No, the mega for series crossover from DC and CW expected later this year will not be a transcendent orgy of pop music and dancing. Because that would mean Berlanti and his array of showrunners and producers looked out at the onscreen talent afforded them and said: yes. Motherfucking musical.
These are the people leaning hard on the pretty terrible Flashpoint comic arc to get folks amped for the Flash and on Superman’s two-episode run on Supergirl to get folks amped for the Maiden of Might. These are the people that gave us what we wanted by putting Felicity and Ollie together and then proceeded to remove everything fun and whimsical about the pairing while also making Felicity cry a lot. These are the people that fridged Black Canary—one of the comic’s most influential woman heroes. The people that gave us a giant man vs. robot fight on Legends of Tomorrow and then hid most of it in the night sky. These are not people we can or should trust with a musical.
But man, they should make one anyway. Because they have, at their disposal, one of the finest line-ups of singers and dancers working today, and instead of having them Hamilton their way into our collective hearts they have them punching people. A lot.
So here’s a thought. Why not do both?
There are the obvious contenders for solos. Both Flash lead Grant Gustin and Supergirl lead Melissa Benoist endured tenures on Glee. (The Gust definitely deserves a less furious cello accompaniment.)
And Benoist should be allowed to do more in a musical number than croon Miley Cyrus while swinging around on a chain.
They’ve both got great parental figures with poppin’ pipes, too. Flash’s foster dad is played by Jesse L. Martin, you know, the dude that originated a prime role in Rent?
And Supergirl’s aunt/mother is Laura Benanti, who has a Tony from her turn as Patti LuPone’s daughter in Gypsy, and managed to get on the Tony ballot this year singing about ice cream despite Hamilton having the Tonys in a headlock.
The Flash has also some wonderful talent back in the lab. Before Cisco was building terrible weapons that always accidentally end up in the hands of bad guys, actor Carlos Valdes was in the national tour of Jersey Boys and on Broadway in Once, where he had to play half the instruments known to man. Oh, and he’s got a band.
Cisco is joined in telling Barry no by Caitlin, who canonically can’t sing, and Harrison Wells, who presumably can. But sometimes Victor Garber shows up as one-half of Firestorm. And you know what Victor Garber can do? Besides steal every scene in Legends of Tomorrow? Open the 1994 Tonys with a song.
His Firestorm partner, Frank Drameh, might not have shown up at the Tonys any time in the last few years, but he’s got a set or damn fine pipes himself.
Oh, and speaking of Legends of Tomorrow, did you know its other star, Arthur Darvill, shared the stage with Carlos Valdes in Once, playing the lead? Because he did.
And you know why White Canary Caity Lotz is so believable as an asskicker? Because choreographed fights are a lot like choreographed dances, and Lotz got her start as a back-up dancer for people like Lady Gaga (in this video she’s on the back left strutting REAL HARD).
Her on-screen persona Black Canary might be dead at the moment, but Katie Cassidy just signed a completely unprecedented deal that has her on a regular across all four DC CW shows. Since she’s the daughter of ‘70s pop sensation David Cassidy, she’ can probably sing; if not, there’s always her career as an unemployed woman powered by soda.
But I believe in the power of Katie Cassidy to sing, or at least be autotuned to high heaven. Which will be required for much of the cast of Arrow, the least Broadway infused show on the CW. I mean, Stephen Amell can only sing Disney and they killed off-Broadway talent Colin Donnell back in season one. However, the series does have one ringer...
... a damned Barrowman.
And while none of the rest of the Arrow cast has appeared on the Great White Way, they do appear to be super enthusiastic. This is very important for a musical!
The only people more enthusiastic are the cast of Supergirl. I don’t have proof, but it appears that almost the entire cast from season one can sing in some sort of fashion.
We already knew Calista Flockhart could fake it, thanks to Ally McBeal ending every damn episode with a musical number, sort of like this one where she watches jealously as Jesse L. Martin woos the entire bar.
But did you know that compact little sweater monkey Winn could sing? Jeremy Jordan wasn’t always playing a romantic third wheel; once upon a time he was originating a role in the Broadway adaptation of Newsies. Which means he can sing earnestly about unions and dance.
And Chyler Leigh. Poor, poor Chyler Leigh. Before her sister saved her from a plane crash in Supergirl, her other, much older sister watched her die in a plane crash in Grey’s Anatomy. And before all that she had to appear in a musical episode of Grey’s Anatomy singing mid-’00s tunes like they were going out of style—which they absolutely were. Chyler Leigh deserves better, guys.
In summary: What could be better than a four-hour musical stretched across four separate properties on the CW? NOTHING.
I know what you’re thinking. “Alex,” you’re already furiously typing in the comments, “what possible villain could be potent enough to force four different superhero casts into song?”
There is only one answer.