The great part of having multiple shows set in the same universe is the possibility of crossovers. The Arrowverse are no strangers to them, kicking off its big crossover event this week with smaller crossovers throughout the season. This season, the Arrowverse will feature a crossover between Arrow, The Flash, DC’s Legends of Tomorrow, and Supergirl. Before the crossover begins, here are some of our favorite TV crossovers of all time.
Static Shock and Justice League
The DC Animated Universe’s roster of TV shows crossed over with each other on several well-known occasions. Perhaps the most memorable crossover was between Static Shock and Justice League. In “A League of Their Own,” Static (Virgil Hawkins) and Gear (Richie Foley) save the Justice League’s Watchtower from a threat that turns out to be Brainiac. The crossover wisely utilized the natural technological overlap between Gear and Brainiac. And it was pretty awesome to see Static team up with the Justice League, especially since he eventually becomes one of its members.
Part of the reason that the DCAU crossovers work so well is because crossovers are already part of the shows’ comic book origins. In the realm of comics, a crossover counts as the inclusion of almost any other subject from a different title. That was the case with Static Shock‘s second crossover with Justice League. “Fallen Hero” brought Green Lantern John Stewart back onto Static Shock, this time as the victim of a plot hatched by villain Sinestro. The episode worked on so many levels, especially with how it strained Static’s idolization of John Stewart as his personal hero.
Static Shock’s crossovers with the rest of the DCAU weren’t just mere superhero team-ups. They were nuanced stories that showcased how comic book crossovers should look. There has to be some benefit — beyond fan service — from having such iconic characters share screen time. Ultimately, Static Shock showed what happens when crossovers are done right. [James Akinaka]
Martin Mystery and Totally Spies
It’s not only DC TV shows that get crossovers, but also cartoons get the pleasure to mix things up. Enter Martin Mystery and Totally Spies!, both shows are produced by Marathon Media Group (French television production company) and Image Entertainment Corporation (a Canadian production and animation company). So, it’s no surprise that the production companies would mix these two animated shows.
The crossover happened in episode 14 of season 5 of Totally Spies! titled “Totally Mystery Much?” Jerry sends the spies — Clover, Sam, and Alex — to Switzerland to investigate a strange creature terrorizing a chic ski resort. However, when the spies arrive at the resort, everything is normal. After an incident, they quickly realize something is seriously wrong. As they begin investigating, they find that they are not the only ones on the case. They meet Martin Mystery, a paranormal investigator working for “The Center,” an organization similar to their own WOOHP. Together they begin the hunt for who or what is terrorizing the winter tourists.
Unfortunately, this would be the last crossover between the two French-Canadian cartoons. As Martin Mystery was canceled after three years in the air due to low ratings. [Zuleika Boekhoudt]
Flash vs Arrow
This episode was the first big crossover to occur in the Arrowverse. Featuring Green Arrow teaming up with the Flash to take on Roy Bivolo AKA Rainbow Raider. This crossover had Oliver teach Barry the reality of being a hero, that you can’t just run in and think you’re invincible. Of course, Barry failed to heed Oliver’s lesson and arrogantly takes on Rainbow Raider himself. Unfortunately, Barry is ultimately “whammied” due to his arrogance. Because of this, Barry loses his mind and Oliver has no choice but to take on his friend. The two engage in a memorable battle and with the help of Team Flash, Barry can return to his former self.
Of course, the main focus of the episode is Oliver Queen and Barry Allen. Bivolo was merely a plot device to build tension between the two heroes. They never showed the two take on and defeat Bivolo, we didn’t need to see that. Instead, we did get the team up with the two heroes the following night on the Arrow episode, “The Brave and the Bold“.
The best part of the episode was the balance between the tones of the two heroes. At that point, Arrow was very much like Batman, while Flash was a Superman-like figure. This episode clashed their dynamics in a way Batman v Superman failed to do.
This was only the first big crossover. Throughout the seasons, there have been several minor crossovers. The major crossovers have become an annual tradition occurring before the winter finales. [Marcus Yap]
For those of us who grew up watching Power Rangers, we all looked forward to the team-up episodes. The one that stood out most was “Forever Red“, a team-up of every red ranger from Mighty Morphin to Wild Force. Of course, as children, we all looked up to the Red Ranger with their great leadership (even if the red alien ranger wasn’t the leader of his faction). Cole Evans, the red Wild Force ranger was no different than us, excited to meet every other Red Ranger. Of course, it wasn’t only a crossover between multiple factions. The Machine Empire wore suits reminiscent to that of the Big Bad Beetle Borgs, a series that was a favorite in the late ’90s.
There was an even bigger team-up in “Legendary Battle” that included every Power Ranger faction prior to Super Megaforce. While we saw the return of various actors, the Legendary Battle team-up wasn’t as iconic. On paper, it may sound more, but we didn’t get enough interaction between the former rangers. [Marcus Yap]