WARNING: SPOILERS FOR THE FLASH
This Flash panel was literally the only reason I stayed at WonderCon for another day. Sure, I love milling about the cosplay and having excuses to eat at food trucks, but sensible heads might’ve prevailed if this had been switched with say…well any other CW show not named Arrow, the series from whence Flash came.
But it was certainly worth the wait. Normally co-creator/showrunner Andrew Kreisberg is just an infuriating mess of baseless teases, which granted, is totally what gets most people off. Me? I find it silly. I know they’re not going to spoil things, so talk about things you can talk about, instead of oblique and vague hype statements. Then again, fan questions also normally make me want to bash my head into my poor Gamora cosplay neighbor, so really, I don’t know what I expect to enjoy.
But I did enjoy this, as it seemed like Kreisberg had loosened his lips a bit in advance of this panel, joined by actors Carlos Valdes (Cisco Ramon), Candice Patton (Iris West) and Danielle Panabaker (Caitlin Snow).
The following features spoilers from The Flash season 1, as well as spoilers and hints on what’s to come, and even glimpses into what the second season (and beyond!) of The Flash might look like.
- The panel began with a sneak peek. Here’s what it featured: pretty much ALL of the Arrow characters. I saw Arrow, Atom, Felicity and Quentin Lance. Laurel Lance is also going to be hit on by Cisco. Firestorm will return, and be in the same episode as Arrow, so we’ll get a double dose of Amell onscreen together. We see Grodd. We see Caitlin and Barry snog. We see Atom working with STAR Labs. Nice Boy Eddie Thawne SHOOTS a pair of cops. Yup, Flash gonna be crazy guys.
- With all this stuff happening, moderator Damian Holbrook (of TV Guide) wonders if it was all planned out from the start. Kreisberg explains that the writer’s room is a big fan of the plan, and had a good idea of where it was all going to go, with enough room for stuff to change. He points to the pilot as planting all of the seeds we just saw: Grodd, time travel, Weather Wizard, Reverse Flash, etc.
- What’s it like to crossover with Arrow? “It’s exciting, it’s really fun,” Panabaker gushes. She loves the interaction between the casts, and the contrast of the two shows: Arrow is dark and brooding, while Flash is fun, after all. Valdes, in particular, mentioned how it was “so great to have Brandon on set.” He, of course, is referencing Brandon Routh, a.k.a. Ray Palmer a.k.a. the Atom. Patton loves it as well, pointing out that if you’re a fan of Arrow, you’re likely a fan of Flash, and vice versa. “More of that the better,” she says, practically nudging Kreisberg.
- Speaking of the Atom, Ray will appear on Flash 1.18, because he’s having trouble with the Atom suit. “Who better to go to than Cisco Ramon?” Kreisberg asks. Felicity also joins him in Central City and will know something’s up with Barry. While keeping secrets is a new conundrum for Barry, it’s 89% of the plot of Arrow, so Felicity will be able to help him. Ugh. Secrets are the worst. They’re basically the brakes on story development.
- Could Cisco and Black Canary ever be a thing? Kreisberg never says never, and called Cisco’s interactions with Laurel the most fun scenes. “He’s us; what would your reaction be if you met the Black Canary?” She comes to Central City because she wants help with her Canary cry. Since Cisco is the Gepetto of the Flash/Arrow-verse, he “builds a brand new one that operates much it does in the comic books.” Of course, in Kreisberg’s mind, “what Canary does for Cisco is my favorite moment” on the show. What rhymes with Laurel? KIDDING.
- Speaking to Cisco’s fledgling handyman weapon/gadget making business, we’re going to get a glimpse into his workshop, which will show us the goodies he’s worked on this year, as well as things he’s planning. Easter Egg central.
