SPOILER WARNING: This article contains major spoilers from recent episodes of “The Flash.”
DC Comics-based hit “The Flash” is nearing the end of its first season victory lap — but not before a Sunday afternoon WonderCon panel that took place at the Anaheim Convention Center’s arena. Cast members Danielle Panabaker (Caitlin), Candice Patton (Iris) and Carlos Valdes (Cisco) were in attendance, along with executive producer Andrew Kreisberg.
The presentation started with a sizzle reel teasing the final few episodes of the first season — similar to previously released footage, with plenty of Reverse Flash and Gorilla Grodd teases. Shortly after, moderator Damian Holbrook asked how much of this eventful first season was planned — Kreisberg indicated almost all of it, with lots of elements set up back in the pilot.
Turning to the upcoming guest appearances from “Arrow” cast members Ray Palmer/The Atom (Brandon Routh) and Felicity (Emily Bett Rickards), Kreisberg explained, “In episode 18, Ray Palmer is having some trouble with his Atom suit, and who better to go to for help than Cisco Ramon?” Kreisberg said that the visit comes at a bad time for Barry (Grant Gustin), as he just discovered that Harrison Wells (Tom Cavanagh) is the Reverse Flash — and Felicity can tell something’s not right with Barry.
Additionally, Laurel (Katie Cassidy) will also guest on “The Flash.” “That’s one of the most fun stories that we wrote, Cisco’s interactions with Laurel,” Kreisberg said. “Cisco is us. What would your reaction be if you got to meet the Black Canary?” Kreisberg said Cisco helps Laurel with a new version of the Canary Cry that will operate very similarly to how it does in the comic books.
Patton was asked about Iris being the seemingly only character left that doesn’t know Barry is The Flash. “I think people just want Iris to finally find out,” Patton said. “I do too. But we want the reveal to be a good one. It’s coming. I want Iris to find out on her own accord. I think she deserves that.”
Kreisberg said that the showrunners agree that it’s not right for Barry, Joe (Jesse L. Martin) or Eddie (Rick Cosnett) to let Iris know the truth of The Flash’s identity — which will be seen when the character finally finds out. “Iris’ response when she finally finds out is less about the excitement or joy or wonder in finding out Barry is The Flash, and more, ‘How can in any planet did the three of you think it was acceptable to keep it from me?'”
Panabaker said she’s “really excited” about the potential of her character following the source material and become Killer Frost. “You’re going to see her sooner than you think,” Panabaker said.
She also acknowledged a wedding scene was filmed between Caitlin and Ronnie (Robbie Amell), and that it was filmed on April Fool’s Day. “Weddings don’t always go off without a hitch,” Panabaker remarked.
When asked about the possibility of Cisco Ramon becoming Vibe, Valdes answered that he prefers to focus in what he’s currently working on. “If we’re filming 23, I’m worrying about 23 right now,” Valdes said. “I can’t say there’s anything in the future, but I certainly hope so.”
Taking a question from Twitter, Holbrook asked about the lack of scenes between Cisco and Iris. Valdes: “Can we get scenes together?” Kreisberg: “Sure!” Kreisberg said that pursuing unexplored dynamics is something they’re talking about when discussing season two, and even within the first season, pairings that weren’t necessarily planned — like Joe and Cisco, investigating the old Allen house together — worked out fortuitously.
Another Twitter question concerned whether viewers will see how Iris and Eddie got together. “We have an episode coming up, episode 20, that has flashbacks to the time when Barry was in a coma,” Kreisberg said. “t’s fun and interesting to see everybody back then — see Caitlin be not quite the Caitlin we know, the origins of how Barry got transferred to S.T.A.R. Labs, Iris and Joe… it’s a really fun episode.”
“I’m always sympathetic to Eddie,” Kreisberg continued. “He’s the most emotionally stable person of anybody else on the show.”
Will the fact that Eddie has potentially villainous DNA factor into storylines? “He has a bad last name,” Kreisberg responded.
Concerning the most recent Reverse Flash twist — that the real Harrison Wells was murdered by Eobard Thawne (Matt Letscher) who stole his appearance and identity — Kreisberg said Cavanagh was excited when he found out, and is excited about “future plans,” as well. Kreisberg confirmed that Letscher will be back before the end of the reason.
Asked about the possibility of a Barry/Caitlin romance, Panabaker said, “I don’t know if she’s holding out for Barry, but I don’t know if she’d turn him away.”
Commenting more on Valdes’ character, Kreisberg said Cisco exists in part to, “sort of remind people they are watching a TV show, and this is meant to be fun.”
