(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.)

Okay, so, no one panic. But we’re here. The weapon is built, the Harbinger has come, and Crisis on Infinite Earths is just days away. This week’s Clock Tower is going to work a little bit differently. We’re still going to talk about the respective shows, but we’re also going to do a little bit of a primer for those who are hyped to check out Crisis, but don’t have the time to commit to five full-time superhero shows! If you’re lost during these little check-ins, just scroll ‘till you hit “So, What Do I Need to Know to Watch Crisis on Infinite Earths?”

We’re All Mad Here

Batwoman has featured the least amount of Crisis lead-in, but that doesn’t mean there was nothing to see. Alice finally got her tea party, and things got lethal. Katherine Hamilton-Kane falsified the evidence of Alice’s death so Jacob and Kate would stop looking for her. She did it as a mother, who saw her husband and stepdaughter hurting. A sip of champagne will force her to make a new call as a mom: take the antidote and save herself, or give the antidote to a terrified Mary. Though Hamilton-Kane’s decision is ultimately unsurprising, it did deliver one of the most emotional moments of the series yet. Her death also ensured that Kate and Jacob are done handling their murderous family member with kid gloves. At least for now. 

Rama KHHAAAANNNNN

You know what’s exhausting? When one half of an episode is infinitely more interesting than the other. Though, it does speak wonders to the performances of Melissa Benoist (Supergirl) and Katie McGrath (Lena Luthor). The two women’s story was up against the god behind all of the world’s natural disasters (who also happened to be played by the incomparable Mitch Pileggi), but they still grabbed all of the attention for themselves.

Currently, hope is all we have when it comes to Lena Luthor. Specifically, the hope that the show does the right thing and brings her back from the edge she currently finds herself teetering on. Having a Luthor who rises above her family’s darkness is so much more interesting than watching another one fall. Particularly now that The Monitor has brought Lex back into the fray. 

Barry Allen’s Superpower Isn’t Speed – It’s Hope

The mid-season finale of The Flash also felt a little disjointed, but there was still a lot to love. It’s hard to give Dark Flash any emotional oomph when you know the real Barry’s going to be back next week. That doesn’t mean we can’t have fun with the zombies though! Bloodwork’s spooky by nature, so getting a horror-centric episode was bound to happen sooner or later. They delivered both on his minions, and on his final creepy form. Most importantly, they delivered on the feels! 

As far as Team Flash knows, Barry Allen’s about to run to his death. We’re going to just ignore the fact that “The Flash must die” doesn’t specify which Flash, and acknowledge all of the beautiful moments that went down between the family. Even if we did miss Ralph a little bit. 

I’m Not Alone

Arrow was always going to have the most Crisis tie-ins. Oliver Queen must die for the universe and Lyla Michaels has been around for quite some time. The team’s last task before infinite earths fall was to build the weapon that would help defend them. Though it’s Oliver’s story with his children that once again ends up being the most important thing about the episode.

Oliver Queen struggle on Lian Yu while reconciling with the fact that he has to say goodbye to his kids resulted in another stellar addition to Arrow’s final season. He shares emotional moments with both William and Mia before things come to a close, but he also sends Diggle with some instructions for the future. Those include ensuring the 2040 crowd is sent back to their time where they belong, and that Mia and William get to grow up together. Considering Mia’s with him in all of the promo shots for Crisis, I suspect neither of those things are going to happen. 

So, What Do I Need to Know to Watch Crisis on Infinite Earths?

Hi new friends! Welcome to your crash course on the biggest crossover event in DC history (yes, step aside Justice League). If you haven’t been following along, and you’ve never read Crisis on Infinite Earths, you need to first know about Krona, Mar Novu, and Mobius. Ultimately what we’re about to see is all of the infinite earths condensed into one. We’re also about to see a lot of people die. 

Mar Novu has brought in several key players outside of the main heroes. J’onn J’onnz was recently confirmed as a participant, as was Lex Luthor. We’ll have several iterations of Superman that include Tom Welling’s Clark Kent and Brandon Routh’s Kingdom Come Supes in addition to the Arrowverse’s Tyler Hoechlin. Batman will finally be joining the fray by way of the one and only Kevin Conroy as Kingdom Come’s version of Bruce Wayne. Smallville’s Erica Durance will be playing both Lois Lane and Alura Zor-El, while John Wesley Shipp will reprise his role as The Flash. In addition, we’ll also see Black Lightning come play in the Arrowverse for the very first time, and will be joined by the likes of Star Girl, Huntress, Jonah Hex, and Burt Ward (we don’t currently know if he’ll be playing Robin). 

If you tried catching the shows this week so you could be prepared, that guy you kept seeing at the end of every episode is Nash Wells. We’re pretty sure he’s Pariah. I’m not gonna dive too much into what that means, just keep your eye on him when he pops up throughout the five-part crossover. If you’ve got questions about Crisis that aren’t addressed here, I’ll try to help out in the comments! 

Same Bat Time, Same Bat Channel

So… anyone else stressed? I’m stressed. This Sunday kicks off a massive event that’s going to lead to the death of a lot of darlings. Oliver and Felicity are likely to get the pocket universe storyline that Superman and Lois got in the comics, since he’ll be playing the lead role, but we’re certainly going to lose a Flash. Superman, Batman, parallel earth versions of your faves? Those are all fair game as we gear up to watch infinity be wiped out of existence. Everything’s fine! We have fun here! See you next week! 

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