The CW's annual DC Universe crossover is coming soon -- and while the episodes will not include the cast of DC's Legends of Tomorrow, that doesn't mean there aren't quite a lot of DC superheroes and supervillains on display.
"Elseworlds" sees Oliver Queen and Barry Allen get "Freaky Friday-ed," and they have to figure out who is doing it and why. Meanwhile, other changes to reality start to take place, and in order to figure it all out they have to team up with Supergirl, Batwoman, Superman, and the Flash of another universe.
So who do we know for sure is coming to "Elseworlds?" Read on.
And if we missed anybody, hit us up in the comments.
(No, we aren't counting people like Batman and Victor Fries, who are at least name-dropped but not confirmed. And there's no Legends listed here, even though there is reportedly a Legends of Tomorrow cameo along the way.)
Oliver Queen and John Diggle are known to be appearing in the crossover, but few other Arrow heroes have been confirmed.
During a recent visit to the set of Arrow, Juliana Harkavy said that she would not be appearing in the crossover, while Rick Gonzalez simply teased that fans will "have to wait and see," neither confirming nor denying.
(We'll get to him later.)
This time around, unlike last year, we don't get two Supergirls -- but that doesn't mean we won't have more than one Kryptonian (more on that in a minute). Still, Melissa Benoist seems to be one of the only main characters without a doppelganger, alternate reality duplicate, or something to that effect going on...
...as far as we know, anyway.
Not only will he appear in more than one episode of the story, but we have seen set photos where Oliver, Barry, and Kara all go to visit the Kent Family farm in Smallville.
We already knew that she and Clark were in a relationship, and that she knew his secret identity, so this really is not much of a surprise, although one has to wonder whether he lives at the farm (and commutes to Metropolis?) or if they are there chasing down some kind of story.
Little is known about the character's role in the crossover, other than the fact that she will first encounter Green Arrow and Cisco Ramon, and that she will eventually help Oliver and Barry find Dr. John Deegan, one of the story's villains.
These specific people, with no ties to Central City (but ties to Oliver Queen) seem to suggest that the rewriting of reality really is all about The Flash and Green Arrow. It's hard to say what that means, exactly, other than the fact that Deegan might turn out to have ties to one or both of the heroes.
And then hijinks ensue!
It is not yet clear whether Iris and Felicity will play a big role outside of their own shows, but it seems that we will at least briefly see each of the wives and hopefully get a little sense for how they react to the idea that their husbands appear to have gone out of their minds.
Oliver Queen's wife hasn't been seen in any of the crossover photos or trailers yet, so we can assume that her role is either a twist, or fairly small, or both.
That said, ComicBook.com has heard that Felicity will take part in the crossover...her role just has not yet been revealed.
We know that at first, Team Flash do not believe Barry about the fact that he is in fact Oliver Queen's brain in Barry's body. We also know that at one point, Cisco and Oliver/Barry go looking for Batman and find Batwoman instead.
Last but not least, we know that somehow, in some version of the story, Cisco ends up as what appears to be a powerful drug kingpin with James Olsen as one of his enforcers.
Because that...is a thing.
"Elseworlds" is weird, guys.
In the DC Comics Universe, the Monitor is practically as old as the universe itself, having been born alongside his twin, the powerful and destructive Anti-Monitor. It was the Anti-Monitor that the heroes from across the DC Comics multiverse had to unite to fight against in "Crisis on Infinite Earths", which has recently had a bit of a relevance in the larger Arrowverse.
Regardless of whatever role The Monitor plays in the event, it sounds like he will be making quite an impression.
“LaMonica was ridiculous, like seeing him in his suit, he’s just a monster,” The Flash star Grant Gustin said of Garrett's performance. “He’s like an absolute unit. He doesn’t have to do a lot with his performance. He’s so intimidating with just these subtleties, so that’s dope.”
In any case, you can see an image above in which the two are both dressed like outlaw bikers.
