First things first: our son was furious about the month-long wait before the next episode. A whole month! I’d make a crack about the age of instant gratification, but then again, when Disney+ launched, at least three people I follow on Twitter whined about having to wait a week between episodes of The Mandalorian.
Anyway, much like episode two, this part was agonizing talk-talk-talk while all two hundred actors with speaking parts got their names onscreen, and then it got entertaining. We got a far shorter cameo from one member of the cast of Birds of Prey than I expected, and an incredibly surprising appearance by Tom Ellis from the Fox/Netflix series Lucifer. He and John Constantine share some dialogue that’s certain to please anybody familiar with Neil Gaiman’s Sandman comic.
John Wesley Shipp also shows up as the Flash from his 1990-91 series, and not only gets that great theme song, but an actual clip from his series. Cress Williams gets to cross over from Black Lightning, because it was about time he met the rest of these characters. The most dramatic moment in the story comes when Supergirl is about to do something very dangerous and stupid with the Book of Destiny and Batwoman stares her down.
So it cruises to a cliffhanger that was pretty much in line with what I was expecting, but there’s a downright brilliant twist right before we were set to go to the credits. Jon Cryer may have just overtaken John Shea as my favorite Lex Luthor, put it that way.
So since we’re pausing this story for a month, I guess my only real complaint is that they missed a serious trick in identifying the seven essential “paragon” characters. Five of them are from the regular casts of these shows. We see these characters every week. Instead of just giving playful winks with cameo appearances from Burt Ward and Ashley Scott and Tom Welling, it would have been smashing to have them play substantial parts as the paragons (maybe adding Teri Hatcher and Lynda Carter?) and let the regular cast members be tasked with protecting them. It just seems like a missed opportunity, but it’s pretty fun anyway.