Central City’s Scarlet Speedster THE FLASH starring Grant Gustin will be running his last leg with its Season 9 set to run early 2023 on The CW with thirteen final episodes bringing the superhero series across the finish line and signaling the end of the Arrowverse!
Faster than a speeding bullet! The CW has announced that another one of its DC-inspired original series will take its bow. The Flash starring Grant Gustin in the titular role will be running one final lap when the series returns to the network in January of 2023 for the Ninth and Final Season. Also starring Candice Patton and Danielle Panabaker, the network has ordered 13 episodes to end, the show’s episode asks have decreased in the last three seasons largely due to safety protocols since COVID, but at least 3 more than the 10 episodes that wrapped the Eighth and Final Season of Arrow.
When it debuted in 2014, the series became The CW’s #1 instant ratings hit; the first proper spin-off from Arrow starring Stephen Amell, the show expired super-producer Greg Berlanti and his team of creatives to introduce an expanded primetime television universe inspired by the DC multiverse, and immediately dubbed by fans the “Arrowverse”. The series brought a whole new level of excitement to the primetime landscape on The CW; Arrow featured the urban warfare of a vigilante dedicated to saving his city, and The Flash added a science-fiction super-powered component.
For the last eight seasons of The Fastest Man Alive, CSI investigator Barry Allen (Gustin) and his allies at STAR Labs have faced metahuman adversaries of all shapes and sizes, including a King Shark and intelligent gorilla, but none have been more dangerous than the Man in the Yellow Suit, Reverse-Flash (played by series regular Tom Cavanagh). The series based on the Silver Age hero that reignited the modern popularization of DC Comics is the second television adaptation of The Flash. The first premiered in 1989 on CBS and starred veteran actor John Wesley Shipp.
With The Flash mythology so firmly rooted in the spectacular multiverse of the original material, during the epic 5-part crossover event “Crisis on Infinite Earths” the Flashes of both television series were able to exist side-by-side. The team-up one of the most anticipated of the series run, The Flash also benefited from partnerships that extended to Star City’s Green Arrow (Amell) and National City’s Supergirl which starred Melissa Benoist. Both Gustin and Benoist appeared on the hit show Glee (though in separate seasons) but provided one of the “Arrowverse” series’ most musical moments.
Beyond the Speed Force!
In a year that has had several DC series come to end, with the untimely conclusions of both Batwoman (in its Third Season), the team-show DC’s Legends of Tomorrow (which ended in Season Seven), and the freshmen series Naomi which was wrapped after just one season, the DC primetime universe has been slimmed down to only Superman & Lois returning for Season Three and DC’s Stargirl which is set to return in the fall with its third season. The fate of the new series Gotham Knights (not based on the video game) introduces members of the Batman family is still undetermined.
With The Flash taking its final lap, fans are concerned this signals the end of the “Arrowverse”. It’s unlikely that with only 13 episodes in its final season and a winter premiere, The Flash will include, or be a part of any epic crossover event. Its Eight Season (which was almost expected to be the show’s last) opened with the 5-part “Armageddon” event that featured guest stars, many from the now canceled series in primetime were the closest thing to a crossover that The CW has promoted since the pandemic affected productions.
Showrunner Eric Wallace who has been at the helm since former executive producer Todd Helbing’s departure to launch Superman & Lois is grateful that The Flash will have one more season to wrap up some loose ends and give the cast a hearty opportunity to bring the adventure to a close. Gustin, Patton, and Panabaker will be back for the final season. The only other remaining original cast member Jesse L. Martin will return for at least five episodes in Season Nine. The actor has a pilot in development at NBC.
Admittedly Wallace has been reported as feeling somewhat melancholy about the show’s trajectory toward to final season, saying out loud what many fans suspect to be true: “That there are a lot of Flash stories still left to tell.” When the show wraps up it will do so as the longest running (to date) of the “Arrowverse” shows. Arrow ended its historic run with Season Eight and had Oliver Queen transcend into a new role in this Post-Crisis continuity. Though nine seasons will indeed be impressive, Smallville ran for 10 seasons climaxing with Tom Welling’s Clark Kent finally donning “the suit”.
Fans are hopeful Carlos Valdes who played Cisco “Vibe” Ramon, Cavanagh, and Shipp will all be back to provide some closure as The Flash legacy comes to an end in primetime, although some have speculated that a spin-off featuring Jessica Parker Kennedy and Jordan Fisher, who portray siblings XS and Impulse, the children of Barry Allen and Iris West-Allen (Patton) could be in the works. Season Nine of The Flash begins filming in September of 2022.
Here’s your #FANSEYEVIEW of the finale trailer for DC’s The Flash on The CW:
The Complete Eighth Season of The Flash will soon be available on Blu-ray and DVD this fall.