Of all the DC TV shows, The Flash is definitely the most open to fan theories and speculation. Barry's abilities are fascinating, and as the world of The Flash gets more weird and wonderful — and even expands into other worlds like Earth-2 — we're tempted to pick apart each episode for secret meanings and hints about what's yet to come.
The run up to Season 3 has seen more theories than ever before, as we all try to guess how the writers will adapt the infamous, game-changing Flashpoint arc from the comic books.
Recent updates have debunked a few of the most popular theories, as have the trailers, but a lot still remains to be seen. So here's a breakdown of the best The Flash Season 3 theories — all we know and all we don't.
Zoom Will Return As Black Flash
Teased in the Season 2 finale, many fans are expecting Zoom to return at some point, but he won't be the villain we know and hate. After being set upon by time wraiths in the finale, Zoom's costume changed to one we recognized from the comics — that of Black Flash. This character is fascinating, and has a complex comic book history. For months fans have been theorizing that this is Zoom's new persona, and now it seems they might be right.
Andrew Kreisberg recently spoke to Entertainment Weekly about the possibility of seeing Zoom return as the Black Flash in The Flash Season 3.
"Obviously we did that on purpose. We love working with Teddy [Sears]. He’s such an amazing actor and amazing person, and was so much a part of the success of this show last season. There aren’t any immediate plans for that, but you can’t keep a good Black Flash down, so I’m sure we’ll be seeing him in the future."
Kreisberg did stress that we wouldn't immediately see this happen, but it seems likely that the Black Flash will appear sometime in the latter half of Season 3. This could have huge ramifications for Barry, especially if the Black Flash takes on the more mythological side of his role from the comics — aligned with the Black Racer (and hinted in Final Crisis and The Flash: Rebirth to be a different incarnation of that character), the Black Flash is an avatar of death, with terrifying powers.
Zoom was bad enough, but by defeating him Barry may have created an ever more powerful adversary for himself. Oops.
Theory status: confirmed, but on hold.
Cisco Remembers The Pre-Flashpoint Timeline
Back in Season 1, Cisco remembered what happened in a previous version of the timeline even after Barry changed the course of events. This was of course his murder at the hands of Eobard Thawne, at the time disguised as Harrison Wells. Cisco's ability to see through the timeline alterations was foreshadowing the later revelation that he is in fact a metahuman, and Season 2 saw Cisco start to explore his powers as Vibe.
Because of Cisco's abilities, it's possible that he might be able to resist the huge timeline alterations after Barry ran back in time to save his mother. The trailers seemed to debunk this theory, showing Cisco to be totally different in this new timeline — instead of a lowly scientist, Cisco is "the richest man in America", owner of his own wildly successful tech company.
However, a new interview with Carlos Valdes suggested that Cisco might still have his metahuman abilities in Flashpoint. If this is so, then he could be the key to resetting the timeline, which would explain why Barry told him about the timeline changes in this new promo:
We'll have to wait and see if this one pans out, or if the Flashpoint Cisco is a plain old human, without his Vibe powers.
Theory status: hinted at, but unconfirmed.
Dr Alchemy Has Multiple Personalities
Revealed in the first trailer for The Flash Season 3, Dr Alchemy appears to be the main villain for the Flashpoint arc in the show. But who is this antagonist? In the comics, the mantle of Doctor Alchemy has been taken up by several characters, so guessing which one the show's writers settled on is tricky. What's interesting though, is that traditionally Dr Alchemy suffers from Disassociative Personality Disorder — or in layman's terms, he has multiple personalities.
This opens up a lot of interesting possibilities for The Flash Season 3. Barry could struggle with this villain, never knowing that his true identity is actually that of one of his friends. Granted, this would be a very similar structure as the other seasons of The Flash — both Seasons 1 and 2 featured a villain that turned out to be someone Barry knew personally.
The multiple personalities could manifest in other ways though, and it's definitely an interesting plot device to use.
Theory status: no hints, still possible.
Tom Felton Is Playing Cobalt Blue
The evil twin of Barry Allen from the comics, Cobalt Blue is a fascinating character. His real name is Malcom Thawne, but secretly he's Barry's twin brother, taken away from the Allens at birth by a doctor trying to cover up a mistake — the death of the real Malcom Thawne.
Confused yet? It just gets more complicated from here. This makes Eobard Thawne a.k.a. the Reverse Flash a descendent of Malcom, and therefore related to Barry. When Malcome learned he had been lied to his entire life, he went off the rails and became the villainous Cobalt Blue, using his own metahuman abilties to fight the Flash.
Obviously, there are endless possibilities as to how all this could play out in the show. But one theory is that Tom Felton's character Julian Dorn is in fact Malcom Thawne, and will become Cobalt Blue. There's a bunch of ways this could play out — either Julian is secretly Barry's brother but was sent to the Dorn family instead of the Thawnes, or Julian is the secret brother of Eddie Thawne, who died in Season 1 (but may still be alive in Flashpoint).
Tom Felton revealed that Julian only existed because of Barry's change to the timeline:
"As far as I know, [my character] didn't exist in the previous timeline, so I'm glad that [Barry] has changed something, so now I'm alive!"
So it could be that this whole mixup only occured because of Barry's changes. And we'll just have to wait to find out how.
Theory status: cool, but no evidence to support it yet.
Tell us in the comments — which theory do you think is true?