The CW’s Crisis on Infinite Earths cross-over concludes with a two-hour, two-part finale that brings together all our heroes. You still have time to catch up, with all the episodes airing for free on the CW app and website. In case you don’t, though, we wanted to give you a quick recap of what went on in parts 1-3 of the Crisis on Infinite Earths crossover. Spoilers follow for the first three hours of ‘Crisis on Infinite Earths.’
Let’s start from the beginning.
Part 1 (Supergirl)
We’ve been warming up for the Crisis all season, but it’s finally here. A bunch of Earths die in the opening moments of part 1, including those that act as homes for the 1989 Batman, the 1966 Batman, and DC Universe’s Titans. Heavy casualties all around.
Earth-38, the home of Supergirl, Superman, and the Martian Manhunter, is next on the list. The Monitor has Lyla bring Earth-1 heroes like Oliver Queen, Mia Smoak, Kate Kane, and Barry Allen over.
The team battles the Monitor’s Shadow Demons, and quickly it becomes apparent that Earth-38 will fall. Lena Luthor works quickly to build a way to evacuate as many people as possible.
The heroes are losing, and the Monitor forces them all to evacuate. Oliver uses the anti-Monitor (not Anti-Monitor, we’ll get to him later) weapon he built to give himself a few more seconds to fight the Shadow Demons. He dies in the process, but the Monitor says he saved billions in his final moments.
Part 2 (Batwoman)
With Oliver dead and Earth-38 lost, the team has to figure out what to do next in the second hour of the Crisis. The Monitor says that there are seven paragons who can fight the Anti-Monitor and his forces and that they already know where a few of those paragons are.
Barry Allen is the Paragon of Love, Sara Lance is the Paragon of Destiny, and Kara Zor-El is the Paragon of Hope. The team has enough information to start looking for the Paragon of Courage and the Paragon of Truth. So Kate and Kara go to Earth-99 to find the former. There, they meet Bruce Wayne, played by Batman voice-actor Kevin Conroy in his first live-action appearance as the character.
Kara and Kate quickly realize, though, that the world this Bruce lives in has defeated him, even if he’s a survivor. This Bruce Wayne has become twisted; he sees the worst in everyone, including Superman, whom he ended up defeating in a very Dark Knight Returns-style twist. Wayne puts Kara in danger with his Kryptonite backup plan and Kate is forced to intervene for her friend, killing Mean Bruce in the process. Back with the Monitor, the two discover that it’s Kate herself who is the Paragon of Courage.
A Tale of Three Supermen
Iris, Lois, and Clark, meanwhile, set off in search of the Paragon of Truth, which is apparently another Superman. Lex Luthor is chasing the Supermen of the multi-verse down, too. With the Book of Destiny, he can kill every Superman on every Earth. He’s a kid in a candy shop. They end up on Earth-167, the home of Smallville‘s Clark Kent. They find him, but their meeting is cut short when Lex Luthor dismisses them. Lex, however, finds himself disappointed. Clark has given up his powers completely to live quietly with his family on the Kent farm, and Kryptonite holds no power over him.
This takes the wind out of Lex’s sails, and then Clark takes the wind out of his stomach when he punches him out.
The crew ends up on Earth-96, inhabited by Brandon Routh’s Superman. The lineage of this Superman is a little foggier. Brandon Routh’s Superman in Superman Returns was canonically the Superman of the 1977 film and its sequels. Here, they find out that this Superman lost most of his loved ones when the Joker attacked the Daily Planet with a gas attack, including Lois and their son. He also wears an outfit with a similar look to that of Kingdom Come‘s Superman, complete with the black background behind his ‘S’ emblem.
Of course, Lex shows up and twists this Superman’s pain around to make him and Earth-38’s Superman fight it out. They do, but eventually, Lois clobbers Lex and talks Superman down. He joins them as the Paragon of Truth.
