Cards on the table: I thought an adaptation of Flashpoint was a mistake.
Let’s just look back on my review of The Flash Season 2, because past-me articulated my stance far better than current-me would:
As for next year? I am tentatively worried. Flashpoint, to me, seems like a mistake. Primarily, there’s the fact that The Flash has been mining the Flashpoint story for a lot of imagery for a long time, taking different aspects and using them in the way that best suited the show at the time; Barry bringing Iris a video of Eddie, for example, or being electrocuted to regain his speed. That means that if they do try and use any of the more well known aspects of the Flashpoint story, then it’s going to come across as quite repetitive. (Then again, given how much of this series was just season one repackaged and repolished slightly, it’s possible that being repetitive isn’t a huge concern.)
More importantly, though, I feel like it’s moving backwards. Earlier, I mentioned how much I appreciated that The Flash was dedicated to developing each of the characters; one of the best episodes this year, The Runaway Dinosaur, was all about Barry getting past the death of his mother. It was a really poignant episode, and I think can be included as one of the best of the entire show, up there with the season one finale.
But then they threw that away just a few episodes later.
I stand by this, still; the new trailer didn’t do a lot to reassure me. (In fact, since writing that, I’ve actually grown more disinterested in the Flashpoint adaptation because I’ve read the original comic, and watched the animated movie, and found both to be quite underwhelming; they felt to me more of a string of “cool” moments and set pieces, rather than an attempt at emotional storytelling.)
Don’t get me wrong, there looks to be a lot of cool stuff here. I really enjoy alternate takes on characters I already know, and looking at parallel universe versions of them; the new timeline has the potential to be quite engaging. It looks to me at the minute as though Wally is going to be the Flash in this new dimension; while I’m not expecting him to retain these powers when the timeline is fixed, I think this is probably foreshadowing a point later on in the season when he will gain powers in the proper timeline. (I’m a little disappointed to see another speedster villain, though, and I dearly hope that this is confined solely to the flashpoint timeline; The Flash is quite heavily running the risk of getting too repetitive with speedster villains.)
Part of me is slightly concerned that what we’ve seen here is actually just an edited down version of the first episode; from the filming reports I’ve been following, it seems they’ve only recently started episode 2, which does suggest that all of this footage is simply from the premier episode. I hope that’s not the case; I kinda feel like the only thing that would bother me more than doing Flashpoint would be to rush it. It seems to me that this is something that should, at the very least, get two-parter, because 40 minutes really doesn’t feel like enough. (I’m particularly hoping to see a considerable number of scenes between Barry and his mother, because I feel that this was a crucial aspect that the original story was lacking.)
In the end, I’m still looking forward to this new season of The Flash a lot. After all, I do really love the show; while I felt that there were, perhaps, a few missteps with the second season, on the whole it remained quite fantastic. I know that it’s going to remain consistently entertaining, and to be quite honest, I’ll probably still quite enjoy the flashpoint episodes too.
It’s just that, right now, this trailer hasn’t quite convinced me, and I’m feeling just a little underwhelmed by it all.