Of all the DC shows on TV at the moment, The Flash is probably my favorite. Though I am, admittedly, a sucker for anything having to do with superpowers, parallel universes, and time-travel (and that The Flash has in abundance). While the show did have its darker moments in Season 3, the characters are genuinely likable, and the show has still continued to be one of the more light-hearted and fun series on the DC lineup. At San Diego Comic Con this year, I was able to take part in a series of roundtable interviews with the cast as they talked a little bit about what the fourth season of the show has to offer.
At the roundtables were stars Grant Gustin (Barry Allen), Jesse Martin (Joe West), Tom Cavanaugh (Harrison Wells/Harry Wells/HR Wells), Carlos Valdes (Cisco Ramon), Candice Patton (Iris West), Danielle Panabaker (Caitlin Snow), and Keiynan Lonsdale (Wally West).
Here is what they told us about Season 4:
No one was 100% sure what version Wells is going to show up for Season 4, but Harry (Earth-2 Wells) will be there for a time. Other than that, no one would say.
- Season 4 starts about 6 months after the end of Season 3, with Kid Flash and Vibe picking up the job that Barry left behind. As Carlos Valdes explained it, “I can tell you straight up, It’s not good. Six months have passed since the disappearance of Barry Allen and the team is sort of clutching at straws to keep the city together, and though Kid Flash and Vibe are out in the field doing their thing and trying to keep it together, there is a unanimous feeling amongst the remaining members that it’s just not the same without Barry. We cannot keep the villains at bay with the same efficiency that he used to. So in light of that, Cisco does whatever it takes to get his friends back.”
- Though Kid Flash and Vibe are fighting, Keiynan Lonsdale confirmed that the team is doing things their own way, “The whole team’s had to step up and become a unit, and it’s sort of becoming this sort of well-oiled machine — as well as it can without Barry.”
- Candice Patton talked a bit about Iris’s new role at the start of Season 4. Iris has moved away from the more investigative role she had in the past and is now “at the forefront of Team Flash and Star Labs, […] She’s had to sort of step into the role that Barry left. It’s a way of distracting herself too. She’s obviously depressed and sad that Barry’s gone, not sure when he’s going to come back, so it’s a good distraction for her to be the leader.” She explained further, “She deals with that in her own way, I think you’ll see a very different Iris in Season 4; she’s almost hardened and a little more pessimistic, and is kind of like, we gotta move forward, we gotta just keep moving. We don’t know if Barry’s coming back, we can’t deal with that, all we can deal with is protecting the city.”
Patton also hinted that Iris and Barry’s reunion might not be the most happy, as he made the decision to go into the speed force without talking with her her. “He didn’t consult her, it was a snap decision. I think when and if he comes out, that’s a conversation they’ll need to have about communication. As iconic as they are, Barry and Iris still have their issues, and they desperately need to work those out before they walk down the aisle.”
- Valdes also confirmed audiences see the return of Cisco’s more lighthearted joking manner. When speaking on the role his character has played on the show, and what the events of Season 3 did he said, “I got to imbue it with a life that I didn’t anticipate, and that allowed the character to blossom. Their response to that was allowing him to go through stuff and experience some challenges and mature in light of them. I’m so grateful for that because it allows Cisco not just to grow in front of the viewers’ eyes, but also to develop some dimension as a character. In spite of that, everybody agrees that last season was really dark, so I think the writers have decided to respond to that by making the next season much lighter. I think they recognize that Season 1 had a strength that really hit viewers in a very good spot, and I think they’re really trying to go back to that.”
- Even though Killer Frost is out and in charge, there might be hope yet for Caitlin Snow, as Danielle Panabaker put it, “We’ll get it out of the way, quick. Here’s what I can tell you about Season 4: those who love Caitlin Snow won’t be disappointed and those who love Killer Frost won’t be disappointed.”
Though Barry will come back from the Speed Force, it might not be the Barry audiences saw go into it. Grant Gustin talked a little about where his character is when we catch up with him in Season 4. “For Barry it hasn’t really been six months,” he explained. “In the Speed Force time is kind nonlinear, and I think this experience in the speed force has been different for him. We’ve seen him go into the Speed Force before, and had the Speed Force embody different people in his life ad kind of teach him the lesson he needs to learn at this point. But this time he sacrificed himself to stabilize it, so I think he’s been kind of on his own and he’s been experiencing his entire life from start to finish again and again and again. So I think when he comes out, he’s kind of had this awakening and understanding of things that he’s never had before, and he’s able to let go of a lot of things. But initially when we see him, he’s also kind of confused and jumbled and it’s been a lot, so he’s not really himself.” He went on to explain, “we’ll see the toll it took on him, initially, when he comes out. He’s kind of jumbled initially, after experiencing so many things in such a condensed amount of time over and over and over again. It takes a toll on your brain, you know? So it’s not really Barry when he first comes out and I got to have fun with that as an actor.”
- Gustin also talked a little about the new villain for Season 4, “The Thinker” (aka Clifford DeVoe), “Yeah, no speedster. I don’t know much about DeVoe, to be honest, from the comics, but we’re gonna have to find ways to outsmart him, her, when we figure out who it is, he or she. It’ll be cool, Barry will actually be the fastest man alive.”
- He also talked a little about this season’s big crossover with the other DC shows: “I don’t know too much, but what I have heard: last year was an alien invasion, so it was pretty intense. This one will hopefully be more fun. It won’t be impending doom necessarily that brings us together, it’ll hopefully be a more fun reason that brings us together.”