"The Flash's" Candice Patton is well aware that Iris West’s fate may be sealed.
After Barry Allen's recent jaunt to the future revealed that Iris dies at the hands of the speed god, Savitar, Team Flash has done their best to influence current events in order to alter the timeline and save Iris from her fate. So far, that mission has not only put massive pressure on the group, but on Iris and Barry’s relationship. To make matters worse, Savitar has now arrived in the present, a development which may have ensured Iris’ impending doom.
Following the emotional roller coaster that saw Barry propose, Iris accept and then Wally torpedo the engagement, CBR caught up with Patton. Over the course of our conversation, we discussed her character's looming death, the pain of her engagement to Barry, and whether she thinks Savitar's true identity will surprise fans.
CBR: What was your reaction to the bombshell of Iris’ impending doom at the hands of Savitar and how it would impact her trajectory this season?
Candice Patton: I knew it would be a great storyline for Iris. It would give her a reason to be a part of the narrative in a big way, and give her a lot of opportunity for growth throughout the season. That’s something I’ve been waiting for for a while, so it’s nice to give her some depth.
What was it like filming Iris’ death opposite a CGI Savitar?
Strange. I had no idea at first how they were going to handle the character of Savitar. Then, realizing he was going to be fully CGI, I was a bit worried on how to work the scene. The questions that followed while shooting were, how tall is he? Where does he have a hold on me? What do his arms look like? Where does he stab me? You have only so much information, and you have no idea what it’s going to look like in post.
Naturally you worry if it’s going to come together and look right -- but it did. I was happy with how that scene turned out. I love our show when the VFX and emotion come together in perfect harmony to create an amazingly impactful moment. I was also worried I’d be shooting different versions of the scene every other episode until the finale. Thankfully, I think I’ve only had to do it two times, and one other small shot when Wally sees her bare finger.
Iris has had a lot to process this season. How has she been dealing with everything thrown at her lately?
She’s gone through a range of emotions. She’s been vulnerable. We saw her scared about her future death. We’ve seen her emboldened, acting out recklessly, knowing that if she isn’t going to die until a certain date in the future, that she couldn’t die in the present. And we’ve seen her strong and stoic – showing up to S.T.A.R. Labs to help save Central City against other meta humans, and she’s even been a calming force for Barry while he struggles with her possible death.
Iris teamed-up with Wally for their own little adventure. What have you enjoyed about that sibling dynamic?
Listen, I’ve loved that dynamic since we introduced it in Flashpoint and was hoping we’d get to see it again. I sincerely love working with Keiynan [Lonsdale]. I also love the brother/sister crimefighting duo. It gave both characters urgency and the opportunity to be heroes in their own right.
Barry finally popped the big question. What was your sense of how badly viewers wanted to see that happen?
West/Allen fans have been loud and proud since day one. We’ve been slow-burning their relationship for a while now, and I think fans who’ve been watching them grow together in the last few seasons, while not expecting it to happen so soon, were overjoyed to see them finally get engaged. For long-time comic fans of “The Flash” as well, it’s a beautifully endearing moment.
As it turns out, the main reason Barry proposed was as an attempt to alter the future. How does that revelation sit with Iris?
It hurts her deeply. Iris is fully head-over-heels in love with Barry. She wants to be his wife more than anything, but like anyone, she doesn’t want it to be for the wrong reasons. Barry has good intentions and clearly loves this woman, but his reasons for doing it so soon – to change the timeline – has forced Iris to question if marriage is what he wants, or if he really just wants to ensure Iris’ future.
Perhaps the biggest mystery of the season revolves around Savitar’s identity. There are plenty of theories out there -- in fact, CBR has one of its own. How shocked will audiences be when he is finally unmasked?
I found out pretty early on who Savitar is. I think fans will be surprised by his identity.
What else has you excited about what’s in store for Iris and Team Flash for the remainder of the season?
I’m very excited to see how Iris and Team Flash hopefully figure out how to defeat Savitar. I'm also anxiously waiting to find out whose laps these three prophecies ["One shall betray you. One shall fall. One will suffer a fate far worse than death."] will land in!
Starring Grant Gustin as the Scarlet Speedster, “The Flash” airs Tuesdays at 8 pm ET/PT on The CW. The series also stars Jesse L. Martin, Tom Cavanagh, Carlos Valdes, Candice Patton, Danielle Panabaker, Keiynan Lonsdale and more.