It’s a bittersweet farewell to The Flash and the Arrowverse. After nine seasons of running like Usain Bolt on steroids, Grant Gustin’s Barry Allen hangs up his suit for good.
The actor first appeared as the speedster in a guest stint on Arrow season 2 before spinning off into his own show, The Flash.
However, The Flash season 9 is not only the final chapter for Barry and his team but also for the entire DCTV universe on The CW. The network pulled the plug on the remaining Arrowverse shows before The Flash season 9 aired, making it the last outing for the superhero saga.
The Flash has a lot to look forward to in 2023. Ezra Miller was cast as Barry Allen in the solo movie right after The Flash debuted on TV. Gustin’s fantastic run as The Flash will wrap up just before a new chapter for the hero begins with James Gunn’s upcoming DC Universe. But things could have been different.
The Flash season 9 is the last one because of a decision made behind the scenes and not because of low ratings. The show was still prevalent in season 8 when it got renewed for season 9.
However, Gustin only agreed to return as Barry Allen for one more year. He had the option to sign for longer, but he didn’t. Many actors from the show thought the show was going to end in season 8, but they were surprised by the renewal.
The actor spilled the beans on how he decided to end the show in an interview with Entertainment Weekly. He revealed that he told the makers of The Flash that he was done after season 9. The actor was ready to quit after season 8 itself, but they persuaded him to stay for one more.
Two weeks after finishing season 8, he broke the news to the directors that season 9 would be his final one. They agreed to not go on without Barry Allen and wrap up The Flash with season 9, which was the right thing to do. Gustin then shared the news with the cast.
Gustin’s choice to leave the show explains why The Flash showrunner, Eric Wallace, had to change his season 10 plans. Wallace had big ideas for The Flash season 10 but had to scrap or modify them when he learned that season 9 would be the last one.
Instead of just having some Arrowverse guest stars, the planned season 10 would have brought together the Arrowverse Justice League. Wallace said he wanted to do several crossover events in The Flash season 10.
The final season would start with “The Forever War,” a new story by Wallace. That would have been a massive crossover with many Arrowverse heroes of epic proportions.
Wallace also wanted to do something big with the Diggle/John Stewart Green Lantern hints. The planned final season of The Flash would have adapted “The Blackest Night,” one of the best Green Lantern stories ever.
The showrunner also said he wanted to bring back the villain Despero to lead an alien invasion on Earth, which was hinted at in his last appearance. Season 10 would then have shown the Arrowverse Justice League onscreen, with their headquarters, the famous Hall of Justice, returning.
However, with the Arrowverse ending with The Flash season 9, it looks like its Justice League will only be a Crisis on Infinite Earths tease.
The Flash season 9 may end the show, but it doesn’t mean goodbye to characters like the Arrowverse’s Barry Allen and Iris West-Allen. Gustin’s The Flash could also show up on Superman & Lois season 4.
Superman & Lois showrunner Todd Helbing said he “would love to bring Grant on” the Tyler Hoechlin series. He also said that seeing Elizabeth Tulloch’s Lois Lane and Candice Patton’s Iris together as journalists would be fun.
The idea came up after The Flash’s showrunner, Wallace, said he would ask Helbing to keep the Arrowverse alive if Superman & Lois got a season 4 renewal.
However, if the show is not renewed, there is still a chance that Gustin’s Barry Allen and other Flash and Arrowverse heroes will appear in future DC movies and TV shows.
The multiverse lets any DC character from any production appear in new projects. With Miller’s The Flash movie bringing the multiverse to DC’s films, Gustin may come back for a movie role as his Barry Allen.
Gunn can bring back The Flash for a season 10 as the new boss of DC Studios, even if it doesn’t come back to The CW. However, that’s very unlikely to happen.
Gunn has big plans for the new DC Universe, including movies, TV shows, and games. DC Studios is making an Elseworlds label for the DC projects that are not part of Gunn’s new vision for the company, but The Flash doesn’t belong to that label.
One-off projects and separate shared universes like Reeves’ can still exist, but a shared DC TV universe like the Arrowverse might cause some confusion with the new DC Universe as it starts, just like what happened to the DCEU.
That’s why it’s hard to imagine Gunn bringing back The Flash for season 10. Some actors and characters from the show might come back in the future through the multiverse, but The Flash season 9 will probably be the end of the show.
Fans should enjoy the final season while they can and hope for a satisfying conclusion.
If you haven’t seen the final trailer for Flash season 9, here you go!
About The Flash (The CW)
The Flash is an American superhero television series developed by Greg Berlanti, Andrew Kreisberg and Geoff Johns. It is a spin-off from Arrow, existing in the same fictional universe known as Arrowverse.
Cast members include Grant Gustin, Candice Patton, Danielle Panabaker, Rick Cosnett, Carlos Valdes, Tom Cavanagh, Jesse L. Martin, Keiynan Lonsdale among many others.
The series follows Barry Allen, a forensic investigator in Central City, who is hit by lightning on the night of the inauguration of the particle accelerator. Months later, he wakes up from a coma and discovers he has super-speed. He becomes The Flash and fights crime in Central City.