When Barry went and messed up the timeline by creating Flashpoint, he set The Flash up for its most dour and self-obsessed season to date. Between wincing about Flashpoint and worrying about Iris’s death and Savitar’s return, Team Flash forgot how to have fun in Season 3, and so did The Flash.
But Grant Gustin, the actor playing Barry Allen, has promised more “fun” for the whole team in Season 4. One clear way The Flash can return to its fun-loving roots is by reintroducing Barry’s previous love interest Patty Spivot.
We first met Patty as a police officer in Season 2 of The Flash, working alongside Barry and Joe West. She eventually became a detective on the Anti-Meta-Human Task Force. Patty has an interest in forensics and an obsession with meta-humans, interests that align with Barry’s and only seem to enhance her chemistry with him. When they finally go on their first date, it’s a breath of fresh air when they finally go on their first date. Barry had been temporarily blinded during an encounter with the Earth-2 meta-human doppelganger of his ex-girlfriend (an entirely different story), so to help keep the ruse going, Barry has Cisco watching remotely and chiming in with advice via an earpiece. It’s a silly — in a good way.
Both Barry and Patty are awkward nerds, and watching them make attempts to flirt make for a breath of fresh air. In Season 2, it’s a welcome break from Barry’s constant pining for Iris.
Sure, Barry and Iris are meant to be together, but their romantic tension felt tired by the end of Season 1. They have little in common aside from being adoptive siblings — which already makes their romantic relationship a little weird.
But with Patty, Barry encounters a like-minded and fun individual who almost never needs saving because Patty is a brilliant badass in her own right. Their relationship is playful, earnest, and a delight to watch.
It’s a shame that, as things start to heat up for the Flash in Season 2 as Zoom arrives on the scene, that’s exactly when Barry pulls away from Patty out of fear that he’s putting her life in danger.
When the tension in their relationship is forced to its breaking point, Barry can either confirm Patty’s correct suspicions that he is, in fact, the Flash, or he can let her leave for CSI school located somewhere that’s not Central City. Does Barry let her leave because he doesn’t care enough or because he cares about her too much to put her in danger?
When the upcoming Season 4 starts, Barry’s will have been trapped in the Speed Force for six months, so we have to wonder who replaced him at his old job. Tom Felton’s Julian Albert won’t return for Season 4, so with the two of them MIA, that leaves a big opening in the forensics department of the Central City Police Department.
Wouldn’t it be cool if Patty Spivot returned to the CCPD, fresh out of a 2-year forensics program, to take Barry’s old job?
It’s highly doubtful considering actress Shantel VanSanten’s prominent role on the Shooter TV series, but we can dream for Patty’s return as we wait for Barry to get out of the Speed Force.
The Flash returns to The CW for Season 4 on Tuesday, October 10 at 8 p.m. Eastern.