How The Arrow Season 8 Premiere Changes The Crisis Crossover

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The final season of Arrow has officially begun, and it is already having major ramifications for the upcoming Crisis on Infinite Earths crossover event. Warning: The following contains spoilers from the Season 8 premiere of Arrow, titled “Starling City.”.

At the conclusion of the episode, it was revealed that Earth 2 had been wiped from existence as Oliver (Stephen Amell) and Diggle (David Ramsey) were preparing to leave and return home. While they made it out, along with Laurel (Katie Cassidy Rodgers), this development has thrown a wrench into the Arrow-verse.

“It does indicate that Crisis [on Infinite Earths] is starting earlier than we thought,” Arrow executive producer Beth Schwartz revealed during a press Q&A for the episode. While viewers had been led to believe that the majority of the Crisis would occur during the crossover, with the early season episodes of Arrow, Supergirl, The Flash, and Batwoman setting the stage for what was to come, that’s all out the window now.

Instead, with the destruction of Earth 2, the Crisis has begun. That, paired with the revelation that the Monitor expects The Flash (Grant Gustin) to die during the event, makes for an interesting couple of months leading up to the crossover. What remains a mystery, though, is how the loss of Earth 2 will play out in upcoming episodes of the various shows. The Flash fans, especially, are going to be wondering what this means for Harry (Tom Cavanagh), a fan-favorite version of Harrison Wells that resides in the alternate universe.

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Whatever the case, the Season 8 premiere of Arrow did its job. “We don’t have that many episodes, so we wanted to start big and we wanted to introduce the upcoming Crisis immediately because that is what this season is about and what Oliver is struggling with the entire time,” Schwartz explained.

That said, don’t expect a planet to get obliterated in every episode this season. Schwartz confirmed that the remaining episodes of Season 8, outside of the crossover, will take place entirely on Earth 1. However, they will see Oliver on the road.

“In our upcoming episodes we visit places that we’ve gone to in our previous seasons, so they’ll take place in different locations,” Schwartz said. “I think we only have maybe one or two episodes actually in Star City.”

Now viewers will have to wait to find out exactly where Arrow is headed. If old locations are being revisited, though, don’t be surprised if Oliver winds up on Lian Yu to say one last goodbye to his favorite island.

Arrow airs Tuesdays on The CW.

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