8:00am PT by Sydney Bucksbaum
DC TV Watch: 'Arrow' Season 5 Finale Kills Off Major Character
Welcome to The Hollywood Reporter's weekly DC TV Watch, a rundown of all things DC Comics on TV. Every Friday, we round up the major twists, epic fights, new mysteries and anything else that goes down on The CW's Arrow, The Flash, Legends of Tomorrow and Supergirl and Fox's Gotham and what it all means. Note: Legends of Tomorrow did not air a new episode this week.
Supergirl season-two finale
Superman vs. Supergirl | The answer to the question of who would win in a fight between Supergirl (Melissa Benoist) and Superman (Tyler Hoechlin) has been answered, and it's pretty much the answer you'd expect from a show named Supergirl. The season-two finale definitively showed that Kara was able to overpower her "more famous cousin" in their fight after Queen Rhea (Teri Hatcher) brainwashed Superman into thinking Kara was actually his nemesis General Zod (Mark Gibbon). Kara's victory proved to Clark that she was ready to be the hero National City needed in a one-on-one fight to the death with Rhea. But when it became clear that Rhea wasn't going to follow through on the agreement and leave Earth if Kara won, Kara had to make the biggest sacrifice she's ever had to make. She used a Cadmus device to irradiate Earth's atmosphere with lead, which is fatal to Daxamites and killed Rhea and sent the rest of the invading force into retreat.
Bittersweet victory | But it wasn't a happy ending for the Girl of Steel, since her boyfriend, Mon-El (Chris Wood), also had to flee Earth to stay alive, as he was a Daxamite too. They were forced to say goodbye quickly, share a kiss and trade "I love yous" for only a few minutes before the air got too poisonous for him to breathe, and he flew away in his pod. But is he gone from Supergirl for good? Out in space, as Mon-El made his getaway, a black hole opened and sucked his pod in.
Seventh wheel | Losing her boyfriend (for the second time) was a harsh blow dealt to Kara, but it was made all the worse by watching everyone around her get to live their "happily ever afters" with significant others. From Alex (Chyler Leigh) asking Maggie (Floriana Lima) to marry her (and Maggie saying yes!) to J'onn J'onzz (David Harewood) finally kissing M'gann M'orzz (Sharon Leal) to Win (Jeremy Jordan) being content in his relationship, she was surrounded by so much romance and happiness that she had to fly away alone and crying. Will the next season focus less on romance, or will it lean into Kara's heartbreak and finally give her a happy, lasting relationship? She's managed to get every aspect of her life under control, between her job, her family relationships, her friends and her role as Supergirl, and the only thing left is her love life. But season three shouldn't just be a soap opera about her love life, so Supergirl will need to find the right balance.
A new villain | The final moments of the finale teased a great deal of what Supergirl fans can expect from next season. Flashing back to the destruction of Krypton, viewers watched both Clark and Kara's pods launch into space. But then a never-before-seen scene showed an evil group of demonic-looking Kryptonians using a skull as their symbol launching a pod with a baby of their own inside, but this one had more sinister aspects, like a woman feeding the baby blood from her own finger, remarking that this infant will "reign" on Earth. The use of that particular word suggests that season three will introduce the DC Comics villain Reign, which is interesting to note because, as of now, there is little known about her in the comic book source material. The leader of the Worldkillers, Reign is a female superhuman built by Kryptonian scientists and has all of Supergirl's powers. She is basically Kara's version of Superman's nemesis Doomsday. Could Supergirl be heading for its own version of The Death of Superman? Now that would be an incredible season-three arc.
Penguin and Riddler reunite | After both the Riddler (Cory Michael Smith) and Penguin (Robin Lord Taylor) found themselves in neighboring cells in the Court of Owls dungeon, they put their vows of revenge on hold to work together to escape. It turns out they accomplish much more together than they do when they're working against each other because their plan worked almost immediately. They broke out of their jail cells and parted ways once they made it outside, with a six-hour peace treaty in place to give them each a head start before their war was back on. With Penguin's army of freaks and Riddler's alliance with Barbara (Erin Richards) and Tabitha (Jessica Lucas), the pieces are finally in place for their war to end, one way or the other.
Good girl gone bad | Plagued with visions of her dead fiance and guilt over his death, Lee (Morena Baccarin) finally snapped. While she hasn't had a real storyline for the entire back half of this season, it looks like she's going to be the newest villain for Jim Gordon (Ben McKenzie) moving forward, as she voluntarily infected herself with the Tetch virus, turning herself into a creature of anger and vengeance.
The Flash season-three finale
RIP H.R. | After an entire half a season of teasing Iris' (Candice Patton) death, The Flash did exactly what had been predicted and swapped H.R. (Tom Cavanagh) in for Iris by using the "transmogrifier" tech that transforms someone's face and body into someone else. It was predictable and safe, since H.R. was the least popular and least loved character on the S.T.A.R. Labs team, and his death only truly hit his new girlfriend, Tracy (Anne Dudek), hard. Obviously the show was never going to lose Iris, as she's the heart of the show, but it would have been a truly surprising and brave move if she was actually killed off, as promised. Instead, Barry (Grant Gustin) and Iris got their happy ending and mailed out the save-the-date cards for their wedding, excited about their future.
