Title: Supergirl: “Crisis on Infinite Earths Part 1” Review
Release Date: December 8th, 2019
Network: The CW
Genre: Superhero, Drama, Action
(This review will contain spoilers for the Crisis on Infinite Earths Arrowverse crossover)
Crisis on Infinite Earths has been in the making for over five years. What started out as a funny little nod on the pilot of The Flash, a show that was born from Arrow season 2, has now grown to be the biggest crossover in this television universe’s history. A lot of people, myself included, expected this first episode to ease us into the story and characters. That was a mistake.
What a cliffhanger! I don’t buy that it will stick but Oliver Queen’s death this quickly in Crisis was shocking, emotional, and so confusing (in the best way imaginable). However, at the same time, you can see the writing on the wall. Even though this episode was centered around Supergirl, Superman, and the preservation of Earth-38, Oliver’s inevitable sacrifice was patiently being foreshadowed in the background. It’s just that we as the audience didn’t necessarily want, or believe, it would happen so soon. But, if you looked for the clues, they were there.
Oliver constantly had these badass moments throughout the episode, whether that be calling out The Monitor for a face-to-face or his huge fight at the end of the episode. Then there was the passing of the torch to his daughter Mia. Last week on Arrow, Oliver pretty much confirmed that Mia is the new Green Arrow and in this episode, he made it official by giving her a Green Arrow suit. It was a really nice moment for both characters and even if you weren’t a fan of Mia, I’m guessing you still couldn’t help but smile during that suit reveal.
Along with possibly being one of the best scenes in Arrowverse history, the stunning sacrifice was totally true to Oliver’s character. He wasn’t going to let those innocent people die, even if there was a bigger picture in play. Oliver has changed as a character and that scene was the best representation of that change. Season 1 Oliver, as heroic as he was at times, would have probably made the hard decision and left with The Monitor. To me, it showed growth for a character who started this whole Arrowverse and it was a fitting end for him. Saving a few billion people in a remarkably cool way. He also temporarily took a cosmic god out of commission, which is another arrow in Oliver’s quiver of awesome moments throughout the years (that sounded a lot weirder than I hoped).
Now, to the difficult part. I don’t believe this death will stick. Not only because Oliver Queen was the catalyst for the Arrowverse and Crisis but also because of what The Monitor said. He wasn’t supposed to die like that. On top of those words, this is a Supergirl episode. It’s weird to permanently kill off Earth-1 Oliver Queen, who is essentially the main character of this whole thing, here instead of part 5 or even his own show (which will be part 4). It serves fine as an amazing cliffhanger, of course, but if we don’t get more resolution with the Earth-1 character I can see many people feeling unsatisfied with how Crisis turns out. We still have 4 more episodes to go and surely there will be some time-travel/multiverse shenanigans along the way. One thing is for sure. Stephen Amell is not done with this crossover.
Regardless if Oliver’s death will stick (it most likely won’t), there was a passing of the torch with the Green Arrow mantle and the head of the Arrowverse hierarchy in this episode. His touching final goodbye to Sara, Kara, and Barry was that moment. Stephen Amell absolutely crushed it in that death scene, even if it was a tad too short.
Trying to get away from the mind-bending cliffhanger, Crisis had a lot to juggle. Much like something out of the MCU’s Infinity War, the Arrowverse has amassed a large roster of characters that will take part in this crossover. How they handle these characters and how much screentime each one gets is immensely important. So far, Crisis on Infinite Earths has managed its time well. As someone who doesn’t watch Supergirl, I never felt left out or bored. The side-arcs were easy to follow and I actually found Brainiac-5 to be one of the stand-outs of the episode (he had a few hilarious one-liners, especially when he was talking about Batwoman and rabbits). I liked the Lena Luthor and Alex dynamic. You can say the same for the conversations between Clark and Kara.
Cameos are another tricky subject. The intro of this episode featured a ton of these smile-inducing cameos including a return to the Michael Keaton Batman universe, a look at how the Titans are doing after that horrendous season 2 finale, and Burt Ward’s brief return to DC television after portraying Dick Grayson/Robin in the old Batman series. We also got our first look into Pariah, formerly known as Nash Wells. It seems that those theories about him unleashing the Anti-Monitor were right so we can all just blame this guy for everything that happened here.
I hope that Clark and Kara get more to do this time around. I’m not too worried about Kara as she’s always been an integral part of these crossovers. But, I’m a huge fan of Tyler Hoechlin’s Superman. With a new CW series in the works involving the overpowered boy scout, you would figure he would get his own character arc in Crisis.
Before we wrap up, that intense Argo City scene was brilliant, serving as an excellent nod to the fall of Krypton and fan-service to those familiar with the character.
And for those who say something along the lines of “Well, this episode just had a lot of fan-service.”. Okay, fan-service is used as a negative term these days and I’m not totally sure why. A lot of people have watched these shows for years. Seeing these tear-jerking goodbyes, comic nods, and callbacks to other comic stories isn’t a bad thing just because it is “fan-service”. Mini-rant over. Let’s get to the verdict so I can continue to freak out over Oliver possibly being dead for good.
Verdict: Crisis on Infinite Earths began with a bang. The powers-that-be behind the crossover promised an event that people wouldn’t forget where worlds and beloved characters would die. That’s exactly what happened. If the rest of these episodes are just half as good as this introduction, Crisis on Infinite Earths will be a massive success for the Arrowverse.
- A fantastic introduction into what Crisis is about and the stakes
- That cliffhanger
- Stephen Amell's performance
- Oliver's awesome fight at the end of the episode
- Seeing all of these characters interact with each other
- The cameos were done well and didn't detract from the episode at large
- Fan-service is not a bad thing
- Still no Anti-Monitor
- Oliver's final scene in the episode was too short
- I really was not prepared for that cliffhanger so I guess the only other "con" I have here is that we have to wait until tomorrow night to see it