The Flash's Barry Allen is back to borrowing problems from the future, whether he knows it or not.
After six months adrift in the Speed Force, Barry (Grant Gustin) is back on terra firma. Caitlin (Danielle Panabaker) and Cisco (Carlos Valdes) fished their pal out of his time stream prison during the season 4 premiere, but not without a few complications. The Scarlet Speedster clearly bumped into John Nash during his wanderings, stopping to siphon off a little Beautiful Mind madness for his own purposes. It's this moment of insanity that confirmed our suspicions that Barry will follow his father's footsteps -- right up the steps to Iron Heights.
Covering the walls from floor to ceiling with indecipherable messages, Barry spent his first day back spouting apparent gibberish. For fans of the show, his rhythmic mutterings had a greater meaning. While most were throwback lines culled from conversations with Oliver Queen (Stephen Amell), Iris (Candice Patton), Nora Allen and others, a few choice phrases gave us a peek at the hero's future. As per usual, it's not all sunshine and roses.
One phrase, in particular, perked our ears, particularly since it was a reference we've seen before. Unfortunately for the denizens of Central City (and our poor little fanboy hearts), "The Trial of The Flash" is definitely on the horizon.
"Your Honor, I'm innocent," Barry pleaded to an unseen judge. "I didn't do this. I didn't kill anyone."
The line harkens back to Barry's first trip into the Speed Force, a journey that took place when Dr. Wells (Tom Cavanagh) still roamed the pipeline and ideas of manipulating the timeline were nascent at best. As the speedster blasted past unplanned events, he saw himself sitting behind a pane of glass, holding a phone, as he'd done so many times before. Only this time he wasn't on the outside looking in -- he was wearing an Iron Heights jumpsuit.
At the time, executive producer Andrew Kreisberg told Entertainment Weekly
it wasn't a storyline The Flash
was currently pursuing. Yet now, three years later, it seems an unavoidable plot point.
"The way I see it, when he was in the Speed Force, he experienced his whole life laid out in front of him from start to finish," Gustin told Entertainment Weekly
last month, confirming that Barry's discoveries, although now forgotten, will, in fact, correspond with the character's arc.
Would remembering the event allow Barry to try and stop it, much in the same way he attempted to keep Iris safe during season 3? Or have the powers that be decided not to retread an old theme? Season 4 is all about shaking that crystal ball until something new falls out, isn't it? No speedster villain, no guilt-ridden Barry, no trite old tales. For us, that presumably means we'll have to wait until Barry blunders blindly into a false conviction. Like father, like son, right?
Meanwhile, there's a light on the horizon. Clearly overjoyed about something, Barry had a nice conversation with a window about buying more diapers. Was that a peek at a moment of WestAllen domestic bliss? Did the bright pane of translucent glass remind him of a hospital nursery, just as kneeling on the floor reminded him of kneeling over his mother's body? One can only hope. It would be a bit much to throw a child into the mix at this point in time, but that doesn't mean we don't want Barry to have a bright future. Just not for another few seasons. At least. Are you hearing this, Flash writers?
After all, God only knows what he meant by "the stars are melting." That just sounds too damn apocalyptic to contemplate right now. The STAR Labs team has other problems to attend to, like the rise of the Thinker, Caitlin/Killer Frost's duality and the presence of Amunet Black/Blacksmith (Katee Sackhoff).
What do you think about Barry's prophesies? Is the STAR Labs team racing towards "The Trial of The Flash"? Moreover, should the Arrowverse tackle that piece of comic book canon? Sound off in the comments below!
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(Images courtesy of The CW)