Things are about to get a whole lot stranger on The Flash. Titled "Into The Speed Force," the next episode will see Barry attempt to save Wally from "a fate worse than death" when he returns to the Speed Force.
Initially, we didn't know why Barry would be returning to the Speed Force or what kind of role it would play. Well, thanks to these brand new photos from The CW, we now know a lot more about what — or who — we will see.
The new photos released by The CW reveal that the mystical realm is going to be playing some intense mind games with Barry — just like last season. While the episode's trailer only gave us a glimpse of them, the recently released photos are here to give us a better look.
Eddie, Ronnie And Captain Cold Are Back
Much like in last season, it appears that the Speed Force will communicate with Barry by manifesting in various human forms — many of whom are no longer with us. One of the characters he comes face to face with is Ronnie Raymond, one half of the original Firestorm (and Caitlin's presumably deceased husband).
As he sacrificed himself in the Season 2 premiere, it will be interesting to see whether he will be manifested as a friend or foe here. Remember, he does tell Barry that he "shouldn't have come here" in the episode's trailer. Is this is warning or a threat?
The photos also reveal Rick Cosnett's return as Eddie Thawne. The character sacrificed himself in the Season 1 finale to erase his descendant — ReverseFlash — from existence. And based on both the photos and the trailer, he doesn't look too happy to see Barry.
Moreover, everyone's favorite Legend of Tomorrow, Leonard Snart — Captain Cold — is among the returning faces as well. He too is one of the figments that confront Barry as he tries to search for Wally.
It's worth noting that while the Speed Force did appear as some of Barry's lost loved ones before — including his mother, Nora — they were there to support him. These three resurrected characters appear a little menacing. Could they be guarding the prison where Wally is kept? Or could the prison-like area of the Speed Force be masquerading as vengeful fallen heroes in an attempt to make Barry feel guilty?
This would explain why they all seem rather hostile towards him — it just doesn't seem like the same Speed Force that helped him excel in Season 2.
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An Ally In The Speed Force
The last time Barry Allen ventured into the Speed Force, the supernatural dimension helped him retrieve his powers by appearing as his loved ones. And while he may be confronted by eerie versions of his deceased friends, it seems like the Speed Force itself has swung in to save the day again, as Earth-3's Flash, Jay Garrick, is there to help him.
However, it's possible that actor John Wesley Shipp is not portraying a Speed Force manifestation of Jay Garrick, but the real Earth-3 Flash himself. After all, the Speed Force can be accessed by any speedster that's fast enough, and I'm pretty sure Jay would be more than capable of entering it as well. The two have teamed up to take on Savitar before — could he have returned to help Barry save Wally?
Remember, Shipp did tell us that Garrick would feature more prominently in the back half of Season 3, so it's possible that he is indeed the real deal. But Garrick isn't the only living familiar face Barry runs into, as another photo reveals the scarlet speedster alongside Joe and Iris West.
It's safe to say that Barry's trip to the Speed Force will reopen plenty of old wounds. Not only will he attempt to rescue the missing Wally, he will also come face to face with apparitions of his fallen friends, as he is confronted by seemingly bitter versions of Ronnie, Eddie and Leonard while being guided by Jay. But the question is, will Barry's visit make things even worse — or will the Speed Force be with him?
Are you excited for Barry's return to the Speed Force on The Flash? Let us know in the comments below!