When the CW first decided to create a television show based on DC’s Green Arrow, they were met with much skepticism to say the least. However, the show was successful enough that in the second season, we got a little surprise character who showed up to help Team Arrow out: Barry Allen, otherwise known as the Scarlet Speedster. The CW then tried their luck at creating another superhero show but set in the same universe as Arrow. This is how we got The Flash.
From the pilot to the season one finale- it was pretty good. Every character was there for a reason, they all had their own arcs, and the primary antagonist was as terrifying as he was intelligent. Every actor was almost always on point, and even the effects were enjoyable (for TV standards anyway). Season two is currently running, and while it’s still fun, it’s not as good as season one. This brought to my attention that The Flash has made its fair share of mistakes, and while that may not detract from the overall quality of the show, it’s still worth mentioning here. I’ll give you a quick heads up though- season two makes more of these mistakes than season one.
Well, it looks like I get to tear apart another one of my favorite shows, but just like the article I did on Arrow, perhaps I’m one of the best choices because I’m such a fan. So without further ado, here are 15 things wrong with the CW’s The Flash.
15. Time Travel Inconsistency
While time travel is incredibly difficult to get and perhaps will never be perfectly adapted, The Flash makes a much bigger mistake regarding it. In time travel, there are two theories – the Butterfly Effect, which states that even the smallest changes can affect the entire course of history, and the belief that the timeline will remain unaltered because if you alter something in time, you were always meant to go back and that just ends up being “fate.” Typically, when conducting a time travel show or movie, you pick one and stick with it. The Flash actually uses both of them, and that makes the trip much more confusing.
14. Really Cheesy Dialogue
Arrow is guilty of this, but The Flash is an even worse offender. Because The Flash takes a much more lighthearted tone than Arrow, the characters in it are much more inclined to crack jokes or name their villains. Then when The Flash tries to have a serious moment among characters, sometimes it feels a little stiff or awkward, because they always love cracking jokes. While Arrow takes itself too seriously at times, The Flash takes itself too comically (no pun intended).
13. Earth-2 Problem Solver
I love the concept of the Multiverse. The one episode where Barry traveled to Earth-2 was one of the best of the entire series. However, the particular breaches that allowed him to travel through dimensions have been used a little lazily. For example, when Gorilla Grodd returned to terrorize The Flash, they dealt with it by shoving him through a portal and sending him to a forest on Earth-2. Then during the holidays when Trickster and Weather Wizard stuck bombs in presents, Team Flash shoved them through the breaches to Earth-2. Did they even stop to think about how that would harm the denizens of Earth-2?
12. Caitlin’s Arc
Remember how I said that season one had an arc for each character that was worth its time? I still stand by that statement. However, once season two started, some of the characters were somewhat shorted. Caitlin is the biggest case. In the first season, she was trying to find Ronnie and deal with the fact of losing him. It sounds simple, but it was pretty darn compelling. However in season two, she simply serves as a love interest for Jay Garrick (but more on that later). She is a brilliant scientist, and they’ve got her down to basic love interest.
11. Jay Garrick
When Jay Garrick appeared on The Flash it was one of the happiest moments of my life. As a comic book lover, I couldn’t have asked to see a character I wanted more than the original Flash. However, we don’t ever get to see Jay use his speed powers as The Flash, and he ends up getting a bit misused. I want to see the original Flash working alongside Barry to help him take down the big baddies, but unfortunately, all we get of Jay is him moping about Earth-2 and staying in Star Labs.
10. Flash Is Watered Down
The Flash is one of the most powerful members of the Justice League. If he and Superman had a race, it would be no contest as to who would win. The Flash is tapped into the Speed Force, he can time travel, he can even run through dimensions. However, this is not The Flash we have in the TV show. This Flash is much weaker, always struggling because he is much slower than the evil speedsters. I was especially upset with the Supergirl crossover when they were running at the same speed. The Flash is much faster than Supergirl!
