"Elseworlds" Part 1 Drops a Subtle Nod to the First Arrowverse Crossover

"Elseworlds" might be messing up the history of the Arrowverse as we know it, but it paid tribute to the franchise's humble beginnings at the same time.

Spoilers for tonight's episode of The Flash, "Elseworlds Part 1", below!

The episode saw Oliver Queen (Stephen Amell) and Barry Allen (Grant Gustin) thrown into an entirely new situation, as they accidentally swapped lives after Dr. John Deegan (Jeremy Davies) rewrote reality. Frustrated that no one on Earth-1 was aware of the switch, the pair traveled to Earth-38, to ask Kara Danvers (Melissa Benoist) to help.

They ended up at the Kent Farm with Kara, Clark Kent (Tyler Hoechlin) and Lois Lane (Elizabeth Tulloch), who offered to help them with their problem. Barry and Oliver then decided to start training at the farm, which caused a bit of a conflict between the two heroes, as they failed to understand each other's approach to superheroics. Barry shoots an Arrow at Oliver, which he catches, only for a Oliver to then be shot in the back with several arrows.

Of course, this is a pretty clear callback to the first "Flash vs. Arrow" crossover, which saw the pair teaming up all the way back in 2014. Back in that episode, Oliver tried to train Barry to be a better hero, something that was slightly complicated by Barry being emotionally manipulated by Rainbow Raider. Oliver then used several arrows to shoot Barry in the back, something that took the younger vigilante by surprise.

It's a bit of a clever homage, one that highlights just how far Barry and Oliver have come since they first teamed up as superheroes. Of course, the sense of them swapping identities adds a fun twist to things, something that fans can expect to see all throughout the three nights of "Elseworlds".

“You’re not going to see me playing Oliver Queen’s mannerisms, or Stephen playing Barry’s mannerisms." Gustin explained in a previous interview. "It’s more being aware that for some reason we’ve switched lives and destinies. It’s more the fun of the situational comedy that we keep finding ourselves in, and less us having a complete role reversal. We get to see Stephen do some of the more goofy speed stuff I have to do on a regular basis, and I get some actual combat as Green Arrow. So, we just see different colors for each of us.”

“Having superpowers is crazy! Wearing the Flash suit is crazy!” says Amell. “The idea is that in order to be the best version of Barry Allen, which I have to be because we face a threat, there are elements of his personality I have to embrace, and there are elements of my personality that he has to embrace.”

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"Elseworlds" continues with Arrow on Monday, December 10th at 8/7c, and Supergirl on Tuesday, December 11th, at 8/7c.