written by Kate Spencer
SPOILER WARNINGS ARE IN EFFECT
After a week off for American Thanksgiving, I’m back to review the final act of a four part crossover.
So what happened on the other shows? On Supergirl, Kara Danvers was going about her usual weekly routine of fighting cyborgs and evil conspiracies when Barry Allen and Cisco Ramon showed up to ask for her help. Over on The Flash, aliens known as the Dominators invaded Earth while Barry was still dealing with fallout from his time travel antics which created an alternate timeline called “Flashpoint.” He recruited Team Arrow, Kara, and the Legends to fight the alien menace at his side, but several of them were brainwashed, freed from brainwashing, then kidnapped. On Arrow, Oliver Queen and friends were trapped aboard the Dominator mothership, where they were put in a simulated ideal world. When faced with a world where his friends and loved ones are alive and happy, Oliver selflessly rejects the fantasy to go back to the harsh hardships of reality.
Oh, and the Dominator mothership is heading for Earth with a weapon that’s nearing completion.
Meanwhile, at the Hall of Justice, the team speculates that the purpose of kidnapping Ray, Oliver, Thea, Sara, and Diggle was to probe their minds for intel regarding metahumans and potential weaknesses. Oliver suggests doing the same thing to the Dominators, so Nate suggests the time of an earlier invasion – Redmond, Oregon in 1951. Not ones to pass up the opportunity for time travel, Cisco and Felicity go along with Nate, Amaya, and Mick to kidnap a Dominator. The heroes have received a call from the new President of the United States (the old one got disintegrated in The Flash) and she wants to meet with them. Kara wants to go too, but Oliver “Green Man-Pain” Queen sidelines her because she’s an unknown quantity and after his latest experience with aliens, he needs something normal. Ollie is kind of a dickbag.
Stein and Caitlin are working on how to combat the Dominators and Caitlin has brought along help – Stein’s daughter, Lily, who has a Ph.D in nanotechnology. But Stein doesn’t have a daughter! Well, he didn’t, but now he does. The memory flashes Stein experienced in the previous episode were of Lily. The talk he gave his younger self about showing his wife more affection led to a product of affection. Stein is awkward around her because his memories of her haven’t quite filled in yet.
The Waverider arrives in 1951. Cisco and Felicity are told to stay behind on the ship. Felicity, who is suffering from linguistic disorder (a side effect of time travel) shouts “Darmok and Jalad at Tanagra!” and I lose my shit. Nate takes this to mean “Have fun storming the castle!” which Cisco takes offense to. Only one lovable dork makes pop culture references around these parts! Felicity thinks Cisco only came along to avoid Barry, given that Barry’s time travel meddling may have led to a change in the timeline that caused Cisco’s brother to be killed in a car crash. Cisco blames Barry for destroying his family while selfishly trying to save his. Pretty harsh, but Cisco kind of has a point. Barry fucked up.
Nate, Amaya, and Mick go out searching for the army and somehow completely miss the huge Dominator ship in the clearing to their right until the camera pans over to reveal it. To be fair, Nate’s helmet doesn’t look like it provides the best peripheral vision. After the aliens defeat the army, they start abducting them. Our heroes eye a Dominator who is further away from the group and, after Mick cooks it a little, Nate punches it out cold. Before they can make off with the alien, the Men In Black show up and sleep dart them all unconscious. Oh, so this is why Nate isn’t invulnerable by default. Felicity and Cisco see this and launch a rescue mission using some weapons they find on the Waverider.
Stein and Lily continue awkwardly working on the tech to disable the Dominators. Lily reminisces about Stein helping her with her seventh-grade science project. Stein, of course, doesn’t remember this and confesses to Caitlin that he changed his own timeline. He won’t acknowledge that Lily exists, calling her an aberration which he intends to fix as soon as the Dominators are dealt with. WTF, Martin?!
Nate, Amaya, and Mick are in a government facility where they discover that whatever they were tranquilized with is interfering with their powers. Wait, was Amaya shot in the magic necklace? Is her totem asleep? Ugh, fine. Plot convenience, whatever. The restrained Dominator is alive and awake, so they use this opportunity to interrogate it. It tells our heroes that the Dominators attacked because of the recent emergence of metahumans – which, being 1951, Amaya guesses means the JSA. The Dominators are here to determine if Earth is a threat. The G-Men come into the room with weapons drawn and take the Dominator away for torture.
