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Headscratchers / Crisis on Infinite Earths (2019)

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    The Legends and Earth- 16 
  • Part 1 established that the alternative Star City 2046 they Legends traveled to was the future of Earth-16, presumably to address the continuity issues with the Connor Hawke character. Yet when Sara interacts with that Oliver, he not only has no memory of the events of that Legends of Tomorrow, but the history of that Earth from 2007-2016 doesn't match up with Earth-1's history. And since when could the Waverider travel to alternate Earths? What's going on?
    • Continuity Snarl, just like with Earth 2 and Robert Queen in the first episode of Arrow Season 8. Oliver seems far younger and doesn't remember Sara already being there. It seems like a communication screw-up between the writers.
    • My theory is that something about the way the Monitor changed Ollie's fate caused the 'old' future to spawn a new universe where events played out almost the same as they would have done on Earth-1 had Ollie lived. So the Waverider didn't travel to an alterate reality, but an alternate reality matching the version of 2046 it visited was later created. And then the timey-wimey ball changed a bunch of details about its history.
    • The destruction of the Time Masters’ Oculus back in the first season of Legends would make more sense than the Monitor's influence - the Time Masters used the Oculus to manipulate the timeline to suit their needs, ergo one can assume that the destruction of the Oculus caused the timeline to eventually reshape itself to what we see in other episodes.
    • Flashpoint also could account for it.
    • Maybe it was Earth-1 they visited after all and Sara was just wrong? Or Jonathan went to some other Earth? I mean, there's no proof that Earth-16 is the one they visited other than Sara just saying so.

    The Fate of Earth- 89 Joker 
  • Alexander Knox was seen reading a newspaper with the headline Batman Captures Joker. if this is the same Earth/continuity as the Burton/Schumacher Batman films, the Joker was killed by Batman. So how is he still alive? Is The Joker a Legacy Character in that universe?
    • I doubt it is meant to be the exact same universe in that particular case, it was just a reference.
    • The brought back the same actor, used part of the film's theme song, used art on the paper designed to look like it's Batman, and it is called Earth-89.
    • If they're willing to bring in all the other continuities they are, it'd be pretty absurd to assume that they'd get cold feet for that sole one, yet still feel the obligation to reference it.
    • The Joker finding a way to cheat death is a constant in any universe.
    • He could very well have gotten an imitator years later.
    • Didn't the script for the fifth movie involve Joker being resurrected by Harley Quinn and Scarecrow? That could explain how he could be alive for Batman to capture.
    • He was only supposed to come back as a fear toxin induced hallucination.
    • Rumor has it the newspaper was supposed to announce Bruce Wayne's wedding to Selina Kyle, a more fitting reference for the Burton films (which heavily teased Catwoman's survival after Batman Returns), but the newspaper was digitally altered in the final cut, possibly to make sure all viewers would get that this universe is a Batman reference.
    • It can most likely be chalked up to an imitator, especially now that there are three Jokers in the comics.

    The Fate of General Zod 

    Oliver's Special Arrow 
  • Oliver inexplicably had an arrow to incapacitate The Monitor so he could give more people from Earth-38 time to evacuate. Is it safe to assume that this arrow is the same "weapon to stop a god" that he was working on with Curtis?
    • It's doubtful that it was said weapon, since it only incapacitated him enough for Oliver to fight some minutes more. However, it's probably researching the weapon that he came up with a way to stop him temporarily
    • Answered in the next part: The Monitor grows weaker as the Anti-Monitor grows stronger. So the Monitor's powers were no longer the same strength they were prior to the Crisis. Which explains why Oliver's arrow actually affected him.

