“Crisis on Infinite Earths” set a strong tone with its opener Sunday night, as the Anti-Monitor hurtling through space obliterated Earth-38 and claimed its first superhero victim in Oliver Queen aka the Green Arrow (Stephen Amell). That action picked right back up with “Part Two” on Monday night’s “Batwoman,” as the assembled heroes mourned the fallen and worked together to stop the imminent apocalypse.
The episode kicked off with Sara Lance aka White Canary (Caity Lotz) and Kara Danvers aka Supergirl (Melissa Benoist) raising one to Ollie before Lyla aka Harbinger (Audrey Marie Anderson) and The Monitor (LaMonica Garrett) crashed the party and brought everyone back to reality — Anti-Matter was only growing stronger and they needed to stop it in its wake.
So Harbinger lured Mick (Dominic Purcell) with the promise of some beer, and the gang got to it. The Monitor revealed the key to saving the multiverses was to bring together the Paragons, the seven special beings that could reverse the current collision course. One of them, a future version of Batman residing on Earth-99, sent Kate aka Batwoman (Ruby Rose) and Kara on a recruiting mission, while Barry aka The Flash (Grant Gustin) and Mia (Katherine McNamara) recruited surprise guest star Constantine (Matt Ryan) and a Lazarus Pit to resurrect Oliver.
There were bigger problems in the multiverses, however, as The Monitor also brought back Lex Luthor (Jon Cryer) to complicate matters, and he promptly took off with the newly resurrected Book of Destiny to kill Superman on all remaining earths. That sent Clark (Tyler Hoechlin), Lois (Bitsie Tulloch) and Iris (Candice Patton) on a hero/recon mission to warn the other Clarks about Lex’s arrival and to find the Paragon of Truth.
After a brief stopover in Smallville (complete with the promised Tom Welling and Erica Durance cameos) they found him on Earth-96 in the form of Brandon Routh’s iteration of Superman. It didn’t take long for Lex to appear and orchestrate a Superman-on-Superman battle, but in the end it was Lois and her reminder of love that pulled out a big W for the krypton-fearing superhero.
Meanwhile on Earth-99 Kate saw the dark side of the Dark Knight (Kevin Conroy), as she learned the repercussions of power and the darkness it can wield. On that earth Batman had already eliminated Superman, but he wasn’t stopping there. He pulled some actual kryptonite out of his sleeve and attempted to eliminate Kara too, proving he wasn’t the real Paragon in the process. In the end Kate accidentally took her cousin and his skeleton suit down, fulfilling The Monitor’s twisted prediction that allowed Kate to officially become the Paragon of Courage.
Concurrently, on Earth-18 Jonah Hex (Johnathon Schaech) made a cameo when Mia, Sara and Barry went with Constantine to the Lazarus Pit in an attempt to resurrect Oliver. They succeeded, but as Sara had warned earlier in the episode, Ollie’s body didn’t come with the man’s original soul. That left a monster in its wake, and given the current imbalance of the universe it was no surprise that Constantine lost his resurrection mojo and could not actually bring the Oliver his people knew and loved back.
With that, the episode ended on several cliffhangers, including Oliver’s fate, Kara’s admission to Kate that she hoped the Book of Destiny could bring back Earth-38, and the reveal that Kate had held onto the piece of Krypton her mad future cousin had used to take down Superman on Earth-99. But the biggest cliffhanger of all was also the least explored. Lyla/Harbinger, who had been acting funny since The Monitor revealed the Book of Destiny, came face-to-face with Anti-Matter, who wanted her help in bringing down… well, the multiverse.
And so the crisis continues, with the next installment Tuesday night on “The Flash.”
“Crisis on Infinite Earths” continues Dec. 10 on the CW.