The Flash (2014 TV series)

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The Flash
TheFLASHlogo.png
Genre
Based on Characters appearing in DC Comics
Developed by
Starring
Composer(s) Blake Neely
Country of origin United States
Original language(s) English
No. of seasons 1
No. of episodes 23 (list of episodes)
Production
Executive producer(s)
  • Greg Berlanti
  • Andrew Kreisberg
  • David Nutter
  • Sarah Schechter
Producer(s)
Editor(s)
Location(s) British Columbia, Canada
Cinematography
  • Glen Winter (pilot)
  • C. Kim Miles
  • Jeffrey C. Mygatt
Camera setup Single-camera
Running time 43 minutes
Production company(s)
Distributor Warner Bros. Television Distribution
Release
Original channel The CW
Picture format HDTV 1080i
Audio format Dolby Digital 5.1
Original release October 7, 2014 (2014-10-07) – present
Chronology
Related shows
External links
Official website
Production website

The Flash is an American television series developed by writer/producers Greg Berlanti, Andrew Kreisberg and Geoff Johns, airing on The CW. It is based on the DC Comics character Barry Allen / Flash, a costumed superhero crime-fighter with the power to move at superhuman speeds. It is a spin-off from Arrow, existing in the same fictional universe. The series follows Allen, portrayed by Grant Gustin, a crime scene investigator who gains super-human speed, which he uses to fight criminals, including others who have also gained superhuman abilities.

Initially envisioned as a backdoor pilot, the positive reception Gustin received during two appearances as Barry on Arrow led to executives choosing to develop a full pilot to make use of a larger budget and help flesh out Barry's world in more detail. Colleen Atwood, costume designer for Arrow, was brought in to design the Flash's suit, which was modeled after the comic books. The creative team wanted to make sure that the Flash would resemble his comic book counterpart, and not simply be a poor imitation. The series is primarily filmed in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada.

The Flash premiered in North America on October 7, 2014, where the pilot became the second-most watched premiere in the history of The CW, after The Vampire Diaries in 2009. It has received generally positive reviews from critics, and won the People's Choice Award for "Favorite New TV Drama" in 2014. On January 11, 2015, The CW renewed The Flash for a second season.[1]

Premise

After witnessing his mother's supernatural murder and his father's wrongful conviction for the crime, Barry Allen is taken in by Detective Joe West and his family. Allen becomes a brilliant but socially awkward crime scene investigator for the Central City Police Department. His obsession with his tragic past causes him to become an outcast among his peers; he investigates cold cases, paranormal occurrences, and cutting-edge scientific advancements that may shed light on his mother's murder. No one believes his description of the crime—that a ball of lightning with the face of a man invaded their home that night—and Allen is fiercely driven to vindicate himself and to clear his father's name. Fourteen years after his mother's death, an advanced particle accelerator malfunctions during its public unveiling, bathing the city center with a previously unknown form of radiation and creating a severe thunderstorm. Allen is struck by lightning from the storm and doused with chemicals in his lab. Awakening after a nine-month coma, he discovers he has the ability to move at superhuman speeds. Dr. Harrison Wells, the disgraced designer of the failed particle accelerator, describes Barry's special nature as "metahuman"; Allen soon discovers that he is not the only one who was changed by the radiation. Allen vows to use his gifts to protect Central City from the escalating violence of metahuman criminals. He is aided by a few close friends and associates who guard his secrets.[2]

Cast

A Central City assistant police forensic investigator. Moments after an explosion at the S.T.A.R. Labs particle accelerator, Barry is struck by lightning in his laboratory and doused by chemicals affected by the accident. When he awakens from a nine-month coma, he has superhuman speed.[3] In September 2013, Grant Gustin was cast in the titular role.[3] Andy Mientus, who would eventually be cast as Hartley Rathaway, also auditioned for the role.[4] Gustin began researching the character during the audition process, and reading as many comics as possible. Gustin primarily focused on The New 52 series of comics, because he knew it would be difficult to read everything and he felt the New 52 was the closest to the show's "look and feel".[5]
Named after the civilian identity of the DC Comics character Killer Frost. A highly intelligent bioengineering expert, Caitlin believed her fiancé, Ronnie Raymond,[7] was killed during the particle accelerator explosion at S.T.A.R. Labs,[8] until he returned part way through first season. Ronnie and Caitlin get married in the first season finale, "Fast Enough".[9]
A recent transfer to the Central City Police Department, Eddie's past is a mystery and he harbored a dark secret.[8] He is partner to Detective Joe West and Iris West's love interest. He kills himself in the first season finale in order to wipe Eobard Thawne, his distant descendant, from history.[9]
  • Carlos Valdes as Cisco Ramon: Named after the civilian identity of the DC Comics character Vibe. A mechanical engineering genius, Cisco is the youngest member of the team of scientists at S.T.A.R. Labs.[10]
  • Tom Cavanagh as Dr. Harrison Wells:
The mind and money behind Central City's S.T.A.R. Labs Particle Accelerator, who becomes a pariah after the lab explodes.[11] He serves as a mentor to Barry Allen after he exhibits his powers, but Dr. Wells is keeping secrets from Barry, including his plans for the speedster. Wells is ultimately revealed to be the Reverse-Flash, but unlike Barry, his super speed requires periodic recharging.[12][13] Wells eventually reveals he is actually Eobard Thawne in disguise, a distant relative of Eddie.[14]
  • Jesse L. Martin as Detective Joe West: A cop who acts as a surrogate father to Barry after his mother's death and father's imprisonment, and who is the father of Iris West.[2][15]

