It’s the final countdown, K.A.L.S. (if you are confused by this moniker, please see yesterday’s Arrow recap)! Four episodes deep in this phenomenal invasion themed DC Week crossover event, and it looks like things are about to get even better! Who’s ready for a ride aboard the Waverider? A quick rundown: The team was mad at Barry because of his Flashpoint changes, but problems were set aside in an effort to save Oliver, Sara, Thea, Dig, and Ray from the Dominators. (Although Cisco is still mad at Barry, and Oliver and Kara have some weird tense vibes going on ... more on that later.) Now, let’s see if the Super Friends can put this alien invasion to rest, shall we?
We open back in Central City, where the team muses about the Dominators’ motives. Nate suggests that they go back in time and kidnap a Dominator to interrogate. The team agrees, and Nate, Amaya, and Mick head back to 1951 -- to the first Dominator invasion -- taking Felicity and Cisco, who are way too excited about time travel for their own good.
Meanwhile, the rest of the team prepares to meet with the new president, but Oliver tells Kara to stay behind, calling her an unknown quantity. Naturally, she’s pretty pissed (which is saying something when it comes to Kara). Aboard the Waverider, Felicity and Cisco fangirl -- HARD. Case in point, this is an actual quotation: “This ship is automatic, supersonic, hypnotic, funky-fresh.” Oh, the lovable tech-support!
Back at S.T.A.R. labs, Caitlin invites Stein’s daughter Lilly, who apparently has a PhD in nanotechnology, to help with the invasion efforts. Stein, who still doesn’t remember her, is very unnerved. The Waverider lands in 1951, and Nate, Mick, and Amaya head off to kidnap a Dominator, leaving Cisco and a very time-effected Felicity on the ship. On site, they manage to snag a Dominator, but, before they can bring him back, a mysterious government agency shows up and takes them all in.
Meanwhile, Felicity and Cisco go stir-crazy. Eventually, conversation turns toward Barry, and Cisco, who is still very clearly angry, says that he wishes he could rely on Barry, but it’s too hard. At S.T.A.R. Labs, things get awkward between Stein and his daughter, and she begins to notice the distance. Stein finally tells Caitlin that Lilly is a time aberration that he doesn’t remember. (And, for once, Barry isn’t the one to blame for this time change. Score!) He tells Caitlin that he plans to restore the timeline after the invasion is over, erasing Lilly from existence.
Realizing that the other time passengers have been kidnapped, Felicity and Cisco prepare to save them, guns awkwardly blazing. In government lockup, Nate seizes the opportunity to interrogate the Dominator. The Dominator tells them that the metas were the catalyst for their invasion. Before they can get more info, the agents come in to take the Dominator away.
Back in Central City, the meeting with the president goes sideways when the same government agency from 1951 shows up to confront the heroes. When the agents start to attack, Barry snaps into action and a fight breaks out, leaving only the lead agent standing. He tells them that Barry and Flashpoint are the reason for the Dominators' invasion. Apparently they see metas like Barry as a future threat. He tells them that, if Barry surrenders to the Dominators, they’ll end the invasion and leave the world in one piece.
In 1951, Felicity and Cisco come to save the team. When they hear the Dominator suffering, Cisco and Nate suggest saving him from being tortured and sending him home to prove that humans and metas aren’t all bad. Before the Dominator leaves, Cisco steals a transponder so that they can communicate with the Dominators during the future invasion.
Back in 2016, Cisco gets a message from the Dominator they saved, who tells them that, if Barry doesn’t turn himself in, they’ll deploy a weapon that will exterminate all metahumans. The team scrambles for a way to save both Barry and the rest of the metas, as the Dominators prepare to enact their invasion and extermination plan.
Cisco uses the transponder to vibe himself and Nate up to the Dominator ship. They appeal to the Dominator they saved, telling him that metas are protecting the universe. He’s not moved. Back in Central City, Cisco realizes that they screwed with time by saving the Dominator and feels conflicted over his anger towards Barry, now that he’s made the same mistake.
At S.T.A.R. Labs, Caitlin urges Stein to talk to Lilly. During their talk, Lilly figures out how to solve their tech problem, and Stein finally begins to see his daughter as a person, not an aberration. Meanwhile, Barry tells the team that he wants to turn himself in. But, of course, they’re having none of that martyr bullshit. All of them refuse to let him leave, and Cisco, my darling Cisco, tells him that he won’t let his friend sacrifice himself. The bromance is back!
Jax and Sara inform the team that the Dominator ship in Central City is opening, and Felicity detects that they’re all opening around the world. With the invasion now in full force, the Dominators drop their meta-killing bomb. Sara and Cisco head off in the Waverider to stop the metabomb, while Stein gives the team his a device which, when placed on all the individual Dominators, will cause mega-pain.
The rest of the team fights an epic battle against the Dominators. Sara calls in Firestorm to transmute the metabomb into something less harmful. When Oliver is almost thrown off of a roof, Kara comes to save him because she’s the bigger ... alien. Barry and Kara race off to implant Stein’s devices on the Dominators around the world. Once they’re all in place, Felicity activates the weapon, and the Dominators begin to suffer.
Jax struggles to transmute the bomb, but, when Stein tells him about his daughter, he manages to push through. With their weapon neutralized, the Dominators retreat, and it looks like the invasion is finally over. Back in Central City, the new president acknowledges all the heroes (and Mick ... kidding!) at a private ceremony. Later, the team gathers at S.T.A.R. Labs for a celebration. Ray says that Kara looks like his cousin (insert *I see what you did there* meme). Kara tells Barry and Oliver that they’re all Earth’s mightiest heroes and Oliver apologizes for being a super-douche. Against Oliver’s wishes, they share a group hug.
Cisco gives Kara an inter-dimensional extrapolator so that she come back whenever she wants and communicate with them when need be. Stein asks Jax not to tell the other Legends about Lilly because he doesn’t want to erase her. Agent Smith, the douchey agent from before, shows up to cover up the whole invasion affair. Kara tells him that she spoke to the president and that he’s being reassigned to Antarctica, as the president establishes their very own DEO. Nate is pretty pleased.
Kara and the rest of the heroes say their goodbyes and head home. Dig tells Barry that all is forgiven and that he needs to forgive himself, before heading back to Star City. Barry and Oliver get a drink and, as is now crossover tradition, consider yet another showdown between the Flash and Arrow. They both realize that, though their lives aren’t exactly normal, they couldn’t be more full. And the musical stylings of Blake Neely mark the end of this incredible crossover.
So much resolved. So much discovered. So. Many. Feels! I couldn’t have asked for a better conclusion to this amazing week! I take back every nag and threat I’ve ever uttered towards Greg Berlanti or Andrew Kreisberg! This crossover made up for everything! I’m so glad that Cisco and Barry made up, that Stein wants to keep his daughter around, and that this invasion nonsense is finally over! It should be interesting to see if anything ever comes of the Earth-1 DEO or Agent Smith. Only time will tell!
Until next time, K.A.L.S.! Thanks for living in the DC Universe with me this week, and don’t forget to tweet us your responses to this fantastic final episode!