The Flash in three acts–An Ode to Earth-2


If you’re the type of fanboy or fangirl who can barely wait for the next big screen appearance of superheroes, whether it’s the Avengers, The X-Men, The Guardians of the Galaxy, or Batman, Superman, and the Superfriends, you’re just looking at the wrong medium.  We’ll admit we were slow in feeling the love for CW’s TV series The Flash–last year’s new tie-in series to the wildly successful Arrow.  Initially The Flash was too lighthearted and comic booky and the lead, Grant Gustin as Barry Allen, maybe just a bit too nice.  But we soon became believers in The Flash the superhero and the show, which rated as the Best Superhero Fix for 2015.  And this season The Flash is even better.

Just take the last three episodes.  Finally superfans got to see the famed Earth-2, that legendary otherworld we grew up with in the pages of Justice League of America.   In the two-parter “Welcome to Earth-2” and “Escape from Earth-2” we got to see in full color this great place where Barry and Iris are married, Iris is cool, Barry’s mother lives, Caitlin Snow is Killer Frost, and our favorite Firestorm (played by Robbie Amell as Deathstorm) is back.  You just know everyone is asking the same question:  Can’t we just stay here to play around a little longer?

So many stories, so little time.  But why not keep returning to Earth-2?  Who cares about Harley Quinn in Suicide Squad when you can watch Danielle Panabaker as Killer Frost?  Open up that portal again, Barry!  We’re hoping for “Earth-2 Strikes Back,” “Battle for Earth-2,” and “Conquest of Earth-2” coming sometime soon to a TV near you.


The Flash is such a good series that it can actually pull off those oddities of comicbookdom that may make the average reader cringe.  Like King Shark, making a return visit to Central City as star villain of this week’s episode.  Who would think a villainous land shark and a story resolution straight out of Sharknado could actually work on network TV?  Because we believe in these characters–Barry, Caitlin, Cisco, Iris, Joe, Wells, Jay Garrick–we will go along for the ride wherever the writers take us.  Can you say that about any of the superhero movies in the past five years?

Sure, The Guardians of the Galaxy and Ant-Man have plenty of heart, and The X-Men movies contain some great character studies.  But does anything really take you back to your love of comic books as a kid as well as CW’s DC Universe?


The medium is the message.  With television we get something closer to our monthly comic books when the show is done right.  We get a chance to live with the characters, get into their shoes, and feel compassion when Barry Allen is barely able to move forward after he caused the deaths of Earth-2 characters that are just as real to him as his Earth-1 family.  In contrast movies are giant sound bites.  We are stuck in a broken clockwork of origin stories as new directors come and go through every mega-franchise character, whether it’s Batman, Superman, the Fantastic Four, The Hulk, or Spider-man.

So if you’re not watching The Flash and tapping your fingers as you wait for the next big superhero movie, tap no longer.  You owe it to yourself to catch up on this fun and exciting second season of The Flash–a big contender for this year’s Best Superhero Fix.

C.J. Bunce

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