooting energy blasts, while others are firing guns directly at the cosmic being.

Yeah, that seems like a really bad idea. All The Anti-Monitor needs to do is jump straight up or teleport away, and the heroes would instantly shoot each other dead.

• Eventually The Anti-Monitor decides he's had enough and grows to kaiju size, intending to stomp out the heroes.

Unfortunately there's no way to watch that without thinking of Mighty Morphin' Power Rangers. All it needed was Rita Repulsa shrieking, "Magic wand, make my monster GROW!"

• Kidding aside, I really liked the battle between the heroes and The Mega Anti-Monitor. The same exact thing happened in the comic, and it looked like it was ripped straight from the printed page. The only problem with it is it was so short. The whole fight lasted less than a minute. Those CGI scenes ain't cheap!

• Near the end of the battle, The Mega Anti-Monitor snatches Superman out of the air and begins squeezing him to death in his mighty fist. Supergirl sees this, and seemingly comes to a decision. She then speeds toward The Mega Anti-Monitor with a look of grim determination on her face.

The music becomes dark and ominous here as well, implying that this is Supergirl's defining and final moment.

This scene comes straight from the Crisis comic too. In it, The Anti-Monitor returns and the heroes are teleported to his cosmic lair. They begin battling him, and The Anti-Monitor blasts Superman, severely injuring him. With Supes on the ropes, The Anti-Monitor is about to deliver the killing blow.

Supergirl sees this and hisses, "NO! You're NOT going to kill Superman!" She then flies toward The Anti-Monitor at superspeed and beats the ever-loving crap out of him, going so far as to punch a hole in his containment suit. He then fires a fatal blast at her and retreats. 

Superman then rushes to Supergirl's side, where she dies in his arms.

I'm assuming the producers were alluding to that moment here in the crossover. Fortunately Atom intervenes before Supergirl can go kamikaze on The Mega Anti-Monitor's giant ass.

• In the wrap-up, the President gives a heartfelt speech, thanking Oliver Queen for his service and his sacrifice in saving Earth from the Crisis. A lot to unpack here...

First of all, who is this President? Have we ever seen her on any Arrowverse show before? We saw a male President back in the Invasion! crossover, and I know Lynda Carter was the President on Earth-38 for a while. Has this woman ever appeared anywhere prior to this?

Secondly, why is she thanking him for saving the world from the Crisis? I thought there was no Crisis in this rebooted universe. The public shouldn't have any idea that anything out of the ordinary ever happened. That was the whole idea, right? The Paragons and select other heroes are the only ones who remember what happened and how things used to be.

Plus, would the President really thank a superhero who lived in Star City? Wouldn't that be like thanking a single fireman for putting out a blaze in Flagstaff, Arizona?

Then the President makes a big deal out of the fact that Oliver was the first superhero.
Ehhhh... I dunno about that.

I get that the producers desperately want Oliver to be the one who kicked off the whole Arrowverse, and the first major hero to die as well. This would mimic the story arc of Tony Stark over in the MCU, and add to the already numerous Endgame parallels.

I just don't think it's true though. Over on Supergirl, she often mentioned her cousin Clark had been superheroing for ten years before she donned her cape. Plus I just get the impression Superman is older than Oliver.

Same goes for Batman he was obviously operating in Gotham for many years before he disappeared, and Batwoman took up his crime-fighting mantle.

And what about Black Lightning? Based on Oliver's date of birth, he was thirty four at the time of his death. Black Lightning is DEFINITELY older than that. Plus, his official Arrowverse wiki entry clearly states that he'd been in the superhero game for quite a while, but retired NINE years ago when he saw the effect it was having on his family. If he was a hero for five or six years before he called it quits, that'd definitely predate Oliver's debut as Green Arrow (assuming the eight season run of his show happened in real time).

Of course I'm basing these arguments on old, previously established info. We're now living in a post-Crisis world, so who the hell knows what may have changed when the universe was rebooted?

Lastly, note that once again everyone's watching the Prez on Channel 52. That's another reference to DC Comics' 2011 relaunch of their entire line.

• Among the people watching the Presidential address is Diggle and his family, who've been altered by the events of the Crisis.

A few years back Dig and Lyla Michaels had a daughter they named Sara. Unfortunately, Barry Allen messed with the timestream in an effort to undo his mother's murder, creating an event called Flashpoint, which caused all sorts of unforeseen changes.

Among them was the fact that Dig's daughter was erased and replaced with a son named John Jr. (!). Not sure why anything Barry did in Central City would affect a kid in Star City, but there you go.

