The CW’s critically acclaimed show “The Flash” arrives next week with a season that promises new twists and surprises for the “Scarlet Speedster.”
Last season, Barry Allen’s future daughter, Nora — played by Jessica Parker Kennedy — travelled back 30 years into the past, disrupting the future timeline and making, in her words, a “big, big mistake.” Barry Allen and his team are now tasked with fixing her errors and ensuring the future goes back to the way it was.
This task will prove to be a challenge, however, as the team will face off against Cicada — played by Chris Klein of “American Pie” fame — a man wielding a lightning-shaped dagger who seeks to take out all of the metahumans, or any humans bearing super powers, in Central City after they tore apart his family. For the television show, this famous “Flash” villain’s powers will be slightly different from his comic book incarnation. Instead of being able to drain the life force of his victims like he originally could, Cicada will now have the ability to drain a metahuman of their superpowers, providing a new kind of threat for our heroes to fight.
With a well-known — albeit slightly altered — comic book character serving as its flagship villain, the new season promises the same high-stakes threats the show has thrived on in the past. However, the new angle of having Nora rather than Barry serve as the catalyst for the show’s upcoming events presents an interesting dynamic for the series to explore. The protagonist himself made a similar mistake by travelling to the past and preventing his mother’s death at the end of season two, an occurrence that inspired the events of season three. The series’ new direction should allow actor Grant Gustin, who dons the titular role, to explore a side of the superhero seldom seen on the show. Fulfilling the mentor role to someone who’s made the same mistakes as him rather than a mentee learning from those around him.
Season five similarly promises interesting plot dynamics with the other members of Team Flash, namely actress Candice Patton’s Iris West. Throughout season four, we got to see Nora interact with all of the show’s characters in small scenes with the exception of Iris, Nora’s future mother. The one time in the show that Nora actually heard her voice, she reacted with a look of disdain before quickly dashing away. This hostility that Nora seemingly holds against Iris is a trait not often seen on the show and should provide a unique chemistry between the characters as Nora becomes acclimated with the team.
The show’s newest approach to the upcoming season comes in the wake of a somewhat mediocre fourth season. In response to a slightly sporadic season three plotline, the showrunners attempted to exercise a “return to form” in their fourth outing, an approach that divided many viewers of the show. For fans who were unsatisfied with the previous season, the new direction of the series should come as good news.
“The Flash” races back onto screens next Tuesday, October 9 at 7 p.m.