The annual crossover episodes in the Arrowverse have been something to look forward to with heroes joining forces on the small screen in the DC TV Universe. Bringing together some or all of the shows, including The Flash, Supergirl, Legends of Tomorrow and Arrow, the crossover episodes are always a challenge for the creators but hugely rewarding for fans as they link together their favourite characters and bring exciting new content which flips the tables across the universe.
The CW announced at the Television Critics Association Summer Press Tour that a four-show crossover will take place next year across an episode each of Supergirl, Arrow, The Flash and Legends of Tomorrow. To celebrate the release of Arrow earlier this month on September 18, we now take a look back at some of the best crossover moments the DC series have seen so far.
Flash vs Arrow
The first annual crossover event in the Arrowverse occurred in 2014’s Flash vs Arrow, combining the eighth episode of the first season of The Flash and the eighth episode of Arrow’s third season. It saw Team Flash (Barry Allen aka Flash, Caitlin Snow and Cisco Ramon) helping Team Arrow (Oliver Queen aka Arrow, Felicity Smoak and John Diggle) take on the boomerang-wielding villain Captain Boomerang, while also confronting the meta-human Roy Bivolo.
The episode was brand new, refreshing and fun, giving fans everything they could have wanted and more. Praised for the action scenes between the two leads as well as bringing the two series together so seamlessly, the ratings for the episodes were exceptional, with both being the highest watched episodes of each show since their respective series premieres. It was a massive event at the time, and the benchmark for the crossover episodes to come.
Heroes Join Forces
The second annual Arrowverse crossover event was again between The Flash and Arrow back in 2015. The Flash episode Legends of Today started the event with Arrow episodes Legends of Yesterday concluding. It also acted as a set-up for the series DC’s Legends of Tomorrow, with the episode introducing Vandal Savage as the main villain, who Barry Allen and Oliver Queen team up to take on.
The episode features the character we’ve come to know and love with skill, grace and plenty of fast-paced action sequences, and successfully pushes all three stories forward. Although the Legends set-up received mixed responses, both series experienced season-high viewership.
The hard-to-top 2016 crossover Invasion! Event was spread across four nights between Supergirl, The Flash, Arrow and DC’s Legends of Tomorrow. Supergirl kicked off the crossover shows with its eighth episode of season two, whilst The Flash followed with its eighth episode of season three. Arrow took the helm for the fourth episode, with the climax airing on DC’s Legends of Tomorrow for its seventh episode of season two.
The storyline ran across the four DC Comics-based dramas in the same week and followed Barry Allen as he enlists the help of Green Arrow, the Legends and Supergirl to fight the evil aliens known as The Dominators as they come to attack Central City.
The event was hugely episode with each episode exciting, fun and superhero-filled, providing fans with an interesting storyline superbly linked between the shows, resulting in the most successful week in CW history in terms of ratings. Every year the Arrowverse shows are raising the bar, but will they be able to do it again this year?
Proving that Barry Allen’s mother was right when she said “everything is better in song”, Barry Allen and Kara Danvers teamed up in a magical musical crossover episode for The Flash and Supergirl, which gained rave reviews when it aired. Duet is the seventeenth episode of the third season of The Flash, which was the main part of the crossover event set up in the sixteenth episode of Supergirl season two.
The musical episode comes about when The Flash and Supergirl are put into an induced coma by the villain Music Meister, and wake up in an alternate reality where life is like a musical and the only way to escape is by following the script, complete with singing and dancing. With two original songs written especially for the episode – Super Friend and Runnin’ Home To You – as well as three covers, the episode is unique and deliciously entertaining. It’s a love letter to musicals – especially with the fantastic performances, genuine musical talent and beautiful chemistry between Melissa Benoist and Grant Gustin. We can’t help but want a musical episode every year!
Though we have just four examples here, the Arrowverse hosts plenty more nods to its other series, with characters making guest appearances in different shows and DC TV truly has become the king of crossovers. There hasn’t been much information released about this year’s annual crossover, but based on the franchise history, we can’t wait to see where they go with it!
Perhaps Gotham can get in on the action at some point down the road!
Arrow season five, Legends of Tomorrow season two, Supergirl season two, Gotham season three and The Flash season three are out now on digital download, Blu-ray and DVD.