Just kidding | That's not how The CW does it. Since Cisco (Carlos Valdes) was able to bring Jay Garrick (Teddy Sears) out of the Speed Force prison to help defeat Savitar (albeit with Iris delivering the fatal gunshot in the end, proving that she didn't need anyone to save her because she saved everyone else), there was a void left over. The Speed Force began to tear apart reality without a speedster in it, so Barry decided to sacrifice himself. He stepped into the Speed Force after officially passing his title of Flash over to Wally (Keiynan Lonsdale) and weirdly smiled as he left Iris behind. It's understandable that Barry wanted to finish fixing his Flashpoint mistake (since that's where all this Savitar nonsense started in the first place), but why did he look so happy about it when he had just shown how excited he was about his future and wedding with Iris? His happiness seemed like the wrong choice, either by the writers of the script or Gustin's decision about how to act in that moment. In any case, Barry will be back and out of the Speed Force in season four, but the only questions are how long it will take for him to return, how he gets home and how much his time in the Speed Force will have changed him moving forward.
Another tease | Did Savitar just confirm suspicions that Clifford DeVoe, aka the Thinker, is going to be the season-four villain? In the finale, he let slip while reminiscing in S.T.A.R. Labs a memory of building a machine to stop DeVoe's telekinetic powers. But when Barry asked who that was, Savitar remembered that DeVoe has yet to come for this version of Barry, so he stopped that train of thought. He is now the second time traveler to name-drop DeVoe to Barry, so the Thinker is definitely coming. Now it's just a matter of which season he'll show up in.
Arrow season-five finale
Surprise return | With all the big returns announced way in advance of the season-five finale, Arrow managed to pull off a major surprise at the very end of the epic hour. As the island-flashback storyline came to a close after five seasons and Oliver (Stephen Amell) killed Konstantin Kovar (Dolph Lundgren), successfully signaling the boat in time to pick him up, he made a phone call to his mother, Moira (Susanna Thompson). What happened next was an unexpectedly emotional scene as viewers got a glimpse of something they never thought they would, as the pilot of the series never showed this conversation. As Moira (who was killed off in season two) finally believed her presumed-dead son was actually the voice on the phone, tears were shed both onscreen and off. It was one of the best moments of the season — and maybe even the entire series — as the five-season-long flashback storyline finally concluded. Oliver and Moira's relationship was one of the highlights of the series, and Arrow has only brought her back a handful of times since her death. Seeing that bond again, even if only for a moment, was powerful.
RIP Malcolm Merlyn | But the finale also pulled off a surprise death, as Malcolm Merlyn (John Barrowman) finally made amends with his biological daughter, Thea (Willa Holland), and sacrificed himself on a land mine on Lian Yu to save her life and the rest of Team Arrow from Adrian Chase (Josh Segarra), Talia al Ghul (Lexa Doig) and their army. Although his death happened offscreen as Thea watched an explosion from afar, leading many to believe it was a fake-out and Malcolm survived, Barrowman confirmed via his Instagram that he is officially done with the Arrow-verse. "Malcolm Merlyn is no more," he said in a self-recorded video. "I know they've done it off camera, but I'm here to tell you that I won't be back next season ... who knows what the future may hold."
The final fight | As expected, the island showdown of all-stars turned out to be one of the best sequences of the series. Evenly matched between the good guys and bad guys, with all of Team Arrow finally reunited, the al Ghul sisters facing off, the two Canaries (one dubbed as the new Black Canary vs. Black Siren) battling it out and Slade Wilson (Manu Bennett) actually turning a new page and not betraying Oliver, the entire hour was a master class in all the best parts of Arrow. Even the small "Olicity" moment, featuring a small but powerful goodbye kiss between Felicity (Emily Bett Rickards) and Oliver when they had to split up on the island, felt right and earned, not overplayed or overdramatic. If the finale is any indication, Arrow is getting back to its glory days just in time for season six.
Record scratch | But wait, maybe it won't. When Adrian realized that Oliver had beat him and won, he pulled out one last trick from up his sleeve (because when has this guy ever not been one step ahead of Oliver?). On a boat with Oliver and Oliver's son, William (Jack Moore), he conceded that Oliver won, and then with a smile revealed he had rigged the entire island of Lian Yu with explosives hooked to a dead-man switch. He got the last laugh as he immediately shot himself in the head, triggering the complete destruction of the island. Oliver looked on in horror, as he thought his entire team, including Felicity, Thea, Diggle (David Ramsey), Quentin (Paul Blackthorne) and the new recruits, was still on the island and, thus, dead. Obviously Arrow isn't going to kill off its entire cast, but it's possible that Team Arrow was in the process of getting off the island, leading to injuries from the blast and one or two people potentially killed. No matter the outcome, it was extremely visually compelling to see the callbacks to the season-one finale with Starling City's destruction via earthquake machine just as the flashbacks brought the show full circle to the season-one premiere. What a way to end the first chapter of the series. Now the question remains: Where will the next five years take us?
What do you think of all the shocking reveals on the DC Comics shows this week? Let us know your thoughts in the comments section below.
Gotham airs Mondays at 8 p.m. ET/PT on Fox; Supergirl will return for season three on The CW in the fall; The Flash will return for season four on The CW in the fall; Arrow will return for season six on The CW in the fall; and Legends of Tomorrow will return for season three on The CW in the fall.