9. Where Are the Villains?
At the end of season one, Barry was worried that the result of his clash with the Reverse Flash would destroy the particle accelerator, and with it, the many meta-humans they had imprisoned there. So they decided to transport them on a truck with the help of rogues Captain Cold and Golden Glider. However, the rogues double-crossed them, leaving the captured metahumans to escape and run Central City freely. And while we’ve seen some of them return, there are still plenty of metas that we haven’t seen or heard from since then. Are they still out there, or did the writers forget about them?
8. Losing Captain Cold
I understand that they wanted to have interesting characters for Legends of Tomorrow, but come on! Captain Cold is not only one of the best villains in the Flash’s rogues gallery, but Wentworth Miller’s portrayal is also one of the best on the TV show. Their rivalry in the comics was one of the most dynamic and competitive. Just before they really started to head that direction with the two, they had old Leonard Snart leave the show to be a part of Rip Hunter’s time travelling team. Luckily for that show, he remains one of the best characters on it.
7. Villain of the Week
One thing that The Flash became horribly guilty of is they got in a habit of having a new villain every week, each less compelling than the last. While it definitely led to some entertaining special effects and challenges for Barry Allen, it ultimately did more harm than good. The show benefits when it focuses more on Reverse Flash, Zoom, Gorilla Grodd, and even that episode with King Shark. Besides, having a villain of the week makes it hard to keep all of the different names right.
6. No Sense of Danger
One of the biggest challenges Barry ever had to overcome in the comics was when he lost his speed on multiple occasions. However, because he is the Flash and will continue to be so for a long time, we all know that he will get it back at some point. Unfortunately, the show didn’t get the memo. Barry has not only lost his speed more than once, but there is almost no sense of danger, because we all know that he will eventually overcome said problem. The same can be said of Barry learning to run on water and do the supersonic punch.
5. Wally West
For those of you who know the comics, you know that Wally West is destined to become Kid Flash. It was only a matter of time before he got introduced on the TV show then. However, what we got isn’t anything to write home about. Wally has instead been flip flopping between rebellious and jerkish to friendly and cooperative. He is the same age as Barry, so we can forget about the “Kid” part of the name. He hasn’t been given any speed powers yet, but I’m not so sure that I want him to anymore.
4. Iris’s Love Life
Iris’s love life was actually pretty decent in season one. However, I was never a huge fan of Eddie Thawne, I was pretty much rooting for Barry the entire time. After all, if the writers were going to put Barry and Iris together, Eddie had to go at some point. However, in season two, it is almost unbearable. On top of Caitlin, Iris also got sidelined in season two. They even brought in a new editor for Iris’s newspaper just to bring in another love interest for her. Recently though, it seems like she’s growing feelings for Barry again.
3. Zoom Reveal
Fool me once- shame on you. Fool me twice- shame on me. All throughout season two, the writers have been teasing who is the man that everyone calls Zoom. There has been much speculation, but the answer was actually kind of underwhelming. I won’t spoil it here, but not only does it do an injustice to a beloved character, but it’s also a very similar beat to the reveal about the Reverse Flash in season one. Just because it was a good plot twist doesn’t mean that you use it more than once, writers.
2. Particle Accelerator Prison
When Barry started taking down metahumans, one of the big questions was how they were going to imprison them, after all, they wouldn’t fit in a normal jail. So they decided that the old particle accelerator would be a perfect fit. They have little chambers that prevent metahumans from breaking out. However, we are never told about how the metas still eat or use the bathroom while being imprisoned. Even worse is that each different cell uses the exact same set piece, so they all look identical.
1. Ending Barry Patty
I know that I’ve been a pretty heavy supporter of Barry and Iris, but that was until season two introduced a new partner for Joe West – Patty Spivot. Patty was cute, funny, and her dynamic with Barry was one of the most adorable things ever to be put in the show. I honestly could’ve seen them together for the rest of the show. Then the relationship came to a tragic end as Patty discovered Barry was the Flash and waited for him to admit it to her. However, he chose to keep the secret, and that pushed her away forever. RIP Barry and Patty.