Here’s everything we know so far about the epic upcoming crossover ‘Crisis on Infinite Earths’ that involves all of the Arrow-verse series on the CW…
‘Crisis on Infinite Earths’ remains one of the most beloved and critically acclaimed comic book crossovers of all time and now the CW will tackle that storyline in between multiple series including ‘Arrow’, ‘The Flash’, ‘Supergirl’, ‘Batwoman’ and ‘Legends of Tomorrow’.
The set up for the crossover event series began with last year’s ‘Elseworlds’ when the Monitor (LaMonica Garrett) showed up and helped create chaos across the Arrow-verse but in reality he was preparing the heroes for a far greater threat looming in the shadows. The Monitor’s counterpart, the Anti-Monitor set his sights on the multi-verse and he’s coming for everybody this season.
So as we prepare for this epic showdown that will kick off in December with three episodes before the crossover plays out with the final two episodes in January, let’s look at what we know about the ‘Crisis on Infinite Earths’ story and the news that’s already been revealed so far.
Comic Book Versus Television
First off let’s talk about the original ‘Crisis on Infinite Earths’ story from the comic books and how that will compare with what’s being planned for the Arrow-verse crossover. In the comics, the Anti-Monitor wants to collapse the multiverse by destroying various worlds until he’s left as the master over all reality. The Monitor recruits heroes from the various Earths across the multiverse to stop him while trying to prevent the complete destruction of these various worlds across the multi-verse. In the end, the Anti-Monitor is defeated but not before the entire multiverse collapses down to one reality with several heroes — including the Flash and Supergirl — sacrificing themselves to stop the worlds from being demolished.
Now the television version of ‘Crisis on Infinite Earths’ won’t be exactly the same for obvious reasons but many of the major tenets will remain similar as confirmed by executive producer Marc Guggenheim at San Diego Comic Con.
“We’re going to begin the way ‘Crisis on Infinite Earths’ the comic begins, which is the destruction of various parallel universes,” Guggenheim said. “And the goal is for us to adapt key moments from the comic, those seminal moments.”
When the Arrow-verse first launched, only ‘Arrow’ and ‘The Flash’ existed but over time more shows were started including ‘Supergirl’. It was later explained that ‘Supergirl’ took place in another world in the multiverse, which obviously keeps that show separate from all of the other CW series except in these instances where the crossover events happen.
It’s entirely possible that a big part of the ‘Crisis on Infinite Earths’ story will be to collapse the multiverse down to one, which would mean all of the shows would then exist in the same reality. While nothing has been confirmed for certain, it would almost seem like that’s a guarantee going forward once this event series concludes.
Playing the Part
The ‘Crisis on Infinite Earths’ crossover will also feature numerous returning characters, new characters and past faces returning in the same or even different roles in some cases.
One of the biggest announcements coming out of San Diego Comic Con is that Brandon Routh would reprise his role as Superman after playing the character in the 2006 film ‘Superman Returns’. Routh currently stars on ‘Legends of Tomorrow’ as Ray Palmer/the Atom but he will put back on the cape to portray a version of Superman from a different part of the multiverse in this crossover.
Tyler Hoechlin will also return to play the Superman who has previously appeared on ‘Supergirl’ as well as past crossover event series.
Elizabeth Tulloch will also make her return as Lois Lane after playing that character last year and Jon Cryer will also reprise his role as Lex Luthor after a commanding performance last season on ‘Supergirl’. In the original ‘Crisis on Infinite Earths’ comic book, various versions of Lex Luthor play crucial roles in the story — including one who is a hero so it will be interesting to see how many versions Cryer will be playing during the crossover event series.
Tom Cavanagh from ‘The Flash’, who has played various versions of Harrison Wells across the multiverse will take on a new role this season as Pariah, the scientist who inadvertently summons the Anti-Monitor and who is then forced to watch as he destroys countless worlds, snuffing out millions of innocent people in the process. Pariah is a crucial role in the comics and now Cavanagh will take up that character for the upcoming ‘Crisis on Infinite Earths’ crossover.
