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TV REVIEWS: FTN Reviews Crisis On Infinite Earths Part 1

December 9th, 2019 by Todd Black Comments

So…that happened, and oh MAN DID THAT HAPPEN!! For years now, Crisis on Infinite Earths has been built up. From small crossovers, to universe jumping adventures, and then the big tease last year with The Monitor and the Psycho-Pirate, a Crisis was coming…and now, the Crisis is here…and it’s already claimed many victims.

The structure of Crisis on Infinite Earth was one that had many people curious. With 5 episodes, three this week and 2 in January, how was everything going to go? How were they going to roll things out? How much would we learn in the first episode and such? Well, after a brief intro to set the scene, they put their foot on the accelerator and didn’t let off, and I still think they haven’t let off yet.

For those who don’t know, there is a force known as the Anti-Monitor, and he has unleashed an anti-matter wave that’ll rip through the entire multiverse if it’s not stopped. The Monitor has been building a team of heroes and allies to bring this madness to an end, and of course, the teams from Arrow, Flash, Legends of Tomorrow,Batwoman and Supergirl (with Black Lightning eventually) are his all-stars. BUT…that doesn’t mean things are going smoothly and according to plan.

“Part 1” focuses on the immediate threat of the Anti-Matter wave, with it destroying Argo City (current home of Alara as well as Earth-38’s Lois and Clark) mere minutes into the episode. While Superman and Lois are fine (as we could guess from the trailer), the universe most definitely is not.

The Monitor had a last ditch effort ready to stop the wave, but the Anti-Monitor sent in an army to disrupt his plans and kill the Earth. This meant we got to see a lot of our heroes in action fighting a shadow army. One that took many twists and turns throughout.

It’s always a thrill to see the Arrowverse “Justice League” suit up and fight together, and this was no different, and they got to have some fun moments like with Kate Kane’s reveal of her identity (“yeah, that makes a lot of sense”), Oliver getting to see Sara again, and then Atom powering up her Batarang, as well as being on the “same language” as Brainiac-5. And you often worry if characters will get buried here.

Sure enough, a few were left with more scenes to be had (but again, it’s only the first hour), but they made it work. Such as using Sara, Lois and Brainy to go to another Earth to save Jonathan Kent, and finding themselves in Star City 2046. Rewriting canon a little bit to show that the Legends in Season 1 went to an alternate Earth and not there own (which helps clear up things for Green Arrow and the Canaries”.

And even with the limited time, as noted above, there were plenty of great moments. But few of them topped the scenes at the beginning of the episode, and the last one.

First off, we had some of coolest cameos ever, I’m calling it. From Robert Wuhl reprising his role from the original Batman movie (complete with score if you listened closely), Alan Ritchson and Curran Walters from Titans (the DC Universe series) getting briefly shown off to show they’re in the multiverse, and of course, Burt Ward, the original live-action TV Robin doing his classic line…while walking Ace the Bat-Hound!

And then, in the end, Oliver Queen died…for real. Like he’s really dead…for now anyway. Whether the death sticks is up for debate, but right now, it feels real, and the weight of that death makes this series crossover feel more important. Sure, we KNEW he was going to die. But this was different. This wasn’t an Iron Man death from Endgame where Tony knew that his death would allow everyone to be saved. Oliver died to save a billion lies on Kara’s world…and yet the danger isn’t over, it’s just beginning. That makes this more impactful, because now all the other heroes have to save the multiverse…while mourning the death of Oliver.

Can you imagine where we’ll be four episodes from now?

If I was to nitpick, the only thing that was bad about “Part 1” is that they really leaned heavily into the Supergirl world (as they should, just hold on) and tried to compound the storylines of characters like Lena, Kara, Alex, J’onn and more. If you don’t watch Supergirl (which I haven’t since Season 2), you’re going to feel a little lost. But overall, it works, and some scenes, like the great Supergirl/Superman scene in the DEO, really prove why these series work as well as they do.

In the end, Crisis on Infinite Earths Part 1 was a near-masterpiece of an episode, and this is just the beginning of the madness and heroic efforts that the crossover is going to bring us. What comes next? More cameos, more action, more insanity…and no doubt more twists to come.

4.5 out of 5 nerds

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Todd Black is reader of comics, a watch of TV (a LOT of TV), and a writer of many different mediums. He's written teleplays, fan-fictions, and currently writes a comic book called Guardians (guardians-comic.com). He dreams of working at Nintendo, writing a SHAZAM! TV series, and working on Guardians for a very long time!