It’s here, my fellow fans of The Flash. The moment we’ve hoped for and dreaded since Grant Gustin’s Scarlet Speedster first ran across our TV screens back in October: the season finale. But before saying goodbye to this miraculous first season of action, comedy, romance, time travel, psychic gorillas, and good old-fashioned superhero fun, I’d like to share with you some exclusive chats I recently had with the show’s cast. So, buckle up for interviews including Barry Allen/The Flash himself (the affable Gustin), the cunning Doctor Harrison Wells/The Reverse-Fash (Tom Cavanagh), the stalwart Detective Eddie Thawne (Rick Cosnett), and the brilliant Dr. Caitlin Snow (Danielle Panabaker). Here are their thoughts on the epic season 1 AND the already anxiously awaited second season…
Nerdist: Barry’s gone through an amazing journey this season. As we approach the end, what’s motivating him? Is it primarily his mother’s murder?
Grant Gustin: Barry is someone who obviously wears his heart on his sleeve, at least the way I’m portraying him. [Laughs.] That’s what ultimately underlying and driving Barry. But now he’s got Caitlin in his life, he’s got Cisco in his life. He’s there for them now too, and a lot of times they’re driving him in a given situation. It depends on what he’s focusing on, what’s right in front of him. But what’s driving Barry ultimately is finding Reverse-Flash, being ready for him, being strong enough to face him, and understanding what happened and why it happened.
N: Once those questions are answered, will Barry have to redefine himself?
GG: That’s how TV series generally work. There will be a new motive and tone, moving on after that. I’m sure Barry will find some more confidence and be one step closer to that Flash we know from the comics, for sure.
N: Will there be more karaoke on the show? If so, are we talking Saturday Night Fever or Xanadu soundtrack?
GG: [Laughs.] Any John Travolta, yeah. Any John Travolta… I don’t know. I hope so. That was definitely one of my favorite episodes. I hope we do a lot more of that in season 2.
Nerdist: Even though Barry has discovered Harrison Wells’ long-held secret, apparently we’ll still be seeing Tom Cavanagh in season 2…
Tom Cavanagh: In the mythology, the guy is the Reverse-Flash. So while they’re telling the story of the Flash, they still need the dark in order to put the light in. So I don’t think the Reverse-Flash is going anywhere… It would be great if you were like, “Hey, so that’s it, huh?” And I’m like, “Wait, what do you know, Nerdist? What the hell?!” “Yeah, I hope you make money on your podcast now.” “What? No, I don’t make any money on Mike and Tom Eat Snacks. As you should know, Nerdist!” [Laughs.]
N: It’s been great to see Wells inject a little humor as well as menace into the show. Your impersonation of Back to the Future‘s Doc Brown was a hoot.
TC: Okay, so that was a complete improv… [As Christopher Lloyd] “If my calculations are correct…” I was just f–ing around. Then the next thing you know, people are literally like… I’m getting text messages from buddies, “Yeah, Doc Brown lives!” I’m like, “What are these guys talking about?” Because that was like five weeks after we’d shot the thing and I literally did not know what the hell anyone was talking about. Then they leave it in. That’s the great thing — when you do anything that’s funny and they put that in, it makes me have a lot of faith. Because I think one of the hidden weapons on our show is we try not to take it too seriously. You can do a graphic novel and you can also laugh while you’re doing it. In my own personal tastes, the people who make you laugh… I look at the first Iron Man for example. There’s so much humor in that. That will cause me to align with you quicker than anything. So yeah, I’m completely on board with that stuff. I love it when we’re funny.
N: As far as the cast goes, have you formed a little bit of an improv troupe?
TC: Carlos is non-stop jokes, and a lot of that then comes out. Because you know each other very well. And also, our set is [pointing to castmates]… Broadway. Broadway. Jesse, Broadway. Grant, Broadway-in-waiting, Glee. For very serious subject matter, there’s way too much singing going on. [Laughs.] We love it. It’s great. It’s a very enjoyable thing. And bonding and the way we get along, I think, helps the humor that occasionally pops its head up on the show.
