— Spoilers for The Flash Season 4 —
The Flash is one of my favorite tv shows and has typically been my top show period. However, season 4 disappointed me in several ways. These include the lack of cohesion, Wally’s hastily ridden exit (which had mostly to do with Keiynan Lonsdale‘s focus on his film career), Ralph Dibny’s overall character, and its general unevenness There didn’t seem to be a central theme to propel our main protagonist, Barry, forward. However, the trailer for season 5 takes the last scenes of its predecessor and gives us a taste of a seemingly dramatic and emotional season that promises to challenge Barry, Iris, and the rest of the team in new and unexpected ways.
The Flash season 4 ended with a twist of the season’s omnipresent “mystery girl” revealing herself to be Nora West-Allen, Barry and Iris’ daughter from the future, who was named after Barry’s dearly departed mother. Well, this was as much of a twist as the show could muster it to be, as many in, if not most of, the fan base had guessed her identity. The trailer that just dropped at comic-con shows the immediate reactions of Team Flash to this news, with Cisco acting as a proxy for their shock by refilling his drink.
The theme of season 5 is “family,” and clearly the dynamic between Nora and her parents will be at the center of it. Candice Patton (Iris), Grant Gustin (Barry), and Jessica Parker Kennedy (Nora) have all spoken at San Diego Comic Con recently about the various dynamics between the past and future family, and it promises (if the writers can deliver it well) a rich character-driven storyline. For some reason, Nora has come back 30 years into the future. Her codename/nickname is “Excess” as future Barry had given her, and she made a “big, big mistake.” Any fan of The Flash or its excellent sister show Legends of Tomorrow can tell you that you can easily make mistakes with time travel, but the mistake Nora made seems to be particularly severe. What has the daughter of classic time-messer Barry Allen have done to mess things up so much? Could it be worse than Flashpoint (as the show has told us over and over again Flashpoint was bad)? At least she brought back the “total fan favorite” Flash ring!
This season trailer does something unique compared to others for Flash seasons. After a minute and a half in, it focuses solely on a masked and hooded man making his way into a messy living room that has the remnants of children’s toys. This scene has a very eerie and creepy vibe, soundtracked only by the man’s deep breaths as he watches, seemingly angrily, a news report praising The Flash. He then takes out a lightning shaped dagger-like weapon, which then drains electricity from the tv to glow a menacing electric red. The trailer then ends with his looking into the camera. Who is this villain? Does he have a vendetta against The Flash and plan to use that dagger to kill him? Does he have control over electricity or the Speed Force?
After the, in my opinion, mess that was Season 4, The Flash needed to give fans an exciting hook to anticipate Season 5. For this longtime Flash fan, and casual tv watcher, I would say it delivered.