Episodes

No. Title Directed by Written by Original air date Production
code
U.S. viewers
(millions)
1 "Pilot" David Nutter Story by: Greg Berlanti & Andrew Kreisberg & Geoff Johns
Teleplay by: Andrew Kreisberg & Geoff Johns
October 7, 2014 (2014-10-07) 296648 4.83[16]
Barry Allen, a forensic crime scene assistant for Central City Police Department, is struck by lightning during a storm that is created after a particle accelerator from S.T.A.R. Labs explodes. In a coma for nine months, Barry awakens in S.T.A.R. Labs, having been placed in the care of his scientist idol, Dr. Harrison Wells, along with his assistants, Dr. Caitlin Snow and Cisco Ramon. Barry quickly learns that he can move at extraordinary speeds, and that there were other "metahumans" created from the explosion. One of them, Clyde Mardon, is robbing banks with his ability to control the weather. In order to stop Clyde, Barry is outfitted with a suit, designed by Cisco, that can withstand his high speed of movement. He tracks down Mardon and with the help of Detective West, who learns of Barry's abilities, Barry is able to stop Mardon. With his new powers, Barry vows to find out who killed his mother when he was a child, believing him to be another metahuman who has similar abilities of speed as he. Elsewhere, in a secret room at S.T.A.R Labs, Wells reveals he is not paraplegic, while reading a newspaper from the future concerning Barry's fate as the Flash.
2 "Fastest Man Alive" David Nutter Story by: Greg Berlanti & Andrew Kreisberg
Teleplay by: Andrew Kreisberg & Geoff Johns
October 14, 2014 (2014-10-14) 3J5352 4.27[17]
With help from Cisco, Barry begins using his abilities to stop minor crimes and help citizens across the city. As Barry begins to push himself more and more, he begins to develop debilitating side effects. While assisting Iris on a school assignment, Barry witnesses a robbery by a crew of men, but faints while trying to stop them. The S.T.A.R. Labs team determine that Barry is becoming hypoglycemic from the use of his abilities due to a sped-up metabolism and needs to ingest more calories to maintain his energy level. The team eventually learns that the robbers are actually one man, Danton Black, who has the ability to create clones of himself. Black wants to kill his former employer, Simon Stagg, who stole Black's cloning research. With encouragement from Joe, Barry goes after Black and successfully stops him from killing Stagg. However, Black commits suicide to prevent being captured. Afterward, Barry accepts Joe's help in finding out who really killed Barry's mother. Later, Wells visits Stagg, who has already become obsessed with the Flash after witnessing his powers and plans to exploit him as he did to Black. To protect Barry, Wells kills Stagg.
3 "Things You Can't Outrun" Jesse Warn Alison Schapker & Grainne Godfree October 21, 2014 (2014-10-21) 3J5353 3.59[18]
As the police investigate the murder of one of the city's crime families, Barry suspects that the killer may be a metahuman who can control poison gases. As Barry and Joe work to discover the killer's identity, Dr. Wells and his team work to retrofit the particle accelerator into a prison specifically for metahumans where S.T.A.R. Labs can begin to find a way of reversing their mutations. This brings up difficult feelings and memories for Dr. Snow, whose fiancé, Ronnie Raymond, was killed when the accelerator exploded. Following another murder, Barry locates the killer, Kyle Nimbus, but is unable to subdue him. Barry discovers that Kyle does not control gases, but literally transforms his body into them. The team learn that Joe, who was the lead detective in the original case, is Kyle's next target. Barry races to Iron Heights Prison in time to save Joe's life. Barry forces Kyle to overexert himself so that Barry can apprehend him without Kyle turning into mist. The team lock Kyle into a custom cell that is able to keep him from escaping. In a flashback to when the accelerator explodes, Dr. Wells is seen going into his hidden room and viewing a surveillance video of Barry getting struck by lightning in his lab.
4 "Going Rogue" Glen Winter Geoff Johns & Kai Yu Wu October 28, 2014 (2014-10-28) 3J5354 3.53[19]
Dr. Wells begins testing Barry's powers by forcing him to perform multiple tasks at superspeed. In the middle of the tests, a group of men attempt to hijack an armored truck carrying a priceless diamond. Barry races over and stops the crime, as well as identifying Leonard Snart from a set of police mugshots. Felicity Smoak arrives to check on Barry, after learning that he woke from his coma. Happy to see Felicity, Barry introduces her to his friends at S.T.A.R. Labs. To combat the "Streak", Snart acquires stolen tech from S.T.A.R. Labs, which includes a cryonic gun. Cisco reveals to Barry that he created the gun as a fail-safe against Barry should he become a killer like the other metahumans they encountered. Felicity helps the team locate Snart, who sets a trap for Barry. Cisco, Caitlin, and Felicity arrive in time to save Barry, and Snart is able to escape. Later, Snart tracks down his former partner, Mick, who has an affinity for fire, and offers him a place by Snart's side taking back Central City from the masked superhero.
5 "Plastique" Dermott Downs Aaron Helbing & Todd Helbing & Brooke Eikmeier November 11, 2014 (2014-11-11) 3J5355 3.46[20]
