Counterbalancing the nice girl act on The Walking Dead, actress Emily Kinney has been leaning into her dark side in subsequent roles—which include playing a serial killer-in-training on The Following and a single white female-esque killer on Forever. Kinney will continue that streak by playing The Flash’s latest bad guy, Brie Larvan, aka the Bug-Eyed Bandit.
“When I first got the opportunity I was really excited,” she tells EW. “Obviously I loved playing Beth. She’s so sweet and has such a good heart. But it’s fun to key into that side of you that’s a little bit more evil and dangerous. It was something I was excited to do immediately.”
But this isn’t the same Bug-Eyed Bandit you remember from the comics, whose alter ego was a man named Bertram Larvan. “I got a lot of freedom knowing that it was such a different character,” says Kinney, who plays coy on whether Brie will return during the upcoming villain team-up—and even more coy on the slim chance we’d see Beth put in a brief appearance on The Walking Dead’s Los Angeles-based prequel. “Even when you read about the Bug-Eyed Bandit and what I got in the script, she did have some different personality traits. I got a lot of freedom to create a new character.”
The narcissistic tech genius will wreak havoc during Tuesday’s episode as she vies to obtain power and get vengeance on those who wronged her. “She’s a person who isolated herself from the world,” Kinney explains. “She’s been holding a grudge against the people who fired her. She’s been creating these mechanical bees and they were worried she was mostly using them for evil, so she got fired and her career was ruined by this company. Now she’s been using her bees and her computer skills to cause havoc and get revenge.”
Naturally, seeking to do harm on the residents of Central City will put her at odds with Team Flash. “She’ll have some interaction with The Flash, but it’s not as direct as you would imagine because a lot of what Brie does is in this isolated beehive cave,” Kinney says.
More directly, she’ll go toe-to-toe with Arrow‘s Felicity Smoak (Emily Bett Rickards), who visits from Starling City alongside Ray Palmer (Brandon Routh), and whom Brie looks at as a formidable nemesis. “We both have pretty good computer skills,” Kinney teases. “They wrote this battle, but we’re at our computers. I thought that was really interesting and of the times. They both have a similar skill set, so they are well matched. It puts Felicity in some danger.”
The Flash airs Tuesdays at 8 p.m. ET on The CW.