Warning: This post contains spoilers for The Flash's Season 3 episode, "Flashpoint."
The Flash's Season 3 premiered on October 5th, and while we were warned "Flashpoint" would cause changes to the timeline and the characters, there was one that didn't make sense. All of the characters returned with their original jobs with only slight differences. Joe West remained a detective. Barry still worked for CCPD, and Iris was still a journalist. Even Cisco had his hand in toys and technology.
Enter #CaitlinSnow, a pediatric ophthalmologist. What? There wasn't even a trace of her scientific roots.
Perhaps this is a subtle shift, a slight warning to fans that Caitlin Snow is changing. It seems Danielle Panabaker isn't opposed to playing a different version of the scientist on #TeamFlash as evidenced by her interview with Melty.
Here's what she had to say:
"I'm really excited to see what happens with Caitlin in Season 3. I just want it to be different. It would be great to see how different Caitlin can be."
Caitlin Snow suffered a great deal in Season 2, and she is the only character who seemed to be a caricature of herself in the first episode of Season 3. Gone was the strong-willed, independent, brilliant scientist who helped shape the team, the woman who was always there to help anyone. Instead, viewers saw a doctor, uncertain of herself and her surroundings, and one who couldn't wait to leave even though Wally was injured and need the doctor's help. Definitely not something a pre-Flashpoint Caitlin Snow would have done.
The change wasn't altogether unwelcome, according to an article written by Joanna Robinson for Vanity Fair, who saw Caitlin as a challenge to the writers. She calls Caitlin's role in Flashpoint Panabaker's "best appearance yet" and goes on to say, "That gives me hope that the somewhat-stiff Dr. Snow—a natural part of Team Flash—will also integrate into the show’s tone better as Season 3 unveils its larger, timeline-altering plan."
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Caitlin's life has been peppered with loss, deception and betrayal in two short years. No one could blame her for wanting to go in a different direction, perhaps even distance herself from her scientific roots and Team Flash. With the recent casting of Susan Walters (The Vampire Diaries) as Caitlin's mother, a biomedical engineer and CEO of a major research company, we're already guaranteed a look at another side of Caitlin when she is forced to interact with her mother. So the distance may happen organically as the team learns more of her mother than she wants them to know.
Or will "Flashpoint" result in a change in Caitlin that not even Barry can reverse? Will she need to be convinced to return to the team? And will the traumas of the previous season prevent her from being the scientist the team needs? Whatever happens with Caitlin, she is a strong member of Team Flash, and I hope "Flashpoint" hasn't affected her abilities as a scientist or her desire to be a part of saving Central City.
What did you think of the new Dr. Caitlin Snow on Flashpoint?