The Flash: “Elseworlds, Part 1” Recap, Season 5, Episode 9

15 Min Read
Supergirl (Melissa Benoist), The Green Arrow (Grant Gustin), and The Flash (Stephen Amell). Image courtesy of The CW.

The Flash opens up the three-part crossover of Elseworlds and I have to be honest, it’s hilarious! We still get our danger and craziness that we expect from our DC shows, but the switch of Barry and Oliver is so much fun.

Before we get to that though, the show opens with the snippet that aired at the end of each of our shows last week. The Flash from Earth 90 is surrounded by the bodies of other fallen superheroes. He’s the last chance at overcoming The Monitor, but he can’t do it alone. He runs off, presumably to Earth 1.

The Monitor (LaMonica Garrett) gives his book to John Deegan (Jeremy Davies). Image courtesy of The CW.

The Monitor already made his way here though. He meets Dr. John Deegan, who appears to be a psychiatrist with hopeful dreams for the future. He gives his book to John and tells him that it holds the key to transformation. The book basically gives him the power of a god. After suggesting that John “think big,” The Monitor leaves.

After that, we start off with Oliver waking up in Barry and Iris’ apartment. He’s quite confused and nothing gets clearer when he gets a kiss from Iris as she serves him breakfast. When he starts to realize that he’s Barry, he begins to play along. As soon as she leaves, he tests out his speed by running across the living room. Baby steps and all that. Iris returns to give him the Flash ring. He ejects the suit and puts it on Flash style. Looking good, Oliver!

He doesn’t get long to try out his newfound speed because there is a break in at IVO Labs. After missing his stop, Oliver heads back and is a little lost as to what he should do. He does manage to throw a lightning bolt that, while a little crazy, takes out the bad guys. Unfortunately, it also hits a robot that is now awake, but Oliver doesn’t know.

Since “Barry” is acting out of sorts, Caitlin runs some tests, but everything comes back normal. Oliver tells the worried members of Team Flash that he needs to leave and go visit someone who may understand his problem. That person being Oliver Queen. 

Of course, Oliver Queen is actually Barry and he is getting his butt kicked by John Diggle. That’s only temporary though as his Green Arrow reflexes kick in and he lays Diggle out. He’s momentarily excited by the realization that he’s now Oliver, but that quickly gives way to seeing this is a problem. Like Oliver, Barry doesn’t get a lot of time to adjust. There’s a fight between rival groups at one of Diaz’s old weapons cache in the Glades. Diggle tells Barry to “suit up.” This leaves Barry trying to figure out how to put it on and asking Diggle, “Do I need help putting this on?”

Barry does get the outfit figure out and he and Diggle head out to the warehouse. While he has the Green Arrow’s skills, he doesn’t have his knowledge. He fires the wrong arrow and ends up having to fight off like a dozen guys. As we know, hand-to-hand combat without his speed is not one of Barry’s strong suits, so he’s super excited. The victory is short-lived when the real Oliver speeds his way through, grabbing Barry and Diggle in the process. When they stop Diggle-as usual- gets sick. The continuity of that fact is awesome!

Grant Gustin is donning the Green Arrow costume for Elseworlds. Image courtesy of The CW.

Barry is still on a high from having new skills, even trying out the legendary salmon ladder. He’s not all that keen to work on getting the switch fixed until Oliver mentions that he woke up in the wrong bed. The fact that Oliver would be sleeping with Iris was enough to get him on board with figuring out how to change back. They go to Team Flash with the news that they are the wrong people, but it is not well-received. No one believes them and they end up locked in the pipeline meta prison. Barry thinks that if they can get free they could get an extrapolator and go to Kara’s Earth to see if she remembers who they really are. This way they will know if it just their Earth that is affected. Luckily, they are two guys who are excellent at escaping.  

Oliver says they need to back up the toilet and that will fry the dampener. (We’ll ignore that every single mega-villain that has been put in the prison has never thought about that.) For it to happen though, one of them will have to get their cuffs off. Since Barry has Oliver’s skills, it stands to reason that the ligaments in his hand will be flexible enough for him to dislocate his thumb and get the cuffs off. He’s hesitant, but finally manages it and the dampener gets fried. Once his part is done, it’s Oliver’s turn to learn a new trick. After laughing about Barry’s still dislocated thumb, he manages to phase them through the door.

Free from the prison cell, they go in search of an extrapolator. Iris happens to be in possession of it and she catches them. Barry tells her the story of when he first met her and she believed him when he said his dad did not murder his mom. He asks her to believe him again. She can finally feel it and she does believe him, willingly handing over the extrapolator.  

On Earth 38, we’re taken to the Kent Farm in Smallville, KS. Lois Lane is there helping Clark fix up his truck. She’s a sassy thing who also happens to know about Clark’s super alter ego. Kara is there, as well. Clark is letting her hang out at the farm since she had to leave the DEO for not admitting her secret identity.

