The third season of The Flash was undoubtedly a divisive one. Whether you were a fan of it or not, it certainly added a great deal to the Scarlet Speedster's story and provided us with its fair share of entertaining moments.
But as we look ahead to Season 4, it's clear that it is time for the show to reinvent itself — something it appears to be doing with its brand new type of villain. There are many ways to help the show return to where it needs to be, but first and foremost, it will be through its use of characters. With that in mind, let's take a look at some beloved characters who were absent from Season 3, and why they should return this season.
Note: Spoilers for Season 3 will follow.
1. Hartley Rathaway
The Pied Piper has only appeared in three episodes of The Flash, but Andy Mientus's sassy performance made him a fan favorite. Initially starting out as the intolerable prodigy of the original Harrison Wells, Rathaway was eventually shunned by his former mentor for speaking up about the dangers of the particle accelerator. And when it exploded, Hartley was affected, becoming the villainous Pied Piper.
While he escaped from Team Flash — after duping Cisco — the character would return in Season 2 when Barry revisited that point in the timeline. But when a Time Wraith followed him back, all hell broke loose. However, Hartley managed to save the day (and Team Flash), altering his villainous future. When Barry returned to the present, Hartley not only saved him again, he knew his secret identity and was a part-time member of Team Flash. Yet, he was inexplicably absent from Season 3.
This season, Team Flash will likely be less homely, due to Caitlin's absence. Moreover, we're not sure if Tom Felton's Julian Albert will be back either. Thus, now would be the perfect time for the show to bring Hartley back. He's officially a good guy and would be able to assist Cisco with his vast expertise and experience. The two have great chemistry, which would undoubtedly provide us with some hilarious moments. And after Season 3, that's exactly what we need.
2. Patty Spivot
Patty Spivot joined Central City's anti-metahuman task force during Season 2 and instantly became one of the most lovable characters on the show. Her infectious smile and underlying nerdiness made her the ideal love interest for Barry Allen. Becoming the show's most "adorkable" couple Barry and Patty were perfect together. But aside from the relationship, Patty was strong-willed, confident and determined to keep Central City safe. This passion led to her uncovering Barry's secret identity as the Flash, and his refusal to fully trust her is what eventually tore them apart.
While she didn't stick around for too long, Patty's chemistry with Barry and all-around infectious attitude ensured that she made a lasting impact. Amidst all the metahuman madness of Zoom's reign of terror, she never faltered, proving that she was arguably the purest character on the show. And after Season 3 went to great lengths to prove that even the strongest #superheroes can be corrupted, The Flash is in desperate need to that purity.
3. Henry Allen
John Wesley Shipp will undoubtedly pop up throughout Season 4 of The Flash as Jay Garrick, but it would be equally as awesome if we saw him return as Barry's father too. The veteran actor portrayed Henry Allen for the show's first two seasons before the character was unjustly killed by Zoom in the final episodes of Season 2.
Always on hand to provide Barry with some much-needed fatherly advice, Henry was the foundation of the show. After all, it was his wrongful imprisonment that made Barry want to fight crime in the first place. Moreover, he shared countless heartwarming and emotional moments with his son and those familial scenes were the type of ones that Season 3 was greatly lacking in.
While Henry did appear in the Season 3 premiere, that was merely part of the Flashpoint timeline. And the rest of the season sorely missed his presence.
4. Black Siren
Katie Cassidy may be returning to her previous series regular position for Season 6 of #Arrow, but this time she won't be portraying Earth-1's Laurel Lance/Black Canary. She'll be screaming her way back into our lives as Laurel's Earth-2 doppelgänger, Black Siren — a role she originated on The Flash.
After her regular Arrow character was unjustly killed off during Season 4, Cassidy showed up on The Flash Season 2 as the villainous Black Siren. With her brown hair, sultry walk, bad attitude and metahuman Canary Cry, Siren was nothing like her Earth-1 doppelgänger. One of Zoom's lieutenants during the "metapocalypse," she tore down buildings with her Cry and bested the Flash in combat. The character's single-episode appearance was met with acclaim and had fans calling for Cassidy to jump ship to The Flash permanently.
Her two consecutive escapes and resurgence in Star City have revealed quite a bit about her backstory and suggest that she will play a major role in Season 6 of Arrow, but with the CW's annual crossover imminent, it's highly likely that the series regular may appear in The Flash next season. And with Killer Frost on the loose, a team-up with Black Siren would be a welcome sight. Go on, CW, let the Central City Sirens loose.
5. Dr. Christina 'Tina' McGee
Amanda Pays starred opposite John Wesley Shipp in the original The Flash 1990 #TV series, portraying the character of Dr. Christina "Tina" McGee. However, she also appeared in a recurring role in the CW's Flash series as a reimagined version of the character. A renowned physicist and the head of Mercury Labs, McGee appeared sporadically throughout the first two seasons. While she initially had a more antagonistic approach to the crew from S.T.A.R. Labs and the CCPD, she mellowed with each appearance.
Her appearance in Season 2's penultimate episode seemed to promise us a whole lot more of her but never delivered. After being saved from Black Siren's attack, McGee revealed to the Flash that she knew is true identity, and subsequently helped Team Flash stop the "metapocalypse." Moreover, we also witnessed a reunion between the stars of the '90s Flash series as Dr. McGee met Henry Allen. And it seemed like we were going to get a romantic storyline for them, until Henry was killed off in that same episode. And since that shocking conclusion, we have yet to see McGee return.
With Caitlin temporarily out of the picture, who better to fill that void than her former boss? Much like Hartley, Christina McGee became an honorary member of Team Flash during Season 2, and she would be a perfect addition to the team in Season 4. Furthermore, after S.T.A.R. Labs was destroyed by Savitar in the Season 3 finale, it would make complete sense for Dr. McGee to come aboard and help fulfil H.R.'s wish by restoring it to its full glory.
With The Flash heading into its fourth season, now is the perfect opportunity for the show to bring back some of the things that helped make it the great show it once was. Since Season 3 wasn't as well-received as previous seasons, it would be a great idea for the show's creative team to revisit the first two and bring back some of the characters that added a great deal to the show. This would allow Season 4 to stand alone by giving these characters more well-deserved screen time as well as regaining a tone similar to the first two seasons.
Are there any characters you would like to see return for The Flash Season 4? Let us know in the comments below!