‘The Flash’ Season 4 Crossover Recap and Review: Crisis on Earth-X, Part 3

The Flash season 4 episode 8
Grant Gustin as Barry Allen/The Flash, Victor Garber as Professor Martin Stein and Franz Drameh as Jefferson “Jax” Jackson (Photo: Katie Yu © 2017 The CW Network)

The CW’s The Flash season four episode eight is the third part of the network’s epic superhero crossover involving Legends of Tomorrow, Arrow, Supergirl, and The Flash. “Crisis on Earth-X, Part 3” starts on Earth-X with Barry (Grant Gustin), Oliver (Stephen Amell), Alex (Chyler Leigh), Dr. Martin Stein (Victor Garber), Sara (Caity Lotz), and Jax (Franz Drameh) trapped in a prison camp wearing power-reducing collars and handcuffs. The camp is full of those who the Nazis find unfit to be part of their society, including those who are of Jewish heritage or homosexual.

Jax talks to a young man named Ray (Russell Tovey) who’s also locked up and asks him why he’s in the camp. He simply answers, “For loving the wrong person.” In comes the Camp Commander who’s the doppelgänger of Quentin Lance (Paul Blackthorne). He has the heroes from Earth-1 and Ray marched out to face a firing squad.

After marching just outside the camp, Barry, Oliver, and the rest of the gang try to put up a fight only to be brought to their knees when Lance presses a remote button causing their power collars to deliver unbearable shocks. They get up and are told to march further out. They come to a deep trench and are told to turn around and face the firing squad. The Nazi soldiers raise their machine guns and prepare to fire.

Back on Earth-1 at S.T.A.R. Labs, Eobard Thawne (Tom Cavanagh) has Kara (Melissa Benoist) strapped down on a gurney and is exposing her to Red Sunlight to make her cells and skin weak. This will allow him to perform the heart transplant, taking her heart out and giving it to her evil doppelganger, Overgirl, from Earth-X. “I’m going to crack you open like a walnut,” says Thawne as Evil Kara enters the room to taunt poor, helpless Supergirl.

Iris (Candice Patton) and Felicity (Emily Bett Rickards) are hiding in the air ducts and overhear Thawne’s plan. They decide to try to break Cisco (Carlos Valdes) out of the pipeline where he’s locked up along with Harry (Cavanagh), Caitlin (Danielle Panabaker), and Mick Rory (Dominic Purcell).

Back on Earth-X, Lance says, “Ready…Aim…” and just before he can say “fire” a cold blast of energy hits the Nazi soldiers’ guns, destroying them. Citizen Cold (Wentworth Miller), Captain Cold’s doppelgänger, has just saved our heroes from execution. It turns out he’s also a high-ranking member of the Resistance. He frees them from their power-reducing collars and Ray, now freed from his restraints, turns into a flying, bright gold man who shoots gold power beams out of his hands. He uses them to drive off the troops as the others make a run for it.

Snart – or as he likes to be called, Leo – and Ray take the heroes to their Resistance base where they meet the group’s leader, General Schott (Jeremy Jordan), Winn’s doppelgänger. Since both the Fuhrer (Oliver’s doppelgänger) and evil Kara are on Earth-1, Schott believes this is the perfect moment to destroy the facility where the multiverse Gateway is to ensure they can never return. The problem is, Barry, Oliver, Alex, and the rest of the group want him to wait at least one hour to give them a chance to fight their way through and get back to their Earth. Schott says no and that he’s going to order the strike.

Back on Earth-1, Overgirl’s telling a weakening Kara that she could have been a god and ruled her own Earth if she wasn’t so weak and foolish. She compares ordinary humans to ants and says they need a leader. Kara, still attempting to be her spunky self, tells her Nazi doppelgänger what she’s talking about is being a dictator, not a leader.

Iris and Felicity drop down from the shafts and knock out the soldiers guarding the pipeline’s main door. Unfortunately, Felicity realizes she can’t open the door so now they have to find a way to free Kara themselves.

The Flash season 4 episode 8
Wentworth Miller as Citizen Cold/Leo, Jeremy Jordan as Winn Schott and Russell Tovey as The Ray/Ray Terrill (Photo: Katie Yu © 2017 The CW Network)

Back on Earth-X, Alex approaches Schott and tries to convince him to give them some time to save her sister over on Earth-1. She tries reaching his humanity by talking about the relationship his doppelgänger has with Kara on her Earth and how they’re family and would do anything for each other. Her words fall on deaf ears and the strike to destroy the Gateway is a go.

Leo approaches his boyfriend Ray, who’s originally from Earth-1, and asks him to talk to the General and get him to give their new allies a chance to save their friends. Ray does and, surprisingly, gets our heroes exactly 60 minutes to get into the facility, disable the metahuman dampeners surrounding the perimeter, defeat the guards, and return to Earth-1. (As Cisco said to Caitlin in season three, “When it comes to the impossible, we’re the experts.”)

Back on Earth-1, Felicity and Iris use the computer in the Time Vault to disable S.T.A.R. Labs’ power which shuts down the Red Sunlight lamp and the drill that Thawne was about to use to cut into Kara. Thawne races to the Time Vault but doesn’t find anyone there. Iris and Felicity hurry into the medical bay and free a weakened Kara from the gurney and make a run for it. Unfortunately, the three brave women are stopped by the huge Terminator-like robot, Metallo. It blasts poor Kara with a green ray and tells the other two that Thawne is not done yet.

