The CW’s family of superhero shows is getting a blast from the comic book past and a hint toward the official title and plot, with alien invaders the Dominators set as the villains in the upcoming four-way crossover among Arrow, The Flash, Legends of Tomorrow and Supergirl.

Created in 1967 by Jim Shooter for DC’s long-running anthology series Adventure Comics, the Dominators are members of the alien empire known as the Dominion, a rigid caste society in which social status is denoted by the size of a red circle on one’s forehead. Emotionless and calculating, Dominators are masters of genetic manipulation who seek to enhance their abilities to aid in their conquests.

 

DC Comics - Invasion! Issue 1
DC Entertainment - Art by Bart Sears

The Dominators were introduced primarily as enemies of DC’s Legion of Superheroes, whose stories were set a thousand years in the future. But in 1989 they were given wider focus in the three-issue limited series Invasion!, in which they serve as the leading faction behind a massive alien invasion of Earth. While the invasion is justified as a means of quelling the threat posed by Earth’s superheroes to the schemes of the various invaders, it’s revealed that the Dominators’ true plan is to harvest our world’s metahumans in order learn to breed their own.

Notable for tall, lanky frames, yellow skin and sharp teeth and nails, the aliens provide the strangest looking villains yet for a shared universe that already has featured a giant anthropomorphic shark among other oddities. As such, the CW crossover event will, according to Arrow and Legends of Tomorrow executive producer Marc Guggenheim, make use of “cutting-edge prosthetics and computer effects to achieve a feature film-quality look.” The aim will be to stay faithful to the version of the characters created by artist Todd MacFarlane for the Invasion! miniseries.

While plot details and the official title have not been revealed, it’s sounding a lot like the CW superhero crossover will be hewing closely — in spirit, anyway — to the Invasion! concept. As it happens, Arrow‘s 100th episode happens during the event, and star Stephen Amell recently revealed that Season 2 main villain Deathstroke will be making an appearance.