- In regards to Iris being the only one to not know Barry’s secret, Candice “wants her to find out, sooner rather than later.” She wants it to be a good reveal, “wants to find out of her own accord, because she’s smart.” Those are her words, not mine. Barry, Joe and now Eddie lying to Iris is going to have big consequences and “gonna come back to bite them on the ass,” Kreisberg promises. Later on in the panel, Patton is quite insightful as to why she doesn’t see the obvious: because she takes Barry at his word, she trusts him implicitly. That he would or could lie to her doesn’t even dawn on her.
- Patton believes Iris’ infatuation with The Flash is a manifestation of her subconscious feelings for Barry; what she likes in The Flash is what she likes about Barry. The Flash is just a more confident and realized version. Plus, she has a hero fetish, like Felicity Smoak.
- In the comics, Caitlin Snow becomes a villain, but there are no signs of that happening thus far. Panabaker is “really excited about the potential of Killer Frost,” and teases, “you’re gonna see her sooner than you think.”
- Are Ronnie and Caitlin getting married? Apparently they have filmed a wedding scene (on April Fools’), but as Panabaker says, “Weddings don’t always go off without a hitch.” Kreisberg does confirm that they do indeed have footage of a wedding.
- When will Cisco Ramon get in on the superhero action? After all, in the comics he becomes Vibe. Valdes says he can’t be concerned too much with the future, because he likes to stay in the moment, but “everybody wants to be in a super suit, come on y’all,” he grins. Who would name him? Panabaker volunteers enthusiastically, but Valdes does not seem okay with the prospect.
- In season 2, we can expect Cisco and Iris to film scenes together, and Kreisberg mentions that the writer’s room are discussing characters that haven’t been seen together to focus on in season 2. That could mean ANYONE not Joe/Barry and Barry’s Dad/Mitch.
- Will we see a flashback of how Eddie and Iris got together? In 1.20, there will be a flashback to the time when Barry was in the coma. “Caitlin is not quite the Caitlin we know,” and we’ll see how Barry was transferred to S.T.A.R. Labs, Kreisberg teases. Presumably we’ll also see Eddie and Iris in the early stages of their relationship.
- Speaking of Eddie, Kreisberg is “always sympathetic for Eddie.” He’s the “most emotionally stable person of anybody on the show.” This will come to light now that he’s brought in on Barry’s secret, because “he’s not cool keeping it a secret” and will call them out for lying to her. It will be hard for Eddie to keep it from Iris. I still don’t get why they told Eddie, but whatever.
- About Eddie’s villainous last name: “He has a bad last name, which may or may not come into play,” Kreisberg says.
- The show varies in its adaptation from the comics; sometimes, as with the body swapping of Eobard Thawne and Harrison Wells in 1.17, they come up with stuff on their own. Other times, like in the finale, they’ll hew real close. In fact, Geoff Johns (a Flash writer), said when reading the finale, “I think I wrote this.” Their hope is not to “spoon feed” comic book fans with a word for word adaptation, while also appealing to general fans.
- Kreisberg has had conversations with Tom Cavanaugh (who plays Wells/Thawne) about his future, which he hopes fans will love. Tom apparently loves the twists and turns for his character. Also, Matt Lescher, who plays Eobard Thawne before taking over Harrison Wells’ body, will be back before the end of the year.
- What about Barry and Caitlin? “I don’t know if she’s holding out for Barry, but I don’t know if she’d turn him away,” Panabaker says coyly, but not really.
- When Cisco read that he died, he thought it was “awesome.” He called it ballsy, and loved it, welcomed it, and hoped it wasn’t a passive-aggressive firing.
- What about that other spin-off? You know, the one with Caity Lotz as someone, Atom, Rip Hunter, Hawkgirl and Victor Garber’s half of Firestorm. It’d be a “crossovers every week” show, Kreisberg gushes, calling it “gonzo. If Arrow is a gritty crime drama and Flash is heart and humor and spectacle, this show is insanity, off the rails. We’re really excited about it.” Apparently “next year we’ll be setting that show up.” Whether that means the show will be set up for the fall, or get introduced in Arrow or Flash like Barry originally did, who knows.
- Characters will migrate back and forth between the shows, which has been the point all along.
