Legends of Tomorrow showed fans a distant future in last week's episode, and it could take the larger Arrowverse into new territory.
In the third episode of the season, entitled 'Zari', the titular team traveled to a dystopian 2042, where ARGUS had established a sort of military state. As the Legends quickly learned, this was largely thanks to the "AntiMetahuman Act", which outlawed any sort of superpowered individuals.
According to Legends' executive producer Marc Guggenheim, there are currently no plans for the Anti Metahuman Act to factor into the other Arrowverse shows. But could it play a role in the Arrowverse down the line? And what ways would it manifest in the shows set in the present day?
Interestingly, the Arrowverse introduced something that could be a precursor to the Anti Metahuman Act shortly after that Legends episode aired.
The most recent episode of Arrow, 'Next Of Kin', had a subplot surrounding a piece of "anti vigilante legislation" in Star City. Mayor Oliver Queen (Stephen Amell) was pressured to add his signature to it, and wrestled back and forth with whether or not to do it. Ultimately, Oliver dismissed the legislation, electing instead to put it up to a city-wide vote.
While it's unknown exactly how that vote will turn out, it certainly has the potential to be something risky within the Arrowverse. Sure, if it were voted in, it would immediately effect the ensemble on Team Arrow. But it would also set a risky precedent for cities worried about their crime-fighting heroes - and certainly create a culture where the Anti Metahuman Act would be accepted.
But honestly, the organization that supposedly keeps the Anti Metahuman Act in place is just as important as the act itself.
ARGUS has played a pretty varied role in the Arrowverse shows, beginning with the introduction of Amanda Waller on Arrow. Under Waller, the group arguably had some questionable morals, but being against metahumans never seemed to be a part of that.
Since Waller's death, the organization has been run by Lyla Michaels (Audrey Marie Anderson). Lyla tried to reshape the organization into something more positive, with the safety of human lives being their top priority. It also dealt with metahumans a bit more, namely with King Shark in a crossover episode with The Flash.
What exactly could it take for ARGUS to reach such a drastic extreme down the line? Even with 2042 seeming ages away from the show's current timeline, it's unknown exactly when the Act is first set in place. This means it very well could unfold - or at least be referenced in some way - in a later season of an Arrowverse show.
So how could the Anti Metahuman Act unfold on one of the other Arrowverse shows, without majorly affecting the shows' superhero nature? Well, there are a few options, depending on which comic book universe you draw from.
In the DC Universe, the closest proxy is the Keene Act, which was a core element of the world of Watchmen. The act outlawed all sorts of "costumed adventuring", aside from a select few employed by the US government.
This very well could unfold within the worlds of Arrow and The Flash, especially with quite a few of its characters already working for the local law enforcement.
And perhaps the other most well known storyline of this kind is Marvel's Superhero Registration Act. While the law didn't outlaw superhero activity, it did require those with powers to join a government registry, or suffer the consequences. As many Marvel fans know, this led to the plot of Civil War, with heroes debating the moral obligations of registering.
While a version of this story was already brought onscreen in Captain America: Civil War, the Arrowverse is in a unique position to create their own version of this conflict. While some fans might disapprove of the idea of the universe's heroes going head to head over the Anti Metahuman Act, it would make for pretty interesting TV - and create a crossover unlike ever before.