Nine years is a long time for an actor to play any character, let alone one that is regularly forced to wear an elaborate, skin-hugging superhero costume. So when I heard The Flash star Grant Gustin suggested to the series’ showrunner to kill off Barry Allen in the upcoming series finale, I assumed he just wanted to be done with the character. But it turns out that the actor had something much more interesting in mind.
Speaking to the TV Line podcast (via CBR), Gustin explained he wanted Barry—performing some of those time shenanigans that got him in trouble seemingly every two of three episodes—to sacrifice himself to save the Speed Force, and, well, I’ll let him explain it:
“When I thought about [the show] ending, there was a theory out there that Barry would sacrifice himself to keep the Speed Force alive and become the lightning bolt that inevitably struck him [in the pilot] and create this full circle moment, which I thought was really cool. Yeah, and I kinda always wanted him to die a hero’s death in a way, and [showrunner Eric Wallace] was very opposed to the idea, and we really wanted to see a happy ending for Barry and Iris. And ultimately, I think that ... as fans revisit it, probably how they’re going to want it to end.”
I concur that fans would likely rather Barry be alive when the series ends, if only because Arrow’s Oliver Queen (Stephen Amell) already pulled the heroic sacrifice during the Crisis on Infinite Earths miniseries. As the biggest, second most important, and only remaining series of the DC CW-verse, giving The Flash a happy ending would be a better way to close out this grand experiment that began in 2012 and encompassed six shows. Besides, even if the Flash died, if somehow the DC CW returned, death has never stopped a hero from coming back to life in any medium. After all, Green Arrow is due to appear on the show before The Flash ends on May 24...
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