Has Barry Allen Learned Nothing?

Illustration for article titled Has Barry Allen Learned Nothing?

The entirety of The Flash’s third season has been about Barry Allen ignoring everyone to meddle with the past for his own gain, it going horribly wrong, and then slowly, deliciously being raked over the coals for it. You’d think that experience would temper his desire to meddle with time, right? WRONG.


The CW has released a new promo and synopsis for presciently titled “Borrowing Problems From the Future”, The Flash’s midseason premiere, and it turns out the wonderful redemption arc we got for Barry during the epic DC/CW crossover saga was pretty much all for naught. Because after Barry was presented with a vision of the future —specifically, Iris’ death at Savitar’s hands—it turns out his immediate plan is to attempt anything that would alter the future, including some convenient usage of Cisco’s vibe powers.

Barry Allen cannot be left alone for more than a second before his brain instantly goes to “HEY LET’S ALTER SPACE TIME AGAIN THAT WENT SO WELL THE LAST TIME GUYS.”

At least the scarlet speedster’s plan has seemingly not included him actually speedforcing his way into the future (yet), so maybe Barry at least took some of Jay Garrick’s “no more time travel” speech to heart. But judging by the synopsis, his attempts to change the future are still going to jeopardize the present, requiring Wally to step in:

BARRY FIGHTS FOR IRIS — Barry (Grant Gustin) is tormented by his vision of the future where Iris (Candice Patton) is murdered by Savitar. When a criminal named Plunder (guest star Stephen Huszar) shows up in Central City, Barry recalls the villain’s presence in his vision of the future and fears that if he catches Plunder, it will cement Iris’ fate. Confused about Barry’s hesitation to stop Plunder, Wally (Keiynan Lonsdale) decides to step in as Kid Flash. Caitlin (Danielle Panabaker) offers Julian (Tom Felton) a job.

One thing Barry definitely hasn’t learned, apparently, is actually talking to other people about his problems so they could maybe help out sooner. Baby steps, Mr. Allen!

But please, whether it’s to the past or the future, The Flash needs to lay off the timey-wimey stuff for a while, lest it meddle with even more of Barry’s character arc than it already has over the last half-season. The Flash returns January 24.



James is a News Editor at io9, where you can find him delivering your morning spoilers, writing about superheroes, and having many feelings about Star Wars. He wants pictures. Pictures of Spider-Man!



I feel like trying to prevent a future is very different from meddling with the past. In the latter you could ruin everything you know and love and/or your own existence, but with the former you’re just trying to create a better outcome for yourself. I mean, we try to prevent bad futures and create favorable ones everyday.