With The Flash heading into its third season now, it's safe to say that our scarlet speedster has been through a lot over the past two years. It's not easy being a superhero and sometimes, it comes with the sting of failure. But like every superhero, you learn from your mistakes, pick yourself up and move on. Unless you're the Flash. Despite being constantly warned by his peers about specific dangers, usually regarding the timeline, Barry Allen continually decides to do his own thing, which never ends well.
Whether it's regarding time travel or a change in attitude, Barry's friends are always on hand to offer some sound advice. But unfortunately, he just never seems to listen. With all that in mind, let's take a look back at those times Barry defied specific instructions and paid the price.
When He Screwed With Time And Then Time Screwed With Him
When Barry had his fairytale-like first kiss with Iris and revealed himself to be the Flash, we were so amazed that it was almost impossible to comprehend what came next. In the midst of saving the city from an incoming tsunami, he ended up running so fast that he traveled back in time to the previous day — and right back into the friendzone. Simple mistake to make when you're a speedster right? As he didn't mean to do it, it was understandable.
However, upon revealing this to his mentor Harrison Wells, Barry was specifically warned not to alter the timeline at all, and advised to live his day out exactly as it had happened up until that point. But instead of listening to the wise words of Dr. Wells, Barry used his knowledge to stop the Weather Wizard before the tsunami and force the romantic conversation with Iris, effectively screwing with time. In return, time decided to screw with him when Captain Cold and Heat Wave showed up, and Iris rejected him. Had Barry heeded Wells' words, he may have been able to stop Weather Wizard naturally and gained the love of Iris once more.
When He Tried To Save His Mom And Created A Wormhole Above The City
When Barry figured out that he could travel through time, he concluded that he would go back to the night of his mother's death and save her, also stopping his father from ever going to jail for her murder. Although he was manipulated by Wells into doing this, he wasn't the only one — Joe and Iris also both agreed that Barry deserved to be happy. But it was Barry's wrongly imprisoned father Henry Allen who begged him not to do it, fearing that it would change the man his son had become. But in what was consistently becoming a trend, Barry did it anyway.
However, he made the heartbreaking choice not to save his mother or alter the course of events, allowing the timeline to remain intact. But because he allowed himself to be manipulated by Wells, Eddie sacrificed himself to erase his evil descendant's existence as a singularity formed above the city, costing Caitlin's fiancee Ronnie his life. Had Barry listened to his father, none of this would have ever happened. Why, Barry, why?
When He Didn't Listen And Changed The Past
No matter how many times somebody experienced tells him it's a bad idea, Barry Allen just won't listen. Back when he wanted to figure out how to get faster, our scarlet speedster deduced that the only person who could teach him would be the Reverse-Flash, Harrison Wells. And the only way for him to see his dead adversary would be to travel back in time. Despite warnings from Caitlin and Cisco as well as Earth-2 Wells who described his plan as "asinine," Barry did his own thing.
The plan backfired as it unleashed a time-wraith and put evil Wells on his trail. Somehow, Barry did manage to convince his archenemy to help him. However, even the Reverse-Flash warned Barry not to reveal himself to Cisco and Caitlin or even mention time travel, both of which he ended up doing anyway — because he's Barry Allen damn it! These deviations ended up altering the timeline significantly and turned Hartley Rathaway from Pied Piper to Team Flash member in one of last season's most shocking moments. On this occasion, Barry got lucky with the consequence, but it didn't always work out that way, as we'd soon find out.
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When He Was Overconfident And Paid The Price
After Barry returned from the Speed Force, he had a new outlook on life. And while he certainly deserved some happiness, the newfound optimism was causing him to overlook threats — including a major "metapocalypse" led by Zoom and the deadly Black Siren. Both Henry and Joe picked up on the overconfidence and insisted that he needed to be careful — and they were right, confidence wasn't going to stop the bad guys. I'm guessing you know what happened next.
Once again, Barry ignored the advice and, although he stopped the metahumans, his arrogance blinded him to Zoom's true endgame. Zoom ended up killing Henry Allen right in front of Barry. After his time away, Barry had begun to think he was truly invincible, and despite his loved ones reminding him that he wasn't, it was too late and he suffered the ultimate loss as a result of his ignorance.
Henry Allen was a very wise man, imagine all that Barry could have accomplished if he actually listened to his father once in while.
When He Saved His Mom And Created A Flashpoint Paradox
The Season 2 finale had us thinking that Barry could finally be happy. He defeated Zoom and obtained Iris' love. As she admitted her feelings and fans rejoiced, Barry threw the ultimate curveball when he told her that he needed to go away for a while. And then he did something we all saw coming — you guessed it: Time traveled. Despite two years of warnings about the danger of messing with timelines, he traveled back in time and saved his mother, resetting the timeline and in effect, the entire show.
Two seasons of ignoring instructions and disregarding warnings were capped off by Barry's decision to save his mother and undo the past. Now that Season 3 will deal with the repercussions of his actions, we know he will begin to forget his old life and perhaps even his super-speed. Barry Allen may be happy for the moment, but once again, it will come at a significant cost.
So while the Flash may do his best saving the people of Central City, sometimes we forget that Barry Allen is still only (meta)human. Which is why it's so darn great that he is surrounded by a group of experienced professionals, mentors and loved ones who can guide him on the path to becoming the superhero he was always destined to be. Now if only he would listen to them once in while.
Check out the repercussions of Barry's defiance in the Season 3 trailer of The Flash:
The Flash Season 3 premieres on The CW on October 4. Do you think Barry will ever listen to his friends? Let us know in the comments!