     Sara's comment to Oliver 
  • Sara tells Earth-16 Oliver that he's a good man in every reality. I guess she forgot about Oliver-X?
    • Saying "Except this one who was the Nazi Führer" would have just confused him, on top of spoiling the moment she was going for.
    • She's using Exact Words: At the time she says it, Oliver-X is dead as a door nail, so he doesn't count.
    • There could also be semantics at work. Either Oliver-X is "not really Oliver," so doesn't count, or he's a "good man" by the standards of his Earth, upholding his ideals of justice (warped though they may be, because Planet Nazi) and crossing universes just to save his wife's life.
    • MST3K Mantra. Sara's giving Oliver a pep talk to inspire him, she's not including Oliver-X either because he's dead by now, or he's not really Oliver, or she's just deliberately leaving him out because it would ruin the mood (and the point she's making).

     Black Lightning's Earth 
  • With so many Earths being numbered like it's going out of fashion, they almost seem to be avoiding saying which Earth Jefferson's from. (We could infer it's 73 from the nearby scene, but they still don't say it, and at that point Earths are dying off pretty rapidly so it's hard to be sure.)
    • This could be tied to the fact that the "multiverse theorists" in Jefferson's world are clearly using their own numbering system distinct from the Monitor's (their "Earth-1" and "Earth-2" can't possibly be the same as the Arrowverse Earth-1 and Earth-2).
    • With these in mind, Smallville having its own "Earth 2", and other factors, I am thinking there might be different "regional multiverse number systems", similar to regional pokédex numbers in Pokémon.
    • Supported in the fact that the Arrowverse's numbering system matches neither the pre-Crisis nor post-52 DC Comics systems.
    • Judging from the naming convention of some of the other Earths, his could have been Earth-77, after the character's original debut year.

     "He never said which Flash?" 
  • How does it make any sense that they can make those exact words work when The Monitor went exactly to the Barry we all know telling him he had to make the sacrifice play?
    • Oliver's death also played out differently than The Monitor foresaw. Hell, this is the first timeline in the Arrowverse were the Crisis happened five years early. In Thawne's words, the timeline is malleable. These shows how shown time and time again fixed events playing out differently or not playing out at all.
      • There are still a lot of plot holes. The problem is a Barry sacrificing himself to stop the Anti-Matter machine doesn't stop the Anti-Monitor's plan. Also,apparently, the Paragons are needed to stop the Anti-Monitor. How do they stop the Anti-Monitor if one of their Paragons is dead.
      • The Paragons were meant to be more of a backup plan if all else failed. They weren't technically necessary to stop the Anti-Monitor or his plan if they could have stopped him earlier. As for losing a Paragon, as shown with Lex Luthor taking Earth-96 Superman's place, it's possible that another person could take Barry's place if he died.

     "Timey-wimey ball" 
  • The problems with the timeline get worse the more you think about it: Felicity going with The Monitor in the flash forwards in Arrow season 7 implies that in that timeline the crisis was solved, but in season 8 they're sent back to 2019 and it's explicitly stated that in their timeline they hadn't been back, but The Monitor sent them back as part of his plan to prepare Oliver, so why hadn't that happened originally?
    • Why was The Monitor at all uncertain of their success if Arrow, The Flash and Legends of Tomorrow have all visited points of the timeline later than the crisis?
    • The newspaper article about The Flash disappearing makes no sense if nobody on Earth Prime remembers the crisis at all. Was there an original future where they did remember and Earth-1 Barry died? How did that happen?
      • Well yeah, clearly the original Crisis didn’t need a multiverse reboot

     Why did Earth-BL merge with - 1 and -38? 
  • Okay, the Doylist reason is obvious: So that all the DC CW shows will take place in the same universe. But what is the in-universe justification? Earth-1 and Earth-38’s heroes had frequent contact with one another, with Supergirl becoming well-acquainted with Earth-1’s stable of heroes, but Black Lightning didn’t meet any of the other heroes until the middle of Crisis, and they only met him briefly before he was erased alongside the rest of the multiverse, so how did his Earth end up merged with the others?
    • For the sake of justifications, let's go with this. When BL and Flash smashed their lightning together it created a quantum entanglement between them. So when the multiverse was reborn, Jefferson's Earth and Barry's Earth were entwined in such a way that they merged.
    • Odds are, one of the Paragons (most likely Barry) thought about Jefferson as they recreated the universe, and their desire to save him caused Jefferson (and, by extension, those parts of reality connected to him) to be incorporated into the new universe.

