Elseworlds review: The Arrowverse is at its best during the crossover


Elseworlds is the Arrowverse’s best crossover yet.

Rather than try to top last year’s four-night crossover, the Arrowverse decided to eliminate Legends of Tomorrow to focus on their version of the DC Trinity. However, Elseworlds actually gave fans the Arrowverse’s version of a Justice League team-up. All three parts were incredibly fun to watch, and it also set up an exciting new Batwoman show as well as next year’s event.

The Flash kicked off Part 1 with the typical mix of charm and laughter. Switching Barry and Oliver allowed Grant Gustin and Stephen Amell to show off their acting ability by embracing different characterizations. Amell, who largely gets to play the serious Oliver Queen, is especially delightful with his various comedic moments. Fans will also get a big laugh regarding Oliver finally forcing Barry to answer one of the most asked questions since season one: where the toilets are in the metahuman jail cells.

Barry also gets to unwind a little bit as he gleefully embraces his newfound talents. Upon learning his best friend woke up in bed with his wife, he’s ready to sing a different tune. Things only get worse for him when his team betrays the two heroes and his wife claims “he’s not her type”. Luckily, he’s able to convince Iris to let them go after he calls her his lightning rod, something he mentioned earlier to Oliver always helps get her on his side.

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In one of the most memorable moments of Elseworlds, fans are treated to a throwback with the Smallville theme song playing over Kent Farm (the same one from the show). This is the kind of fan service we can get on board with, and the Arrowverse’s ability to incorporate elements from previous DC Comics shows has always been a treat. We don’t get to spend a whole lot of time at the farm, but it does serve its purpose. Barry and Oliver are looking for Kara, and end up meeting Clark and Lois as well.

Despite some of the naysayers, Tyler Hoechlin’s Superman is a delight to have back onscreen. Newcomer, Elizabeth Tulloch, is a bit of a hit-or-miss as Lois Lane. Tulloch’s enthusiasm at playing the iconic character certainly makes her likable, but some of her scenes felt a little off. It could just be the writing, or that Erica Durance’s take on the character has left such a lasting impression on us. Nevertheless, we look forward to seeing what she will do as Lois Lane if the character does return to the Arrowverse.

She stays home for the big fight scene in Part 1, which allows Superman, Supergirl, Green Arrow, and Flash to team up against a power absorbing android. The special effects for the robot are okay, and it helps that the fight is at night. It’s still a good time, and Barry does get to do his best Oliver Queen impersonation before firing his arrow, but we still preferred Kara’s attempt from earlier.

Part 2 sees the heroes head to Gotham City where fans are treated to their first look at Ruby Rose as Kate Kane. There was a lot of controversy surrounding Rose’s casting, but she’s fantastic in this episode. There are some small nitpicky problems, like Kane’s notorious red hair simply being a wig rather than having Rose dye her hair. Others have taken issue with her tattoos, which we actually think are fine if they choose to show a flashback of how she actually got them. She isn’t in it a lot, but Rose makes the most of her scenes and shows an easy chemistry with her other Arrowverse heroes.

In Gotham, we learn Batman is only a myth now since he abandoned the city a few years back. This leaves the city crime-ridden and the perfect place for Dr. John Deegan to rewrite history at will. Unlike the previous crossover installments, this middle episode doesn’t feel like a time-waster until the finale. The team learns of Deegan and the Monitor as well as introduces a new hero.

Their win at Arkham Asylum is short-lived since the Monitor returns the book to Deegan, who once again rewrites history. This takes us to Part 3, where the heroes face their biggest obstacle. Barry and Oliver are now the Trigger Twins, a pair of nefarious outlaws clad in leather jackets and bandanas. It’s a hilarious look for the two of them, and honestly, we would be interested in seeing an episode with these two attempting to be criminals. Poor Barry doesn’t even have the stomach for doing anything evil.

Since this is the Supergirl episode of Elseworlds, we get to see a typical Kara/Alex heart-to-heart. Their relationship is the heart and soul of Supergirl and we wouldn’t have Kara without it. Unfortunately, this version of Alex isn’t actually her sister but an employee of Deegan’s evil Superman. Through persistence and her typical Kara empathy, she’s able to reach out to this version of Alex by describing her own sister. There’s a lot to like in this scene: Melissa Benoist knocks it out of the park, and it serves as a reminder of how great Alex’s story has been on Supergirl.

A powerless Barry and Oliver aren’t naive enough to think they can beat dark Superman on their own so they get their greatest weapon: the real Clark Kent. Fearing for his cousin’s safety, Lois and Clark immediately spring into action. Did anyone ever think we’d get a Superman versus Superman fight scene on The CW? The flying fight scenes could use some work but that didn’t stop us from appreciating it nonetheless.

But let’s talk about that final fight from Elseworlds! Martian Manhunter, Superman, Supergirl, The Flash, Arrow, and Brainiac 5 all team up to give us a nod to the Justice League. Honestly, if Batman and Wonder Woman had been there DC Comics would have collectively lost their minds. It’s such a small moment, but it’s scenes like this that make us love the Arrowverse despite its flaws.

Next. Elseworlds: Crossover will have long-term consequences in the Arrowverse. dark

However, most fans will be still processing the actual ending of Elseworlds. The final teaser promises Crisis on Infinite Earths, one of the most prominent arcs in DC Comics history. But what has been left unresolved is what Oliver gave up to save Barry and Kara. Did he offer himself in exchange or simply postpone their deaths until the next crossover? Only time will tell.

Our biggest complaint about this year’s crossover is that they could’ve used an extra episode. The Flash team by far got the most screen time for the supporting cast while they could barely fit Supergirl‘s in at all. However, we will acknowledge how hard it can be to integrate every character and sometimes that’s just how things will be. Hopefully, the Luthors are able to make an appearance somehow next year.

What did you think of Elseworlds? Are you excited for Crisis? Be sure to tell us in the comments below!