The CW's DC shows Arrow and The Flash are back, with the former returning for its fourth season and the latter in its second. Not only are both series looking to raise the bar in terms of quality, but they are both serving as building blocks for a shared DC TV universe. Characters are rapidly being introduced to both series and each week both make nods to the events taking place in the other.
The Flash and Arrow are setting up the third DC series - DC's Legend of Tomorrow - which introduces a team of supporting characters going on a quest through time to stop the villainous Vandal Savage. However, before that series airs, the two shows are set to have their annual crossover episodes.
Last year's crossovers, "The Flash Vs Arrow" and "The Brave and the Bold", showed the two heroes building their relationship and establishing a dynamic. It was a sort of introduction to the shared universe for those who were only watching one of the two series. As such, both episodes were standalone and actually worked independent of each other - each episode had its own plot and villain, as well as separate settings.
However, The CW is getting bolder in terms of its DC universe and this year's crossover looks to be a true, multi-night event. Speaking with Zap2It, Arrow star Stephen Amell dropped a few hints about what to expect from the two episodes.
"Last year was designed so that if you were a fan of one show or a fan of the other show, you could enjoy 1.08 of 'Flash' and 3.08 of 'Arrow' independent of one another. It's not the case this year. If you put them back to back on one night, they would run like one two-hour episode of television. In fact, most of the 'Flash' episode takes place in Star City and most of the 'Arrow' episode takes place in central city. We have a common villain... and just in general we've done an excellent job of weaving not just two shows, but three shows together."
Though most of the crossover has already been filmed, production is not yet complete on the episodes. There's little information about the plot of the episode, but it was confirmed to serve as a springboard for DC's Legends of Tomorrow. Knowing this, Amell dropped one final, tantalizing hint at what can be expected from the event.
"We shot a scene that had, like, nine superheroes in it. Nine people with either powers or super suits... It was an amazing thing to look at, to look out over the scene and see the world that has been built over the course of three-plus years."
The idea of nine costumed heroes in a single episode is especially impressive considering the grounded approach the first season of Arrow took to the DC Universe. Looking at that season, it would have been impossible to predict that heroes like the Flash and Firestorm were going to play a major role in the TV universe. It's a welcome addition - one that altered the course of Arrow and allowed The Flash to spin off into it's own incredible series. Seeing all of the heroes, the carefully placed pieces, finally uniting in one episode should make this crossover event the most successful episode of both series.
Season 2 of The Flash airs Tuesdays at 8/7pm central; Season 4 of Arrow airs on Wednesdays at 8/7pm central; Legends of Tomorrow begins in 2016.