Cisco and Felicity finally save Amaya, Nate, and Mick, but as they’re leaving, they hear the Dominator’s cries of pain from the torture room. Nate and Cisco don’t want to leave the Dominator behind to be killed by the G-Men, seeing it as an opportunity to show the Dominators they can be better than that. Cisco and Felicity return to the Waverider to repair the Dominator ship that Oliver and Company (Cisco’s pun, not mine) used to escape the mothership on Arrow. After the Dominator is rescued, it flies off in the ship…minus a communicator which Cisco swiped while he was repairing it.
Sara, Barry, Oliver, and Ray are at an airfield to meet the President. Barry asks Oliver what he said to Kara before they left because she seemed angry, and he didn’t think she could get angry. That’s Oliver’s superpower, Barry – he can piss anyone off. Scary black SUVs then surround our heroes, so you know it’s the government. They pull weapons and an elderly government agent threatens to shoot them. A scene transition reveals that the Man In Black from 1951 who captured that team is the same old government agent guy accosting the heroes at the airfield in 2016. (Let’s call him Agent Smith for brevity’s sake.) Smith’s goons are prepared to shoot to kill. Golly, if only there were superheroes here. Maybe one of them who could do some sort of X-Men: Days Of Future Past Quicksilver “Time In A Bottle” scene and–okay, there he goes. Thank you, Barry.
Smith (who knows Barry’s secret identity) tells them the Dominators are threatened by metahumans and says he’s afraid of them, too. Their visit in 1951 was just recon, but due to Barry’s time-traveling fuckups, they’ve come back to nip the threat in the bud. Smith has worked out a deal with them: if Barry surrenders himself to them, the Dominators will leave Earth alone.
When the Waverider arrives back in 2016, the communicator Cisco nabbed lights up and the Dominator they rescued in 1951 tells them the same thing – he’ll spare the planet in exchange for Barry. He adds that the Dominator weapon will eliminate all metahumans if Barry doesn’t turn himself in. Okay, wait. All metahumans? Because not all powered individuals got their abilities from the particle accelerator explosion. Some enhance themselves with tech (like in Ray’s case), others (like Nate) got their powers from drugs, and then there’s magic (like Amaya). Kara isn’t a meta or a human, but they still see her as a threat, right? Also, we know at least some of the JSA were considered powered metahumans long before the particle accelerator activated. So how exactly does this weapon target anyone?
At the Hall of Justice (I know they haven’t called it that yet, but come on), the heroes discuss the new information. Cisco says the projected non-meta casualties of the bomb are around two million…okay, the Dominators don’t have an anti-meta bomb, they just have a bomb and they’re going to drop it on the biggest cluster of metas, right? Cisco tries to call the Dominator back, but it’s not answering, so he and Nate vibe up to the ship. Oh, I should explain. See, Cisco can do this thing where he can touch an object and either have a vision of a current, future, or past event, or project himself to the owner of said object and if this is new information to you, why aren’t you watching The Flash?? Anywho, the Dominator says powered individuals are a threat on countless worlds, including their own. They know some of them fight to protect people, but not everyone does and there’s always the threat of horrible people getting power. Yeah, we call those elections on this planet.*
Cisco realizes their attempt to kidnap a Dominator actually led to history being altered and now that same Dominator is back to kill them. Well no, they came back because of Flashpoint, but yeah, I guess I can see the logic in there somewhere. They did alter events. Cisco realizes they fucked up the same way Barry did, not thinking about what consequences there could be to their time travel. Hey, if it gets those two to be friends again, I don’t care if the logic is shaky.
Lily gets frustrated with Stein keeping her at arm’s length and is about to leave, but Stein stops her. He apologizes, blaming the way his life has gotten more complicated. This activates the “unrelated conversation which somehow sparks an idea to fix a bigger problem” trope and the two talk science and finish each other’s sentences. Stein starts to look at Lily with pride but gets a text – Barry is about to do something stupid.
Do a shot.
Barry is willing to sacrifice himself to save the planet, but Oliver won’t let him. “No offense, Oliver,” Barry says, “but you and what army?” Cue the Big Damn Heroes pose! Even Mick isn’t willing to let Barry turn himself over for the team. Cisco tells Barry that he’s not sacrificing himself, even if that’s what a hero would do. Because Barry isn’t a hero to Cisco, he’s his friend. Awwwwwww. Now hug! Oh wait, now Jax and Sara deliver news that the ship over Central City is opening up. Uh-oh, is Kiersten Warren about to take another space laser to the face?