A new metahuman appears in Central City, with the ability to turn anything she touches into an explosive. Barry is able to discover that the metahuman, Bette Sans Souci, is a former military explosives expert who was changed by the particle accelerator when it bonded bomb shrapnel to her body on a cellular level. As General Wade Eiling hunts for Bette, Barry brings her to S.T.A.R. Labs where the team explains to her how she got her powers. Unfortunately, they cannot reverse the process. While the team is away, Dr. Wells convinces Bette to kill Eiling so that he cannot exploit any metahumans. Barry races to stop her, but Bette sets off several bombs around Eiling and his men. Eiling manages to shoot Bette, which causes her body to turn into a massive bomb. Barry speeds off with Bette's body and drops it in the river to save the city from the explosion. General Eiling visits Dr. Wells, demanding that they work together, as they did in the past, to collect the metahumans. Dr. Wells refuses and warns Eiling to never return to S.T.A.R. Labs. In a flashback set five years in the past, Dr. Wells tells Eiling he is putting an end to their experiments. After Eiling leaves, Wells walks to a cage and tells Gorilla Grodd that he has plans for him.
6 "The Flash Is Born" Millicent Shelton Jaime Paglia & Chris Rafferty November 18, 2014 (2014-11-18) 3J5356 3.73[21]
Iris is visited by the Streak, who again pleads with her to stop writing about him. Before he can finish, Barry speeds off to stop a car thief. Barry confronts the thief, but when he hits him the thief's skin turns to steel and Barry breaks his hand. Barry runs back to the lab before he can be hurt further. The thief is identified as Tony Woodward, who was Barry's childhood bully. Barry and the team discover Tony's hideout, and Barry rushes in without a plan to defeat him. Tony gets the upper hand again and Barry is beaten up and left for dead. Back at the lab, Cisco determines that if Barry can hit Tony at over 800 mph at the right angle, then he can create enough force to compromise Tony's metal structure. Tony kidnaps Iris and demands that she write about him. Barry arrives and successfully hits the speed necessary to temporarily disable Tony's abilities. Afterward, Tony is locked away at S.T.A.R. Labs, and Iris renames her hero "The Flash". Meanwhile, Joe is visited by the metahuman that killed Barry's mother, who steals the case file and threatens Joe to drop his investigation.
7 "Power Outage" Larry Shaw Alison Schapker & Grainne Godfree November 25, 2014 (2014-11-25) 3J5357 3.47[22]
Dr. Wells returns to his secret room, where it is revealed that he has been documenting Barry's growing abilities, and using his computer, Gideon, to look at events in the future. Barry arrives at a crime scene where the victim was murdered via electrocution, and charred beyond all recognition, suggesting a metahuman was involved. While investigating the victim's identity, the team identifies a power drain in the city. When Barry arrives he is attacked by Farooq Gibran, a man who has the ability to siphon electrical energy. The attack drains Barry of his speed, and when Wells checks with Gideon it reveals that there are no references to Barry or "The Flash" in the future. Wells believes that Barry's body just needs an electrical jumpstart, and Farooq arrives at the lab while the team is attempting to help Barry. The process does not appear to work, but Wells quickly realizes that Barry's problem is psychological. When Farooq catches up to the team and Dr. Wells' life is in danger, Barry overcomes his fear, connects to his speed on a cellular level and stops Farooq. Later, Dr. Wells sees that the timeline is back on track, and takes a sample of Farooq's blood to determine how he was able to drain Barry's abilities.
8 "Flash vs. Arrow" Glen Winter Story by: Greg Berlanti & Andrew Kreisberg
Teleplay by: Ben Sokolowski & Brooke Eikmeier
December 2, 2014 (2014-12-02) 3J5358 4.34[23]
A new metahuman, Roy Bivolo, shows up with the ability to send people into an uncontrollable rage, and uses his ability to rob the Central City bank. The police track him to a warehouse, where he uses his abilities on a cop to facilitate his escape. Barry arrives in time to save Joe, but is almost injured himself before Oliver Queen, as the "Arrow", arrives to stop the cop. Later, Oliver informs Barry that he and his team are tracking a killer who uses lethal boomerangs. Barry and Oliver agree to team-up and catch each other's targets. Oliver tries to teach Barry to be more mindful of his surroundings, but Barry decides to go after Bivolo by himself. Bivolo uses his abilities on Barry, but because of Barry's powers it makes the effects last longer. Oliver tries to stop Barry, and the two engage in a fight. Oliver manages to wrangle Barry long enough for Dr. Wells and Joe to use colored strobe light to reset Barry's emotional state. Afterward, Barry and Oliver capture Bivolo and place him in the prison at S.T.A.R. Labs.
9 "The Man in the Yellow Suit" Ralph Hemecker Todd Helbing & Aaron Helbing December 9, 2014 (2014-12-09) 3J5359 4.66[24]
The metahuman that killed Barry's mother returns, killing two guards at Mercury Labs in search of the company's work in tachyon particles. Barry witnesses the man in yellow, and engages in a high speed fight around the city. The man in yellow insinuates to Barry that they know each other before speeding off. Meanwhile, Eddie asks Iris to move in with him and Ronnie is revealed to have survived the particle accelerator explosion, but does not remember who he is and has the ability to burst into flames. Barry confesses his love for Iris before the police and S.T.A.R. Labs use the tachyon particle technology as bait to lure the man in yellow into a trap. The man in yellow escapes and attacks Dr. Wells and the police before engaging in a second fight with Barry. Ronnie appears and blasts the man with flames before both flee the scene. Later, Dr. Wells enters his secret room and unveils the same yellow suit as the man that they captured, placing the stolen tachyon technology on the suit's chest.
10 "Revenge of the Rogues" Nick Copus Kai Yu Wu & Geoff Johns January 20, 2015 (2015-01-20) 3J5360 3.87[25]
