Chester P. Runk has been a beloved and valued member of Team Flash for several seasons now, and a big part of his character’s appeal is the actor who plays him, Brandon McKnight. The character first appeared in early Season 6 and this season in addition to helping out Team Flash, Chester is pursuing a relationship with Allegra (Kayla Compton)… that is, if either one of them decides to just go for it.
FlashTVNews spoke with Brandon McKnight on the eve of a new episode airing tonight (“The Mask of the Red Death, Part 1” airing at 8PM ET/PT on The CW), and you can find that interview below.
FLASHTVNEWS’ CRAIG BYRNE: How does it feel to be shooting the final season of The Flash?
BRANDON McKNIGHT: I’ve been saying that it’s bittersweet. It’s definitely a lot more bitter than sweet, though. This is my first show where I played a character, so it’s going to be really sad for me to have to put Chester to rest.
It’s just been such a great few years of my life, man. I was brought into the show and was so graciously and warmly accepted by the cast and crew. These people are my friends now. I’m so used to seeing everybody multiple times a week. It’s going to be a big change, personally and professionally.
Like I said, this is my first show, so to have to put this to bed and put this to rest, and then move on…. it’s cool to move on and explore different avenues and see different things and you get to play different characters, but at the same time, it’s like, “wow, I’ve been here for three years now,” and that’s kind of it. So, it’s bittersweet, but right now, it feels a lot more bitter than sweet. But all good things come to an end.
Did you feel almost like you won the lottery getting such a great character to play such as Chester?
Oh, my God, you have no idea. It’s crazy. Because I was a big fan of the show before I got the part.
I tell the story all the time, but Flash is both mine and my little sister’s favorite hero, our favorite superhero, and we watched the show from 2014. It was our favorite show. We never missed an episode, and we watched it together.
So, I was just excited to get the audition. When I read about the character for the audition, he was supposed to be like this really wild, super fun-loving guy who’s unapologetic about who he is, and stuff like that. I remember having an absolute ball with the audition and thinking, like “man, if I got to play this character, I’d probably be tired, because he has a lot of energy, but I would love every second of it. I would love every second of playing this person.” And then, three weeks later, I found out [I got it] and it’s just been an incredible ride.
When you first auditioned for Chester, did you have any idea what that would lead into becoming a series regular or a recurring character?
Well, I remember on my audition breakdown, and said that there was the potential of the character becoming series regular. I usually put things like that out of my mind, though, because especially in this industry, you can’t fall in love with ideas before they actually become a thing.
And I had no idea who the character was: I think I think the character’s name in the audition was Zeke, and he ran a podcast called Zeke Geeks or something like that. I thought he was just going to be – not the villain of the week because he wasn’t really a villain, but the issue of the week, I will say. And then, knowing that there was the potential for it to become a series regular was was something. Me and my manager, we kind of just looked at it, and were like like “hey, every episode that they have, that’s just another audition.” That’s the way I treated it, pretty much, for all of Season 6. It was a very long extended audition with which I got paid, as well.
So, it was a surprise, but we also knew it was a possibility when in Season 7, they decided up me to a series regular.
One of Chester’s friends asks this in Wednesday’s episode, and now I will ask too: What’s going on with “Challegra?”
A lot of confusion, but also a lot of exploration, is what I’ll call it. This is uncharted territory for Chester. He’s never been in this situation before, here someone he likes is [a situation that’s] actually working out, you know what I mean? But then, there’s also some trouble in the water. They’re both human beings, and love is a confusing thing. Relationships are difficult at times, especially when they’re brand new, and you’re dealing with people who are dealing with a lot of stuff from the past. I think Chester is just trying to try to figure it out, trying to navigate this this uncharted territory.
Do you get to have any scenes with Javicia Leslie in this “Red Death” story arc?
I don’t know if I can tell you that. As we all know, she’s around.
Having been a fan of The Flash, is there anyone from The Flash or the Arrowverse itself that you wish you had gotten a chance to work with?
I feel like there are so many people. I would have loved to work with Stephen Amell. That would have been really cool.
There are so many people, and now because you’re asking me, everybody’s going through my brain and I’m drawing a blank on one person. There are tons of people I would have loved to have seen. I would have loved to see Chester’s reaction to Supergirl. I think he would have lost his mind.
