What They Say:
World’s Finest – The Flash comes from an alternative universe and aids Kara in her battle against Silver Banshee and Livewire in exchange for her help getting home.
Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers)
While I had problems with last week’s episode in how it handled various pieces of it, as it seemed like it wasn’t too sure of which parts it wanted to tell of J’onn’s past and how they wanted it to be perceived, the show did a lot of good stuff overall and it nudged plenty of things along to get us to an interesting point here that has been hoped for since a simple photo shoot last year. A network-ish crossover (CBS is heavily invested in The CW) that has been smartly marketed in the last few weeks and works to bring two very positive and bright characters together for some classic superhero fun. Fun that touches upon various things that we’ve had in the silver age comics for years with races and more. Being a big fan of both characters and the way Supergirl has appropriated a number of Superman stories, there’s a lot to really get enthused about here.
Since this episode is (hopefully) drawing in Flash viewers, the show does a decent job of catching us up on things at the start with what’s been going on and its focus on Siobhan, who is looking to introduce metahumans into the Supergirl universe as well. She’s getting a little exam at the DEO, but when nothing comes of it, she’s essentially just trying to walk out of the place since she isn’t getting what she needs. What she does get is a chance viewing of Livewire using her powers and making it clear that she’s intent on taking down Cat Grant. Birds of a feather, to be sure, so the easy foundations for a team-up are in place. Siobhan’s struggle with what she’s going through is getting a straightforward approach but it’s also thankfully not truly rushing it like we’ve seen with some others since she’s been seeded into the show for several episodes.
So when Siobhan goes on the attack to get a little revenge on Cat and Kara, she ends up screaming Kara right out of the building – and into The Flash’s arms as he was racing by and caught her as she was falling down. Suffice to say, as the two end up out in the wilderness, they have quite the conversation as they connect and try to figure each other out. It’s all kind of simple and silly, a lightness that works well because both are well known in their respective places, but Flash is learning that he’s in a whole other world here and nothing he knows in terms of named characters exist here. Of course, what does he do? Reveals everything about himself since it’s just easier. Considering the kinds of bad versions and people he’s come across so far, it’s risky but it’s the kind of easy TV-out that we get in these shows so they can get to the real story they want to tell.
What we do get are some real differences between the worlds here as Barry works to find help here but none of his known associates exist in this world – though there is a Central City! The fun comes when Winn and James get involved and there’s a quick info-dump that’s done in a light and silly form, especially with Barry learning that she’s an alien and there are lots of others here. I love the little multiverse piece they bring in – again, to expose this audience to it – and they hit it well without overdoing it. Barry ends up being adopted into the group pretty well as Winn is excited about parallel worlds and time travel, but seeing James getting jealous at the way Barry and Kara are so at ease with each other is just priceless. But nowhere near as priceless as when Barry ends up in Cat’s office with all of them and she just hits sharpy at all of it – and him – wonderfully so.
Cat’s naming process is great with the references that we get as well as how Barry tries to get involved in establishing his name here as well. Barry’s had difficult people to deal with but Cat’s something very new for him and it really is great to see how it all plays out. It’s exactly what you want out of a crossover like this and the interactions in this way.
Siobhan’s setup as the Silver Banshee is well handled as we get some solid background on it, avoiding the metahuman aspect and going for a curse that goes back generations and runs in the family. It’s something she can believe in because of what she’s feeling but also because family doesn’t lie in this manner. So with the knowledge that the way to break it is to kill those that wronged her, she figures her best approach is to get a little help by freeing Livewire and working with her. Their team-up, which works smoothly enough to get things underway, is all that’s needed for Kara to ask Barry for some help and with the promise of more help from them in getting him back to where he belongs. It’s a standard setup and reasoning while also adding a little fun in just seeing how James feels so displaced by Barry – and Barry’s obliviousness because Kara and Barry just see each other as superhero buddies.
What becomes really fun about the two of them as they go up against Livewire and Silver Banshee is that Barry is all about coming up with a plan while Kara is just intent on fighting it out. That’s a little disorienting for him because he usually does try to come up with a plan, so he ends up winging it since it’s her Earth. Of course, that means things don’t go too smoothly at times against the villains since they’re able to catch them by surprise with their team-up, but really it’s just great to see how Siobhan is able to gain an advantage and look great in the costume. Villain costumes have been weak in Supergirl in general, but this one really embraces it in all the right ways, giving her a strong and distinctive look rather than something simple and “real world” in a way.
Naturally, it all comes down to a big fight in the final act with Livewire and Silver Banshee kidnapping Cat as Siobhan is crossing the line and embracing who she is. It’s good to see Barry using his experience on Earth One against a range of opponents that can help here while also being useful in providing a little mentor experience as well to pass on to Kara. There’s a lot to like in seeing how the two sides go at it, having four characters with powers getting into it well and setting it so that they all get good time with it – in public, no less, which will help rehabilitate Supergirl’s image some. Sadly, some of the special effects in it, such as the helicopter sequence, is a little wonky, but the majority of it is a lot of good and fun, hitting the right mood for it all. Of course, Supergirl’s rehabilitation is far too easy, but this is the core of comic books and inspirational material so you can accept it for that it is easily enough.
And yes, the epilogue aspect is just perfect in getting some fun in seeing Kara and Barry race together. That’s always been a part of the comics, albeit with Superman, but getting it here is great since they go with the nicknames and just embrace the comic book side so well. There’s a whole lot to like here in just how adorable these two are in working together and what they bring out with each other. Crossovers can be pretty bad things in a lot of ways, but with this one, they really did nail a whole lot of it and pleased from start to finish in so many ways. It’s utterly infectious when you get down to it and that’s been a huge part of this show for me in that Supergirl is that inspiring and positive. This episode also did some really smart stuff in not trying to cram too many stories here, hence, no Alex or J’onn outside of a very brief mention and even Lucy kept to her smaller role.