As Barry works on improving his speed through various training exercises, Leonard Snart returns to Central City with the freeze gun and a new partner, Mick Rory, to set a trap for the Flash. Barry discovers his plan, and agrees with Dr. Wells to not engage Snart in the hope that he goes away and no one gets hurt like the last time. When the Flash fails to show, Snart and Rory, who now has a gun that can emit absolute hot temperatures, kidnap Caitlin to force Barry out of hiding. Cisco and Barry realize that if they can get Snart and Rory to cross the streams of their respective weapons it will cancel out the effects. The Flash meets Snart and Rory in the middle of a city for a showdown, exposing himself to the media. After multiple failed attempts, Barry eventually gets them to cross the streams with Eddie's help, successfully damaging the weapons and disabling the criminal pair. While in transport to Iron Heights Prison, Snart and Rory are broken out by Snart's sister. Meanwhile, Caitlin investigates the cause of Ronnie's transformation.
11 "The Sound and the Fury" John F. Showalter Alison Schapker & Brooke Eikmeier January 27, 2015 (2015-01-27) 3J5361 4.08[26]
While home, Dr. Wells receives a threatening call from an unidentified person before having to use super speed to move out of the way of his glass ceiling shattering around him. Wells informs Barry and the team that the caller was Hartley Rathaway, a former protégé. Hartley begins attacking his family's business with sonic blasts, and when Barry arrives to stop him Hartley reveals that he knows the secret Dr. Wells is hiding. Dr. Wells reveals that Hartley warned him that the particle accelerator could explode ahead of time, but Wells chose to risk it for the potential rewards. Cisco discovers that Hartley intentionally got caught so he could steal information from S.T.A.R. Labs' computer that would allow him to identify the frequency of Barry's molecules so he can kill him. Barry triggers a trap set by Hartley, which starts shredding Barry's organs. Dr. Wells taps into a satellite and sends an alternative frequency to disable Hartley's weapons. Later, Joe has Eddie start an investigation into Dr. Wells. Hartley, imprisoned back in the particle accelerator, reveals to Cisco that he knows where Ronnie is and how to save him. In his secret room, Dr. Wells uses the tachyon technology to temporarily recharge his speed force energy.
12 "Crazy for You" Rob Hardy Aaron Helbing & Todd Helbing February 3, 2015 (2015-02-03) 3J5362 3.60[27]
A woman with the ability to teleport to any location she can see breaks into Iron Heights prison to free her boyfriend, Clay Parker. Barry finds residual DNA particulates all over the scene and when analyzing it at S.T.A.R. Labs the team identifies the woman as Shawna Baez. To help Barry, Henry Allen tracks down leads in Iron Heights and finds out that Clay owed money to a local crime boss, who was also planning a major heist. Barry learns the location of the heist, finding Shawna and Clay robbing an armored truck. Barry is able to capture Shawna after removing all the lights in a tunnel, effectively making her unable to teleport without being able to see where she is going. Cisco goes to Hartley to find out more about Ronnie; Hartley reveals that Dr. Stein, who developed research into a F.I.R.E.S.T.O.R.M. project focused on transmuting elements, was at S.T.A.R. Labs the day of the explosion. Hartley reveals that during the explosion Ronnie and Dr. Stein merged, before he escapes Cisco's custody. Later, Barry and his father discuss the Flash, with Henry insinuating he believes Barry is the Flash. Elsewhere, two city workers are attacked by the gorilla, Grodd, in the city's sewer system.
13 "The Nuclear Man" Glen Winter Andrew Kreisberg & Katherine Walczak February 10, 2015 (2015-02-10) 3J5363 3.66[28]
The team attempts to track Ronnie's whereabouts after he injures a scientist. Knowing that Dr. Martin Stein is in control of Ronnie's body, they use his wife to talk Stein/Ronnie into coming back to the lab for testing. Meanwhile, Joe enlists Cisco's help to identify who murdered Barry's mother. Cisco discovers an old mirror left in the former Allen home that captured images from the night of the murder, and Joe finds blood from two people behind some new wallpaper, one of whom was likely the killer. Joe asks Cisco to compare the blood to Dr. Wells', but Cisco refuses to believe Dr. Wells is involved. Dr. Wells discovers that Ronnie and Dr. Stein's atoms are in conflict, and if it continues they will become nuclear. Dr. Wells determines that a component of the tachyon device recharging his speed could be converted to a quantum splicer to stabilize Ronnie's body and separate the two personalities. Dr. Snow uses the device; Ronnie's body still goes nuclear, but safely away from the city. The explosion alerts General Eiling, who orders a team to recover "Firestorm". Cisco runs the blood samples and informs Joe that while neither is from Dr. Wells, one is from an adult Barry.
14 "Fallout" Steve Surjik Keto Shimizu & Ben Sokolowski February 17, 2015 (2015-02-17) 3J5364 4.01[29]
Barry and Caitlin investigate the explosion and find Ronnie and Dr. Stein have separated. General Eiling investigates the crater left by Ronnie and Stein's explosion, and realizes that "Firestorm" has separated. Joe shows Barry the images from the night his mother was killed, and Barry learns that a future version of himself was there trying to save his mother. Barry talks to Dr. Stein and learns about the possibility of time travel. Dr. Wells visits General Eiling, who reveals that he knows Barry is the Flash and that he wants the F.I.R.E.S.T.O.R.M. project. Dr. Wells gives up Dr. Stein, who is tortured by Eiling until Ronnie shows to save him. Ronnie and Dr. Stein are forced to reunite to survive Eiling's military onslaught. Merging properly this time, Ronnie and Dr. Stein work together to control the Firestorm Matrix within them, gaining enough control to be able to merge and separate on command. The pair decide to leave Central City to stay ahead of Eiling and learn more about their new powers. The Reverse-Flash kidnaps Eiling and brings him to the sewers. He reveals himself to be Dr. Wells, and allows Grodd, who is displaying psychic abilities, to drag Eiling deeper into the sewer.
