Supergirl: Elseworlds, Part 3

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Today’s reading will be from…

Supergirl wraps up the annual crossover with “Elseworlds, Part 3.” Picking up pretty much where the last part left off, Barry and Oliver, now being seen as the outlaw Trigger Twins, face off against a black-suited Superman, who proves to be Dr. Deegan, the man causing all the problems for our heroes. The introductory voice over is even done by Deegan, although the phrasing sounds like it’s borrowed from Arrow’s usual lead in.

 

Barry and Oliver confront their foe, and try and talk him down. When that doesn’t work, Oliver gets ruthless and plays an old villain gambit on the would-be hero, forcing him to make a decision that lets the heroes get away. Barry, in my view, overreacts to this a bit, even after Oliver explains what he did.

 

“Superman” returns to STAR, which now has the S symbol all over it, and is greeted by the remnants of Teams Arrow and Flash, who are in full sycophant mode. Diggle and Killer Frost (I think, she looks like her but never uses her powers) are the main suck ups who soothe “Superman’s” frustrated ego at the heroes escaping. There’s a disturbance down in the Pipeline, which is where we learn Kara has been imprisoned with her powers dampened. Deegan-Man taunts her, but is intrigued that neither she nor Superman are in the Book for this world aside from the fight against Amazo we saw in part one. We also see Alex, who is somehow or other here, and fully involved in Deegan’s altered reality.

 

Ok, I’m going to be a geek for a moment. Feel free to skip this paragraph if such things bother you. When Flash first met Supergirl, and was trying to get home, he determined that Cisco, Caitlin, Harrison Wells, and STAR didn’t exist on Earth 38, Kara’s home. But somehow, the reverse isn’t true, and some of the Supergirl cast are on Earth 1? This doesn’t make any sense at all to me. So far, the only character who definitively is on both Earths seems to be Batman, who hasn’t been seen but has been referenced on both worlds. So, either Alex and at least one other have been on Earth 1 all along, Deegan-Man did something weird with people he doesn’t know about, or the writers screwed up. Pick one of those, I guess. Rant over.

 

The heroes on the run decide their best shot is to go to Earth 38 and get Superman, and to do that, they need Cisco. Barry is a bit dubious, since the other versions of Cisco he’s encountered have been varying degrees of bad guys if not outright villains. They go to what I believe is supposed to be Cisco’s apartment, but end up in some weird other dimensional realm talking to the Monitor who set all this in motion. It’s a short conversation, with the Monitor being overconfident and dismissive, returning the heroes to the hallway. I’m not sure what purpose this encounter served, aside from some vague hints about them needing to be their true selves.

 

Since Barry is part of the police force and knows where criminals in Central hang out, Oliver lets him take the lead, and they end up at what I think is the same bar Killer Frost briefly worked at for/with Amunet Black, the villainess played so delightfully oddly a few times by Katee Sackhoff. First they encounter Gary Green, Time Bureau nerd and the sole Legends of Tomorrow cast member to get to the crossover. Gary is a fawning fan of the Trigger Twins, and eventually directs them to the boss, Mr. Ramon. Cisco is pretty much a caricature of a mobster, and at first sics his thugs, including James Olsen (see above rant) on them. Barry manages to get his interest and attention, and they adjourn to Cisco’s office. How in the world Olsen supposedly beat Oliver in a fight in this scene, I have no idea.

 

Kara is trying to use what powers she has left to escape the Pipeline, and Alex catches her. Kara makes a heartfelt appeal to Alex and there does seem to be some effect, but not as much as Kara was hoping for. Alex clearly isn’t ready or willing to listen, and ends the conversation decisively. Oliver makes an intriguing offer to Cisco, and Killer Frost, of all people, gives dating advice to Alex, which surprises Kara when she hears the specifics.

 

Seventeen tries later, under Barry’s instruction, Cisco manages to get them to Earth-38. How they knew to go to the Fortress of Solitude to find Superman, and Lois, I’m not sure. Cisco screws around with a few things he really shouldn’t while Barry and Oliver start bringing Superman up to speed on the new developments on Earth 1. Kara keeps trying with Alex, pulling out a story from her childhood which seems to have more or less happened on this Earth, too. Superman proves to know a bit about the Book of Destiny, and Cisco tells them if there’s something important to Deegan-Man, it’s at STAR. Cisco, Barry, and Oliver find an amusing point in common in the discussion.