- Danielle and Candice will have scenes together and develop a friendship upcoming.
- How hard is it to work these crossovers? It’s “a lot to keep track of, but the payoff is worth it,” Panabaker believes.
- Who are they dying to work with on Arrow? Without a second pause, Patton said “Diggle,” not caring that he’s married. Panabaker mentioned working with Paul and Katie (Quentin and Laurel), and Valdes bragged, saying he’s pretty much worked with everyone.
- In upcoming episodes, a very big difference in the Reverse Flash’s timeline will come out that affects all the characters. In fact, the characters are going to learn about the future they were supposed to have before the Reverse Flash changed everything by killing Barry’s mother. We will see their reactions, and whether they wish that was their future or not. My guess is that we’ll see Caitlin as Killer Frost in this Ghost of Futures Past episode, as the “dark timeline” for her character, kind of like Dark Willow was foreshadowed in an alt-Buffy future well before it actually happened.
- Speaking of Buffy, Emma Caulfield tweeted at the show asking for a part. Apparently her and Andrew Kreisberg go way back, and used to watch Buffy over the phone together before she even auditioned for a part. She almost didn’t even go out for the audition for a one episode part that became Anya. In other words, it sounds likely that Emma Caulfield will be showing up on Flash at some point.
- What rogues will be added to Flash’s Rogues Gallery in season 2? “Definitely going to see Mirror Master next year,” Kreisberg promises. He also mentions Doctor Alchemy will show up at some point, and hypes the crowd by saying they have “1 thing [planned] people will lose their mind over.” Considering Mirror Master is really the last big name left to unveil, maybe it’s Rogue War?
- What’s the deal with the different Ra’s al Ghul pronunciation? In the comic books, it’s pronounced “Rache” al Ghul, but they thought there’d be confusion, since he’s pronounced Ra’s in the Nolan-verse. So they did a compromise: those in the League of Shadows pronounce it Rache, and everyone else says Ra’s.
- WALLY WEST ALERT: “I wouldn’t be surprised if one day, you saw Wally West on the show,” Kreisberg hints.
- BLACK FLASH (as in, the Death for those in the Speed Force)? “You can see anything on this show,” Kreisberg responds. Case in point, Episode 1.21 is called “Grodd Lives,” where Gorilla Grodd is the villain for that episode, and they have a fully CGI rendered gorilla for that episode. DC and Geoff Johns have “opened everything up…nothing is off limits. If it existed in the Flash universe, there’s a good possibility you’ll see it on the show,” Kreisberg teases.
- Kreisberg was disappointed by the lack of fan fervor over the fact that the Flash fighting the Reverse Flash had a white symbol (as opposed to the yellow Barry has been rocking all year), which hints it might not be the Flash we know. Does that simply mean it’s an older Barry? Or is it another Flash: Wally West? Jay Garrick? Bart Scott?
- If that wasn’t enough fodder for nerd wet dreams, Kreisberg said: “The events of 15 [1.15, part 1 of the time travel 2-parter] are not as erased as you might think.” Kreisberg tells fans to expect “more original Harrison Wells, more Matt Letscher Eobard Thawne and more Tom as Eobard Thawne.”
- In response to a fan wondering if they might see a dark timeline in Flash and Arrow, Kreisberg says that once they start monkeying with time travel, it’s “gonna do bad things.”
- We can expect a heartbreaking scene between Iris and Joe upcoming.
- And lastly, we end with: What one word describes the last few episodes for their characters?
- Valdes: “Dreams.” [I bet he gets a smooch from Laurel]
- Patton: “Pissed.” [meaning she learns Barry’s secret and ain’t happy ‘bout it]
- Panabaker: “Frosty.” [Killer Frost really is happening sooner rather than later]
- Kreisberg: “Tears.” [DEATH?! HEARTBREAK?!]
New episodes of The Flash return April 14th, and at this point, I’ve probably never been more excited about the show. Well played, Andrew Kreisberg.