15 "Out of Time" Thor Freudenthal Todd Helbing & Aaron Helbing March 17, 2015 (2015-03-17) 3J5365 3.69[30]
Mark Mardon, who has the ability to control the weather, returns to Central City to avenge the death of his brother Clyde and sets his sight on Joe. Cisco begins to believe Joe was right about Wells, so he rechecks the containment field that had failed to hold the Reverse-Flash. He discovers that the Reverse-Flash seen in the containment field was only a hologram. Wells arrives and reveals himself to be Eobard Thawne, a man from the future who came back in time to kill Barry but killed his mother instead, and has since been stranded in the present day. Wells also explains that he is pushing Barry to get stronger so that he can use Barry's powers to return to his time, and he murders Cisco to protect his secret. Mark kidnaps Joe and forces him to watch as Mark sends a tsunami into the city in order to kill Iris. Barry is forced to reveal his secret identity to Iris, just after she admits to romantic feelings for him, in order to save the city. Barry runs back and forth across the coastline to create a barrier against the tsunami, but he runs so fast that he creates a time warp and travels back in time to when Mark first returned to Central City.
16 "Rogue Time" John Behring Story by: Grainne Godfree
Teleplay by: Brooke Eikmeier & Kai Yu Wu
March 24, 2015 (2015-03-24) 3J5366 3.33[31]
As Barry begins to relive the previous day, Dr. Wells realizes what happened and warns Barry not to change any event for fear that he will create a bigger problem as the universe balances itself. Barry does not listen and instead captures Mark Mardon before he can kidnap Joe. Meanwhile, Leonard Snart and Mick Rory return to Central City. Leonard sends his sister Lisa after Cisco, whom they force to rebuild the cold and heat guns, and a third gun for Lisa that turns people into gold, under threat that they will kill Cisco's brother. Barry realizes that Dr. Wells was right, and his actions have resulted in Cisco's kidnapping and Iris rejecting his romantic advances. Cisco returns and reveals that Leonard tortured his brother until Cisco revealed the Flash's true identity. Barry goes after the Snarts, and the two develop an uneasy truce: Snart will not reveal Barry's identity, will no longer kill innocent people, and stay away from Barry's friends in exchange for Barry not locking him away in the particle accelerator. The Reverse-Flash kills a local reporter and destroys evidence linking Dr. Wells to the death of Simon Stagg. The reporter's vanishing causes Barry to think Joe might be right about Dr. Wells.
17 "Tricksters" Ralph Hemecker Andrew Kreisberg March 31, 2015 (2015-03-31) 3J5367 3.67[32]
Barry and Joe go after terrorist Axel Walker, who goes by the name Trickster. Axel sets a diversion for the Flash so that he can break James Jesse, the original Trickster from 20 years prior, out of prison. James and Axel attempt to extort wealthy patrons by poisoning them and ransoming the antidote. When the Flash arrives, the Tricksters fit him with a bomb that will detonate if he stops moving. Dr. Wells coaches Barry on how to vibrate his molecules so that he can phase through objects, which removes the bomb. Afterward, Barry provides an antidote to all the patrons, before capturing the Tricksters. Later, the Flash reveals his identity to Eddie, so he can help keep Iris from looking into Dr. Wells for her own protection, as Barry realizes that Wells is the Reverse-Flash. In flashbacks, after failing to kill Barry as a child, the Reverse-Flash escapes down the road only to lose his speed. Gideon informs him that travelling back in time has drained his powers. He removes his mask to reveal the real Eobard Thawne. Eobard stalks Dr. Wells and reveals the particle accelerator is not built until the year 2020. He then appears to kill Wells and steal his appearance and identity so he can develop the particle accelerator sooner and return to his timeline.
18 "All Star Team Up" Kevin Tancharoen Grainne Godfree & Kai Yu Wu April 14, 2015 (2015-04-14) 3J5368 3.67[33]
As Barry works in conjunction with Joe and Eddie to stop crimes across the city, an engineering professor is attacked and killed by a swarm of bees at the local university. While the team searches for a metahuman that can control bees, Felicity arrives with Ray, in his A.T.O.M. suit, looking for assistance to improve his suit. The team tracks another bee attack, but Barry is too late and is attacked by the swarm. The team captures one of the bees, which turns out to be a robot and their metahuman just a disgruntled scientist named Brie Larvan from Mercury Labs, who is targeting other former employees. Barry struggles with whether he can trust Cisco and Caitlin, not knowing if they are working for the Reverse-Flash or not. During the next bee attack, Barry goes after Brie while Ray, as the Atom, attempts to stop the bees from killing Dr. Tina McGee. Felicity taps into the wireless frequency for the bees to disable them, and Barry captures Brie. Later, Barry informs Caitlin and Cisco that Dr. Wells is the Reverse-Flash. Caitlin does not want to believe this, but Cisco does, revealing that he has been having "dreams" in which Wells kills him with super speed (as happened in the original timeline).
19 "Who Is Harrison Wells?" Wendey Stanzler Ray Utarnachitt & Cortney Norris April 21, 2015 (2015-04-21) 3J5369 3.75[34]
