ELSEWORLDS is here! Review of Part 1

THE big event is finally here! ELSEWORLDS shakes up the Arrowverse, and if this first chapter is any indication we are in for a fantastic ride! This is an action-packed, high intensity, top speed (pardon the pun), and at times hilarious crossover, and it all starts HERE! The setup works exceptionally well, bringing together most of the major players seamlessly. Want to know more? Follow us after the jump!

SPOILERS AHEAD! You have been warned!

Note: This review is posting prior to ELSEWORLDS Part 1 being aired in the Pacific Time Zone USA. If you haven’t seen the show yet, STOP HERE and come back after you’ve watched the episode. You’ll be glad you did!

We start with the clip that ended FLASH last week, with the John Wesley Shipp Flash running from the Monitor on the now-doomed Earth 90. From there we go straight to Earth 1, where the Monitor meets Dr. John Deegan and hands him this amazing and powerful book. With that book, he can rewrite anything in the universe. As the Monitor says, “Use it wisely. The universe is in your hands.” So, what to do first?

We cut to the West-Allen apartment where Oliver wakes up to find that everyone thinks he’s Barry Allen. As the new Flash, Oliver has to stop a crime in progress at Ivo Labs. He stops the crime with speed force lightning…but with too much of it. The lightning bounces around and animates a robot in Ivo Labs…

Yes, we have A.M.A.Z.O. here! LOTS of trouble ahead for this episode!

After an awkward meeting with Team Flash, he decides that the best course is to meet “Oliver Queen” in Star City. Meanwhile, Barry finds himself training with Diggle. He realizes that he has now been recognized as Oliver Queen. He wants to get in contact with “Barry Allen”, but has to go with Diggle to a crime in progress first. Like Oliver, Barry isn’t used to his new gig. Just when everything is going south, Oliver arrives as the Flash and speeds both Diggle and Barry away.

Back at S.T.A.R., no one believes them. The team even conspires to knock them out and places them in the pipeline! They manage to escape using some of each other’s techniques and make a run for the extrapolator to go to Earth 38 and get Supergirl’s help. The thought is that this mind swap only affects Earth 1 – and they are right. Iris hands them the extrapolator as she starts to believe that Barry and Oliver might be telling the truth, and they head for…

SMALLVILLE!

Yes, we have now established that the Kent farm is on Earth 38! In case you need any further proof, just listen to the soundtrack as we appear at the farm. WOW!

Clark and Lois and Kara are all there. Kara talks with Clark about recent events on Supergirl, in which she had to leave the DEO. The President had demanded she tell her secret identity, and Clark agrees that she did the right thing by not complying.  Clark wants to tell Kara something, but is interrupted by Barry and Oliver. Kara does recognize them accurately, and introduces them to Lois and Clark.

The scenes here are fantastic. Barry finally has a comeuppance for an incident early in his training with Oliver, but that starts bickering between the two. It finally resolves when they come to a realization…that if they are stuck with each other’s abilities, they need to start acting more like each other. It plays into their motivations – Barry needs to be more serious, and Oliver needs to loosen up.

Just then Cisco appears.  A.M.A.Z.O. is tearing up Central City, and seems to be able to take on the powers of any meta it faces.  Clark and Kara accompany Cisco, Barry and Oliver back. This battle is on a grand scale – and it takes all that help to save the day. The kill shot is Barry’s, and he uses Oliver’s phrase, “You have failed this city” to make the shot. He is learning to act like Oliver, at least for now. 

Back at S.T.A.R., the team now accepts that Barry and Oliver have been switched.  They discuss more about this strange situation on Earth 1, with the red skies and strange lightning. Cisco has seen vibed visions of the Monitor, though he does not know that name yet. He lets Barry and Oliver in on the Vibe, and they see the moment the Monitor handed that book over to Dr. Deegan.  Somehow, Monitor can see them! He tells them that there is really nothing they can do to stop what’s coming.

When the Vibe session stops, Oliver uses his newfound speed to draw a picture of the scene they witnessed.  They realize where they need to go next…

That drawing included the Wayne tower!

In Gotham City, we see a brief glimpse of Batwoman on the top of a building…and that’s it for this chapter. Come back tomorrow night for Part 2!

NOTES:

  • There are SO much of the show’s details that are not in this review – this was fast paced and action packed throughout. I use my keyboard to take notes while watching every episode, and this is the first episode in five seasons of THE FLASH that I actually had trouble keeping up with the pace of the show while keyboarding. There was not a second where this show dragged on. Great writing and acting here!
  • There were a lot of great lines in this show. Some were Barry and Oliver using each other’s usual lines. Some came out of their confusion in realizing that there had been a switch. Some came of their natural friendly rivalry. And one line came from Sherloque…who handed Clark a check for his third wife who lives on Earth 38! Sherloque was “just a bit” behind in his alimony payments. Clark agrees to take the check back with him, and after Clark leaves Sherloque asks “Can I trust him?”
  • Using A.M.A.Z.O. was the perfect plot device to bring Supergirl and Superman to Earth 1. The fight required everyone’s help, and the way they resolved the battle made as much sense as comic book science can give. In other words, you could still suspend  your disbelief at the way they came together on Earth 1.
  • SMALLVILLE! Need I say more?
  • And I would be remiss if I didn’t officially recognize the Crisis on Infinite Earths here, red skies and all.  Yes, the red skies are coming years earlier than the future headline…but that could be Nora’s visits messing with the timeline, or there could even be a second Crisis in the future. After all, DC seems to have one of those every few years anyway.  
  • The thing about THIS crisis is that the Monitor doesn’t seem to be the good guy here. Is he more of an Anti-Monitor figure here? We’ll have to wait and see.
  • And, we get two great cameos. John Wesley Shipp in full 1990’s Flash regalia, and Ruby Rose as the new Batwoman looking like she jumped straight out of the pages of her own comic. Can’t wait to see more from both!

SUMMARY:

THIS is the way to start a crossover! Tons of action, a seamless way to bring everyone together, some exceptionally funny moments, HUGE nods to past DC shows, and a vision of things to come. This is a 10/10 for me. Of course, that just my opinion.  What do YOU think? Leave your comments below!

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2 thoughts on “ELSEWORLDS is here! Review of Part 1

  1. Rob

    Using the theme from Smallville made my brain first think that Earth 38 was the home of the Smallville universe, I had to make my brain make the switch to realise that would be a different Earth (if it existed in this universe). But still, hearing the song was pretty awesome.

    I also liked that they used the theme from the original 90s Flash while Shipp was running away on Earth 90.

    Reply
  2. golddragon71

    The 1990 Flash and theme are what I’ve secretly been drooling for ever since Barry’s appearance in Arrow was first announced.
    When John Wesley Shipp was confirmed for him to be a recurring character, while everyone else was screaming Jay Garrick, i always knew he couldn’t be a speedster right out of the box because it would overshadow Grant’s ability to be THE Flash of the new series. And sure enough, JWS did a fantastic job as Barry’s father and we still got an easter egg or two along the way. (watch the 1990 pilot and then Tricksters from season one of this series and see if you get my reference)
    When JWS went from Henry Allen to Jay Garrick and we started seeing him appear, I had hoped that we’d get the 1990 theme as an easter egg. However, All this time, I always wanted to see A Tale of Two Barrys.
    I’m looking forward to the next two parts. (I actually had to wait until 3:30 to watch this as I didn’t have my DVR set to record Supergirl’s time-slot)

    Reply

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