The Flash Showrunner Says "Armageddon" Isn't a Crossover

The Flash returns next week, kicking off its eighth season on The CW with a five-episode event, "Armageddon". But while the "Armageddon" event will see The Flash (Grant Gustin) joined by heroes from other corners of the Arrowverse - including Batwoman (Javicia Leslie), Black Lightning (Cress Williams, The Atom (Brandon Routh), Mia Queen (Katherine McNamara) and more - this isn't exactly a crossover. The Flash showrunner Eric Wallace explained in a recent interview just how "Armageddon" came together and made it clear that the five-episode event isn't a crossover, but is instead a very intimate, and emotional story.

"Two things combined kind of surprisingly, to create the storyline you guys are about to see. I originally had an idea four years ago, and it was right after 'Crisis on Earth-X'. Because my first season on The Flash was season 4. And because I'm that guy, I thought to myself, 'Well, if I ever get to do a crossover, I have this crazy idea', and it was the kernel of what is 'Armageddon'," Wallace told The Flash Podcast. "It was with a different villain, not Despero. But it at least started from the same place and the whole nine yards. Then cut to 4 years later, The CW called up and said, 'Hey we'd like to do not a crossover,' because I want to make it clear to everybody: it's not a crossover. A crossover is a show with 20 heroes all in one scene taking place on 20 worlds, it costs a billion dollars, and it takes all this extra time to shoot. We've none of that due to COVID. So this is a 5-part special event, which means instead of a story that's revolving around Kara, Barry, and Oliver, this is just Barry. This is Barry's story. It's the story of Barry's worst day ever, how it affects his marriage, and how it affects Iris."

Wallace continued, "So when The CW called and said, 'Hey, we don't want to do a crossover. Because we know we can't due to COVID, but what could you give us for some kind of story that's 5 episodes long, that's a little bit bigger, and has a little bit more spectacle than your usual five episodes?' And I remembered my idea from 4 years earlier, and I said, 'I'll get back to you in a week.' I thought about the heart of the story, which is Barry's emotional journey. And I realized there's an even better way to tell this story. And I call it 'The Cloverfield Model', which is based on a movie that I really love. It's a story of a monster rampaging through New York and destroying everything. But it's told in a really intimate, small way. It's about those characters, right? Well, that's what we have here. We have the fate of the entire world at stake here. Cosmic proportions are at jeopardy in Armageddon. But we're telling it in a very small, intimate way that's so Barry and Iris-centric, you're going to be amazed. And that turned out to be the key. And I had to make some changes, obviously. It's 4 years later, there's a different team in place, different characters, Barry's on a different kind of arc, and all that good stuff. But it turned out to be the best thing ever. It wasn't the right time for it back in season 5, but it's the perfect time for it now. And that's how 'Armageddon' really got started."

In "Armageddon", a powerful alien threat arrives on Earth under mysterious circumstances and Barry and Iris and the rest of Team Flash are pushed to their limits in a desperate battle to save the world. But with time running out, and the fate of humanity at stake, Flash and his companions will also need to enlist the help of some old friends if the forces of good are to prevail.

The event will feature appearances by Javicia Leslie as Batwoman, Brandon Routh as The Atom, Cress Williams as Black Lightning, Chyler Leigh as Sentinel, Katherine McNamara as Mia Queen, Osric Chau as Ryan Choi, Tom Cavanagh as Eobard Thawne, and Neal McDonough as Damien Darhk.

The Flash airs Tuesdays at 8/7c on The CW. "Armageddon" kicks off on November 16th with "Armageddon, Part 1."