N: As far as the Reverse-Flash goes, we’ve seen him, with perhaps one exception, perform as a solo act thus far. Would you like to see him team up with other villains moving forward?
TC: Oh, yeah. I think that’s the domain of this genre. And I completely welcome it. You look at Flashpoint and some of the alternate universe stories. Like, how great would that be? When all these guys are together. We did a [commercial] recently where myself and Mick Rory, Captain Cold, a bunch of guys were all teaming up, getting together to fight the good guys in a Fight Club scenario. I was like, “Let’s bring that on.” We had so much fun doing it.
N: You appear very familiar with the comics. How much comics reading did you do prior to signing on for the role?
TC: In as far as The Flash is concerned, I thought I was extremely knowledgeable. Until I got in with these guys and realized I was the dumbest guy in the room. [Laughs.] They just know so much, and they’ll just throw it at you. You’re like, “Huh? What?” Geoff Johns is current keeper of the flame. Their knowledge is annoyingly rampant. I don’t compare, but it’s been a humbling education. I enjoy it.
N: I ask because you’re quicker to drop some comic titles than the rest of the cast.
TC: That’s because I’m less modest than the rest of the cast. That’s all it is. I have no humility barometer. That’s all. [Laughs.]
Nerdist: You’ve spent most of this season with many fans thinking you were the Reverse-Flash, because of your character’s last name…
Rick Cosnett: Everyone asked me if I’m the Reverse-Flash. Everyone. Obviously with a name like Thawne, there’s a huge scope for what can happen. And we all know Andrew and Greg love to flip things on their head. They love to surprise people. Let’s just say things are going to unravel in a huge way. And by the end of season 1, you guys are gonna be shocked as hell.
N: Should he return next season, would you like for Eddie to get in on the karaoke action?
RC: I would love it. I’m a bass baritone. [Laughs.] I’m plugging for it, man.
N: What would your go-to song be?
RC: Probably “Waterloo” by Abba.
N: Good one! It’s underrated.
RC: It’s very underrated. And I feel like it would be a big surprise. It would come from left field. It’s a bit of a tribute to Toni Collette from me. [Laughs.]
Nerdist: You and Grant have had a terrific chemistry on screen. You’ve probably seen Twitter fill up with #Snowbarry. What are your thoughts on that? Would you like to see them develop a romantic relationship at some point?
Danielle Panabaker: I think it would be interesting to see them have a relationship. They both sort of have bonded over these loves that they can’t be with. And they do have a really special connection. Hopefully we will get a chance to explore that at some point.
N: You guys have done a lot without saying a lot, in the way you look at each other and communicate through body language.
DP: Yeah, and I feel very lucky. Because Grant and I do get along so well, and we get to play with that stuff together.
N: Caitlin showed remarkable strength in letting Ronnie go after she’d already lost him…
DP: When he left, it was a much more peaceful thing. Because he’s dealing with his own stuff right now. That’s a challenge, and he’s got to do it in his own way. Obviously she’s sad not to be with him, but she understands. He’s always just a phone call away. He’s just got to drag that Martin Stein along with him. [Laughs.]
N: When you signed on for the role, did you do much comics research?
DP: A little bit. I definitely read The Flash book and got my handle on what was going on.
N: Did you read much about Killer Frost?
DP: Not too much. We’re not there yet. I have a lot of trust in the writers and faith in them, so I rely on them to introduce things to us. I would love to add that dynamic. Absolutely. I’m really excited by the potential of Killer Frost.
N: With the spinoff [Legends of Tomorrow] on the horizon, are there more venues and opportunities than ever for her to appear?
DP: I am really excited about the spinoff. It’s all really wonderful people involved, who I adore, and it would be great to have them around and to get to continue to work with them. I don’t know if the spinoff means Killer Frost will happen any sooner. I think it will happen on The Flash, and I think it’ll happen sooner than you think.
N: Is there anything else you wish for Caitlin in season 2?
DP: I don’t know that I have a wishlist. I love seeing her outside of S.T.A.R. Labs. She really excels there, but it’s nice to see her other places too. I love playing those moments. It’s really fun.
What were your favorite moments from The Flash‘s first season? Let us know below!