Barry and Eddie track a metahuman named Hannibal Bates, who can shape-shift into anyone he touches, but he takes Eddie's shape and frames him for murder. Later, Hannibal knocks Barry unconscious and assumes his form, but Dr. Wells realizes the truth and prevents Hannibal from killing Caitlin and Iris. While transporting him to Central City Police, Hannibal uses his powers to escape. Caitlin develops a serum to suppress Hannibal's power, allowing Barry to defeat him and clear Eddie's name. Meanwhile, Joe and Cisco decide to investigate the car accident scene in Starling City where Wells' wife Tess Morgan died, though Caitlin is unsure they are correct and believes they are going to ruin Dr. Well's reputation. With the help of Captain Quentin Lance, Cisco and Joe locate a buried corpse near the crash site. After a series of tests confirm the corpse is the real Harrison Wells, Barry, Caitlin and Cisco locate the imposter’s secret room at S.T.A.R. Labs. They find both the Reverse-Flash's costume and a newspaper article from the future concerning the Flash vanishing during a crisis.
20 "The Trap" Steve Shill Alison Schapker & Brooke Eikmeier April 28, 2015 (2015-04-28) 3J5370 3.93[35]
While in Wells' secret room, Barry learns about his battle with the Reverse-Flash in the future, as well as key moments in his life that include marrying Iris, a promotion at the CCPD, and that he created the artificial consciousness known as Gideon in the future. The team regroups at Barry's home, where Barry explains his plan to convince Wells to confess to killing his mother. In order to trap Wells, Cisco reverses the polarity of his containment field to protect himself from Wells, while Caitlin films the interaction to capture Wells' confession. The trap fails, but Joe shoots Wells before he can kill Cisco. As Wells dies, his body transforms, revealing himself to be Hannibal Bates. The real Wells calls the team, revealing that he was always aware of their actions because he had them under surveillance. Wells goes after Iris and Eddie, but Barry arrives, forcing Wells to kidnap Eddie instead. Wells reveals to Eddie that he is really Eobard Thawne, Eddie's future relative. Flashbacks reveals the aftermath of Barry being struck by lightning, and Wells offering Joe to save Barry's life.
21 "Grodd Lives" Dermott Downs Grainne Godfree & Kai Yu Wu May 5, 2015 (2015-05-05) 3J5371 3.62[36]
Barry scours the city looking for Eddie, but must take a break to stop a robbery at the gold reserve. When Barry confronts the would-be thief, they are both disoriented by an unknown psychological attack. Back at the lab, Barry describes the attack to Caitlin and Cisco when Iris walks in, confronting Barry about being the Flash. The thief attacks again, but Barry is able to stop him. The thief turns out to be General Eiling, whose mind was being controlled by the gorilla Grodd. With a lead from Iris, Barry, Joe and Cisco head into the sewers to look for Grodd. The trio realize that Grodd is getting smarter and larger, and during an attack, Barry is knocked unconscious while Joe is kidnapped by Grodd. Cisco and Caitlin build Barry a device that will prevent Grodd from attacking him psychically. It works, but Grodd is too powerful and during a fight the device is damaged. Barry is able to fight off Grodd's psychic attack and trick him into jumping in front of an on-coming train. Elsewhere, Wells works on a device that will allow him to return to his own time.
22 "Rogue Air" Doug Aarniokoski Aaron Helbing & Todd Helbing May 12, 2015 (2015-05-12) 3J5372 3.65[37]
Cisco discovers that Wells has been supercharging his speed while he sits in his wheelchair, which is why he is so much faster than Barry. The particle accelerator is activated and the team realizes that Wells has been at S.T.A.R. Labs the entire time and he has repaired the accelerator. While investigating, Wells escapes but the team is able to find and rescue Eddie, who is disillusioned after Wells showed him that Iris marries Barry in the future. Eddie later tells Iris what he knows of her future and ends their relationship. Worried that when the accelerator reaches full power the metahumans imprisoned inside will be killed, the team decides to relocate them to the A.R.G.U.S. prison on Lian Yu. In order to set up a safe transport, Barry is forced to go to Leonard Snart for help. Snart agrees but only after Barry erases Snart's criminal record and history from the CCPD database. Snart sabotages the transport and allows the metahumans to escape. Wells arrives back at the lab just as the accelerator fully charges. Barry, Ronnie, and Oliver all meet outside to fight Wells. After each tries battling Wells individually, they coordinate efforts and Oliver finally stops him with a nanite injection that disables Wells' speed.
23 "Fast Enough" Dermott Downs Story by: Greg Berlanti & Andrew Kreisberg
Teleplay by: Gabrielle Stanton & Andrew Kreisberg
May 19, 2015 (2015-05-19) 3J5373 3.87[38]
Barry visits Wells where Wells describes their relationship in the future, why he killed Barry's mother, and why he ultimately had to help Barry become the Flash. Wells also propositions Barry, requesting help creating a wormhole where Wells can return to his time, while also allowing Barry to go back in time to save his mother. Barry and the team are conflicted, as this could alter the timeline in an undeterminable way. Barry decides to go through with it, so Wells informs him that he will need to turn the particle accelerator on and then super speed at the right velocity into a hydrogen particle to create a wormhole. Barry will have less than 2 minutes to change the past, or the wormhole will create a black hole that could destroy the world. Barry successfully travels back in time, but his future self motions him not to save their mother. Instead, Barry identifies himself and reassures Nora that he is safe in the future before she dies. Barry returns and stops Wells from returning to his time. Before Wells can kill Barry, Eddie shoots himself causing Wells, as he is reverted back into Eobard, to be erased from existence. The team is unable to prevent the black hole from being created, and Barry super speeds into it in an effort to stop it.

