The Flash's Danielle Panabaker teases Killer Frost's icy Earth-2 debut
When Team Flash heads to Earth-2 during Tuesday’s episode of The Flash, they’ll be shocked to discover that more than a few faces are very different on the other side.
In a bid to save Earth-2 Wells’ (Tom Cavanagh) daughter, “Barry, Cisco and Harry go over to Earth-2 with a definitive plan that goes awry,” executive producer Todd Helbing teases. “They are left having to improvise and find themselves in a completely different scenario than they anticipated, and have to race for their lives to get back.”
Case in point: Barry (Grant Gustin) and Cisco (Carlos Valdes) will quickly come up against Killer Frost (Danielle Panabaker) and Deathstorm (Robbie Amell), who are nothing like their Earth-1 doppelgängers. “She’s completely different,” Panabaker says. “Caitlin comes from a really good, well-intentioned place, and Killer Frost does not. She just wants to hurt people and steal from them.”
The only silver lining is that the episode reunites a version of Caitlin Snow with Ronnie Raymond, who perished during the singularity last season. “It’s very Bonnie and Clyde,” Panabaker says of their dynamic. “There’s a lot of passion between those two characters. It’s different than the relationship between Earth-1 Caitlin and Ronnie in that it’s very passionate, very hot and heavy. It’s fun.”
Though getting into the mindset of Killer Frost wasn’t hard once she was in costume — “There were some people on set [who didn’t recognize me],” Panabaker says — the actress took a cue from some familiar villains. “I watched some old Batman movies and really looked at all those femme fatales, Uma Thurman and Michelle Pfieffer, and went to them for inspiration,” she says. “It was a lot of fun. I really enjoyed it.”
Unfortunately, viewers won’t find out how this Snow turned into the ice queen we see on Earth-2. “They’re really focused on getting Wells’ daughter back and closing the breach, so there is no way for Zoom to continue to terrorize them,” notes Panabaker, who doesn’t rule out the possibility of the two Caitlins meeting some day. “That would be so fun to get to play them opposite each other,” she says. “I don’t think Killer Frost would be pleased to see what a goody-goody Caitlin can be.”
As to whether Earth-1’s Caitlin Snow could face the same icy fate, Helbing says it’s not likely — at least, not yet. “I would say right now, Caitlin is not affected, so for that to happen, there’s going to have to be some scenario that would trigger that,” he says. “But for right now, it’s not a possibility.”
Meanwhile, back on Earth-1, the rest of Team Flash is faced with a new meta-human terrorizing town with no Flash to stop him. “It’s up to Caitlin and Jay, and they enlist the help of Joe, to stop Geomancer,” Panabaker teases. “Team Flash is a really good team, and it’s tough when some of the members are gone.”
Jay (Teddy Sears) will really need to step up in Barry’s absence, leading Caitlin to feel even more desperate to save his life. “She’s pretty determined,” Panabaker says. “As we’ve seen in the past, she can be pretty focused when she has a reason to be. This is also her specialty. This is totally in her wheelhouse of working with science to save people. That’s her passion. It’s great to see her focus on that, even though the circumstances are a little bit sad.”
With that in mind, the recent reveal that Jay Garrick’s Earth-1 doppelgänger is Hunter Zolomon — whose alter-ego in the comics is Zoom — has sent fans down the theorizing rabbit hole. “I think there is a little bit of a red flag, but Jay has explained that Hunter Zolomon was adopted, that’s why he has that name,” Panabaker hedges. “It’s unfortunate for Caitlin that she can’t rely on this Earth-1 doppelgänger to save Jay, but when we do find out more about Zoom, I promise it’s worth the wait.”
“We do things on purpose on the show,” Helbing says of the Hunter Zolomon nod, noting that we will see Hunter again in coming episodes. “As you know, sometimes we follow the way things are in the comics, and sometimes we don’t.”
The Flash airs Tuesdays at 8 p.m. ET on The CW.