Carlos Valdes, a.k.a. Cisco of the CW’s Flash fame, made an appearance for the press at this year’s Dragon Con in Atlanta over Labor Day Weekend. An important friend and ally to Barry Allen (Grant Gustin), Cisco helps the speedster combat metahuman threats with gadgets, technological know-how, and a constant barrage of quips that has made him one of the most endearing parts of the series for fans. In the interview, Valdes touched upon diversity in the Hollywood industry, what’s coming up in The Flash’s third season, whether or not his character will continue on the path to becoming the DC comic hero “Vibe,” and just how crossover-heavy the CW will be this season with the addition of Supergirl to the ranks alongside superhero stalwarts Flash, Arrow, and Legends of Tomorrow.
On The Flash/Supergirl Musical Crossover
Valdes was first asked a question regarding the announced crossover episode between the Flash and Supergirl this season, which will in fact be a musical. The two cheery heroes did meet in a an episode of Supergirl wherein Barry was mistakenly launched into Kara’s dimension, but despite the two being Glee alums, there was no singing involved. Obviously, this upcoming crossover will rectify that. “We, the actors, don’t know much about it so far. They’re very good about keeping us in the dark about it. I know that the wish is to have as much music as possible in the episodes themselves, but I’m not sure how much will be in there. We’ll just have to see what it will all sound like,” Valdes noted. He also added, “I do currently know the concept behind it (the crossover). It’s very entertaining and it leads to infinite possibilities.”
On the “Flashpoint” version of Cisco
In the finale of The Flash Season 2, Barry decided to travel back in time to save his mother from Eobard Thawne, the Reverse Flash. In doing so, he created an alternate timeline wherein things are vastly different from what we currently know. In the comics, Flashpoint harkened in a new era for DC Comics, changing all the heroes from the ground floor up, so needless to say when this was announced for the television theories, fans expressed some serious interest. Valdes said:
“This character I’m playing is still Cisco Ramon, but it’s obviously an alternate reality version of him in which he is still a genius and still posses a technological prowess about him. Now though he’s able to cash in on that prowess and build his way up the ladder to become the richest man in America. He’s a billionaire! He’s created all these things and these apps at Ramon Industries — which looks a lot like S.T.A.R. Labs — and he’s ostentatious, not afraid to flaunt his wealth which makes for interesting colors and relationship dynamics. Barry has to struggle with the fact that this is not the Cisco he knows and there’s a bit of an antagonistic energy to this Cisco. It’s what makes the beginning of Season 3 so interesting.
On Diversity in the Superhero Genre
Diversity has always been tricky for some bigger comic book companies and the Hollywood industry as a whole. Carlos took time to address this fact by stating,
“As a kid, I always wanted to be an entertainer, so I emulated a lot of great actors and roles from my childhood. I fell in love with all that material and I never once considered the idea that my race would be an obstacle. In stage shows, there are these roles that are traditionally played by white men. I always imagined these moments in these plays when I was a kid without that (race) being a part of the aesthetic. As I got older, I realized it was actually a limitation in that I might not be able to play some of the parts that I loved so much. In that though, there is a sense now of great optimism wherein there are shows written like Hamilton that exist. Roles are being written for people of color, and it’s a beautiful thing to witness. I really find myself looking forward to the roles that have yet to be written, as Cisco once was.”
On Vibe: His Powers, His Costume, and Flashpoint
“First and foremost,” Carlos stressed after being asked about Cisco learning to master his powers and walk the path closer to his comic book roots, “I think it’s important to stress that the altered timeline of Flashpoint will not overtake the season. I think this season is more focused on the repercussions of the creation of that timeline and it being opened. I think a lot of fans are expressing concern at their favorite characters and relationships being gone, but without giving too much away, I can assure fans that is NOT the case. With that said, we get back to exploring Cisco and his powers.” Valdes then interestingly stressed, “Powers grow. That’s what they do.”
This of course led to a question regarding whether Cisco would be getting his own costume as the superhero, Vibe. Carlos took a second to contemplate then responded soundly with, “No comment.”
On Working With Tom Felton
After being asked about his love of Harry Potter, Valdes regaled reporters with stories of his love of the original series and his eventual “falling out” with the novels, to then jump back into the world of Hogwarts with the movies. Tom Felton, who portrayed the villainous Draco Malfoy from the Harry Potter series of films, has been cast as a yet unspecified role within The Flash’s third season, which Carlos was happy to address. “Tom is the best. We’ve hung out a few times and he’s so interesting, I’m learning a lot from him. The work that he brings on set is inspiring, and Grant (Gustin) feels the same way. They’ve been working a lot together recently in fact, there’s so much love there. I’m excited to see how fans react to his work.”
On the CW DC Show Crossovers
“This is the biggest year for crossovers that there ever has been.” Carlos noted when asked about The Flash, Arrow, Legends of Tomorrow, and Supergirl crossing over. “There is a LOT of stuff planned. It’s going to be a busy year.”
Be sure to catch Carlos Valdes in The Flash Season 3 when it premieres on October 4th.