I’ve met a a lot of the other actors, and it would have been fun just to interact with them, be on set with them, and be able to chill with them for a few days. But there’s too many to list.
If someone says to you in a few years “would you come back and play Chester again,” would you be down?
In a couple of years? For sure. An older Chester, who’s a little more seasoned and a little more grounded and a little more grown up but still so much fun? In a heartbeat. Absolutely.
How would you tease Wednesday night’s episode?
I would say whatever you think is going to happen, probably isn’t. I’ve been reading a lot of the predictions that people have online and stuff like that, and whatever you think you know, I promise you, you don’t know. I haven’t read a single prediction that’s been right. So expect surprise, and expect the unexpected.
A new episode of The Flash airs TONIGHT (March 1) on The CW.
The Flash: Speaking With Tom Cavanagh Before Tonight’s Finale
Tom Cavanagh discusses his return as the Reverse Flash in the series finale of the Flash airing March 24
Tom Cavanagh was a part of The Flash from the start, first playing Harrison Wells-but-actually-the Reverse Flash, and then giving us a myriad of Wells throughout the multiverse. He’s also proven himself to be a fantastic director, helming multiple episodes of The Flash as well as fellow CW superhero staple Superman & Lois. Tonight, he’s back in front of the camera, playing Barry’s arch enemy once again.
FlashTVNews spoke with Tom Cavanagh in the days leading to tonight’s finale, and here are some highlights of that conversation:
How did it feel to be back? “I think the emotions are probably very different for somebody like myself or Carlos Valdes who decided to leave after Season 6; myself with the knowledge that [I have] this parachute of the fact that I play the Reverse Flash and he’s gonna come in every four or five months and blow up Central City and try and kill the Flash. It was a tremendous situation for me, because that’s exactly how it played out. I got to come back, and see my friends, and put on the suit, and enjoy that. It was just a grand circumstance anytime out to see the crew and the cast and put on that suit.”
On the importance of bringing the Reverse Flash back for the series finale: “It was understood that when we got to the series finale, that we have to include the Joker to the Batman; or in this case, Reverse Flash to The Flash.”
Would he like to play Reverse Flash again? “Reverse Flash, for me, was just a joy to play, as an antagonist or arch-enemy. There’s charisma to that character, and I delighted in. I would suit up again in a heartbeat.”
Cavanagh has pitch for a return on a possible Reverse Flash spinoff project. “Here’s my pitch: What if Reverse Flash, with all his villainy, fell for a civilian and then suddenly that complicated his agenda? Where would he go with his paramour, and how would it affect him? Would he then be able to carry through on his designs of destroying Barry? The reason we didn’t do that on The Flash was because you’d need to call that show Reverse Flash. We’ve got The Flash, which I wholeheartedly support. That being said, I think there’s room in the multiverse now that The Flash is over for us to explore that. And so, that’s my pitch for a Reverse Flash spinoff.”
Is Eobard afraid of any of the other speedsters? “Heck no, and that will be readily apparent in the finale.”
Was it fun to play Eobard insulting Eddie and Hunter Zolomon in the finale? “Poor Teddy Sears. Poor Rick Cosnett. Grand humans, all. And then, they roll on camera and it’s just, like, me taking shots. Teddy would quote them back to me a month later and I’d ask ‘who said that?’ ‘You said it!’ It’s so fast and furious, that I can’t keep track sometimes. I have to say, there’s one descriptor for those guys: It’s ‘tolerant’.”
Any final words for the fans who have followed the series for nine years? “I think it’s great that you bring that up, because often times, when a show has run a long time, a lot of the concentration is on the people who are the face of the show on camera, but off camera is the audience. They are the reason we were even given these nine years. It’s never lost on me. I remember [Superman & Lois and former Flash showrunner] Todd Helbing saying this: ‘These people invite us into their homes for an hour a week, and it is such a privilege and a responsibility. We want to let them know that we don’t take it lightly.’ That would be the message that I would like to basically parrot. Certainly, we’re grateful for the audience showing up week after week, which gave us those nine years. And even though I’m sure we didn’t always succeed story wise, it’s important for us to let the audience know that it was not from lack of trying. We understood that they were the reason we were there, and we were always doing our best to try to tell stories that they would enjoy, and keep coming back.”
