It was never going to be possible to go even bigger than “Crisis on Infinite Earths,” so it wasn’t a surprise when The CW announced earlier this year that the next Arrowverse crossover would be much smaller in scale – this time, it will be a two-way crossover between Batwoman and Superman & Lois. We were always told that the event following “Crisis” would shrink the scale, but it’s clear that the decision was partially made to accommodate the coronavirus outbreak changing the way that TV shows are produced.
At DC FanDome over the weekend, it was confirmed that the 2021 crossover will have to be more limited in its ambitions due to the pandemic. During the Multiverse 101 virtual panel, Arrowverse EP Greg Berlanti revealed that new safety guidelines that have to be employed on set in the wake of COVID-19 will affect how this crossover is produced. Typically, the crossovers involve an enormous cast and are also heavy on the crew. But next time, they’ll have to significantly reduce the amount of people on set.
In a way this is disappointing, but as stated above, these limitations don’t totally clash with the original plans for the crossover, anyway. It also could be good for the event in terms of both plot and production. As much as we love having all the heroes together, these miniseries have become increasingly overstuffed and the storylines have definitely become strained because of it.
With Ruby Rose also stepping away from Batwoman since this crossover was first announced, it’ll actually be starring Javicia Leslie’s Ryan Wilder alongside Tyler Hoechlin’s Man of Steel. So, a stripped-back crossover should allow for a greater focus on Ryan’s evolving hero’s journey and a bond forming between her and Supes. What’s more, the cast and crew have frequently spoken about how difficult the crossovers have become to make, so having a classic two-show event should be much less demanding for everyone involved.
The Arrowverse series will premiere their next seasons on The CW in January 2021.