Part 3 (The Flash)
In part 3, Mia Smoak and John Diggle are still in agony over their death of Oliver, and they go off in search of a way to resurrect him in hour 3. Mia, John, and Barry haul John Constantine off to bring Oliver to a Lazarus Pit, which goes about as well as previous Lazarus Pit adventures have gone, with Oliver leaping out in a mindless bloodlusted fury.
That forces Mia, Constantine, and John to go off in search of Oliver’s soul. To do this, they score a ticket to Purgatory from none other than Lucifer Morningstar on Earth-666, played by Tom Ellis of Lucifer. They find Oliver in Purgatory, but their reunion is cut short when a man named Jim Corrigan shows up and gives Oliver the mission of becoming the Spectre.
Meanwhile, the rest of the team is trying to hunt down the remaining Paragons. Iris, Ray, and Ralph Dibny track down Ryan Choi, who is the next Atom in the comics after Ray Palmer. Ryan, played by Osric Chau of Supernatural, reluctantly joins them as the Paragon of Humanity. They also find that J’onn J’onzz, the Martian Manhunter, is the Paragon of Honor. The team has brought together all the paragons.
To stop the Anti-Monitor, they have to stop his Anti-Matter wave. The Monitor gives Cisco back his Vibe powers so that he can locate the source of the wave, and it just so happens that it’s right here on Earth-1. Convenient!
The team breaks into the Anti-Monitor’s under-ground chambers where they find out that he’s been holding Earth-90’s Flash hostage, forcing him to run on a treadmill (a cosmic one?!) to create and fire anti-matter.
A Flash must die
Here’s where we find out what the Monitor meant by “The Flash must die.”
Barry tries twice to sacrifice himself. The first time, Nash Wells–now Pariah–pulls Black Lightning from his Earth. Black Lightning is freaked out at first but figures out that he’s working with good guys pretty quickly and tries to absorb the energy created by the Anti-Monitor’s device. Unfortunately, he’s still just one guy, and is quickly overloaded. They need to destroy the machine by putting it in reverse. Barry again volunteers to get on, only for Earth-90’s Flash to sap him temporarily of his Speed Force so that he can sacrifice himself.
Back on the Monitor’s ship, an Anti-Monitor-possessed Lyla Michaels/Harbinger kills the Monitor. Things are going badly, but Pariah teleports the Paragons to the Vanishing Point, a place out of space and time, at the last second.
The Paragons are literally the last people left in all of existence across the multi-verse. And then, Brandon Routh’s Superman screams in pain–as Lex Luthor replaces him. Lex edited the Book of Destiny to make himself the Paragon of Truth.
Wow, Lex. Not cool.
This is where things leave off. In a hopeless place with some of our heroes stranded with who is arguably Earth-38’s most dangerous man. Theoretically, bringing at least one Earth back is in his best interests, but you never know with Lex.
What comes next?
The show has been a hell of a ride so far. Tuesday night, we’ll see how Oliver Queen–now the Spectre–along with Lex Luthor and the six remaining Paragons try to bring back Earth and existence itself. The Arrowverse has previously been split up into multiple earths, with Flash, the Green Arrow, the Legends, and Batwoman on Earth-1, Supergirl and her friends on Earth-38, and Black Lightning over on his own (unnumbered) plane of the multiverse. It shouldn’t be a surprise that all of the remaining paragons–Barry, Kara, Sara, Kate, Ryan, J’onn, and technically Lex–live on Earths-1 and -38. So now, will the Arrowverse make the bold move of completely flattening the multiverse, putting Flash and the Legends on the same Earth as Superman and Supergirl, finally bringing Black Lightning into the fold?
If I had to hazard a guess, I would bet that Earth-1 and Earth-38 will be restored, while Black Lightning’s Earth will be folded into Earth-1. But I’d love to see Superman and Supergirl on the same Earth as Flash to really make a unified Arrowverse. We’ll see what happens tomorrow night when Crisis on Infinite Earths concludes.