'Arrow' Season 8 Episode 1: Five key differences between Earth-2 and Earth-1 that were revealed in the season premiere
Though we've learned quite a bit about this universe since it first appeared in Season 2 of 'The Flash', we found out about a few more key differences between this world and the main reality thanks to 'Arrow' Season 8's premiere, including the identities of this world's Hood and Dark Archer.
Earth-2 was the first parallel world that we were introduced to in the Arrowverse. Though we've learned quite a bit about this universe since it first appeared in Season 2 of 'The Flash', we found out about a few more key differences between this world and the main reality (Earth-1) thanks to 'Arrow' Season 8's premiere. So without further ado, here's five things we learned about Earth-2 in the episode:
Batman exists and he visited Lian Yu
The first scene of the premiere recreated the opening of the show's pilot episode with Oliver attempting to signal a boat on Lian Yu. However, there was one important difference: instead of Deathstroke's mask mounted on a tree stump, we see Batman's iconic cowl. Later in the episode, Bruce Wayne is name-dropped as well, which further confirms that Batman is an active vigilante on Earth-2 and the appearance of his mask suggests that at some point in his career, Earth-2's Dark Knight visited the island and may have fought the same enemies Oliver faced there on Earth-1.
Adrian Chase is the Hood
Earth-2 is a world where Oliver Queen (Stephen Amell) never came home from Lian Yu, at least not until the Earth-1 Oliver landed on this world and assumed his doppelganger's identity. But even though Oliver wasn't around, Starling City still has an Emerald Archer, the Earth-2 version of Adrian Chase (Josh Segarra), whose Earth-1 counterpart was the villain Prometheus.
We don't get to see much of Adrian's backstory before he became the Hood and started working with Laurel Lance / Black Canary (Katie Cassidy Rodgers) but the episode does give us some fun moments with him like the scene where Oliver and Adrian fight (giving us serious 'Avengers: Endgame' vibes) and when Oliver calls Adrian a show-off when the latter is working out on a salmon ladder, recreating Oliver's iconic training scene from the show's pilot. Despite Oliver's reservations about him, Adrian manages to earn Oliver's trust and the Earth-1 hero advises his Earth-2 counterpart to drop the name "The Hood" and go by "Green Arrow" instead.
Malcolm Merlyn and Moira Queen are married
This is something we had suspected when the promotional images for the episode were released and the episode confirmed that on Earth-2, Moira Queen (Susanna Thompson) married Malcolm Merlyn (John Barrowman) after the death of her husband. Walter Steele (Colin Salmon), who married Moira on Earth-1, is out of the picture in this universe after he sold his shares in Queen Consolidated and left the company behind. Though Malcolm is a villainous figure on Earth-1, here he seems to be one of the good guys, though someone else from the family did step in to take Malcolm's place as the Dark Archer.
Tommy Merlyn is the Dark Archer
On Earth-1, Malcolm almost destroyed the city as the Dark Archer when he tried to unleash a doomsday device in the Glades. However, on this Earth, Malcolm's son Tommy Merlyn (Colin Donnell) is the one who became a villain, driven by grief after his half-sister Thea Queen (Willa Holland) overdosed on Vertigo.
Tommy's path mirrors that of his father's Earth-1 counterpart, right up until Oliver manages to convince him to a be a better man and stop the attack on the city. Though Tommy does listen to Oliver and stop his evil plan, he unfortunately does not get a chance to truly redeem himself because of the next entry on this list.
Earth-2 has been destroyed
In the final moments of the episode, a bloodred wave of anti-matter hits the universe, erasing it from existence. Laurel luckily survives her universe's destruction, escaping with Oliver and John Diggle (David Ramsey) to Earth-1, but the trauma of seeing everyone and everything she has ever known vanish into thin air is bound to have a lasting impact on the hero and we'll be seeing how that plays out in the next episode.
'Arrow' Season 8 Episode 2 'Welcome to Hong Kong' will air on The CW on October 22.