This post contains spoilers for Elseworlds.
Check out last week's Supergirl review here.
Each year we ask ourselves how DCTV could possibly surpass its last crossover event, and each year I find myself gobsmacked by the series’ response. Invasion wasn’t the best, but damn was it ever cool. Crisis on Earth X had a couple struggles, but punching Nazis! And now here we are with Elseworlds. If you’re prone to thinking like one Oliver Queen, you may say it was filled with a lot of fan service. If you’re more of a Barry or a Kara, you call those things Easter Eggs, and you’re still squealing about some of them that happened back in Part One.
Part Three keeps us in Central City, but reality has been rewritten once again. In this reality, Barry and Oliver are famous outlaws, Kara’s trapped in the cortex, Cisco’s a crime boss, and Doctor Destiny moves past his dreams of becoming The Flash and makes himself Superman instead. Though he gives himself all the powers of Supes, he’s still unable to outsmart Barry and Oliver. Mar Novu finds himself impressed with the heroes’ success, but does little to offer support. I mean, why would he? He caused the problem!
Doctor Destiny doesn’t bank on Barry and Oliver soliciting help from Cisco to collect Superman (much like Superman doesn’t expect Lois to go collect Brainiac 5 and Martian Manhunter to help in the final battle). While the boys recruit the Man of Steel, the Supergirl chapter of the crossover takes some time to show that sisterhood can’t be taken down by something as silly as a man with a book. Alex helps Kara escape the cortex, they find the book, and they all go about fixing their little destiny situation.
How do they decide to fix it? It couldn’t possibly be by revisiting one of the most absurd, infuriating and fundamentally terrible uses of power in the history of superhero films, could it? But it could! The Flash and Supergirl are going to run and fly really fast in opposite directions around the world to slow down time so Superman can stop Doctor Destiny. They do get a slight tip of the hat by acknowledging that this will kill the Speedster and the Girl of Steel, but the fact that we had to go back to that well is exhausting.
So, why don’t Barry and Kara die? Because Oliver made a deal. What that deal was is currently unclear, but the Green Arrow returns to confront Mar Novu while Barry and Kara are risking their lives. Oliver tells the god that he can’t have The Flash and Supergirl. If what Mar Novu says is true, and he genuinely wants the heroes to win, Barry and Kara must be the ones to survive. They are the ones who inspire hope, and who bring about change in their respective cities. Of course, Oliver does this too, but he’s not great at self worth just yet. Eventually Mar Novu agrees, but he notes that there must be balance. This implies that for his friends to live, Oliver just offered up his own life in return.
Here’s hoping that’s not the case. It’s obvious, it’s lazy, and Elseworlds was too good for it all to boil down to Oliver being so willing to sacrifice himself that he’s unable to see that it’s not just him making the sacrifice anymore. But, if Oliver didn’t offer up himself, what was it that he gave Mar Novu to convince him to save the two shining lights of DCTV?
We now know that when we return from hiatus in early February, it will be to Crisis on Infinite Earths (please hold your excited expletives until you reach the comments section). The implications there are literally limitless. You want the World’s Finest? You’ve got it! Here’s a couple episodes of Supergirl and Batwoman kicking ass and taking names. Brave and the Bold? All yours. Please god yes. Have you been hoping Black Lightning will come to play? Easy! All of those options are exciting, but they’re still not thinking big enough. By bringing on a full blown crisis event, DCTV has opened the doors to infinite possibilities. We could see more instances of past heroes not just playing the parents of the heroes of today, but donning their tights again ala John Wesley Shipp. Hell, we could finally see the Supernatural crossover we’ve all joked about for so long. Oh, and a lot of people you love are probably going to die? Minor details! Let's just focus on the possibilities for now.
Bringing about Crisis on Infinite Earths is a great way to distract from the fact that Supergirl is a guest star in her own offering to the crossover. Other than that, the only other real annoyance is that a Braniac 5 vs. A.M.A.Z.O. fight happened and they didn’t even have the decency to show it on screen. Elseworlds closes out nice and quiet like. Clark and Lois are going to Argo to get married and have a kiddo, and the Justice League all goes their separate ways. Kara gets a nice crack in about Oliver smiling, forcing him to admit he might like her and Barry just a little bit. The boys have a nice drink, and then that’s all she wrote for the hero portion of this story.
As for the villains, well, destiny’s not quite done with Deegan just yet. Psycho-Pirate’s mask might look a little silly, but he still remembers everything from each alteration in time. At least he will if they keep his powers the same as they were in the comics. Either way, he’s taken an interest in Doctor Destiny, and Batwoman doesn’t like the whispers she’s hearing from Arkham Asylum. Oliver also apparently already has her programmed in his phone?
We’ve got a couple of months before our heroes return from hiatus, but sleep easy knowing that, when we return, all of your DC comic book dreams could come true. You know what to do if you had thoughts on the crossover!