Crisis on Infinite Earths (parts four and five)

I had originally planned to watch the final two parts of “Crisis on Infinite Earths” – presented as Arrow 8.8 and Legends of Tomorrow 5.0 – over two nights, but part four was so lousy and uninspired that I decided to stampede to the end, and I’m really glad that I did, because part five was downright fun.

So the big changes to the Arrowverse are that the Superpeoples’ Earth was merged with the Arrow/Flash/Batwoman/Legends Earth and Black Lightning’s Earth, and now Supergirl’s National City is on the other side of the river from Flash’s Central City. Atop that, Diggle’s daughter is alive again, Superman and Lois have two kids, Lex Luthor has been a good guy who’s just won the Nobel Prize, and Lynda Carter’s no longer the president. A bunch of other DC shows now have their own Earths, and at the end of the story, seven of the heroes (Barry, Kara, Sara, Kate, Clark, J’onn, and Jefferson) get together to hang out in the Hall of Justice (the building was introduced in the 2016 crossover), where there’s a monkey named Gleek running around and the old Super Friends theme plays. Best ending possible, I’d say.

Otherwise, part four was a last roundup for Stephen Amell to have yet another death scene and to marvel at how months apparently passed at the Vanishing Point but Kate kept her hair perfect. Part five was what I understand is the usual Legends of Tomorrow mayhem, with enough violence and superhero action to keep our son completely riveted and enough romance novels and fifty-foot teddy bears to keep the grownups baffled. Lots of the usual Arrowverse talk about how tough it is being a hero as well, but balanced with the show’s playful and silly spirit.

So I reckon they’ve left the big impacts on the Batwoman storyline for us to learn about in a few days, so stay tuned for that. Hopefully the next time we see the Hall of Justice, Barry will have cleaned the place up. And if any of you readers happen to see any fan art with our new seven Super Friends drawn in the classic style of the Alex Toth originals, won’t you please drop me a line? I’d love to see this cover below done with the TV gang. (Bonus points if they have somebody redraw Tyler Hoechlin’s face in a Curt Swan style.)

But fun aside, did it work? Well, I honestly don’t know that they did everything that they could or should have done. The spit-n-cough cameos from Ashley Scott, Burt Ward, and Robert Wuhl were cute, but the actors could have been given more substantial roles to play somewhere in the narrative, couldn’t they? There’s a brief bit in part four where “our” Flash meets the Flash played by Ezra Miller in the current movies, which was nice. I suppose Zachary Levi or Gal Gadot or Margot Robbie are outside the TV shows’ budget, so it was nice to see somebody from the big screen show up on TV, where I think DC’s superhero stories are told better.

But speaking of Levi and Gadot, this really was a fine opportunity to introduce DC’s other big hero names into the Arrowverse, and I think I’m disappointed that they didn’t give us the chance to meet Shazam, Wonder Woman, and Green Lantern. Some footage which may have been from the Ryan Reynolds GL film is in the “new worlds” montage at least, but there should be a Green Lantern on the new combined Earth, not on his own world, because that’s precisely the problem that this story solved. And TV is long overdue a Wonder Woman. I hope some of the big names start appearing as guests on the Arrowverse shows in the future.

Anyway, wonder what they’re going to do for the November 2020 crossover? Hopefully something a shade smaller…?

Super Friends cover credit: Pencil Ink Blog

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