    Earth- 167 and other Earths? 
  • According to the recap page for "Crisis on Infinite Earths: Hour Five", Earth-167 did survive, but is it outside of the multiverse, being its own separate universe?
    • Equally, is Stargirl/Courtney Whitmore's Earth, Earth-2 likely to produce a crossover with The Flash (2014) or is that unlikely for Exiled from Continuity reasons?
    • Earth-167 was destroyed along with all the other Earths, but when the Paragons restarted the universe at the Dawn of Time, they unknowingly caused that single universe to split into a new multiverse, one that also contains an Earth-167, presumably not that different from the old Earth-167. It and Earth-Prime are in the same multiverse, it's just the heroes are unaware the multiverse still exists, so there's no contact between them.

     Justice League Line-up 
  • At the end of the crossover, Barry sets up a team to deal with threats to the new Earth-Prime, consisting of the Flash, Supergirl, Martian Manhunter, Batwoman, Superman, White Canary, and Black Lightning (along with an honorary seat for Oliver Queen). While this makes sense from a Doyalist perspective - one representative from each TV show (and Martian Manhunter) - what is the in-universe logic of Black Lightning being on the team? None of the rest of the heroes had met him before the Crisis, and ultimately he only had a brief role in events once he showed up. We the audience know he is a hero with a lot to bring to the table, but why would Barry not include someone with a proven track record like Ray Palmer or John Diggle?
    • Perhaps because he doesn't have a proven track record in their eyes. His rather naieve question about "How often is the world in danger?" may have cemented it, but as a fairly rookie hero who may be out of his depth if faced with something sufficiently big, being able to call on more experienced people like Barry and Sara, or more powerful people like Clark and Kara, could keep him from endangering their new world by trying to fly solo against something he isn't fully prepared for.

     Okay, so what the heck was the original plan? 
  • Clearly, Novu's original plan (whatever it was) went off the rails with Ollie dying and the Crisis being moved forward five years. But what was the whole thing with the Book of Destiny and all that? Did he even have a plan? Because it feels like he basically just destroyed all those Earths and put all those heroes to the test for nothing.
     The Old Transporter Problem 
  • I guess I'll ask it: are we ever going to get some kind of confirmation that everyone from now on (besides the paragons) is the actual person i.e. has their soul, but with different memories, and not just a copy a la a Time Remnant or a clone Oliver willed into existence? Because the latter is the obvious conclusion.
    • Considering they restarted the multiverse at the Dawn of Time, that would mean that they're all the original people just with new memories and possibly different locations. Plus, Oliver was effectively God at that point, so bringing back the originals would be well within his power to do, especially since Crisis effectively never happened in this new multiverse.

     (Meta) Why just Earth BL? 
  • It's relatively obvious why the creators didn't want to merge the Titans or Doom Patrol universes with Earth Prime (namely, they have their own versions of Superman and Batman), but why did they decide that Black Lightning (2018), a series filmed half a continent away from most the rest of the Arrowverse shows, should be merged, but not, say, Swamp Thing (a character long associated with John Constantine) or maybe set Batwoman (2019) up as a sequel to Gotham with any discrepancies being excusable by Crisis? Especially since the number of things Black Lightning has done with Crisis can be counted on one hand with fingers to spare? Was it licensing issues that only allowed cameos, or what?
    • In-universe answer: At least the Legends, specifically Barry, know of Jefferson. Probably when the Paragons were recreating their world, the characters only thought about bringing together people they knew. So Kara and J'onn's Earth, Earth-1, and Black Lightning's Earth all came together. Real-world answer: Probably licensing issues, yeah.
    • For the real world answers, I think what is more likely is that having all the DC-CW shows be set on the same Earth made crossing over, even in small ways and thus make it feel like a fully realised universe easier going forward. The exception being Stargirl, whose history was so different from the main Arrowverse that it required it being on a different earth. Shows not made by the CW/Berlanti team probably weren't even considered to be folded in for similar reasons.