Production

Development

On July 30, 2013, it was announced that Arrow co-creators Greg Berlanti and Andrew Kreisberg, Arrow pilot director David Nutter, and DC Comics CCO Geoff Johns would develop a television series based on the Flash for The CW, and it would detail Barry Allen's origin.[39] Kreisberg revealed after the announcement that Allen would first appear as a recurring character on Arrow in three episodes of season two—all written by Berlanti, Kreisberg and Johns—and the last of the episodes would act as a backdoor pilot for the new show. Kreisberg added that Allen would be a forensic scientist and the introduction of his superpowers, as well as the reactions to this, will be very human and grounded. Johns stated that the character of the Flash in the show will resemble his comic book counterpart, complete with his trademark red costume, and not be a poor imitation. Kreisberg elaborated: "No sweat suits or strange code names; he will be The Flash." While researching the best way to depict the Flash's lightning speed, Johns stated it would not just be the standard "blurring around".[40]

Barry ultimately appeared twice in Arrow‍‍ '​‍s second season, with the planned backdoor pilot cancelled in favor of a traditional pilot by The CW executives, who had been impressed by early cuts of Barry's first two episodes on Arrow. This allowed the creative team to flesh out Barry's story and his world on a bigger budget, as opposed to a backdoor pilot's constraint of incorporating characters from the parent show. The pilot was officially ordered on January 29, 2014, and was written by Berlanti, Kreisberg, and Johns, and directed by Nutter.[41][42] On May 8, 2014, The Flash was officially picked up as a series, with an initial order of 13 episodes.[43] Three more episodes were ordered in September 2014 following a positive response to newly completed episodes by executives,[44] while seven more were confirmed the next month for a full 23-episode season.[45]

Design

The costume was designed by Colleen Atwood, who also designed the costumes for Arrow.[46] It features a burgundy color scheme, a masked helmet, and gold accents throughout,[47] and went through multiple adjustments from the moment it was placed in computer renderings to the day of filming the pilot.[5] Primarily made of leather, the suit contains areas with a stretchable material to allow Gustin room to bend. It initially took Gustin approximately 40 minutes to get into his costume, as the first cowl was prosthetic and had to be zipped and glued to his face. This was cut down to approximately 15 minutes by episode eight, when designers were able to develop a new cowl that easily slid over Gustin's face and locked into place.[5]

Filming

Production on the pilot began in March 2014, with filming taking place in Vancouver, British Columbia;[48] additional filming for the series takes place in Portland, Oregon.[49] On how action sequences are shot for the series, compared to Arrow, Gustin said, "When [Arrow] shoot[s] action sequences, pretty much what you see is what you get and they're really doing everything. We do a lot of plate shots that are empty shots of the area we’re going to be in and then they’re putting us in later in post. I do a lot of the fighting. I don’t have to do it full speed and then they ramp it up and a lot of people have to freeze and I keep moving. Then I have to clear frame and step back into frame. It’s really tedious stuff that we have to do. On theirs, they learn fight choreography and they shoot it from the perfect angles and what you see is what you get."[50]

Music

Arrow composer Blake Neely also composes for this series.[51] On December 18, 2014, WaterTower Music released a selection of music from The Flash/Arrow crossover episodes, as well as two bonus tracks from their respective 2014 midseason finales.[52]

Broadcast

The Flash was screened at the Warner Bros. Television and DC Entertainment panel at San Diego Comic-Con International in July 2014.[53] The series officially premiered on The CW on October 7, 2014, during the 2014–15 television season[54] and also premiered in Canada on the same night.[55] The second episode was screened at New York Comic Con on October 9, 2014, as a way to repay the viewers that watched the series' premiere episode.[56] The series premiered in the United Kingdom and Ireland on October 28, 2014,[57] and in Australia on December 3, 2014.[58]

Critical reception

Regarding Gustin's debut as Barry Allen in Arrow and the potential for a series, IGN's Jesse Schedeen stated his concern: "Gustin doesn't come across as leading man material. His awkward bumbling intertwining with Felicity's was cute, but rarely did I get the impression that this character could or should be given his own spinoff series."[59] Schedeen eventually warmed up to the character, however, once the "dorkiness and social awkwardness" were downplayed a bit and the emphasis was placed on "his keen scientific mind."[60]

The review aggregator website Rotten Tomatoes reported a 96% approval rating with an average rating of 7.4/10 based on 55 reviews. The website's consensus reads, "The Flash benefits from its purposefully light atmosphere, making it a superhero show uniquely geared toward genre fans as well as novices."[61] Metacritic, which uses a weighted average, assigned a score of 73 out of 100, based on 27 reviews, indicating "generally favorable reviews".[62] IGN's Eric Goldman and Joshua Yehl praised the show's premise and cast after viewing a press screening copy of the pilot. Goldman and Yehl favorably compared it to Arrow, stating that The Flash progresses with a confidence that Arrow did not get until later in the series.[63]

Ratings

The first episode of The Flash was watched by 4.8 million viewers and had a 1.9 18–49 demographic rating, making it The CW's most watched and highest rated series premiere since The Vampire Diaries in 2009. It also became The CW's second-most watched series premiere ever, behind 90210, and the third-highest rated in the 18–49 demographic.[64] Factoring Live + 7 day ratings, the pilot was watched by a total of 6.8 million viewers, becoming The CW's most-watched telecast and the highest-rated premiere among men 18–34 (2.5 rating). It broke the previous record for the most-watched telecast held by the cycle 8 finale of America's Next Top Model in 2007 (6.69 million). Additionally, across all platforms, including initiated streams on digital platforms and total unduplicated viewers on-air over two airings the week of October 7, 2014, the premiere was seen more than 13 million times.[65]

The Canadian premiere was watched by 3.11 million viewers, making it the most-watched broadcast that night and the second for that week.[66] In the United Kingdom, the premiere was the fourth highest-rated broadcast of the week and the eleventh of that month, with 1.53 million viewers.[67][68] The timeshifted version got 82,000 viewers.[69] The premiere in Australia was the most-watched broadcast on pay television, with 129,000 viewers tuning in.[70]

Digital comic

The Flash: Season Zero, written by Kreisberg, Brooke Eikmeier and Katherine Walczak, with art by Phil Hester and Eric Gapstur, is intended to take place between the pilot episode and episode 2. Kreisberg stated, "Barry will [already] be the Flash, he will have his team, everyone will be in that world, and we'll [sic] introducing a new set of villains that we won't be seeing on the TV show. It'll feel like the same heart, humor and spectacle that you get watching Flash." The comic will showcase the entire TV cast, plus new rogues, a group of circus performers who gained super powers as a result of the S.T.A.R. Labs particle accelerator explosion. The group is led by Mr. Bliss, a character who first appeared in Starman. The comic launched digitally biweekly on September 8, 2014, with its first physical release featuring a collection of the digital releases, releasing on October 1.[71]

Shared universe

Arrow

Main article: Arrow (TV series)

