Perhaps it's risky so soon after watching Episode 17 of The Flash to try and write a coherent article, but there's too much in this new season trailer which is just begging to be unpacked. So, with the obvious note, given that this is a trailer for future episodes, that full spoilers for the most recent episode are below, let's start breaking down this new trailer.
Given that The Flash and Arrow are both off next week (I've already had a cry about that, fear not, I won't litter this article with my tears- but it's the last break for the season, at least) rather than just a promo for Episode 18 the CW have given us a full trailer right up until the end of Episode 22- they're shooting the finale as we speak, but, with set photo knowledge, there's definitely big footage from the penultimate episode in here too. But stop reading and watch!
There's a fair bit in there that we've seen from the Paleyfest Promo, but there's plenty of new stuff to warrant talking about too. Please bear in mind this is not just for next week. A promo site posted this erroneously as just for Episode 18, and I assure you, that's not the case- way too much for one episode! We haven't got a specific promo for Episode 18 yet.
The ATOM is coming to Central City next time!
Episode 18, All Star Team Up, will guest star Brandon Routh as Ray Palmer, who's been a regular throughout Arrow this season, and will help helm the new spinoff show next year, and with him of course is Emily Bett Rickards' Felicity Smoak! Ray's in Central City to make some final adjustments to his suit- some fans are very hopeful that means shrinking- but we'll also see him in action.
And so will a couple Lances!
Namely Laurel's Black Canary, who we see talking to Cisco- though not actually in costume- and apparently in the Starling City interview room, not Central, from the looks of it. We don't know what episode she'll be in or how big a role she'll play, but she'll definitely pop up!
And so will Detective (oops, Captain) Quentin Lance, helping out Joe and Cisco looking into Nora Allen's murder. It might be nice to see him being helpful, because in this week's Arrow, Public Enemy, he's far from it.
What- or who- have they found?
That's definitely a skeleton, and one that will land anyone who knows about it in a "hell of a lot of danger." My personal guess at who this is? Well, it's just speculation, but I'm sure many share my suspicion that this is the corpse of the real Harrison Wells, killed and hidden by Eobard Thawne on the night of his 'car crash' fifteen years ago.
Metahuman prison break!
In an old hangar we see a truck explode, and who walks out of it moments later is of note. First, though, it's been suggested by a few- myself included- that the person on the left resembles Wentworth Miller's Captain Cold, particularly the goggles, and the quick glimpse of a hood, plus this looks like the hangar he and Heat Wave based themselves out of in Episode 10.
Either way, the above villains don't look happy, and Mist's threat to "take your last breath" isn't exactly friendly. But, expect the return of at least Anthony Carrigan's Mist, Liam Mcintyre's Weather Wizard, and, from the looks of it, Paul Anthony's Rainbow Raider. Some have suggested this will be a breakout episode, while others have hinted that this could be the earliest group of Captain Cold's Rogues, who may actually team up with The Flash to stop the Reverse Flash. This morning in a Q and A Carlos Valdez (Cisco) hinted at "unexpected teamups" in the finale.
And now pity the person that Mist has got his hands- gas? - on. (Does that almost look likes Wells to anyone else?)
Grodd's gonna make a much bigger appearance!
While I doubt that Grodd will feature as a single episode's villain this season, we will see Grodd confront West in the sewers, and we'll also (revealed in a panel) learn that he really has an issue with Barry. Don't expect him to take the villain spotlight, per se, but do expect a more complete look at him. His character seems to be being built up similar to the way that Slade Wilson was, way back in Season One of Arrow, when he wasn't a direct threat. Also, if you're interested in how they achieve his (amazing) appearance, they've confirmed it's a blend of both CGI and costume to achieve the most realistic sentient gorilla look possible. I don't know about you, but I'd say it worked.
Yes, that is a Vibe tease for Cisco.
Any fans familiar with Francisco Ramon's Vibe in the comics would have instantly picked this up. While the above mentioned panel also established we wouldn't be seeing Vibe or Killer Frost this season, because the team dynamic we've got going works so well, it's possible in the future. This is just a nice hint at that.
Suspicions about Wells are REALLY picking up!
Barry already has very strong suspicions about Wells, but in this timeline Cisco is only harboring them, and Caitlin hasn't revealed any. However, expect a big reveal in the very near future, as Barry finds Wells' secret room- and the Reverse Flash's suit is missing.
Expect Doctor Tina Mcgee (you'll remember her from the midseason finale as the CEO of Mercury Labs) to play into this in a big way. Another mini trailer focused solely on Wells shows us mostly seen footage, but it also reveals that when her character returns she may well be crucial in piecing together the disparities between who Harrison Wells really was and the changes which Eobard Thawne's impersonation bought to him.
And let's all desperately hope that when this below scene inevitably gets recreated in the new timeline it doesn't end the same way!
Also, have a look at this scene below. They're in the room which contained the Reverse Flash, with Barry yelling at someone to face him- probably Wells- but in the middle of the containment field appears to be the empty shell of a Reverse Flash suit. What's that all about?
Things are looking down for Eddie Thawne!
Ever since the Paleyfest Promo the above scene of Eddie shooting two policemen hasn't made sense to us. Now, with Eddie actively aware of Barry's identity (big twist there) his dramatic turn on the CCPD is a shocking one indeed. Will he turn evil? Perhaps. There are shocking twists and secrets to come for his character, including in relation to Eobard Thawne, it's been teased. Now that Rainbow Raider's back in the picture (apparently), that could be the cause of this rage.