The back of their jackets have a very specific patch or embossing on them. The symbol on the jackets belongs to the Trigger Twins. In DC Comics, there were actually two sets of Trigger Twins, one being a pair of heroes while the second is a pair of villains most commonly associated with Batman. Based on the leaked photos, it's hard to tell which version "Elseworlds" is leaning into -- the heavy use of black in the outfits seem to lean towards the villains who notably appeared in both Infinite Crisis and Blackest Night, while the bandanas are a little more in keeping with the heroic pair who first made their appearance in All-Star Western #58 back in 1951.
"Elseworlds" was the name of an imprint, which ran from 1989 until 2010, in which familiar characters and concepts from the DC Universe would be imported into strange and unfamiliar circumstances. The first of the Elseworlds titles was Gotham by Gaslight, which dealt with Batman hunting Jack the Ripper in Victorian Gotham. The final was Superman: Last Family of Krypton, which centered on an alternate timeline where Jor-El and Lara were able to join their son in traveling to Earth, and the world had to cope with a super-powered family.
The brand itself was just a savvier way of telling "imaginary stories," as DC used to call their non-canon tales in the pre-Crisis on Infinite Earths times -- but even within the main continuity, you would sometimes get a riff on the established DC Universe. Often, such stories would alter reality for a brief time, or at least convince the heroes that they were living in a different universe than the one readers knew.
One such story, "Destiny's Hand," centered on the return of Doctor Destiny, a villain who could reshape reality by using a stone called the Materioptikon, or Dreamstone, which allowed him to create entire realities by using dreams or memories.
There is no telling exactly how the black-costumed Superman will operate in the crossover, but it certainly looks like he's a bad guy, either willed into existence by John Deegan or otherwise working for him.
We have a theory, though:
With the arrival of The Monitor in The CW's forthcoming "Elseworlds" crossover event, fans have been wondering how long until the other shoe drops and we get a hint that Crisis on Infinite Earths mega-villain The Anti-Monitor might show up...but comparably few fans have been asking about another character who plays a huge role in that story.
Superboy-Prime, one of the multiverse's Clark Kents, was one of a handful of characters saved from being erased from history at the end of the first Crisis -- and he would return later to serve as the main antagonist in Infinite Crisis as well as a handful of other events, including "The Sinestro Corps War" and Countdown to Final Crisis.
In the latter, Superboy Prime took on the identity of "Superman Prime," as well as donning the black-and-silver costume that the Man of Steel wore when he returned from the dead.
One big difference between the "regeneration suit" worn by the main universe's Kal-El and the one worn by his demented doppelganger? Earth-Prime's Superman added a black cape to the outfit.
That version of the costume -- featuring the cape and with "Superman" wearing his hair short -- was the visual inspiration for Zack Snyder's nightmare sequence in Man of Steel, and now will also be brought to life by Tyler Hoechlin's Superman in "Elseworlds."
It isn't yet clear what role she plays, or whether they might be setting her up as a potential villain for Batwoman should that rumored series get off the ground, but it looks like she's got a cold gun to work with...!
Again, little is known about what Caitlin Snow is up to in the crossover; we have seen her in an image or two, but mostly it just seems as though she is part of the Team Flash that doesn't believe Oliver at first that he isn't Barry.
But it could be really interesting to see her bounce off Nora Fries, especially since it was recently revealed that her father had dealings with Victor once upon a time.
With a little luck, he will show up in more than just an alternate-Earth mode, unlike last year's crossover where Earth-X Guardian was pretty much it.
So far, there is no real indication of which might be true, but in our heart of hearts we kind of hope he's the Flash of the Earth represented by Shipp's original 1990 The Flash series.
...Of course, that would raise some questions about the appearance of the farm from Smallville in the crossover...!
Could we finally see Martian Manhunter shapeshift into his superhero form while other superheroes are around?
During his on-set interview, Jesse Rath revealed a little bit about who he is teamed with in the crossover, and it is someone that Rath himself has long admired as a fan of the Arrowverse before being hired onto Supergirl.
We won't spoil it -- look for more details in the week leading up to the crossover, of course -- but we will say that he confirmed for us that he appears in the Supergirl episode of the crossover, and that he will meet some people from the other shows. Beyond that...well, you'll have to wait.