The Flash’s season finale was stuffed with several Easter eggs and comic book references, all of which fandom celebrated last night. But in the glib joy of seeing Jay Garrick's helmet and Hawkgirl, did we miss the biggest—but most subtle—callback to DC Comics?
As some viewers may have noticed, “Fast Enough,” felt dangerously close to the DC storyline Flashpoint. Published by DC in 2011, Flashpoint was a crossover event triggered by the Flash after he tampered with time. Like his television counterpart, comic book Barry Allen travels back to the night Reverse Flash murdered his mother. But whereas the CW’s Flash resisted the temptation to save Nora Allen, comic book Barry was far less wiser. In saving his mom, Barry doomed the rest of the universe by triggering a domino-effect of other changes to the DC Universe’s timeline—for the worse.
Such a fate for The CW Flash’s timeline was explained rather thoroughly by Professor Martin Stein, who warned Barry about the consequences of time-tampering. As Stein broke it down, Barry’s meddlings could inadvertently affect anything, resulting in a far different present. (Maybe comic book Barry should have had the foresight to consult a professor first, too.) With such an ominous foreshadowing to a Flashpoint scenario, it looked like The Flash was about to follow in the comic universe’s footsteps.
The Flashpoint “adaptation” continued when Barry went all DeLorean and entered the time stream. There, he caught glimpses of parallel realities and futures—including ones where Caitlin becomes Killer Frost. While it’s merely speculation at this point, it’s not impossible to think that the Killer Frost Barry saw was a “Flashpoint” universe Caitlin. After all, Killer Frost is commonly known as a criminal in DC lore (hence the “Killer” in her name). Perhaps there’s a universe out there in the CW multiverse where the Flash does save his mom, and triggers a dystopian future with far darker fates for his friends?
But the biggest shout-outs to Flashpoint come when Barry arrives at that fateful night, and he must make a do-or-die decision on saving his mother. In last night’s finale, Barry witnesses his future self battling the Reverse Flash inside his home. But just before Barry can intervene, his older self looks at him, and subtlety advises against intervening. Heeding his future self’s vague warning, Barry holds off and allows Reverse Flash to kill his mom. This moment is actually an reversed (appropriately) scenario from Flashpoint. In the comic, it’s present-day Barry who, after realizing the error of his ways, stops his former self from saving Nora. Present Barry gives Past Barry a much more heart-felt explanation however, hoping that the naive Flash will understand.
This real tear-jerking reference, however, comes when Barry gets one final goodbye with is momma. Like the television series, Flashpoint Flash meets his Mom as a fully grown adult. With the chance to say everything he’s wanted to Nora, Barry is finally able to let go. Unfortunately, comic Barry isn’t able to return to his normal present as smoothly as his television counterpart’s—instead, entering a brand new (52) universe—but that’s another story.
So while televison’s Flash flirted ever-so-intimately with a Flashpoint world, it never officially sealed the deal. But the series could still potentially explore the dark future in season two. With that cliff-hanger of an ending, it’s possible that the Singularity wormhole sucked Barry in and spat him out in one of infinite realities. And with the aforementioned Killer Frost shout-out in mind, there’s a good chance that one of those realities is Flashpoint parallel.
What do yo think, readers? Do you want The Flash series to visit the world of Flashpoint? Let us know in the comments.
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