Wednesday, November 30, 2016

The Flash - Invasion!

Now this is more like it. The big four-part crossover which was teased (but not actually begun) last night on Supergirl gets started here with the arrival of the Dominators on Earth. For those not familiar with the aliens, the Dominators were first introduced back in the 60s but made their most notable splash in DC Comics in 1989 as part of the Invasion! (good name) mini-series. Realizing he can't stop the alien threat alone, Barry (Grant Gustin) enlists the help of Team Arrow (including the retired Thea), the Legends, and even hops universes to bring back Supergirl (Melissa Benoist). Although Barry doesn't take naturally to leading, the team follows him... at least until they discover about Flashpoint whose effects continue to be discovered as one Legend learns he now has a loving daughter he has never met.

While not the most sophisticated of villains, the Dominators are a big enough threat to gather the team together. Along with bringing in some under-utilized aliens for the (mostly) united heroes to fight, the episode also includes a few fun tidbits for fans (such as the realization that Star Labs warehouse looks an awful lot like the Hall of Justice). The inclusion of Supergirl and her interactions with the various members of the team, such as learning Mick's (Dominic Purcell) origin story, and Oliver's (Stephen Amell) heart-to-heart with Barry are definitely highlights. It's not surprising that the heroes struggle a bit their first time out. And things don't get any easier for the team when 90% of it falls under the Dominators' sway and it's up to Barry, Ollie, and Wally (Keiynan Lonsdale) to save the day.

Although there are a few awkward moments, with too much of the team (specifically Cisco) shitting on Barry, the crossover works well incorporating such a large number of characters. The message of Barry's future self certainly raises some questions about the Flash's state of mind and the current timeline, but given Jay Garrick's warnings about doing even more damage by attempting to alter things any further we have to wonder if there is anything Barry can do to make up for Flashpoint. As for the invasion, the team is separated again heading into the next crossover episode which should highlight the newer members of Team Arrow and reveal what happened to Ollie and some of the other heroes after they were beamed away by the Dominators.

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