Warning: Spoilers ahead for the "Killer Frost" episode of The Flash.
On tonight's episode of The Flash, much of the episode was spent with Caitlin Snow searching for Alchemy -- and while she didn't find him (exactly), somebody else did: the audience.
After weeks of wondering just who might be behind that comically strange mask worn by the villain we now know to be the scion of Savitar the self-appointed "speed god," Alchemy made himself known in a surprising way in the closing moments of tonight's episode.
Caitlin, having developed powers she was having a hard time controlling, was looking for Alchemy to help her get rid of them. Given that Savitar has a cult that worships him, of which Alchemy is apparently a member, Snow spent much of the episode trying to track down Savitar's acolytes in the hope that somebody would lead her to Alchemy.
Along the way, that led her to Julian Dorn, the other CSI who worked at the Central City Police Department with Barry. It was by kidnapping him that she was able to find the acolytes of Savitar, and eventually Barry had to bargain for her freedom by agreeing to resign from the police force.
In the closing minutes of the episode -- the one that producers had promised would reveal the identity of the villain -- all of the seemingly-unrelated plot threads were pulled together.
After Barry left the CSI lab, Savitar came to Dorn in the hospital (where he was resting after getting a minor concussion when The Flash punched him to shut him up while he freaked out about Caitlin), and Julian followed that up by heading to the lab, opening his locker, and...
...that's right, Draco Malfoy wields the Philosopher's Stone as Dr. Alchemy on The Flash.
This is not entirely surprising, of course; back in the summer, before the season had started, many fans speculated that Felton had been cast specifically because he's a great bad guy. His response to that, when we asked him about it at Comic Con?
"They came to me for a reason," he teased.
In the comics, Doctor Alchemy is generally Albert Desmond, a villain who uses an item called a Philosopher's Stone (for you Harry Potter fans out there) to transmute matter. That's the item we've seen Alchemy using throughout the season, of course.
At one point during Mark Waid's beloved run on The Flash in the '90s, though, Doctor Alchemy was out of commission and a successor -- Curtis Engstrom, The Alchemist -- appeared wielding Desmond's Philosopher's Stone.
An interesting element of the Engstrom version of the character is that while Desmond was a common criminal before he came into possession of the Philosopher's Stone, Engstrom was a gifted biochemist who worked at S.T.A.R. Labs. His life of crime actually began after he came into possession of the Stone, when he used particles of it to perform medical miracles and decided that in order to get what was coming to him, he would steal his revolutionary development and ransom it back to his employer.
As we speculated recently, the thing about The Flash's big twists so far is that they've been deceptively simple. Going into The Flash's first season, everyone assumed Harrison Wells would turn out to be the Reverse-Flash, and while the writers deftly misled enough of the audience of the course of the season to make it a genuinely entertaining revelation when he came out as Eobard Thawne, the "slap" of thousands of viewers collectively smacking themselves on the forehead and saying "Of course!" could be heard around the world. Ditto Jay Garrick, who came to Central City and made both audiences and even Barry himself immediately suspicious. Give him a few really heartfelt scenes with Caitlin, though, and suddenly when he's the bad guy it's mind-blowing.
So the idea that Felton could be Doctor Alchemy is one that immediately got into the fan-theory network. While there were initial questions as to just how that would work for Desmond, it seemed like Julian fit the model of Engstrom quite well.
It still kind of does: we see that he's apparently reluctant to serve as Alchemy when he runs into Savitar, but like Engstrom, he'd have to get the stone from somewhere to be tempted by its power.
The Flash airs Tuesday nights at 8 p.m. ET/PT on The CW.
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