Barry made his first appearance in the Arrow season two episode "The Scientist" as a CSI from Central City. He arrives in Starling City to investigate a suspect with super powers who might have connections to a case in Central City. He meets Oliver Queen (Stephen Amell) after Queen Consolidated is burgled. Barry has an immediate rapport with Oliver's confidante, Felicity Smoak (Emily Bett Rickards). Oliver is immediately suspicious of Barry despite the needs of his forensic expertise; Barry's investigation of the theft allows Oliver and his partners to begin uncovering the Mirakuru plot orchestrated by Deathstroke (Manu Bennett). Barry reveals that he is not in Starling officially, and his quarry may have been involved in the murder of Barry's mother. In addition, Barry hopes to meet the Arrow during his time in Starling City, as he has been reading the hero's exploits as a fan and seeks his help in solving his mother's murder. He is ordered to return to Central City, but Felicity and John Diggle (David Ramsey) bring him to their hideout when Oliver is poisoned. In the following episode, "Three Ghosts", Barry saves Oliver's life, and continues to assist Felicity in hunting Cyrus Gold (Graham Shiels), a test subject of Sebastian Blood (Kevin Alejandro), after proving that he can be trusted. In a gesture of friendship, he leaves a custom-made domino mask for Oliver to improve his disguise. Returning to Central City, he is hit by lightning while in his lab at the same time that the S.T.A.R. Labs particle accelerator explodes across town.[2] In "Blast Radius", it is revealed that Barry was left in a coma following the lab accident. In "The Man Under the Hood", Caitlin Snow and Cisco Ramon take inventory at the Starling City facility of S.T.A.R. Labs prior to its shutdown by Harrison Wells; they are interrupted by Deathstroke. Caitlin and Cisco later help Felicity create an antidote for the Mirakuru drug.

In March 2014, it was announced that Gustin would not appear in a third episode of Arrow as originally planned. However, Danielle Panabaker and Carlos Valdes appear in the Arrow episode "The Man Under the Hood" in their roles as Caitlin Snow and Cisco Ramon, respectively. Arrow executive producer Marc Guggenheim stated, "This was something that really came about because obviously Barry is in a coma at the end of ["Three Ghosts"]. That pretty much made it impossible for Barry to appear in [the third episode, as originally planned]... The idea of bringing in [Caitlin Snow and Cisco Ramon] really, really appealed to us because it allowed us to honor our original intention [of] doing something Flash-related around episode 19 or 20 [of season two] without having comatose Barry and basically paying Grant Gustin a lot of money to sit around with his eyes closed just unconscious the whole episode... It allows us to further flesh out the Flash universe in Arrow."[72] Gustin had a brief cameo appearance in the Arrow season three premiere, "The Calm".[73] Valdes appeared once again in the season three episode "Broken Arrow",[74] while Gustin will appear in the final episode of season three, "My Name is Oliver Queen".[75]

In July 2014, Kreisberg stated that a crossover event would occur in the eighth episode of the first season of The Flash and the third season of Arrow, respectively.[76] In early January 2015, The CW president Mark Pedowitz announced the intention to do a Flash/Arrow crossover every season.[77]

Amell appears as Oliver Queen / Arrow in the pilot episode.[78] Kreisberg announced that Rickards would appear in the fourth episode as Felicity.[76] Previous Arrow nemesis William Tockman / The Clock King (Robert Knepper) was in the seventh episode.[79] Members of The Royal Flush Gang, who previously appeared on Arrow, made a cameo appearance in the eleventh episode of the series.[80] Rickards and Brandon Routh as Ray Palmer had scenes in the eighteenth episode, "All Star Team Up".[81][82] Katie Cassidy and Paul Blackthorne, as Laurel Lance / Black Canary and Detective Quentin Lance, respectively, appeared in the following episode, "Who Is Harrison Wells?",[83][84][85] while Amell and Doug Jones as Jake Simmons / Deathbolt appeared in the twenty-second episode, "Rogue Air".[85][86]

Vixen

In January 2015, the CW announced that an animated web-series featuring the DC heroine Vixen would be debuting on CW Seed in late 2015. It will be set in the universe of Arrow and The Flash.[87] The character is expected to make a live-action appearance on The Flash and/or Arrow as well.[88] Gustin and Amell will reprise their roles as Barry Allen / Flash and Oliver Queen / Arrow, respectively.[89]

DC's Legends of Tomorrow

Main article: Legends of Tomorrow

In February 2015, it was reported that a spin-off series, which is described as a superhero team-up show, was in discussion by The CW for a possible 2015–16 midseason release. Berlanti and Kreisberg would executive produce alongside Guggenheim and Sarah Schechter. The potential series would be headlined by several recurring characters from both The Flash and Arrow, including Leonard Snart (Wentworth Miller), Dr. Martin Stein (Victor Garber), Heat Wave (Dominic Purcell) and Ray Palmer (Brandon Routh). Caity Lotz, who portrayed Sara Lance / Canary on Arrow, will reprise the role, taking on the alter-ego of White Canary.[90] There is potential for other Arrow and The Flash characters to cross over to the new series.[91][92] Berlanti also stated there was a particular reason that the other half of Firestorm, Ronnie Raymond (Robbie Amell), was not mentioned in the initial cast announcement.[93] On May 7, 2015, The CW picked up the series, titled DC's Legends of Tomorrow.[94]

Ciara Renée, who portrays Kendra Saunders / Hawkgirl on Legends, made a cameo appearance in the final episode of The Flash‍ '​s first season, "Fast Enough".[95]

Awards and nominations

The Flash won the "Favorite New TV Drama" People's Choice Award for 2014.[96]

Home release

Complete Season DVD/Blu-ray Release dates
Region 1/A Region 2/B Region 4/C
1 TBA September 21, 2015[97] TBA

See also

References

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External links