As the Arrowverse has introduced many Justice League heroes and villains over the years, several iconic cities from the DC Universe have also made the jump from page to screen. Since Arrow’s beginning in 2012, The CW has introduced an endless slew of DC Comics characters, either in their own shows or as supporting players in other heroes’ projects. With the DC TV franchise getting close to hitting its decade-long anniversary in 2022, The CW’s Arrowverse has come a long way with popular shows like The Flash, Supergirl, Legends of Tomorrow, Black Lightning, Batwoman, and Superman & Lois.
But whenever an iconic superhero like Superman, The Flash, Batman, or the Green Arrow is adapted to screen, it is not just their characters and costumes that come with them. Ever since DC Comics began, the comic publisher has created many fictional cities from which various heroes or villains operate. While most DC mediums include real-life places, given that most of these stories still take place in America, there are also the additions of the made-up cities. The Arrowverse is no exception, as they have included multiple fictional cities across the various shows.
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While most of the Arrowverse shows occur within a specific city, the characters have occasionally traveled to other sites connected to the DC brand. As this franchise also loves its fair share of DC Easter eggs and name drops, other places have been established to exist in this particular version of the DC Universe. The longer the Arrowverse goes, the more Earth-Prime will expand as they bring in more characters who originate from specific towns.
Even though Atlantis is traditionally known as Aquaman’s underwater kingdom, the Arrowverse has been relatively ambiguous about its version of it. Through The Flash, the Earth-2 version of Atlantis was alluded to as an island city, being above water. After Crisis on Infinite Earths, Earth-Prime’s Atlantis has been referenced several times by Cisco Ramon. As Cisco is the only one on Team Flash to have visited Atlantis, they have never mentioned whether he has to travel into the ocean to get there or, similar to the Earth-2 counterpart, it is not a lost city in the sea. Ever since Batwoman season 2 confirmed Aquaman’s existence in the Arrowverse, it raises more questions about their take on Atlantis.
While Arrowverse’s Earth features several cities from the comics, they have also incorporated a number of places on Krypton. One of them is Argo City, which is best known as Kara Zor-El’s hometown in the comics, which is also the case on Supergirl. Despite the destruction of Krypton, Argo City is revealed to live still as Kara discovers it in Supergirl season 3. Thanks to Kara’s parents Alura and Zor-El, they manage to save Argo City the day Krypton died. During the third season, Kara reunites with her mother, learning she was still alive for all these years. While Crisis on Infinite Earths saw Kara’s home city destroyed, it ends up being restored when Oliver Queen created Earth-Prime.
Even though Brenton Thwaites is actively playing Nightwing on Titans, the Arrowverse has actually featured Dick Grayson’s city that he protects in the comics: Bludhaven. Introduced in Arrow season 1, Bludhaven is established as a being somewhat close to Star City. In the comics, Bludhaven is actually a sister city to Gotham City, but that doesn’t appear to be the case in the DC TV version. Despite being a big Nightwing connection, Titans have so far not even mentioned Bludhaven once.
During Arrow season 1, Joseph Falk, a.k.a. Savior as he dubbed himself, served as a minor villain in the eighteenth episode, “Salvation.” Even though the show never showed it, Joseph is established to come from Calvin City. In the DC lore, Calvin City is the hometown of the Justice Society of America hero Al Pratt, a.k.a. Atom.
One of the Arrowverse’s frequently featured places is The Flash’s Central City, the home place of Barry Allen, Iris West-Allen, Joe West, and several more characters. Just like in the comics, the Arrowverse’s Central City is in the state of Missouri. As the show has described it over the years, Central City is literally the home of the impossible, with The Flash being the first show to introduce metahumans into the franchise.
While the Green Lanterns haven’t properly joined the Arrowverse yet, they have dropped many Easter eggs and references, including Coast City, California, where Hal Jordan comes from in the lore. In Arrow season 4, Oliver is seen operating from Coast City briefly in the flashbacks. Even though fans never saw Green Lantern’s face, Hal actually does have a quick cameo as a person wearing a bomber jacket with the last name “Jordan” on it.
It only took the Arrowverse six years before they could finally start to expand their Batman Easter eggs and nods. During Arrow season 6, Gotham City is mentioned for the first time before becoming a frequently featured place through Batwoman. Just like in the comics, Bruce Wayne and Kate Kane’s home city is a massive criminal place that got worse when Batman mysteriously left Gotham.
In The Flash season 2, the Arrowverse introduced its take on Gorilla City that comes from Gorilla Grodd’s mythology. Established as a city in Africa on Earth-2, Gorilla City was a refuge for gorillas who had been experimented on, similar to Grodd. In the comics, Gorilla City was originally a location on the planet, Calor, before Green Lantern accidentally took it with him back to Earth. Despite Gorilla City being destroyed with the rest of Earth-2 during Crisis on Infinite Earths, Cisco has confirmed that it now exists on Earth-Prime.
During The Flash season 6, episode 10, “Marathon,” a major Justice League location is established in the Arrowverse. After the creation of Earth-Prime, Cisco had been trying to map out this new world as much as possible. Happy Harbor can be seen on a map, which is the original location for the Justice League’s first headquarters. In DC media, Happy Harbor is better known as the base of operations for the teenage Titans superheroes on Young Justice.