Here is someone standing with Iris getting attacked by the Reverse Flash. We're not sure who it is, but it's probably either Eddie, Joe or Barry. I'd be going with Eddie just from how it looks in the trailer, but we don't know for sure.
We saw this in the Paleyfest promo too, but it has to be included. Remember, we've seen two versions of Barry encounter each other in the time continuum (the Doctor Who fan inside me wants to say 'vortex.') We'll see that play out very soon, same as Eddie's shooting, given the Paleyfest Promo only went up to around circa Episode 20.
Some new villains to consider...
Emily Kinney (The Walking Dead) as the Bug Eyed Bandit, a hacking nemesis of Felicity. She'll be the villain of the next episode, as the Bug Eyed Bandit (a he normally) is an Atom villain, and we know that's what she was cast for. Many speculate on HIVE connections for her, an organisation very loosely touched on in Arrow once this season and once in season two. In the comics, that stands for the Hierarchy of International Vengeance and Extermination, and he could certainly fit into the DCW-verse.
We actually don't know who this is or what episode he'll appear in- 20 seems to be when the filming lines up for it, but that's not official- but guesses have ranged from Sportsmaster to Doctor Alchemy, or to the Guardian. A popular theory, reinforced in this trailer by the military car and weaponry, coupled with his MASK and suit design and colour scheme is that he is a HIVE soldier.
I have no idea who this is either, but he's freaky- and he's also in the Pipeline, from the looks of it. Does he have the ability to change his face, perhaps?
And yes, that's Clancy Brown's General Eiling, who was apparently killed by Gorilla Grodd. However, given where he's walking from, it's possible that his apparent resurrection or appearance has something to do with the metahuman above in the Pipeline.
Expect some potential costume changes...
We see it very loosely in the trailer, but it was far more clear in Episode 17 as Flash and Reverse Flash battle it out around Nora- that logo is very distinctly a white one. Perhaps it's a hiccup with the CGI coloring, or it may hint at a classic change this season, which already exists on Thawnes' newspaper.
Okay, okay, you're all here for this. HERE'S the amazing team up- Firestorm, the Arrow, The Flash.
We very recently saw set photos for this which spread like wildfire. I was going to write an article on it, but decided against it. I don't like set photos. It's probably irrational, as when these things are in a trailer I'm fine with it, but when they aren't officially released it feels full on spoilery and kind of perverted. Stupid, yes, but it's how I feel. Judge me haha. (Also, someone said Oliver's hair was significant as it was shorter than usual on another thread. While this is speculation, I say with 99% certainty- it is not. That is what we call a haircut. Even actors have them sometimes.)
Not only does this mark the debut of both Amell cousins (Stephen and Robbie, Oliver and Ronnie, respectively) on screen together (AMELLTASTIC) it also shows us some huge things.
Including Firestorm's return. We know that he'll be in the spinoff series, but Robbie Amell hasn't actually signed on yet, but Victor Garber (Professor Stein) has. Greg Berlanti allegedly teased that we can't know why that is yet, so something significant may happen here.
And of course Oliver Queen- but he doesn't look like Oliver Queen. He's wearing the armour worn by the League of Assassins. I have two main theories for this- he has accepted Ra's' offer being the first, and accordingly joined the League. Secondly, though, is that this is actually an alternate timeline.
In Flashpoint the timeline is so messed up by Barry's Mum's rescue that major changes occur, including Thomas Wayne becoming Batman instead of Bruce, and a much darker version. It's possible this version of Oliver is Oliver Queen in a Flashpoint style scenario- a version which joined the League of Assassins, or accepted Ra's al Ghul's offer, rather than becoming the Arrow. We'll see how it pans out, but don't consider anything on Arrow spoiled just yet. Do not assume we know any spoilers or that he's Ra's- they wouldn't show us otherwise.
We will also see them fight the Reverse Flash- namely, however, in this trailer, Oliver. Remember, this is Episode 22, so the odds of Thawne dying one episode before the finale aren't very likely. Perhaps this is where time shifts, or huge events begin to unfold. This episode is called "Rogue Air" - the finale, announced just recently, will be called "Fast Enough."
Seriously, can somebody scream "THIS IS GOING TO BE EPIC?" I've already got goosebumps just thinking about this.
"The real endgame is almost here...I promise you, Barry Allen. You will die."
I can't wait. This is going to be amazing. Expect another full breakdown tomorrow, as I imagine Arrow's rest of the season may get a similar trailer. What these shows are doing with their shared universe is incredible. It's cohesive, it's not forced, and they complement each other rather than weight each other down. Characters don't exclusively belong in one property, they're crossing over all the time. And that's amazing.
So if you just watch The Flash, or if you just watch Arrow, amend that mistake- expose yourself to the brilliance of this whole, expertly crafted, incredibly made and thrilling to watch universe which has introduced more comic characters and has a longer runtime than any other superhero shared universe. Do what I just did, and, as a DC fan, or even just a superhero fan, think just how incredibly lucky we are for these shows to exist. Keep up the amazing work, producers.
Don't miss "All Star Team Up" with the Atom and Felicity in two weeks' time, or tomorrow night's Public Enemy for Arrow. We're sure in for a ride for the rest of the season.