Barry and Oliver show up, surprising everyone. Thankfully, Kara still remembers them as themselves. This happens to be their first time meeting Clark and Oliver’s reaction is priceless. He starts male posturing, puffing out his chest as if he could actually take on Superman.

Kara stop Lois Lane from hammering on Barry and Oliver. (Tyler Hoechlin, Elizabeth Tulloch, Melissa Benoist, Stephen Amell, Grant Gustin) Image courtesy of The CW.

Back on Earth 1, the robot Oliver woke up, A.M.A.Z.O. (Anti-Metahuman Adaptive Zutonic Organism), is destroying IVO Labs. Caitlin and Ralph try to take it on, but they fail. What’s worse is that the robot has the ability to assimilate their powers. At least it doesn’t take them away like Cicada. They realize that having the Flash or Green Arrow would be useful, but Iris admits she let them go and she believes them. Luckily, Cisco believes them, too. He admits to vibing a strange man and that combined with the weird weather phenomenon makes him think that Barry and Oliver may very well have been switched.

On the farm, Barry is getting a lesson in shooting his bow, even though he’s already good at it. He manages to anger Oliver when he pulls the same trick on him that Oliver had done to him. While Oliver managed to catch the arrow Barry shot at him, he gets nailed in the back with two arrows from remote-controlled crossbows set up in the field. He gets mad and feels like Barry is treating this whole situation like a joke or a game. Oliver points out that every lesson he’s learned comes with a painful memory and he draws on that darkness. It feeds who he is when he is the Green Arrow. For Barry, it’s the opposite. His power comes from joy. They come to the conclusion that they need to start acting more like each other.

Barry (Grant Gustin) stops to take a photo of his successful prank on Oliver (Stephen Amell). Image courtesy of The CW.

Cisco shows up and says they all believe the guys now. He also tells them they need help with their A.M.A.Z.O. problem. Instead of just getting Barry and Oliver, Kara and Clark decide to come, too. Can we say “Dream Team,” everybody?

They all come back to Earth 1 and proceed to hit A.M.A.Z.O. with everything they got. They keep up a quick rotation to keep it from having time to replicate their powers. Their plans come to a smashing end when Superman torpedoes it into the ground. It’s not that easy to kill though. It comes right back up and replicates their powers anyway. Since it can now phase, they can’t even hit it.

Sherloque says that it’s a computer so they should just “turn it off.” Cisco works on a virus that will disable it while Barry enacts a plan of his own. He sends Oliver off to draw A.M.A.Z.O. back and tells the super cousins to wait. Iris suggests that it may have the same weaknesses as those it cloned powers from, but Barry shocks her by saying they aren’t going to weaken it. “We’re going to send it straight to hell.” How very Oliver of you, Barry!

The virus is delivered to Barry and Oliver gets his hands on A.M.A.Z.O., counteracting it’s phasing with his own. This allows Supergirl and Superman to grab ahold of it and hold it steady. After uttering the Green Arrow catchphrase, Barry fires the arrow with the attached virus, hitting A.M.A.Z.O. in the eye. The whole thing explodes into pieces.

With the danger having passed, Clark heads back to Earth 38, but Kara stays behind to help out. It’s not like she can do much back at her Earth anyway. Iris is upset with Barry for how he acted during the fight with A.M.A.Z.O. She fully believes that he is really her Barry and she asks that when he comes back, he comes back as himself. “You’re the Green Arrow now, but please don’t become Oliver Queen.” Barry promises that he won’t.

Cisco tells Barry and Oliver about the man that he vibed and then shows them. It’s a much more intense vision than before. The man, The Monitor, appears to be speaking directly to them. He tells them that nothing can stop what has been set in motion and that they might as well give up now. Cisco is left with another nose bleed and is extremely freaked out.

Oliver saw enough to draw a sketch of what they saw in the vision. They don’t know who the men in the image are, but he knows the building in the background. It’s in Gotham City and they decide that is where they need to go next.

Last shot of the show is of Batwoman (Ruby Rose). Image courtesy of The CW.

Our final shot is of Batwoman standing high atop a building, looking over her city.

The next episode is the very next day! One of the best parts of the crossover is not having to wait a week for the next episode. Arrow will be on Monday, December 10th at 8/7c as we continue with Elseworlds and finally meet Batwoman. 

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By Crystal
Crystal joined the Nerds and Beyond team in 2018. Three years earlier, she tripped into the Supernatural fandom and decided to stay. It's where her passion for writing was reborn. Her free time is largely centered around creative writing (okay, it's fanfic), providing editing for others, and binging makeover shows. The DC Universe is her other fandom of choice and she lives for the crossover extravaganzas. The main joy in her life is her young son whom she homeschools and takes to Disney World as often as possible.
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