While the Arrowverse has yet to feature Vic Sage, a.k.a. The Question, his birthplace does exist in The CW’s shared universe. In Arrow season 4, Oliver visits Hub City to get magical assistance from Esrin Fortuna. One of the other times Hub City got used was during Legends of Tomorrow season 1 when Ray Palmer and Kendra Saunders, a.k.a. The Atom and Hawkgirl, respectively, got left behind in 1958.
The Arrowverse has adapted various elements of The Atom’s mythology, including Ivy Town, which is where Ray and Ryan Choi come from. Ivy Town is first introduced during the Arrow season 4 premiere as Oliver and Felicity Smoak had been living there for several months. They had moved to Ivy Town after deciding to retire from fighting crime in Star City. Through Legends of Tomorrow, fans have also gotten to see Ivy Town in the past when Ray was a kid.
Central City isn’t the only important place in The Flash mythology, as there is also Keystone City, which has existed in the Arrowverse for quite some time. Like the comics, Keystone is the twin/sister city to Central City and is where Wally West comes from originally. Even though John Wesley Shipp’s Jay Garrick operated from Central City on Earth-3, the DC Golden Age Flash also originates from Keystone City in the DC lore.
While the Arrowverse hasn’t mentioned Kandor City, they have established Kryptonopolis, which was Krypton’s second-largest city in the comics. But after Kandor was taken and bottled by Brainiac, Kryptonopolis became the planet’s capital city. Kryptonopolis is first mentioned on Superman & Lois season 1, episode 2, “Heritage,” as Jor-El tells Jordan Kent the history of the fallen planet.
One of the all-time famous DC cities to exist in the Arrowverse is Metropolis, the city Superman mainly protects. Interestingly enough, the Arrowverse has shown and mentioned Metropolis on various Earths in the Multiverse besides Earth-38 and Earth-Prime. Even before Crisis on Infinite Earths, Metropolis had even been mentioned to exist on Earth-1 as Julia Pennyworth mentioned it in Batwoman season 1. Post-Crisis, Metropolis was briefly seen on Superman & Lois before the Kent-Lane family moved to Smallville to live on the Kent Farm.
While Doom Patrol is another ongoing DC TV show, the Arrowverse has featured the city where they originally come from, Midway City. The Flash season 1 is the first time Midway City is ever referenced, but don’t actually show it until the sixth season during the episode “Licence to Elongate.” Midway City is also one of the homes for the DC heroes Hawkman and Hawkgirl in the comics.
In Supergirl’s pilot, when Kara’s pod crashed on Earth, it landed in Midvale, which is where she grew up with Alex Danvers and her parents. In the comics, Midvale is actually the town where Supergirl’s rocket lands before her cousin Superman discovers her. Throughout the show’s run, Midvale has been featured multiple times, primarily in the handful of flashback episodes that focused on Kara and Alex as teenagers.
Even though National City was an original creation for the Arrowverse, the Supergirl comics have actually incorporated the DC TV city through Supergirl: Rebirth. The Arrowverse established that National City is based in California, although it may have changed post-Arrowverse Crisis. While Metropolis was set somewhere on the East Coast, with Superman as its protector, Supergirl served that role on the West Coast for National City.
One of the Arrowverse’s non-U.S. cities that was introduced early during Arrow’s run is Nanda Parbat, the hidden city where Ra’s al Ghul operated with the League of Assassins. After being mentioned in the first two seasons, Arrow season 3 is when Nanda Parbat is further explored as it was located somewhere within the Hindu Kush mountains in Asia. That is where Arrowverse characters like Sara Lance and Malcolm Merlyn went to train before they became The Canary and The Dark Archer, respectively.
During Superman & Lois season 1, New Carthage is another town that gets referenced in the Arrowverse. In the comics, New Carthage is where Dick and two of DC Comics’ other Killer Frost, Crystal Frost, and Louise Lincoln studied, as they all attended Hudson University. On Superman & Lois, New Carthage was one of the towns that Morgan Edge has originally promised to help with jobs. Ultimately, Morgan failed to deliver on his promise as his mysterious shady activities are what Lois Lane is now trying to investigate.
While the Arrowverse hasn’t introduced any of DC’s Starman, Opal City has made it into the franchise, which is where Ted Knight and others operated from. First mentioned during Arrow season 3, Opal City is located in Illinois, a departure from the comics where it is actually in Maryland. While the Arrowverse version of Ralph Dibny never lived in Opal City, Elongated Man did live there for a period of time in the comics.
Before the Arrowverse explored Clark’s hometown, Smallville was all about the Man of Steel’s upbringing in the Kansas town. Superman & Lois now gets to continue featuring Smallville as they moved from Metropolis to take over the Kent Farm after the passing of Martha Kent. Before Crisis on Infinite Earths, Earth-38’s Smallville was identical to the Tom Welling drama as Tyler Hoechlin’s Superman lived on the Kent Farm that Smallville used.
While the Arrowverse has included more than a dozen famous and beloved cities in the DC Universe, the franchise’s very first one was Star City. When Arrow first began, the Emerald Archer’s hometown was actually called Starling City, before they renamed it in the fourth season. Ray had tried to rebrand Green Arrow’s city to Star City, which happened in the following season after they thought Ray had died. To honor his memory and wishes, they rename Starling City to Star City. Similar to Gotham City, Star City is one of Arrowverse‘s most damaged cities due to the amount of crime and corruption that ran rampant, which lead to the creation of the Green Arrow and his team.
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