Over on ‘Arrow’, Colin Donnell will return as Tommy Merlyn while Josh Segarra is slated to come back as Prometheus. Charlie Barnett will also join the cast to play an adult John Diggle Jr. from the future.
Perhaps the biggest surprise casting was the announcement that Burt Ward — who played Robin in the original ‘Batman’ television series from the 1960’s — would be making an appearance during this crossover. It’s not been announced who Ward will be playing but it would almost seem crazy if he’s not portraying an older, wiser Dick Grayson as an homage to that same character he played more than 40 years ago.
Oh and one final thing — as previously mentioned LaMonica Garrett will be playing both the Monitor and his counterpart the Anti-Monitor and we got a glimpse of what he’ll look like during the ‘Crisis on Infinite Earths’ crossover.
— Marc Guggenheim (@mguggenheim) July 21, 2019
How Will the Crisis Affect the Various Shows?
During the end of the ‘Elseworlds’ crossover, the Monitor struck a deal with Oliver Queen that he would spare his friends in exchange for a promise that he would do whatever commanded of him to help stop the upcoming crisis. Oliver agreed but didn’t tell anybody about his ominous promise to the Monitor.
In the season 7 finale of ‘Arrow’, Oliver is called upon just after retiring to raise his daughter alongside his wife and the Monitor whisked him away while telling him that he would die in this upcoming crisis.
This is the final season of ‘Arrow’ so all bets are off when it comes to the carnage that could strike this series during ‘Crisis on Infinite Earths’. It seems almost impossible that Oliver would survive this event series crossover but stranger things have happened in the past. More likely, Oliver will be one of the casualties, which would then explain the end of ‘Arrow’.
Over on ‘The Flash’, things are just as dark and dangerous for Barry Allen because that series has been teasing the upcoming crisis ever since the debut episode several years back. In that debut episode, a newspaper clip from the future is shown with a headline that says the Flash has gone missing and the year was 2024. At the end of ‘The Flash’ season 5, the newspaper headline stayed the same but the date changed to 2019 after Barry’s daughter from the future rewrote the past, which obviously bumped up the crisis that is about to land on Earth.
In ‘The Flash’ season 6 premiere, Barry Allen will also learn of his future regarding the upcoming battle for the multiverse.
“The Monitor shows up at the end of our first episode and says the universe is in danger and says the only way to save it is for Barry Allen to sacrifice himself,” actor Grant Gustin revealed during ‘The Flash’ panel at San Diego Comic Con.
‘The Flash’ will essentially be split into two seasons as well with the first half focusing on Barry’s newest villain named Bloodwork, who will be played by ‘Heroes’ alum Sendhil Ramamurthy. Bloodwork wants to find a way to permanently cheat death and he will go up against Team Flash during the first half of the season. The second half of ‘The Flash’ will then dive into the aftermath of ‘Crisis on Infinite Earths’, which will obviously change a lot for the team going forward.
Over on ‘Supergirl’, the girl of steel eventually defeated Lex Luthor and he is later killed by his sister Lena. At the end of the season, the Monitor appears and does something to Lex’s body, which would seem to indicate that he will be brought back to life because he will play a role in the upcoming crisis. The Monitor also summons Malefic — J’onn J’onzz’ twin brother from Mars — and he will be an obstacle in the way to get Supergirl and her team ready for the battle ahead.
‘Legends of Tomorrow’ and ‘Batwoman’ will also be featured during the ‘Crisis on Infinite Earths’ story but details about their involvement hasn’t been revealed just yet. ‘Batwoman’ is just getting ready to debut in the fall but we do know the show will be one of the five parts of the crossover.
‘Crisis on Infinite Earths’ will kick off with a three night series event this December before the story concludes in January with the final two episodes on the CW.