Todd Helbing, the executive producer of The CW’s The Flash and Superman & Lois, has news about the connection between the shows and it’s not good for the future of crossovers or the Arrowverse itself.
While he didn’t rule out characters meeting again somehow in an exclusive interview with Looper, Helbing declared The Flash and Superman & Lois are set on separate Earths.
“We’re a different planet, a different Earth,” he explained. “The Superman that you saw in all the crossovers is not the same as the Superman on our planet. It’s clearly a doppelganger.” The same would be true then for Lois and Arrow’s John Diggle — who cameoed whenever actor David Ramsey was invited to direct an episode.
He added the decision, whether or not it makes sense, came from the DC office. “Part of how this all folds in the big picture with DC is ultimately a DC decision. I’m sure there’ll be more clarity in the future, but as of now, we’re a different Earth in the DC Universe.”
The revelation became canon in the Superman & Lois season 2 finale when General Lane (Dylan Walsh) made a speech edifying that the Man of Steel is the only superhero known in his universe.
At first glance, the Arrowverse Crisis on Infinite Earths adaptation should render this outcome impossible but the crossover only reduced the size of the Multiverse rather than erasing it. For instance, there was enough room for Black Lightning to stand on its own, and the Legends of Tomorrow continued hopping around time periods and dimensions.
That was until they were canceled along with Naomi, Batwoman, and Supergirl — making the Arrowverse even smaller — with The Flash currently being the last one standing. However, don’t expect a narrower focus to make potential crossovers easier.
“With General Lane’s speech there about Superman being the only hero, it might be a little tricky to do crossovers in the way that we’ve done them historically. I don’t know,” Helbing admitted.
He added that The Flash, where he still has a lot of friends including Grant Gustin, “would probably be my first call” if an opportunity arose but cautiously reiterates, “It’s a little tricky now to do all this, but we’ll see what happens.”
It shouldn’t prove to be that hard when Flash can travel to other worlds and through time by running fast enough, and comic book/sci-fi logic has always been outlandish anyway. Still, Helbing seems at a loss.
“It’s hard to speculate other than they’re still comic book shows,” he declared. “There are guests in comic book shows all the time. I don’t know if we’ll have exactly the same thing — it’s hard to perceive [what could happen in] the superhero genre.”
Helbing would end on this note: there is always the chance CW’s DC continuity gets rebooted totally in the next few years, opening new opportunities entirely. “It would be great if, four years from now, there was a completely different second wave of this. We could do those. They were a lot of fun, but it’s hard to say.”
Effectively, the Arrowverse is dead, it isn’t hard to say at all.