The Clock Tower 1

(Welcome to The Clock Tower, where we’ll break down the goings on of the The CW network’s Arrowverse. We’ll touch on things like themes, cultural impact, lead-ins to major events, ships, and more every other week! Warning: this Clock Tower is filled with spoilers. Proceed at your own risk.) 

Hi, and welcome to the very first edition of The Clock Tower. (Yes, that’s in reference to exactly what you think it is.) Over the years, the Arrowverse has grown into a massive undertaking. We’ve seen The Flash, Supergirl, Legends of Tomorrow, and now Batwoman all stem from the world that Arrow started. Now, as we inch closer and closer to the huge crossover event Crisis on Infinite Earths, it’s time to start bidding farewell to the show that started it all.

Arrow doesn’t premiere until next week, but eight years ago, the show kicked off by establishing a certain aesthetic – one that will now be continued by DCTV’s newest show: Batwoman. Anyone who’s watched an episode from the first six seasons of the former series can tell you that the show about Green Arrow was heavily influenced by Batman, but now we’ve finally started to see Oliver shift into his role as his own hero, and an actual member of the famed Bat Family has emerged.

Supergirl 5.01

Premieres and Season Themes

Three of the five shows that currently make up the Arrowverse premiered this week. Supergirl, Batwoman, and The Flash all delivered strong starts to their respective seasons. The Girl of Steel will be tackling its usual gamut of current events, with the start of the season focusing on the sanctity of journalism and what happens when that’s threatened. Team Flash will focus on grief from the perspectives of both hero and villain. Meanwhile, Kate Kane and company will focus on being yourself, and growing into the person you needed as a child.

Needle Drops

It’s unlikely that we’ll see this section show up often throughout the season, but both The Flash and Supergirl came out of nowhere with their needle drops this week. Strangely enough, both were during a situation involving a black hole. Supergirl casually hurled herself into one to save J’onn J’onzz while “Supermassive Black Hole” played. The very next day, The Flash did the very same to save a YouTube scientist, but I regret to inform the entirety of the Arrowverse that The Flash still maintains best song usage by a solid lead, replacing its use of “Dragula” last year by finally dropping in Queen’s “Flash Theme” to accompany his heroics. 

A Crisis Is Coming

Most of the Crisis activity seems to be happening on Earth Prime (which makes sense). Supergirl still inhabits Earth 38, while the Batwoman we’re currently seeing is still in the past. That means The Flash is the only Justice League member to get a visit from The Monitor this week. As usual, he didn’t really come bearing good tidings. Barry’s disappearance has jumped up to December 10th of this year – the date of his crossover. The Monitor also insisted that “The Flash has to die.”

Technically, Oliver’s deal was to save The Flash and Supergirl from the idiocy of trying to slow down the planet with their speeds. However, I have a hard time seeing Oliver Queen letting The Monitor slide on a technicality. Which means the question becomes: which Flash isn’t making it out of Crisis on Infinite Earths?

The Flash Barry Iris

The Real MVPs

Supergirl’s pretty easy. There was a T-Rex in the episode, and The Girl of Steel punched that T-Rex in the face. I may or may not have texted a buddy who doesn’t even watch these shows screaming about the fact that there was a dinosaur. Always put dinosaurs in your show. It doesn’t matter if it makes sense. Just do it. 

Batwoman’s moment is a little more subtle. When she first arrives in the abandoned building to take on Alice, there’s loads of homage to Batman Begins, and I’m into it. The fact that they chose to reveal Alice as Kate’s twin immediately rather than dragging out what a bunch of comic readers already know also gets a gold star. 

It’s difficult to pin down a favorite moment from Team Flash, mostly because there was a lot to choose from in “Into the Void.” Cicsco quotes Mission: Impossible, but goes with an Emilio line; Killer Frost is finally being given some semblance of a story; and it feels like Ralph’s really being given the opportunity to shine. If the best of the best has to be chosen, the trophy goes to Barry and Iris as they learn to process their grief over their lost daughter.

Batwoman 1.01

Yikes

Every show’s got ‘em. Hopefully this section won’t be too full as this column grows, and this week there was only one! “You’re a female Bruce Wayne” should never be uttered in any instance that isn’t met with ardent denial. The pilot episode of Batwoman gets a pass as Kate learns to step into her role and make it her own, but I sincerely hope that foolish statements like that are addressed in the future of the show. 

Same Bat Time, Same Bat Channel

We’ll see all three shows return next week with their second episodes, and Arrow brings its final premiere to the table. Unfortunately, the stellar Legends of Tomorrow doesn’t return until the crossover event, but hey, at least they’re in this one! And while not (yet) technically a part of the Arrowverse, Black Lightning will be returning with their second episode of the season as well, and will be joining in on the “fun” in Crisis on Infinite Earths. Stay tuned.

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