The Flash series finale airs tonight on The CW.
Flashback: Revisiting Our Earliest Flash Cast Interviews
FlashTVNews revisits our earliest interviews with the cast of The Flash.
The final episode of The Flash airs tonight (May 24) at 8PM ET/PT on The CW… and we’re feeling pretty retrospective right now. Sure, we have a new interview with Tom Cavanagh that will be posted this afternoon, but beyond that, we’re thinking about the long run that got us here.
FlashTVNews had the opportunity over the years to interview almost every series regular in the show’s 9-season run, at one time or another. Whether it was at a Comic-Con, a carpet for a crossover, or the very first Flash appearance at the Television Critics Association press tour… we were there. Below you can find some of those interviews, starting from the TCA Press Tour and moving down the list. Sadly, we never did get to do video with such folks as Brandon McKnight, Jon Cor, or Kayla Compton… but if you want to see how the cast was talking about the show in the early days, this may be a treat for you. And again, the series finale “A New World, Part Four” airs tonight at 8PM ET/PT.
Candice Patton (Iris West):
Jesse L. Martin (Joe West):
Tom Cavanagh (Eobard Thawne/Various Wells):
Carlos Valdes (Cisco Ramon):
Rick Cosnett (Eddie Thawne):
Grant Gustin (Barry Allen… the fastest man alive!):
Danielle Panabaker (Caitlin Snow):
John Wesley Shipp (Daddy Flash):
Teddy Sears (Zoom/Jay Garrick/Hunter Zolomon):
Jessica Parker Kennedy (Nora West-Allen):
Keiynan Lonsdale (Wally West):
Danielle Nicolet (
The Seal Cecile Horton/Virtue):
Michelle Harrison (Nora WHY DID I SAY THAT NAME):
Patrick Sabongui (Captain Singh):
The Flash: Eric Wallace Would Be Open To Continuing The Story
Flash Showrunner Eric Wallace discusses the possibility of Flash audio adventures after the series is done.
Could there be a continuation of The Flash after Wednesday’s final episode? It’s possible.
Before he landed on The Flash, Showrunner Eric Wallace had been involved with Big Finish Productions’ audio continuations of the classic gothic TV soap Dark Shadows, having written or co-written three stories for the studio. Stories like the ones told by Big Finish can keep a franchise alive – they were the leading source of new Doctor Who stories during the “wilderness years” between the 1996 Paul McGann TV movie and Christopher Eccleston’s debut in 2005’s “Rose.”
When we spoke with Eric Wallace prior to the launch of The Flash Season 9 earlier this year (well before the current writers’ strike), we asked him if he’d have any interest in writing Flash audio adventures one day, and in addition, which character from Dark Shadows lore he would “borrow” to meet Team Flash if he ever could, a very nerdy question that might only be understood by a fraction of the audience reading this website.
“Yes, I would love to,” he confirmed. “Not immediately.. give me a year off, I need a break… but I would love to write a Flash audio adventure at some point in the future, to tell the stories that I wasn’t able to tell during this particular moment.”
As for the second part of the question, asked only for fun? “I already know what the answer is, but I’m gonna qualify it: I would want to bring over Barnabas Collins, but I think the more appropriate character to come on to this show is Quentin, because Quentin is a man out of time, much moreso than Barnabas is. Barnabas was locked in a coffin and then woke up after 200 years and is dealing with past baggage, so obviously, he would have a lot to talk about with Barry Allen. But Quentin is a man of the past who was thrust into modern times, and actually starts to adjust, but a curse follows him, so he can’t ever have a future, so seems to me that there’s a definite story between Quentin and Iris, right there.”
And that’s not all: “Having said that, Julia [Dr. Julia Hoffman] and Reverend Trask are my next two favorites. I have to sneak them in too somehow,” he said, making us wonder why we never managed to get the actors David Selby or Jerry Lacy on The Flash TV show as Max Mercury or a character in that vein.
In the months since this interview was conducted, Grant Gustin has also addressed his Flash future beyond May 24:
“I think regardless of if I put the suit on again or not – and I love this – I’ll be associated with this character for the rest of my life, so if anybody wants to call me about The Flash, I will take the phone call and hear them out,” Grant said in a recent interview with EW.
Maybe this means May 24 won’t be the end after all…