When I talk to fellow geeks about the CW's, "The Flash" television series I generally get a mixture of objective criticism and fawning affection but ultimately everyone seems to agree the series is not only taking the property very seriously but is also done in an extremely earnest mentality. I for one cannot dispute that. I love the series. [FULL DISCLOSURE] The Flash was my third exposure to comic books after my Uncle introduced me to Spider-Man and X-Men in the late 80's. In truth if I had to say a comic book character brought me into the comic book geek "fold" as it were I'd have to say it was The Flash.
I began the series early on but fell off due to life complications (as will happen) and only recently got caught up thanks to OnDemand episodes on Xfinity (nope they didn't pay me for that endorsement). As I watched the brilliantly handled characterizations and unfolding storyline with the "Reverse Flash" and all that entailed I was certain they were moving toward some sort of "Flash Point Paradox" story arc...
Alas it was not to be. Still most epic thing for me was seeing mature Barry from the future look over at younger Barry and hold him off, knowing full well what it would mean. I swallowed a lump as Barry emotionally bid his mother farewell. (sniff)
Still the season ends and it's big and epic and now the announcement recently went out that the character of "Zoom" has been cast for The Flash's upcoming second season. An interesting announcement considering in the comic books The Reverse Flash was also known as "Professor Zoom". Casting aside (I'm all for actor Tony Todd playing the character much less "voicing" him which I think is an interesting choice of words).
With no idea what that could mean for the character or how they will treat him (meaning what treatment they will give the character) I think this could prove to catapult the series into mythic television history status akin to British SciFi series, Doctor Who. Another favorite of mine.
So why do I say this?
1. BOTH THE FLASH AND DOCTOR WHO HAVE RICH HISTORIES
DOCTOR WHO has a huge history from the series inception in the 60's to today there have been 13 incarnations (regenerations for you Whovians) each with unique personalities and traits that made them memorable.
THE FLASH (although in literature, see comics) has an equally vast history to draw from. With Barry Allen being the most prolific by far, the character actually was predated by Jay Garrick and then following the Crisis on Infinite Earths event by Wally West and coupled with a slew of speedsters that have carried the torch of the Flash and tapped into the (later introduced) Speed Force. Each incarnation of the Flash and likewise the speedsters who ran alongside him brought the series to a memorable status.
2. BOTH THE FLASH AND DOCTOR WHO HAVE A ROGUES GALLERY OF VILLAINS
DOCTOR WHO has never fallen short of its fair share of villains and archnemesis for the Time Lord to face off against. Most notably, the Daleks, the Master, the Cybermen, the Sontarans and more. Each villain brought its own tension and set of problem solving skills the Doctor had to develop in order to defeat them and ultimately save the day.
THE FLASH in like manner has had his own Rogue's Gallery (so much so they named themselves that in the comics) with such memorable characters as Captain Cold, Boomerang, Mirror Master, The Trickster and even the Reverse Flash/Prof. Zoom. Likewise these villains brought their own unique brand of problem solving that caused the Flash to develop methods of dealing with each.
3. BOTH THE FLASH AND DOCTOR WHO HAVE THEIR ARCH NEMESIS
DOCTOR WHO has arguably had villains worthy of being called the worst. The Daleks could be said to be the main villain due to their part in the Time War and ultimately the demise of The Time Lords but in truth the villain who stands out as being the true counterpoint to the Doctor is, the Master. The Moriarty to his Sherlock Holmes the Doctor has had to face the Master again and again. The resilience of the character and ultimately some of the Doctor's worst moments are directly attributable to the Master.
THE FLASH has without question had only one solid and resolute villain who is his counterpoint and the source of most (if not all) of the Flash's worst moments. None other than Professor Zoom who later came out as the Reverse Flash or "The Man in Yellow" for those of you just joining us from watching the television series.
With so much in comparison with this iconic television show I think it's safe to say that The Flash has all the ingredients of a legendary television program. At leas the recipe is there and if nothing else this is the Golden Age of superhero entertainment. So whether its the stars aligning or just an unbelievable cast, production team etc I know I will be watching both Doctor Who and The Flash these upcoming seasons.
What do you think?