Crisis on Earth-X might be the best crossover yet in the CW/DC universe. The set-up is simple: cast members from THE FLASH, SUPERGIRL, ARROW and LEGENDS OF TOMORROW all gather for Barry and Iris’ wedding in Central City. Unfortunately, the festivities are soon interrupted by the arrival of Nazis — specifically, the residents of Earth-X. These beings come from an Earth where Hitler won the war and Nazis rule the modern era. While we can’t tell you their purpose in coming to Earth and attacking the heroes we know and love, we can tell you that the set-up, which begins in SUPERGIRL, leads to the biggest crossover this universe has ever seen.
During a visit to the sets of THE FLASH, SUPERGIRL, ARROW and LEGENDS OF TOMORROW recently in Vancouver, cast members from the various shows all dished on the fun — and hard work — of this year’s event.
“[The crossovers] always so massive and such undertakings workload wise,” Melissa Benoist (Kara Danvers/Supergirl said. “I said to myself at the end of last year’s crossover, ‘There’s no way it could get bigger than this. How are they going to write something bigger than this?’ Well, they wrote something massive that was overwhelming to read, in an exciting way of course, but also at the same time like I had to brace myself. I think we all did.”
As Benoist and a sizzle reel for the episode also teased, you’re going to see the Earth-X evil version of some of our heroes: “I did play two characters. I did wear a very different outfit. There’s still a cape and my face is covered and she’s not so nice. It was pretty challenging. I’ve had moments like that on this show with Bizarro and when Martian Manhunter takes over Kara’s body, but this was entirely different. This was not even Red Kryptonite-isque. This was way worse.”
“I like this crossover better than last year’s crossover because there is a lot more human things in it,” Caity Lotz explained. “It is still pretty huge, it is still pretty fantastical. But it is more grounded in the characters a bit and then also kind of what comes out of the characters carries along a little bit more. Kind of [like] the lessons and things will carry on for the characters in the other seasons [of the various shows].” Maisie Richardson-Sellers (Amaya Jiwe/Vixen) expanded on the human scale of the episode, hinting that “this year one thing they did beautifully is there’s lots of personal relationships woven into it as well. So it’s not just one big fight; you also get to know certain characters a lot deeper, and there’s some love in it, and there’s some loss in it. It’s a very emotional journey as well as spectacular.
Meanwhile, don’t think of this big event as crossovers of characters in individual episodes. It’s more like a four hour movie, according to Stephen Amell (Oliver Queen/Green Arrow). “What I can tell you about this year is you know the order of the episodes, as in SUPERGIRL, ARROW, THE FLASH, LEGENDS? That doesn’t mean shit. You can’t tell what episode is what episode. The first episode, it centers on everyone coming together in episode 1 for Barry and Iris’ wedding. So you’re collecting everyone from all over the place, and then it’s really effectively their story throughout the first hour, which would indicate that it’s a FLASH episode, except it’s not. The payoff is that I’ve seen one cut of one episode, and it’s just…It’s like a four-hour escape. There are some through-line storylines like Oliver and Felicity’s relationship, and Barry and Iris’ relationship, and what’s going on with Sara, what’s going on with Victor and Franz. It really is — for the first time — it’s an event. It’s not a crossover anymore. Call it the crossover if you want. But it’s kind of like calling the Super Bowl just a football game. Yeah, sure, they play football, but there’s so much other stuff that goes on with it. It’s an event.”
While some characters — such as Ray Palmer and much of the cast of SUPERGIRL — don’t really travel to the wedding itself, they will pop up throughout the episodes, particularly as the heroes need to band together to fight these Earth-X villains. Echo Kellum (Curtis Holt/Mr. Terrific) hinted that “I’m really excited – Curtis aka Mr. Terrific definitely has a bigger footprint in this crossover than last year, and I think he really helps figure out some stuff on what’s going on with Crisis-X.”
“I think a lot of us are all involved in the crossover in some capacity, “Rick Gonzalez (Rene Ramirez/Wild Dog) said. “I mean, Crisis X, it’s gonna be pretty eventful. There’s a lot happening in there. I was excited to be a part of it. I’m also excited that I was in it last season. The trajectory of what they’re created — I don’t know how they keep coming up with this stuff and topping it every year.”
Fans should expect a few fun or unexpected pairings/interactions in the episode. Amell said he “really enjoyed Oliver and Kara’s stuff – but not in the way that you might think,” while Grant Gustin (Barry Allen/The Flash) said “Barry and Kara have a few interactions that are fun, classic Barry and Kara interactions”. And Danielle Panabaker hinted that “Heat Wave’s really into Killer Frost. He’d really like to know a little more about her. He’d really like to figure out how to make her come out, as well.”
Finally, be prepared for what some call the greatest hero gathering ever. “The best thing that we got to do was the big gathering of everyone here in our world, on the Waverider, which was pretty awesome to have all of those superheroes together, and it was a really unique and fun thing which I think the audience will like as well,” Brendan Routh (Ray Palmer/Atom) teased. As you can see from the photo below, that’s definitely a lot of heroes.
Crisis on Earth-X airs on Monday, November 27 from 8:00 to 10:00 p.m. ET/PT and on Tuesday, November 28 from 8:00 to 10:00 p.m. ET/PT on The CW.