DC/CW’s “Crisis on Earth-X” Part 1 & 2 Review
This year it seems like they are taking a different approach to adding more consistency and substance to the new crossover event. What disappointed me last year was that the crossover only really existed in two of the four shows. Supergirl barely touched on the events of that crossover till the very end of the episode. A bad move when Supergirl is always the start of the crossover, and you don’t hype people up to give them what was practically just another Supergirl episode for the most part. Hopefully it seems they learned from that mistake since both Supergirl and Arrow are airing back to back as part one and two of “Crisis on Earth-X”.
Earth-X is a dark world in the Multiverse where the Nazis won World War II, and it was good that we could quickly come to an understanding of this backwards world. The idea itself is pretty fun when you find yourself curious as to what the opposite of some of these heroes would be. Sure Nazis is nothing new, but Pandora’s Box is blown wide open when we are talking about Nazi doppelgangers of the DC TV heroes that we know and love. The explanation we got of Earth-X was great for the exploration of the “Arrowverse”, or New 52 universe that I think at this point sounds more fitting. World-building is pretty awesome when it comes to comic book shows and I appreciate when they take leaps to address the world outside of what these characters are used to. Now some doppelgangers you knew you would see, but there were a few to catch you off guard. As for the others, it was cool how this was more than being evil copies. They took on their own personalities, desires, goals and more.
For the first part the main attraction is of course Barry and Iris’s wedding. I mean what other way are you going to bring everyone under one roof without an enemy to fight? You knew we were building up to that moment, yet you were also awaiting when things would go wrong. The villains from Earth-X were going to attack the ceremony and you wanted to know exactly who they would send on that kind of mission into a room full of heroes. Maybe not prepared for action, but nonetheless a room full of heroes. The wedding itself was still a nice scene. This was everything you hoped for as a Flash fan. When that moment of escalation came, I’m glad it didn’t come too predictable. From there the action which followed was paced out well enough to spotlight everyone capable of fighting without getting choppy between scenes.
The transition between these scenes was perfect because this means that they are off to a good start. Like I said before, it was a problem that we could have four episode crossing over, and only two of those four genuinely a part of the crossover. Now there is more effort put into these shows connecting and showing that these events are going on at the same time. I personally love that for Supergirl it is so easy to travel to the other universe. For how distant they are from everyone else, somehow they just fit in so well with the people they interact with. The Arrow episode as well impressed me because there was that moment here and there focusing on Oliver and company, but there was nothing which pulled you away from the main story at hand. Big props to them understanding what needs to be prioritized.
A lot of things go on here that I was surprised that they would also try to fit into this story. You have the future of some relationships in question, you have the splitting of a Firestorm matrix in question, and much more. As per usual, I was very drawn in to the situation between Jax and Stein over their future. It sucked to see the struggle they were going through to figure out what they wanted from one another, and I certainly wasn’t expecting this all to happen now. I suppose now is the time for something decisive. I have not been watching Arrow, but that was a tough pill to swallow seeing what life has been like for Oliver and Felicity. Of course these are a lot of obstacles that these things will create which is bold. So much of it going on in just the first part of “Crisis on Earth-X”. Part of you wants to hope this is all them getting the personal things out of the way early on, but at the same time you wouldn’t want them to completely shun what characters are still working through despite being part of a wedding or fighting villains from a different universe. For the first half of this crossover it was appreciated who they decided to focus on with such a big cast.
Tone was a big wonder when it came to this crossover. This was going to get serious, though you wanted to see how they would fit the craziness of these different corners of the multiverse colliding. Overall the best word to use is entertaining. Heartbreak aside, this is what it means to be a hero during a time of crisis, no pun intended.
It is only the CGI that I felt was too apparent. That is something I don’t think I’ve had to say for a while now when it comes to these shows, so it came as a surprise when I felt myself so distracted by the effects that came off so unreal. This isn’t to say that they are supposed to have this crazy big budget for these shows, though for this crossover there are some expectations visually that you can’t entirely make exceptions for.
DC/CW’s “Crisis on Earth-X” Part 1 & 2 proved to be a big step up from where we were at this point in last year’s crossover event. There’s actually more crossing over. This was watching Crisis on Earth-X more than it was watching Supergirl or The Arrow. They felt more like time slots which is how it should be. We understand the enemy, their intentions, and what is at stake if our heroes don’t put a stop to this new invasion. For the most part the drama is contained and not as distracting as you would have feared with so much going on at once. Hopefully they keep pushing with the same pacing and intensity that comes with quite the personal engagement.