 

Alex finally agrees to let Kara out, which is, of course, when Deegan-Man, flanked by Killer Frost and Diggle, turns up. The heroes breech in just in time, and, as the fight starts, Cisco bails, having no interest in this clash of titans. Superman and Deegan-Man fight through the city, battering each other and various buildings and aircraft. The newly realigned Alex says anything important would be in the Fortress of Solitude, which Barry complains he just left. This one turns out to be a lot closer; it’s Wells’ old Time Vault. They find the book, don’t manage to make it work quite, and figure out Superman is the key. Kara takes off to get it to him.

 

After some teamwork, Superman starts using the book, which affects our heroes first. Flash speeds off to help, while Green Arrow gets stuck in an elevator with Killer Frost and Diggle. Somehow, in close quarters with no room to dodge, Oliver beats them both. I’m really not sure I buy that one, no matter how slick Oliver is supposed to be. Oliver somehow gets to the scene of the fight almost as quickly as Barry did, and threatens Deegan-Man with a green kryptonite arrow. Barry pleads with Oliver not to kill the villain, that maybe this is the test the Monitor was babbling about. Deegan-Man does a foot-stomp shockwave to startle everyone and takes off with the book, while the heroes… stare at each other. Don’t wanna chase that down, guys?

 

The heroes go back to STAR, where Alex and Kara have another chat, which is interrupted by lots and lots of alarms. Deegan is at it again with the book, and it’s having bad effects all over the place. Barry comes up with a plan to “slow down time” that makes no sense at all. Superman warns that he saw in the book if Barry and Kara do this, they’ll die. This is likely a nod to the Crisis on Infinite Earths series, where both Supergirl and the Barry Allen Flash died, Flash in a somewhat similar fashion to what they’re about to go do. Oliver tells Superman to go do what he can with the Deegan and the book while he goes to try something else. Oliver goes back to the Monitor and calls him out for being a bad god, or at least not a smart one. There’s a lot of cutting back and forth between Flash and Supergirl starting to feel the effects of their nonsensical stunt and Superman fighting Deegan-Man. The cavalry arrives in the form of Lois Lane with… some weapon or other, J’Onn J’Onzz, and Brainiac 5. Deegan summons Amazo, and Brainiac proves what a badass he is by taking the robot down (sadly off camera) on his own. You know, the same robot that was giving Flash, Green Arrow, Superman, and Supergirl a hard time. Eventually, the heroes win, with the Book looking burned and Deegan a lot more like the comic book Doctor Destiny.

 

To wrap things up, we get several small scenes. Kara jokes this is getting to be an annual thing, and Barry says, “Oh, God, I hope not.” Clearly a joke about the crossovers. The Earth 38 crew go home via Cisco power, the extra Alex and Olsen having conveniently vanished. Kara goes back to the Kent farm where she gets some unexpected news and Clark encourages her about the recent issues with the DEO. Lois gets her own big surprise shortly after. Barry and Oliver go out for a drink and talk about what they’ve learned about each other. Oliver refuses a hug, and as he leaves, gets a call from Batwoman. She asks if Deegan will be a problem, and says he’s made a friend. Cut to, Arkham Asylum, where Deegan is next door to Psycho Pirate, who babbles off some lines from the original Crisis On Infinite Earths comic. We fade out with a title card that tells us what next year’s crossover is going to be. It’s a jaw dropper for comic fans, and, with something that big, they damn well better include the Legends next time, and maybe even Black Lightning.

 

What I liked: There was a lot of high-grade superheroics here, and they did it well for the most part. Tyler Hoechlin at this point is my second favorite live action Superman, just behind Christopher Reeve, which is high praise from me. Elizabeth Tulloch is a kickass Lois Lane, although amusingly we didn’t get to see any reporting from her. The Superman/Deegan-Man fight was amazing. Brainiac 5 trashing Amazo was fantastic. I like how the heroes have come to trust each other. Gary’s cameo was a nice touch.

What I didn’t: The big “slow down time” plan didn’t even make comic book sense. It also shouldn’t have been effecting the heroes, as Barry’s powers shield him from speed issues and Supergirl is, well, Supergirl. The heroes letting Deegan-Man fly off with the book while they all just stared made no sense. I’m not wild about the developments for Lois and Clark, since it sounds like an excuse to keep them off Supergirl for the foreseeable future. I mentioned my issues with Alex and Olsen being on Earth 1 at all. And I missed the Legends. Oliver’s elevator didn’t really work for me.

 

Despite the issues, and there were some, it was a great crossover that introduced a few new, important characters, who I thought were all handled well. I’ll give this episode a 3.5 out of 5, and the crossover as a whole a high 4 out of 5.

 

I’m very interested to see how Batwoman joins their ranks with her own show later this year.

 

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