The October release of “The Flash” is one of the most anticipated series for the 2014-2015 television season, and with a cast that includes the original television Flash — John Wesley Shipp — it’s easy to see why. Shipp — who plays Barry Allen’s father, Henry Allen — on the series, along with fellow television veterans Jesse L. Martin (Detective Joe West) and the hilarious Tom Cavanagh (Harrison Wells) joined CBR Executive Producer Jonah Weiland on the CBR Yacht at Comic-Con International 2014 to discuss their roles on the show, and what to expect from the Fastest Man Alive’s newest television endeavor.
On the big reveal at the end of the pilot for Cavanagh’s character, Harrison Wells: “Well, listen — like you, my character lives a life of intrigue and deceit,” Cavanagh said to CBR’s Jonah Weiland. “And so do all your fans, let’s be honest! All your fans are going, ‘Yeah, that’s right!’ For us, in a strange way, Barry Allen — The Flash — he has a dual character that John played, ordinary guy with extraordinary powers — in many way, that character is actually the most easily definable. The rest of us are living dual lives on different levels. I will say this, it’s tremendous to, as an actor, be able to play that.”
Martin on his character Detective West, and his relationship with Barry Allen: “There’s the obvious surrogate father [role], but as time goes on, what I’m learning is Joe becomes a moral sounding board for Barry in some cases,” said Martin. “And sometimes, just literally a barrier between him and danger — forget metahuman, just regular human danger. Because he spends so much time with my daughter, it’s in my best interest to make sure nothing happens to him or her.”
Shipp on his initial reading to be the Flash in the original television series: “I was not [a comic book fan],” Shipp said. “When they wanted me to consider reading for the Flash and audition for it, I said, ‘Flash Gordon?’ And they said, ‘No, The Flash,” and now of course, I’m highly insulted when people say the same thing today. … I knew they were doing [the new series]. … When I heard about [“The Flash’s”] re-imagining of the Allen family — in this telling, Henry is wrongfully convicted of killing his wife in front of his 10-year-old son, and he’s been in prison for 14 years. I thought, ‘That’s the role.’ And then they called up and offered me that role and I was thrilled.”