John Wesley Shipp‘s Jay Garrick, the Flash of another world, returns to The Flash with tonight’s episode, “Enter Flashtime,” which promises to be a speedster-filled story in which the fast heroes assemble to stop a detonated nuclear device.
Longtime Flash fans have a special connection to Jay beyond the current series as he was the “O.G. Flash,” Barry Allen, on the original Flash TV series which ran from 1990-1991.
In anticipation of the March 6 installment which airs at 8PM ET/PT on The CW, we spoke with Mr. Shipp about “Enter Flashtime,” Jay, and of course, topics about the Flash legacy. Enjoy!
CRAIG BYRNE FROM FLASHTVNEWS: What can you tell us about “Enter Flashtime?”
JOHN WESLEY SHIPP: There’s a nuclear device that’s gone off, and we have split seconds to try to figure out a way to keep it from destroying everything. It pulls in all the speedsters – it pulls in Jay’s scientific knowledge, it pulls in Jesse, it pulls in others who are not necessarily speedsters…. we all get together to try to figure it out – as long as we can keep running, which is not limitless. Speedsters have to stop. If we stop, it’s Game Over. While we’re moving in Flashtime, and everyone else is nearly frozen, the rest of the world is moving almost imperceptively, and we’ve got to figure out a solution to this problem, because if we stop and it reverts to real time, it’s over.
When filming the 1990 Flash series, did you ever think that technology would ever be far enough to do an episode like “Enter Flashtime?”
I never thought that I would ever be in another Flash suit, let’s start there!
At the filming of the last episode with Mark Hamill at 5am in Southeast Los Angeles, I ripped the wings off of the suit, threw ’em in the air, and swore I’d never get into another Flash suit! And lo and behold, here I am! I remember Carla Princi, I owe her an apology… she was publicity at Warner Bros. and at one point, she was being so affirming, and she said “this is a role you were born to play!” And I shot back. I said “Oh, God, I hope not!” Simply because I was a young actor at the onset of my career, and there were so many more roles that I wanted to play.
Now I need to say “Carla, it appears that you may have been more right than I knew at the time.”
It’s pretty bizarre to be back in this whole universe, but I love the concept. Isn’t it brilliant? Just the idea and the concept of the [“Enter Flashtime”] episode.
Is Jay Garrick’s costume more comfortable to wear than the old one?
It’s night and day. I’m sitting in my Jay Garrick suit, and they come up and they say “do you need some water” or “would you like to get out of that?” I’m like “no, this is Christmas! Are you kidding me?” The old suit was so difficult to work in. I give the creators props: It was a work of art, and $100,000 to build four suits in 1990. They were really wonderful, but it was very difficult to work on. It was very hot and you had to glue it to my face, and a lot of things that don’t have to happen now. There’s an undersuit now and an outer shell, so you can peel the leather shell off and they can wash the undersuit, which is much more pleasant for everyone on the set.
Last week gave us the sad news that original 1990 Flash Executive Producer Paul DeMeo had passed away. Can you talk about him and his role in your Flash experience?
I was shocked — it really took my breath away. It really was a sucker punch. I was going down to the subway in New York, and I saw that Danny Bilson had put something up, and I sat down, and I was like “you’re kidding?!?!” I contacted Danny, and I said to him “I can only imagine what you’re feeling,” because for me, it’s like a significant part of my creative, professional life just left the planet, because Paul, of course, and Danny… 28 years ago, they changed my life. I wouldn’t be here talking to you today — not about this — if it hadn’t been a creative decision that they and Warner Bros. and CBS made 28 years ago, for me to play what they call the O.G. Flash.
You were just talking about “The Trial of the Trickster.” Wasn’t that Bilson and DeMeo in the final shot with the sign?
Yes! It was them, and then I go streaking by in a red flash.
Danny put that up on his page, and I put it up on my Twitter page, too. It was a great shot.
There’s much more to this interview. You can read Part 2 here!
The Flash: Eric Wallace Discusses Barry’s Coming Crisis
The Flash EP Eric Wallace discusses what the Crisis on Infinite Earths will mean for Barry and Iris.
Warning: Spoilers for the Flash Season 6 premiere “Into the Void” are being discussed here.
A Crisis is coming… Crisis on Infinite Earths, that is… and on December 10, 2019… Barry Allen is destined to die. And the story engine will guide The Flash Season 6 toward exciting places.
“Crisis turned out to be the best thing that could have happened — I can’t speak for the other shows, but I certainly speak for The Flash — because it created an immediacy to things,” Executive Producer Eric Wallace recently said in a group Q&A. “We know that December 10, 2019, The Flash will die. He just said it. We’re not messing around. So as a married couple, [Barry and Iris] can count the number of days and weeks. The countdown begins next week. What kind of urgency does that give them? An extreme one. It turns the dial up to 10, and it makes you think, ‘Is every moment together our last? What can we do? Should we fight this? Is it inevitable? These are all the things that they’re grappling with for these next seven episodes, because eight ends, and it’s Crisis time, and it’s time to go off to, literally, cosmic war. So the relationship is strained. But it’s also going to bring them closer together than ever before, because that’s what tragedy does,” he continued.
And how is this different from Season 3, when they saw that Iris was destined to die?