Holbrook asked how Valdes reacted when he found out he’d be dying — temporarily, at least. “I was like, awesome,” Valdes said. “Dying on camera? That’s so dope. When Andrew told me, he was like, ‘So we’re going to kill you in this episode — don’t worry, you’re coming back, we’re going to turn back time.’ This show just keeps getting better. You guys are ballsy, and I love it.”
Anything Kreisberg can be said about the in-development “Flash”/”Arrow” spinoff? “We’ve announced some of the casting,” Kreisberg said. “It’s going to be like the crossovers every week. It’s going to be gonzo.” Kreisberg said the if “Arrow” is gritty crime drama and “Flash” is heart and humor, the spinoff will be “insanity and off the rails,” and the next seasons of “Flash” and “Arrow” will both work to set up the spinoff.
Given all of the villains that have already been introduced in the first season of “The Flash,” Kreisberg addressed who may be coming in season two. “I think we definitely want to meet the Mirror Master next year,” Kreisberg answered. “I’m sure Dr. Alchemy will show up at some point. And we’ve got one thing that hopefully people will lose their minds over.”
When asked what the cast brings of themselves to their characters, Valdes cited his “passion and zeal.” “There are pieces of me in there for sure,” Patton said of Iris. “This season, we’ve seen Caitlin infused with so much warmth,” Panabaker said, adding that she’s a “caretaker” much like how Caitlin has been depicted.
Moving to fan Q&A, Kreisberg was asked how he and Greg Berlanti balance work on both “Flash” and “Arrow.” Kreisberg credited the work of “Arrow” executive producer Marc Guggenheim and the writing teams on both shows, plus said the team has something of a “Moneyball” approach in everyone playing to individual strengths. “We’ve really learned to divide and conquer, so we’re not all doing the same things. Especially with ‘Flash,’ we have to stay ahead — the only we can pull off what we pull off is really planning it, creating the visual effects and all that.”
A fan asked is “The Flash” could cross over with another CW show, other than “Arrow,” what would the panelists pick. Panabaker: “‘iZombie.'” Patton: “‘Supernatural.'” Valdes: “For the sake of having a different answer… ‘Vampire Diaries.'” Kreisberg: “I want to see all of these guys on ‘Whose Line Is It Anyway?'”
Chance of Wally West? “I wouldn’t be surprised if one day you see Wally West on the show,” Kreisberg answered.
Asked if there’s any possibility the Black Flash — basically Death for speedsters — will ever appear on the show, Kreisberg said nothing is off limits. “If there’s something that existed in the Flash universe, no matter how crazy or how silly, there’s a good chance it’ll be on the show.”
An audience member asked how aware Iris may be of her feelings for Barry, and the possibility of him being The Flash. “Her feelings for Barry — I think she’s somewhat aware they exist,” Patton answered. “She loves Eddie. Eddie’s a good guy — as far as we know. About her knowing who The Flash is — I don’t think she knows. I know that’s frustrating for a lot of people. The way I justify it as an actor is, Iris takes Barry at his word. They’ve never lied to each other. For her to even remotely believe that Barry could lie about something this big, it doesn’t even dawn on her to go down that path.”
A young fan asked what Cisco is referring to in the recent “Flash” teasers when the character says, “This is mad freaky.” Kreisberg said that the alternate timeline from recent episodes may not be entirely erased. “Some timelines may be revisited in some creative and innovative ways, which will prove helpful in us figuring out the mystery,” Valdes added.
A fan in Harley Quinn cosplay asked, in character, if viewers will see more of the original Harrison Wells. “You’ll be seeing more of the original Harrison Wells, you’ll be seeing more of Matt Letscher as Eobard Thawne, and more of Tom as Eobard Thawne,” Kreisberg said.
Also in the Q&A, Kreisberg acknowledged a longtime friendship with “Buffy the Vampire Slayer” alum Emma Caulfield and said she’ll likely guest on “Flash” or “Arrow” at some point; Valdes revealed he taught Gustin how to play Uno; a potential storyline centered on a child receiving powers from the particle accelerated and how the S.T.A.R. Labs crew would deal with the threat; and an explanation as to why “Ra’s al Ghul” has had two different pronunciations on “Arrow” — Kreisberg explained that comic fans know the character as “Raysh,” but it was pronounced “Roz” in the Christopher Nolan Batman films. The “Arrow” team decided to split the difference, with characters like Nyssa and Ra’s himself saying “Raysh,” and everyone else pronouncing it “Roz.”
For the final question, Halbrook asked the cast for one-word teasers hinting towards their character’s future during the march towards the finale. Valdes: “Dreams.” Patton: “Pissed.” Panabaker: “Frosty.” When asked for a one-word tease for the finale, Kreisberg answered, “Tears.”
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