The Flash's Bloodwork -- actor Sendhil Ramamurthy -- is probably best known to genre fans for his role as Mohinder Suresh in the NBC superhero series Heroes. One of the only successful superhero shows that did not draw its characters from DC and Marvel, Heroes kind of took the approach of "what if superheroes -- but The X-Files?" And in both Heroes and The Flash, Ramamurthy plays a brilliant scientist who, frustrated by the progress in his experiments, ends up injecting himself with something awful, and developing visually creepy and mind-altering super-powers. We will see the culmination of Bloodwork's conflicts with Barry Allen begin tonight, in the first half of the two-part midseason finale, but in the meantime...well...
...It's hard to ignore the similarities. So we didn't, and asked Ramamurthy about the similarities between the two.
"I didn't know what was going on. But as somebody who's done genre TV, there are certain kinds of archetypes that exist," Ramamurthy told ComicBook.com. "And it never really strays too far from that. So I didn't think it was surprising, but I did think, okay, how can we make this different? How are we going to make this different? And turning into Bloodwork, and what Ramsey does, I felt was sufficiently different enough that I could have fun with it and go way further than I could on Heroes with it."
Of course, Heroes -- like Watchmen, from which it drew a good deal of inspiration -- is a bit of a deconstruction of the superhero genre. We asked what it was like to be a part of The Flash, where so many of the tropes that Heroes wanted to subvert, or at least play with, are played relatively straight, and there's less "wink, wink, nudge, nudge" for an actor.
"The fun part of that is to sometimes put the nudge, nudge, wink, wink into it," Ramamurthy admitted. "But you don't want to do it too much. But that is the big difference from it, is a freedom in a way of playing it straight because you commit to it 100%. There is no wink, wink. It in a way makes the stakes higher, which for an actor is always better in that there's no nudge, nudge, wink, wink. I love that term Arrowverse. It is a universe that exists where all of this is real, and the stakes really are this high, and there's no acknowledgement of quote unquote the real world."
The Flash is back for its sixth season, pitting Barry Allen against new and old foes while on an apparent suicide run toward the destiny he has been hoping to avoid since the series premiered. Way back in 2014, fans learned that — as in the comics — Barry Allen would give his life in the Crisis on Infinite Earths, helping to turn back the Anti-Monitor and save the multiverse. That event would take place in May of 2024…or so we all thought. Due to some changes to the timestream during the last season of The Flash, Barry's date with destiny has been moved up to December 2019, when all five of The CW's interconnected DC Comics shows will cross over for "Crisis On Infinite Earths," and fans will get to see how Barry tries to outrun his fate.
The Flash airs on Tuesday nights at 8 p.m. ET/PT on The CW, followed by episodes of Arrow.