“You should watch next week, when that exact question is asked and answered,” Wallace explained. “That is literally the plot. What this story has enabled us to do is to look back at any other time when somebody was facing life and death, and see how they reacted then. So in the writers’ room, we had a lengthy discussion about how it’s the other side of the coin. We know how they reacted with Iris. How will they react next week? And I will tell you — no spoilers — it’s different. It’s not the same, because of what they learn next week. That’s the great part of the story. The Monitor showing up and kind of making a cosmic pronouncement drives you to extremes in order to fight against or accept the coming Crisis. And every episode this season – 602, 3, 4, 5 and 6, especially — are all about, ‘Do I accept death? Or do I fight it?;’ That’s also the reason why Bloodwork is the villain this season. The villain, as we now know, has HLH cancer and is dying. So for the first time in the show’s history, we have a villain and a protagonist who are going through the same thing. It’s the reason Bloodwork was chosen as a villain this season. It was very deliberate, because they’re going to learn about halfway through the season, ‘Maybe we’re not so different? And what does that mean?”
And finally, do Barry and Oliver know about their respective interactions with The Monitor (LaMonica Garrett) this season?
“No, and boy, I wonder what will happen when they both find out. [Laughs] It’s good stuff. It’s so great, ’cause I can’t tell you when it happens,” Wallace said excitedly. “But I will tell you that is a scene that happened and is a moment, and it is coming. Lets just say people might get pissed off a little,” he laughed.
The Flash airs Tuesdays on The CW.
Flash EP Discusses Killer Frost’s New Status Quo
Eric Wallace discusses the new status quo for Killer Frost in The Flash Season 6.
As we saw in tonight’s Flash season premiere “Into the Void,” Killer Frost (Danielle Panabaker) is going to be able to live a little bit of a life of her own. What does that mean for her future?
New showrunner Eric Wallace was asked that very question.
“Now that she has a life coach?” he joked, referring to Ralph’s offer. “I will tell you, and again, no spoilers, it has been a pure delight writing Killer Frost this season, because she’s much more in the forefront than Caitlin is.”
“That life coach stuff starts next week in 602,” Wallace teased. “It’s like the second scene and we honor the promise of the premise.We deliver. And it’s it’s led to these hilarious situations. Because basically, it’s like when we talked of her almost as a teenager who finally got the keys to the car but doesn’t know how to drive. We’ve got to drive to go to the store, to get the groceries, to get some wine, to meet your boyfriend, or to go to the movies, or whatever. So everything is new through her eyes, which means she’s gonna make some mistakes, which is great, it’s gonna lead to some more tears, but then at the end, she’s going to grow into something that didn’t exist before. Maybe you do lose that Killer. Maybe it’s just Frost waiting down the line.”
Photos from the second episode of The Flash Season 6, “A Flash of the Lightning,” can be found here.
New Showrunner Eric Wallace Outlines His Plan For The Flash Season 6
New Flash showrunner Eric Wallace talks about his plan for The Flash Season 6.
Yesterday, The CW hosted a screening for the first episode of The Flash Season 6 “Into The Void” — you can see some preview images here — and following the screening, new showrunner and Executive Producer Eric Wallace talked to press in a Q&A. But before he began his interview, he told us of his overall plan for what fans should get from The Flash Season 6 as a whole.
“Usually, one of about two or three things happen in the sixth season of a hit show: snooze-ville, and it goes into cruise mode, and you know, no one really cares, but you kinda watch it because it’s habit. You make your beans while you watch it, you eat it, no big deal,” Wallace illustrated. “Or crash and burn! ‘Oh my! That used to be my favorite show, and I can’t stand it anymore!’ Or third, hopefully [laughs], what we’re going for this season, we’re not looking at this as Season 6 of a show. We’re looking at it as Season 1 of a show. I’m trying very hard, my staff’s trying very hard, the cast and crew, everybody, to reward all of the fans who’ve been watching for five years. And as a thank you, we’re going to try and not give them the exact same thing they’ve gotten for five years, not that it wasn’t great. We love it. I truly love it, because I was a fan of the show before I started working on it.”
“But as a reward, we’re trying some new things,” Wallace continued. “I don’t know if you guys heard at Comic-Con, this is the season of thrills and chills. … But that is kind of the goal. But it’s one of those things where we want to not just keep the joy and the spectacle and the tears. We want to expand upon it. This is the season opener, so there’s only so much you can do in one episode. But the new format of the show, which is graphic novel number one, which just began here…it’s a self-contained story,” he said, pointing to the Ramsey Rossa (Sendhil Ramamurthy) story that begins in the season premiere.
“His story begins, it burns very hot,” Wallace explained. “By the time we get to 603, 604, we’re in cuckoo town, essentially. I mean that in the best way, because the story ends in 608. That’s wrapped up. The end. We go to Crisis. And then, starting at 610, it’s a brand new story, graphic novel #2… so it’s given, I think, the season, again, [has] a new fresh energy that I’m hoping is that reward to all the people who’ve been watching for five seasons. I’ve been watching for five seasons, too. I love Zoom, Reverse Flash, Savitar, all the gang. But sometimes me and my wife and my child will watch and go, ‘Dude, shouldn’t he have caught him by now? It’s like Episode 17.’ It’s normal. It’s perfectly normal to think that. And it’s part of the fun, because it’s 22-episode season. But I think folks are in for a little bit of a fresh surprise. We hope everybody enjoys it,” he said.
The Flash Season 6 premieres Tuesday, October 8, and you can find our video interview with Eric Wallace from Comic-Con below. Read more Flash Season 6 coverage here!
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