Stein provides the team with devices which, when placed on the Dominators, will cause them excruciating pain. Meanwhile, one of the Dominator ships drops the anti-meta bomb….look, it’s just a bomb, okay? Sara and Cisco fly the Waverider to intercept the bomb while the others attack the Dominators…on the roof of a parking garage? I don’t care – this is going to be a cool super-battle and that’s all that matters. In this corner, weighing in at a combined weight of probably a lot, we have Green Arrow, the Flash, Supergirl, Vixen, Firestorm, Spartan, Steel, the Atom, and Heat Wave. In the other corner, ALIENS! And right here, a squealing fangirl who’s been reading comic books for decades about to make that shot of all of the heroes together her desktop wallpaper for the next century.
I can’t begin to describe this action, just know it’s really freaking cool…well, until Ray says “see you later, Dominator” and then I want to slap him. Kara flies overhead, heat-visioning everything because she didn’t go to the Arrow School Of Close-Quarters Combat For Heroes With Ranged Abilities. Amaya stampedes with an elephant spirit, Diggle uses a gun, Nate punches, Mick and Firestorm sling fire, Ray flies and shoots lasers, Oliver fires arrows, and Barry plants Stein’s devices on all the Dominators at super-speed. Squeeeeee! Sorry, this is superhero crack for me. But there are Dominators all over the world! What do?
Felicity: “This looks like a job for Supergirl.”
Barry’s offended. I’m giggling.
The two plant devices on every Dominator in the world at super-speed and, once Felicity activates them, the gadgets neutralize all of the Dominators at the same time. The Waverider catches the bomb in a tractor beam, but they can’t hold it for long, so Firestorm lands on it and transmutes it into harmless water. The day is saved and the heroes are honored by the new President, who both Mick and Sara agree is hot.
The heroes celebrate at an after-party where Ray observes that Kara looks a lot like his cousin. I GEDDIT! Oliver apologizes to Kara and says that Earth could really use a Supergirl. She says her Earth could really use an Oliver Queen. Awww…NOW CRISIS-MERGE! What, you thought I was going to say “kiss”? Eww, no. Kara and Barry even manage to get Oliver in a group hug. Cisco presents Kara with a device that will not only let her call Earth-1 if she ever needs help, but also allow her to travel back and forth between Earth-1 and Earth-38. Yay! More crossovers!
Agent Smith – wait, his name really is Agent Smith? Noted. Anyway, Smith tries to join the party (or possibly cover things up), but Kara informs him she had a lovely conversation with the President about starting Earth-1’s own Department of Extranormal Operations and reassigning Smith to Antarctica. Damn! Maybe–
Nate: “Maybe next time you’ll be a little nicer to strange visitors from another planet.”
Why do I even make the jokes? They do it for me.
Kara returns to Earth-38 and everyone parts ways. Diggle forgives Barry for erasing baby Sara from existence. Oh yeah, I didn’t mention that. See, not content with letting the Arrow writers outdo him, Barry’s Flashpoint fix eliminated a female character from Arrow before she was even out of diapers. John Diggle’s daughter was replaced with a son, John Junior…huh, why does that name sound familiar? The episode ends with Barry and Oliver having a drink and toasting to their less-than-normal lives.
Oh boy, was that fun. All right, this one is going long so I’ll try to be brief. I loved this crossover. The Flash and Legends episodes really shone, but that didn’t make the other parts bad, just different. Arrow focused more on the core cast of that show and the whole simulation thing did sort of drag things to a halt, but it also progressed the story a little. I know some couldn’t understand why the Supergirl episode was even considered part of the crossover when it was more along the lines of a prelude, but I kind of understand why they structured it that way. Each part showcased the respective characters of the shows and touched on their individual plots. Part of a crossover is to get people who only watch one or two of the shows to watch the others. In Supergirl‘s case, there really wasn’t a way to bring the Dominators to that Earth as a threat, and immediately taking Kara to Earth-1 at the start of the episode would have removed her from her cast and storylines. It wouldn’t have been a Supergirl episode at that point.
I’m glad the crossover wrapped up some dangling threads across shows, like Barry’s Flashpoint mistakes alienating him from friends, Stein discovering his daughter and deciding in the end to hide her from the rest of the team to save her from being “corrected”, and Future Barry’s message. I still don’t think any of those are completely wrapped up, but there’s closure for now, and I’m glad they were included in such a big event. Though I feel like maybe the Legends forgot something…maybe forgot to ask Barry about something? It’s slipped my mind; I’ll probably think of it later.
Next episode: Al Capone and the Reverse-Fla–ohshitnowIrememberwhatitwas.
Legends Of Tomorrow airs Thursdays on the CW at 8 ET/7 CT. Kate can be reached on Twitter @WearyKatie.
Like our content? Please consider supporting us on Patreon!