Dark Arrow tells Thawne to get the power back on, but he says he can’t because someone has encrypted it and that it’s Felicity who knows the code. Felicity won’t give him the code even when he vibrates his hand and his eyes turn bright red as he threatens to kill her. But, Kara comes forward and tells Felicity she doesn’t want anyone dying for her. Felicity reluctantly gives in.

Back on Earth-X, Leo drives up in a car wearing a Nazi officer uniform. Oliver’s in the backseat posing as the Fuhrer to fool the guards into allowing them to gain access to the facility. It works, and Oliver confronts Lance who reveals the doomsday machine is a waverider all their own. To convince Lance he’s his doppelgänger, Oliver orders the waverider through the portal to Earth-1.

Lance, still not convinced, brings a prisoner out for the Fuhrer to eliminate. Handing him a pistol, Lance shows the prisoner to be the doppelgänger of Felicity. Oliver turns the gun on Lance and pulls the trigger but, surprise, no bullets! Oliver transitions into Arrow mode and is able to take down the armed guards by himself with Lance retreating to the Gateway. Oliver pushes the red button deactivating the metahuman dampeners. Barry rushes in only to find out the controls to the Gateway have been destroyed and they will have to fight through the Nazis to the Gateway room itself.

Back at Resistance headquarters, General Schott orders the destruction of the facility and launches the Red Tornado which is a smart, fast, and deadly robot built to explode. Leo lets the others know it’s headed toward them. Barry and Ray race off to intercept it while Oliver, Leo, Sara, Alex, Stein, and Jax take on Lance and his Nazi troops. The Flash and Ray are finding it extremely hard stopping the Red Tornado. They use their speed, throw lightning at it, and try forcing it down into the ground with no luck.

Back at the Gateway, Oliver and Leo are pinned down by a large Nazi machine gunner while Alex and Sara are taking on more troops than they can handle, forcing them back. Stein and Jax decide to separate so that Jax can hotwire the power cell while Stein pulls the lever that will turn on the Gateway. Right after Jax hotwires the power cells, he’s pinned down by some Nazi gunfire. Stein, seeing this is his only chance to turn on the Gateway, makes a run for it and just as he’s a few steps away from the lever, he’s shot by a Nazi soldier. He falls to the ground bleeding badly as Jax screams, “NO!”

The Flash “Crisis on Earth-X, Part 3” Review:

Full of suspense, action, and a few comedic moments, “Crisis on Earth-X, Part 3” continues the most ambitious crossover storyline The CW (or any network) has ever attempted. It keeps the story moving at a quick, nearly non-stop pace and still manages to find moments and scenes for the major and supportive cast to shine.

There are two stand-out performances in this episode that need to be recognized. The first was delivered by Wentworth Miller as Captain Citizen. He provides most of the comic relief in the episode with his slightly over-the-top performance as Captain Cold’s doppelgänger who immediately likes the heroes from Earth-1 and wants to help them save their friends and their Earth along with his. He also has the best lines, even putting down his doppelgänger when he hears about how Snark always believed their carefully laid plans would go wrong so they should just forget them. “That’s terrible advice. I always make plans and follow them,” says Miller as Leo.

The second goes to Victor Garber as Stein, the brains of Firestorm who only wants to find a way to safely separate from being connected to Jax and go home to his family and enjoy his retirement. The final scene where he sacrifices himself to try to open the Gateway to save his teammates and friends is truly shocking and heartbreaking.

The one drawback to the episode is that it’s never explained why Eobard Thawne teamed up with evil Kara and Oliver from Earth–X and why he would take orders from them. This is Thawne from Earth-1 with Wells’ face. He’s the original villain from season one and would never team up and follow anyone…unless it benefited him in some way.

Still, with impressive CGI work, plenty of action, and above average performances, “Crisis on Earth-X, Part 3” has almost everything a fan could want in a superhero crossover episode.


Recaps of Supergirl’s “Crisis on Earth-X, Part 1” and Arrow’s “Crisis on Earth-X, Part 2”

More on The Flash Season 4:
The Flash Season 4 Episode 1 Recap
The Flash Season 4 Episode 2 Recap
The Flash Season 4 Episode 3 Recap
The Flash Season 4 Episode 4 Recap
The Flash Season 4 Episode 5 Recap
The Flash Season 4 Episode 6 Recap
The Flash Season 4 Episode 7 Recap
The Flash Season 4 Episode 8 Recap
The Flash Season 4 Episode 9 Recap
The Flash Season 4 Episode 10 Recap
The Flash Season 4 Episode 11 Recap
The Flash Season 4 Episode 12 Recap
The Flash Season 4 Episode 13 Recap
The Flash Season 4 Episode 14 Recap
The Flash Season 4 Episode 15 Recap
The Flash Season 4 Episode 16 Recap
The Flash Season 4 Episode 17 Recap
The Flash Season 4 Episode 18 Recap
The Flash Season 4 Episode 19 Recap
The Flash Season 4 Episode 21 Recap
The Flash Season 4 Episode 22 Recap