This post contains spoilers for Crisis on Earth X.
If you watched part-one of Crisis on Earth X and wished that your epic superhero crossover had more action, the Arrow portion has exactly what you were waiting for. It makes sense, since historically it has had to rely on choreography and practical effects a lot more than its three sister shows. Part-two didn’t skimp on the emotions, by any means, but there’s a whole lot more punching Nazis.
Before it can get to the action, it has to rip your heart out. It’s in the Arrow rule book. Back in the days of Prometheus, there were endless fan theories that the masked murderer would be none other than Tommy Merlyn. Turns out good things come to those who wait, assuming by “good” you mean you like having your heart broken while watching a beloved character die again. We’ve been waiting for Colin Donnell’s pretty face to grace Arrow again ever since we started playing with multiple Earths, but he’s been busy starring on Chicago Med. That knowledge made his cameo even more special, since it meant he took some time out to come play with his Arrow family after all of these years. But also bad Nazi Tommy! No! No cyanide pill. Also no being a Nazi. We’re going to need you to just stop all of this Earth X nonsense.
As is standard with the heartbreak, it wouldn’t be a day in Star City if Oliver wasn’t having a bad time. Kara had to meet her Nazi counterpart too, and Barry discovered that Eobard Thawne is still alive and still managing to ruin his life, but Oliver met his Nazi-self, watched his best friend die again, and is still trying to come to grips with the fact that the love of his life just doesn’t want to marry him. It’s a lot more complicated than a simple “she doesn’t want to marry him” but no one uses their words in Star City (or Central City), so that drama’s going to have to play out until the end of the Crisis event, it seems.
Speaking of our darling Felicity Megan Smoak; she’s Jewish. It’s more than a little frustrating that the episode merely nods to it with a glance from Barry and visible discomfort on her part, and I’m hoping we see this rectified before the crossover’s complete. Her faith has been brought up multiple times in Arrow’s tenure, and looking at this event through a Jewish lens seems highly relevant. There was plenty of opportunity to discuss it during the multiple times she and Iris are talking about their significant others and not what’s happening around them, or when Oliver’s Earth X counterpart invades Star Labs with a bunch of Nazis. It’s a strange thing to glaze over, particularly with the timeliness of the events taking place in the DCTV universe.
While Star Labs is being invaded, our heroes discover the motive behind this little takeover: Earth-X Kara needs a new heart. L’il miss amazing red-lip soaked up too much sun, and she’s dying, but not on her doting husband’s watch. It’s fascinating to see that Oliver is still driven by love, even on the worst of all Earths. Always brooding, always with too much emotion than he can handle, and never with super powers. Hats off to the Crisis on Earth X writers for making the super speed joke. It was a nice moment in a mostly heavy episode.
Eobard Thawne also brought some laughs with him to Earth Prime. He’s a little shit, sure, but he’s a funny one. His snark mirrored by his darkness is enough to make you sad that he’s not still working alongside Damien Darhk and wreaking havoc on the timeline, but it’s real nice to see Tom Cavanagh back in that suit. Matt Letscher brings something special to the character, but it’s hard to hold a candle to Cavanagh’s cold calculation, and that calculation is exactly what they needed for Crisis. He has a plan outside of Nazi-Oliver’s that we are yet to discover, but based on his and Nazi-Kara’s conversation it doesn’t have anything to do with her getting the new ticker she needs.
If you had thoughts on the first half of Crisis on Earth X, you know what to do!