Anyway, when the universe was rebooted, apparently Sara was restored and John Jr. got to stick around too. I'm assuming they must be twins, since they look like they're the same age.

I guess when the seven Paragons were concentrating on restoring the universe in Part Four, one of them (Canary, probably?) threw Dig a bone and gave him the perfect family.

Also, note that Lyla's been de-Harbingered here as well. I wonder if she remembers her time as Harbinger? Does she remember being possessed by The Anti-Monitor and killing The Monitor? Or did any of that actually happen at this point? It's all very confusing.

• More fallout from the reboot: In Metropolis, Lois calls Superman and tells him he needs to get his ass home and deal with his sons. This comes as a shock to Supes, as they previously only had one child Jonathan who we saw in Part One and Part Two. For some reason, merging Earth-38 with Earth-1 has caused Supes and Lois to have an extra kid!

• Barry and Caitlin (not Frost, for some reason) solemnly watch the President's address in STAR Labs. So... where's Cisco? And Ralph? Even more importantly, where in the seven hells is Iris?

From what I've read, any time an actor on The CW guest stars on another show, they're paid quite a bit more than their normal rate— sometimes up to twice as much. Since The CW's pretty cash-strapped to start with, this means they can't afford to have the entire cast of one series show up on another. They have to be prudent, and decide who to include and who to cut.

Apparently Iris didn't make the cut here. I get it, but that was definitely an unfortunately decision. We saw Iris literally get vaporized by the antimatter wave in Part ThreeBudget or not, a happy reunion scene between her and Barry was definitely in order in this episode. Her absence is just strange and weird. Hell, for all we know she may not have been restored (yes, yes, I know she did— that was a joke).

• These two aren't grieving for Oliver, they're sobbing because now that Arrow is over for good, they're officially unemployed.

• I loved Heat Wave's little tribute to Oliver, as he silently tipped his bottle of beer to him. 

Part One of Crisis began with a voiceover from The Monitor, saying:

"In the beginning there was only one. A single black infinitude. Then the infinitude found release, and, finally, the darkness broke, filling it with life. With the multiverse. Every existence multiplied by possibility, and spread out before space and time in infinite measure.
Civilizations rose and fell, and rose again across reality's grasping expanse.
Life. A precious gift persevering in the face of every obstacle, until, finally, the age of heroes was born."

We get the same speech near the end of Part Five, although this time it's Oliver reciting it. The only other difference is that his monologue begins, "In the END there was only one."

By the way, that "In the beginning there was only one. A single black infinitude" line is straight from the first page of the Crisis comic.

• Confusingly, we then see that even though many of the Earths were combined into one, there's still a Multiverse out there. Wait, what? And if that wasn't enough, the numbering of the various worlds seems to have been rejiggered.

Earth-2 is back, although it's now home to Stargirl and her supporting cast, including S.T.R.I.P.E., Doctor Midnight, Hourman and what appears to be Wildcat.

I guess Harry Wells and Jesse Quick, who lived on the old Earth-2, really are gone for good.

Earth-12, or I guess more accurately Universe-12, is the setting for the Green Lantern Corps.

Earth-19, where HR Wells and Cisco's ex Gypsy used to live, is now occupied by Swamp Thing.

The Titans are back (despite having been obliterated in Part One) and living on Earth-9. For some reason they live in what is clearly San Francisco, even though everyone in the Arrowverse lives in fictitious cities with generic names like Central City.

The Doom Patrol is still kicking, now on Earth-21.

Happily, we then see that Superman-96 is alive and well again, as is his homeworld of Earth-96. Note that he's now wearing his traditional red & yellow chest emblem, instead of the red and black Kingdom Come one he sported earlier in the crossover.

I assume that means Lois and all his friends were never killed by the Joker in this reality, which is what prompted him to change the emblem in the first place.

Lastly we see that everyone on the various Arrowverse shows are now living on Earth-Prime. This will make it much easier to do crossovers in the future, but it's gonna wreak untold havoc on shows like Supergirl and Black Lightning, as their worlds were quite different from Earth-1. Expect huge changes to all the shows from this point on.

I was VERY confused by all this. As I said in the intro to Part One, DC Comics' upper management thought their multiverse was too confusing for new readers (it wasn't). They then came up with Crisis On Infinite Earths in order to streamline and simplify their universe. At the end of it, their Multiverse was gone, and there was only one Earth.

I could swear I read an article in which the Arrowverse producers said they were doing the exact same thing. I can't find it now of course, which makes me wonder if I maybe dreamed the whole thing. If they did say that they were lying, because here we are with a Multiverse again.

