After a curiously-worded tweet, Arrow star Stephen Amell has some fans wondering whether The Spectre could be playing a role in "Crisis on Infinite Earths" -- and one fan site is even reporting that Amell himself will be the one to step into the role. The Spectre's presence in "Crisis on Infinite Earths" would not be entirely surprising -- after all, the character played a brief but very significant role in the comic book miniseries on which the event is based. The decision to put Oliver Queen under that particular hood would be a little more surprising -- but something that might make some sense to longtime comics fans.
The Spectre is basically God's avenging angel. While the traditions of superhero comics prevent him (usually) from saying outright what God he works for, The Spectre is divine wrath personified, with some definite Judeo-Christian aspects to his backstory and characterization. The Spectre, also, is a powerful force that needs to be tethered to a human.
Traditionally, one of a small number of humans have hosted The Spectre, and for the overwhelming majority of the character's history it was former Gotham cop Jim Corrigan, who got the gig after a brush with death and served as The Spectre for decades before dying of natural causes. Some other characters have tried on The Spectre's cloak since then, most notably Hal Jordan, the Green Lantern.
In "Day of Judgment," following Corrigan's death, The Spectre's powers were being harnessed by forces from Hell, creating chaos on Earth. After a trip to Heaven to reunite Corrigan's soul with the power of the Spectre, he turned them down, opting to live out his eternal bliss. Desperate, the heroes plucked Jordan -- who at that point was dead after having gone evil, but sacrificing himself in an act of redemption -- out of purgatory.
Hal Jordan would not only bring a close to the battle with Hell, but continue on as The Spectre for quite a while after that, until a suitable replacement could be found.
Trying to relax after an amazing weekend. The spectre of the crossover still looms large.— Stephen Amell (@StephenAmell) October 14, 2019
Such a trajectory is not impossible to imagine, either for the Oliver Queen we have always known or for another Earth's Oliver Queen who may have been a spoiled rich kid whose act of redemption was the kind of heroism that has defined the later life of our Ollie. In fact, Heroic Hollywood is already reporting (based on an anonymous source and prompted by Amell's tweet above) that Amell will play the role). Written well, it could be pretty poignant -- and it could play into something else we all learned this weekend.
Over the weekend, fans were told that Tom Ellis would be playing the role of Lucifer Morningstar (his character from Lucifer and the literal devil) in "Crisis on Infinite Earths." He was reportedly taking part in a scene that also included Matt Ryan's John Constantine, suggesting some magical elements. What if, then, Lucifer was representing Hell and The Spectre was representing Heaven in reality's conflict with the Anti-Monitor?
During an interview with ComicBook.com last week, we asked Amell to address an old theory we came up with -- namely, that Oliver Queen would not die in the Crisis but would be removed to a pocket Universe with Felicity. Asked whether he would prefer death, or a fake-out death like that, Amell teased, "I have a third idea, but I can't tell you what it is."
In the original comics, The Spectre appeared and was one of the beings who came the closest to defeating the Anti-Monitor one-on-one. His inability to do so put him into a coma, and left the villain significantly weakened. It was later established that a hand seen at the dawn of creation -- a long-running mystery of the DC Universe -- was likely that of The Spectre.
"Crisis on Infinite Earths" has loomed over the Arrowverse for years. The series premiere of The Flash featured an allusion to the hero disappearing amid red skies in the year 2024. During the original comics event, red skies were a sign of doom to come to a world during the Crisis. At the end of last season, a couple of things happened: The Monitor (LaMonica Garrett), who had appeared in "Elseworlds," reappeared and revealed that Oliver Queen was destined to die in the Crisis...and the future newspaper at STAR Labs rolled back the expected date of the Crisis from 2024 to 2019.
In the comics, Crisis on Infinite Earths centered on a battle between the combined superheroes (and even some villains) of the DC multiverse and an immortal, cosmic threat known as the Anti-Monitor. Like The Monitor, the Anti-Monitor will be played by LaMonica Garrett in the Arrowverse. As the Anti-Monitor destroys realities, he replaces their positive matter energy with antimatter, growing his own power and sphere of influence. He was eventually stopped by the sacrifices of several heroes, including The Flash and Supergirl, as well as the merging of multiple universes to save reality by becoming a single, unified timeline. Fans have long wondered whether the events of "Crisis on Infinite Earths" might bring Supergirl and even Black Lightning to Earth-1, where the rest of the series take place. The crossover will also feature guest appearances by Tom Welling as Clark Kent, Erica Durance as Lois Lane, John Wesley Shipp as the Flash of Earth-90, Johnathon Schaech as Jonah Hex, Kevin Conroy as Bruce Wayne, and Ashley Scott as The Huntress.
"Crisis on Infinite Earths" kicks off on Sunday, December 8 on Supergirl, runs through a Monday episode of Batwoman and that Tuesday's episode of The Flash. That will be the midseason cliffhanger, as the shows go on hiatus for the holidays and return on January 14 to finish out the event with the midseason premiere of Arrow and a "special episode" of DC's Legends of Tomorrow, which launches as a midseason series this year and so will not have an episode on the air before the Crisis.