It’s the showdown The Flash fans have been waiting for—and this time, it won’t be erased by time travel.
During Tuesday’s episode of The Flash, Barry (Grant Gustin) and the rest of his team make a play to confront Wells (Tom Cavanagh) for his role in Nora Allen’s death. Will Wells fall into their trap? EW caught up with executive producer Andrew Kreisberg to get the scoop on the episodes leading up to the finale, in which Iris (Candice Patton) also finally learns a big secret.
ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: Now that Team Flash has found Wells’ lair, what does that confrontation look like?
ANDREW KREISBERG: The whole thrust of [this] week’s episode is Barry having enough information about Wells to realize that he can force a confession out of Wells—that he killed his mom and got his dad out of prison. That really becomes Barry’s overriding concern. Those people who thought that the events of episode 15, when the timeline was altered, was a full and total reset, and that those events didn’t matter, are going to be proven very wrong. It turns out that the key in getting Wells to confess lies is Cisco’s (Carlos Valdes) ability to remember that alternate timeline.
Are we going to find out how and why Cisco is able to tap into that alternate timeline?
You will find that out this season, but not necessarily [this] week
Many fans suspect it has something to do with his future in the comics. Is that possible?
I would say that’s definitely a possibility.
In the comics, Eobard Thawne was fixated on Iris. Will we see a little bit of that on the show?
As always, we take our cue from the comics, but we don’t always necessarily follow the stories perfectly. People always ask how closely will it align with the comics, but it’s not as simple as when you’re adapting Game of Thrones, where you’re following one story. With the comics, you’re following multiple stories with multiple writers. People are constantly retconned and revised, backstories are revised and motivations are changed. In some ways, it’s good for us because it allows us to cherry-pick the best parts that we feel work for us. There’s definitely a confrontation between the Reverse Flash and Iris coming up, which is fairly exciting. It’s not necessarily the Iris fixation that was in that run of the comics.
Is it possible that Harrison Wells is collecting all of his imprisoned metahumans’ powers?
Interesting theory. [Laughs]
What can you tease about the upcoming interaction between Eddie (Rick Cosnett) and Eobard?
The fact that they have the same name is not a coincidence. It’s something that we’ve known about since the very beginning of the series. All of that stuff is starting to come to fruition. For those people who, just like Eddie, wondered why the Reverse Flash didn’t kill him in episode 9 when he killed every other cop in that room, you’re going to get the answer to that.
I hear Barry and Iris will finally have a heart-to-heart. How will Iris feel upon learning Barry’s secret? I have to imagine she’ll be pretty pissed off at not just Barry, but Joe (Jesse L. Martin) and Eddie as well.
The reason she’s not pissed at Eddie will become apparent, which is kind of interesting. But she’s definitely pissed at Barry and Joe. Keeping people in the dark for their own protection is a trope for these shows. Sometimes, especially on Arrow, we let that go on for too long. We’re trying to correct that on this show. We’re definitely building toward Iris finding out in this first season, not just in the finale, and her having a reaction to it that’s quite normal.
I don’t think Joe and Barry were trying to be rude or disrespectful. They thought what they were doing was right and was the smart thing to do. As Joe said, even if he had his initial reservations about keeping her away from all of this, once they found out that Wells was the villain, he didn’t want her coming to S.T.A.R. Labs and coming to hang out with him and getting closer to danger. As always with these things, there’s going to be emotional fallout—but it’ll end up bringing people closer together.
Iris is the last person not really in the know. So what does season 2 look like if everyone knows Barry’s secret?
There will be new people introduced on the show next year, and they won’t know. It’s funny because we read the comments and see some people are upset that Iris doesn’t know. For us, keeping this secret is the least interesting aspect of all of these shows. Especially on Arrow, there’s such a freedom to it now that everybody is in on this secret, everyone can just have real conversations. Everyone is on board, so everyone can be talking about everything that they should be talking about. That’s not to say those devices weren’t important and helpful in the earlier seasons, especially about episode 18 of the first season of Arrow, where Laurel’s (Katie Cassidy) journey—even though she didn’t know Oliver’s (Stephen Amell) secret—in that episode really helped him. For now, it’s better that everybody knows and everybody can talk about it and be on the same page. The false jeopardy of “we have to keep this secret” fades away, and it allows you to come up with more grounded, more organic problems for your characters to have to face.
You really seemed to be laying more of the groundwork for Caitlin (Danielle Panabaker) to become Killer Frost last week, when she talked about how much Wells has changed her life. A lot of people expect it will come as a result of Captain Cold’s (Wentworth Miller) gun, but what’s going to surprise us about that?
We didn’t name these characters Caitlin Snow and Cisco Ramon on a whim. Their characters certainly have trajectories and we have thoughts on that. I, as always, ask the audience to trust us on these things. Some of these things are going to take longer than people suspect, and some shorter. It is very interesting to read all the theories out there. Every once in a while, somebody does come close to the truth, but people will just have to see.
What can you tease for the Rogues teaming up?
The episode is entitled “Rogue Air.” The team discovers that the pipeline is no longer secure, and they have to move all the metahumans that are there. Especially in the last few episodes, you want to nod back to the entire season. In season 5 of Doctor Who, they open an episode with seeing all the characters [that] the Doctor and Amy had hooked up with over the course of the year. In a way, this reminds me of that, where we get to see the Weather Wizard, Peekaboo, The Mist, Deathbolt and Rainbow Raider again. It’s fun.
And Grodd is coming back.
Yeah, we decided to put Grodd in the episode “Grodd Lives.” It just felt right. [Laughs] It’s crazy. There was an early episode of the original Flash series where Tina’s husband was a wolf man-type thing. I remember thinking back then, “Man, I wish that had been Grodd.” So to sit here and watch these dailies is amazing. When you watch the dailies and the first cuts before the effects are all added in, you do have to think, “Okay, I know this is going to look amazing.” Because at that point you’re looking at very crude animation, or sometimes a snap shot of the storyboard. Or worse, it’s a black screen that says what you’re going to see, and you have to imagine how great it’s going to be. What’s so interesting about the “Grodd Lives” stuff is you’re watching this episode, and everyone is acting with nothing. Grodd is in this episode, and it’s the first time we have a fully rendered CG character walking amongst our guys. That episode is going to be amazing. General Eiling (Clancy Brown) returns in it.
Will we see any new Flash tricks before the end of the season?
You’re going to see a couple of new Flash tricks over the next couple of episodes, one in particular that is right out of the comics. He’s going to learn how to do it for the first time in episode 20, and put to really good use in episode 22.
The Flash airs Tuesdays at 8 p.m. ET on The CW.