I don't get it. As I said, I thought they were following the pattern set down by the comic and merging all their Earths. If there's still a Multiverse out there, then what the hell was the point of this crossover?

I should note that even though the Crisis comic was intended to simplify DC's books, it actually made things even more complicated. There were hundreds of plot holes, and it wasn't clear if any previous comics actually "happened" or were to be ignored. 

Eventually things got so bad they came out with two more miniseries (Zero Hour and Infinite Crisis) which attempted to clean up all the discrepancies, and eventually reinstated the Multiverse! 

Maybe the Arrowverse writers were aware of that and just went ahead and kept their Multiverse, so they wouldn't have to restart it again in a couple years. I still don't quite get the point of it though.

• Barry sets up a shrine to Oliver Queen— complete with his costume and an eternal flame— inside a decommissioned STAR Labs facility. Um... why are there puddles of water all over the floor around the shrine? Does this place have a leaky roof too?

• Barry tells the others they can use the facility as their new HQ. He then unveils a round conference table, complete with personalized chairs— including a ceremonial seat for Oliver.

Of course heroes like Batwoman and Black Lightning will have to drive several hours to get to this HQ in Central City, but hey, it'll be waiting for them when they finally arrive!

Also, I'd be remiss in my duties if I didn't point out that these look like slightly modified DXRacer gaming chairs. Eh, I'm OK with that. They used similar ones in the shuttlecraft over on The Orville as well, so... you gotta work with the budget you've got!

This table is very much like the one used by the Justice League in the comics and the Superfriends on TV.

The Justice League now exists in the Arrowverse, folks! They don't actually call it that of course— most likely for copyright or trademark reasons— but make no mistake, this IS the Justice League! It's taken them eight years, but they finally did it! I gotta admit, I never thought I'd live to see a live action JLA on TV!

• I loved the scene of the Justi, er, I mean the heroes all sitting around their new round table. They've all got these goofy grins on their faces, as if the actors just couldn't help themselves. It's awesome to see DC heroes actually laughing and smiling, rather than, you know, snapping the necks of supervillains.

• After sitting at the table, the heroes hear a noise overhead. One that sounds like the chittering of a monkey.

When then cut to a storage area in the HQ, complete with an opened cage labeled "Gleek."

Of course this is a reference to the Super Friends cartoon series. Gleek was an blue alien monkey (no, really!), and was the pet of Zan and Jayna, the Wonder Twins. Gleek's only apparent power was his stretchable, prehensile tail that was strong enough to lift a full grown man.

OK, including a nod to him was a fun little throwaway gag, but let's hope this is as far as it goes. I don't want to see a CGI monkey hopping around the heroes' headquarters.

This scene also raises more questions than it answers. How long has this poor monkey been locked up in this cage? Apparently someone's been feeding him regularly, as we see a conveniently-placed, fresh banana peel hanging from the door of his cage. So obviously there's some sort of custodian taking care of the place.

Also, if Gleek exists in this post-Crisis world, does that mean the Wonder Twins are gonna pop up as well? Oy! Shape of a bad idea! Form of a lame callback!

• We end with an exterior shot of the building, which looks exactly like the Hall Of Justice from the Super Friends cartoon.

See? Told you it looked exactly like it! All that's missing from the Arrowverse version is Ted Knight's baritone narrating the epilogue.

By the way, the Hall Of Justice was based on the real life Cincinnati Museum Center!

• So there we have it Crisis On Infinite Earths. Despite the fact that it was designed to streamline and simplify the Arrowverse, I have a feeling it's gonna make things even more complicated. Much like the comic did!

The Crisis left us with a ton of mysteries, uncertainties and unanswered questions. Did Harrison Wells exist on Earth-Prime? Did he still build STAR Labs and the Particle Accelerator? Did Eobard Thawne still take his identity? What about Nash Wells? Is he still from some unnamed Earth, or is he now from Earth-Prime? If he's not from another Earth, why does he look exactly like Harrison Wells?

Why does no one seem to know who Black Lightning is, even though he was an established superhero over ten years ago? Why does he seem so clueless about all the threats to Earth-Prime if he's lived there all his life in the post-Crisis continuity?

And what about Nora West-Allen? When Barry vanished in the Crisis and never returned, she came to the past to meet the father she never had. She was erased from existence in the old timeline, but does that still stand in this one? If so, she'd never have reason to come back in time, because without a Crisis, Barry would never vanish.

So many questions. I'm sure some will eventually be answered in time, but I'm confident others never will.

For the past few years, any time the audience noticed a plot hole, the writers could just shout "FLASHPOINT!" and that'd explain it away. Now they'll be yelling "CRISIS!" to handwave any problems.

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