ARROW: Andrew Kreisberg, Geoff Johns, Greg Berlanti and Grant Gustin Preview The Flash's Debut! Plus, a Tease For What John Barrowman's Return Will Mean for the Queens | Give Me My Remote

ARROW: Andrew Kreisberg, Geoff Johns, Greg Berlanti and Grant Gustin Preview The Flash’s Debut! Plus, a Tease For What John Barrowman’s Return Will Mean for the Queens

December 4, 2013 by  

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It’s been more than four months since it was announced that Flash/Barry Allen would be making his debut in the ARROW universe (with the intention to build a spinoff around that character), and tonight is the night viewers will finally get to meet him.

“Barry comes to Starling City because there is an unexplained robbery at Queen Consolidated, and Barry is very interested in the unexplained throughout the course of these two episodes,” ARROW executive producer Andrew Kreisberg teased to reporters earlier this week. “[Barry]’s the opposite of Oliver in a lot of ways: he’s funny and he’s outgoing, and a little unsure of himself, and smart.”

As for Barry’s portrayer — former GLEE guest star Grant Gustin — ARROW executive producers have nothing but praise for their newest star.

“Grant, as an actor, brought more to Barry Allen than we’ve seen before,” ARROW exec/DC Comics’ Chief Creative Officer Geoff Johns said. “Especially seeing him in the days as he’s taking these first steps. He has heart, he has humor, he has compassion — Barry was always a nice guy, who stops and makes sure everything was all right.”

“Had we not found Grant, I’m not sure we would have done the character,” Greg Berlanti added. “We looked at everybody — it was certainly the largest search I’ve ever been apart of for a TV show — and he just fit the part. It suddenly didn’t about age or any of those other things, but wow, if I were a kid and I got to watch the living embodiment of the Flash, this is who I would want to see do it. So that’s our hope with these episodes: when people watch him, even before he becomes the Flash, people connect with him the way we did.”

And, yes, Gustin’s is a bit young, but the matter is not only addressed on-screen, but was actually an intentional move on their part.

“We always saw him as a little bit younger, and the thing that was important to us was that he really should be a contrast to Oliver and Stephen [Amell],” Kreisberg said. “Stephen is more of the conventional square-jawed and muscle-bound hero, and he needs all of that. But the Flash is a random guy who is a random guy who gets struck by lightning; he needs the bolt of lightning in the way Stephen doesn’t need the lightning.”

Gustin — who is actually a huge superhero fan himself (he has a Superman tattoo!) — is relishing his time in the role, and told reporters he’s in training now to prep for filming the actual pilot next year. But more importantly, he said he’s relieved he actually likes his character.

“He’s fun to play, he’s likeable,” Gustin pointed out. “I haven’t had the opportunity [before this] to play a character that I would actually want to spend time with!”

As far as the non-Flash aspects of the show, in addition to the producers revealing that Alex Kingston is currently in Vancouver filming her return to the series, that Malcolm double-bombshell (not only is he alive, but he’s Thea’s father), will be ramping up starting with tonight’s hour.

“There was no way [Malcolm] was going to stay dead,” Kreisberg laughed. “[That reveal] was one of the things we were talking about at the end of last season, and the story works on so many different levels. For one thing, Moira always works best when she has a deep dark secret, and last season, we were like, how are we going to top this deep dark secret? In a way, this one is even better because it’s more personal…Thea, ironically, is one of the few people who actually turned out well after last season. So now, you can probably assume she’s going to be hit with a whammy as the season progresses. So, we’re excited for that.”

The two-part Flash arc (and midseason finale) air tonight and next Wednesday at 8 PM on The CW.

Related:

ARROW: Emily Bett Rickards Teases Sparks Between Felicity and Barry Allen
ARROW: Emily Bett Rickards Offers a Tease for Episode 12
The CW Opts to Make THE FLASH Pilot a Standalone Hour

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