By Alex J Lee
‘The Flash’ follows the story of Barry Allen (Grant Gustin), an ordinary police forensic scientist who gets struck by lightning and gains super speed. Drawing on the long and rich Flash mythos from DC Comics the series follows Barry as he becomes the Flash and goes up against a variety of super villains. Whilst ‘The Flash’ is a spin off from the DC series ‘Arrow’ the connections between the two are light, essentially just serving to create a wider universe for the characters to exist in. It’s perfectly possible to enjoy one completely separate from the other.
One of the greatest strength of ‘The Flash’ is that the series is not afraid to fully embrace the “comic bookness” of its source material – for example one episode features the Flash going up against a giant telepathic gorilla. At the same time, however, it balances the ‘out there’ concepts with real emotional human drama – in many episodes the story of Barry’s interactions and realtionship with Iris West (Candice Patton) and Joe West (Jesse L. Martin) are just as important as his fight with the villain of the week.
I think in many ways a comic book story like ‘The Flash’ is best suited to being told on TV as opposed to being told on film. A storyline within a comic tends to run over many issues building up to an epic conclusion and a film can’t fully capture that. A TV Series like ‘The Flash’ can drop hints and allow a story to build up throughout its 23 episode run. ‘The Flash’ delights in the twists and turns that its storytelling format allows with each episode building towards Barry’s epic confrontation with the Reverse Flash in the season finale.
‘The Flash’ is a superhero show and it’s very good at what it does. If you like superhero stuff this show is definitely for you. If you want a jumping-on point into the world of superheroes then I’d say give ‘The Flash’ a try. If you don’t care for superheroes at all then this show definitely isn’t for you.
Image from The Flash Twitter