Much like Harrison Wells was the obvious choice to be the Reverse-Flash before the body-snatcher reveal, the sudden highlighting of Jay Garrick could be The Flash‘s latest ploy to throw us off the scent.
There are many reasons why Jay Garrick (Teddy Sears) could actually be Zoom, all of which are lined out here, but there are also a few glaring questions that could debunk that theory, like how Jay could be in two places at once — speed mirages?! Time travel?! — or how Zoom could be zipping between universes if Jay didn’t have his powers when he first landed on Earth-1.
A potential answer: Jay Garrick, if that is his real name, is simply a henchman for Zoom, similar to Killer Frost (Danielle Panabaker), Deathstorm (Robbie Amell), and Reverb (Carlos Valdes).
Let’s say Jay’s story about using Velocity 6 to gain more speed in order to beat Zoom was true. Hypothetically, Zoom eventually catches him and sends the powerless Jay to Earth-1 to spy on Barry (Grant Gustin) and help steal his powers. But Jay sees an opportunity to cure his illness and potentially get his powers back by getting close to Caitlin, who goes on to develop Velocity 9. Zoom, displeased with Jay getting his powers back, unceremoniously kills the Crimson Comet during this week’s episode. (Another possibility is that Zoom enlisted Jay to get Caitlin to develop Velocity 9, therefore making Zoom even faster, and simply killed Jay because his services were no longer needed.)
But then who’s the man in the iron mask? Roll with this for a moment: Earth-1 Eddie Thawne (Rick Cosnett). And if you know the story of The Man in the Iron Mask — one twin becomes an evil king, the other imprisoned and forced to wear an iron mask so no one knows his identity — it therefore stands to reason that Zoom is Earth-2 Eddie Thawne. But wait, didn’t Eddie kill himself in the season 1 finale in order to erase Edobard Thawne (Matt Letscher), a.k.a Reverse-Flash, from the timeline?
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What if, when the singularity swallowed Eddie’s lifeless body, Zoom discovered him and — shocker — revived him. Remember when Patty Spivot (Shantel VanSanten) shot Earth-2 Harrison Wells (Tom Cavanagh)? Jay was injected with Velocity 6 in order to phase into Harry’s chest and remove the bullet. What if Zoom did the same thing to Eddie? Zoom could’ve phased through Eddie’s chest to remove the bullet, given a quick jolt to jumpstart Eddie’s heart, then locked Iris’ former fling up in his lair and put a mask on him for a number of reasons, secrecy included, but also because Zoom probably didn’t want to see Eddie’s face — his own could be horrifically scarred or disfigured similar to Zoom’s dark mask.
It all comes back to this photo of Barry and the man in the iron mask. Though some believe the mystery man could be a version of Jay Garrick (or even Hunter Zolomon), the fact of the matter is that Jay Garrick towers over Barry Allen. He was always meant to be the tall, square-jawed depiction of a superhero opposite Barry’s less traditional one.
Juxtaposed, Eddie is much closer in height to Barry, which could make him a more viable candidate to be the man in the iron mask. That raises the question of how Eddie would know Jay’s name in order to tap out that message to Barry and Jesse (Violett Beane). Simple: Zoom could’ve been keeping Jay a prisoner alongside Eddie in his lair before sending him to Earth-1, and Eddie’s message was a warning not to trust him.
If Eddie Thawne from Earth-2 actually is Zoom, that would be a fun nod to viewers who thought the character was surely going to end up being the Reverse-Flash ever since Cosnett’s casting was first announced. Instead, Eddie was just an ancestor of the real Reverse-Flash, Eobard Thawne, who recently returned to the series — though he hailed from an earlier timeline.
This, of course, just adds another familiar face to the long suspect list of who could be Zoom: Jay Garrick, Hunter Zolomon, Edward Clariss, and Henry Allen among them — and all from any Earth. Henry Allen was actually one of the earliest theories, especially when Barry’s father quickly disappeared after getting out of jail. If a version of Henry is, in fact, Zoom, his long absence serves to make the impact of the reveal even more poignant.
The Flash airs Tuesdays at 8 p.m. ET on The CW.
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