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My Final Thoughts on the “Heroes Vs. Aliens” Supergirl-Flash-Arrow-Legends Crossover

Posted on the 03 December 2016 by Weminoredinfilm.com @WeMinoredInFilm

My Final Thoughts on the “Heroes Vs. Aliens” Supergirl-Flash-Arrow-Legends Crossover

That was a lot of fun. The end.

Really, what more needs to be said about "Heroes Vs. Aliens," CW's four show ( Supergirl, Flash, Arrow, Legends of Tomorrow), three night (Tuesday-Thursday) crossover event? The episodes weren't perfect. Because of the logistical challenges in the shooting schedule, characters often came and went without reason and little explanation. The special effects, so often praised on The Flash for looking big budget movie-quality, showed their financial limitations, particularly during the final battle between the heroes (at least all those they could fit into the scene) and CGI aliens. The inevitable easter eggs and metajokes were hit and miss, as evident in one quick exchange in the Legends third of the crossover when Felicity remarks of Kara "It's like looking in a mirror" (lampshading the obvious physical and personal similarities between the two characters) and Ray follows up with "Hey ya know what's funny? She kinda of looks like my cousin" (since she's Supergirl, and he once played Superman). The former is fine, the latter a bit of a groaner, particularly with Brandon Routh accenting it by practically winking at the camera.

But who cares? The Vancouver-based producers, writers, cast and crew responsible for producing these shows practically killed themselves to bring us their most ambitious crossover event yet. On top of that, they managed to make something actually coherent and mostly accessible for those people who might watch one or two of these shows but not all of them (e.g., I watch Flash, Arrow and Legends but not Supergirl, and I know of some who only watch Flash). The Flash episode felt like a Flash episode. The same goes for Arrow and Legends. Even as all the characters gathered to fight aliens, each episode still advanced individual storylines - Professor Stein met the daughter he inadvertently created through time travel but now wants to keep, Sara got her goodbye with Laurel, Cisco finally forgave Barry for Flashpoint, which was really the primary arc of the three-parter. This was about everyone forgiving Barry, but especially Cisco.

On one level, that's actually a bit disappointing, turning this grand cross-over into something a tad more mundane (or budget-conscious) than expected. An epic superhero movie just transplanted to TV this was not. On another level, this is actually preferable to the way they've done the crossovers in the past, paving a new future where they clearly know how to do this without having to sacrifice or at least momentarily pausing season long story arcs on each of the impacted shows.

Of course, while that worked in most everyone's favor it's also the reason Kara was so underutilized. She's literally a character from another universe (not to mention planet) meaning she had no ties to any of this other than through her friendship with Barry. Anything happening with her on Supergirl right now did not carry over into this at all. While the Legends capper to the crossover finally gave her something to play, specifically her efforts to win Oliver's respect and trust, you could still see the "What do we do with Supergirl?" strain throughout the crossover on the writers' part.

And now that's something they can try to do a better job on next time because there will definitely be a next time. Flash and Supergirl are already confirmed to have a crossover planned for 2017, a two-part musical episode spanning the shows. Then should all four of the Arrowverse shows still be around this time next year there will most certainly be another big crossover event like this, allowing Diggle to potentially freak out upon meeting Martian Manhunter as he did in the most recent non-canonical Superhero Fight Club video. These episodes are just pure light-hearted entertainment, comic books brought to life, mimicking big team up and event (or annual) issues in a way very few movies have outside of

These episodes are just pure light-hearted entertainment, comic books brought to life, mimicking big team up and event (or annual) issues in a way very few movies have outside of The Avengers. "Invasion!" was fun and goofy and overstuffed and not 100% perfectly coordinated. The next one they do probably won't be perfect either, but it'll sure be a heck of a good time for those who just want to escape into this world and watch these characters hang out, punch stuff, hang out, talk science, punch stuff, talk science one more time and then punch stuff before celebrating their victory.

My Final Thoughts on the “Heroes Vs. Aliens” Supergirl-Flash-Arrow-Legends CrossoverAs this "Heroes vs. Aliens" event frequently acknowledged, we're pretty darn far removed from where we started five years ago with Oliver and that island. It was nice to see that history acknowledged, from Oliver's Matrix fantasy world on Arrow to Sara reminding Oliver on Legends that his is all technically started with the two of them since she was on that dang boat with him. However, after so much sci-fi craziness with aliens and time travel and whatever the hell you want to call Citizen Steel's godawful costume it all ended about as perfectly as it could: Oliver and Barry having drinks together.

My Final Thoughts on the “Heroes Vs. Aliens” Supergirl-Flash-Arrow-Legends CrossoverSome day, Kara (who currently anchors the most watched show in the Arrowverse) will probably be at that bar with them, though I doubt Melissa Benoist will ever truly look old enough to drink. For now, this universe bends around Oliver and Barry, and the demands of their shows dictate that they must constantly be living heightened lives. But, gosh, they - and everyone who worked on "Invasion!" - earned those drinks and a hardy pat on the back.

Here's how Marc Guggenheim summed it all up in an interview with Deadline:

I think when you do a season of television you go into it going I'd like the season premiere needs to be amazing. The season finale needs to be amazing. Then, of course you want the mid-season premiere and the mid-season finale to be great and we always include the crossovers in that. So, it's a very big deal for us. It's our big event of the year and we really give it our all, and we try to leave absolutely nothing on the field.

But to do that takes so much work on the part of so many people, the crew, the writers, the actors, everyone. It's a job but they're also doing it because they love the shows, they love the fans and they love these characters. So many of the people involved with these shows are fans of the characters of comics and love seeing all these people together on screen. We all get the same jolt that I think the audience gets which is oh my God, they're all like Supergirl is sharing time with Flash and Arrow and Legends How fun is that? That to us is the whole reason we do this.

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