How is it that the DCEU version of Barry Allen’s Flash has never thrown a single supersonic punch? In the full Justice League trailer, the Flash’s inexperience is played for laughs, but it also has us legitimately concerned. How can he be such a noob?
His counterpart on The CW learned how to throw a supersonic punch in only six episodes. To date, the most significant things that Ezra Miller’s version of the Flash has done is wreck a bodega while stopping an armed robbery and somehow capture Jai Courtney’s unicorn-obsessed Captain Boomerang off-screen. The latter involved tying up an insane Australian guy with no superpowers, and the former did more harm than good.
In the Justice League trailer, Wonder Woman, the team leader, instructs Batman, Aquaman, Cyberman, and the Flash about how to do battle. “Don’t engage alone,” she says. “We do this together.” Everyone else is ready for a fight, but the Flash? He nervously looks side to side, realizing that he’s a guy that runs really fast fighting alongside some battle-hardened warriors. And they’re up against things called “parademons.”
In a separate conversation with Batman, Barry confesses his inexperience: “It’s really cool you guys seem ready to do battle and stuff, but I’ve never done battle. I’ve just pushed some people and run away.” It’s easy for him to avoid danger with his superspeed, but moving directly towards danger and actually fighting people — or in this case, flying aliens — is really far outside the realm of his expertise.
Barry’s whole vibe in Justice League seems to be about delivering the movie’s comic relief as he relishes in how “cool” everything is to him. When Bruce Wayne throws a batarang at his face and Barry dodges it easily, he reacts with excitement and awe that Bruce is the Batman. Barry’s the kind of nerd that totally geeks out in the midst of any superhero team-up, but he’s also likely to make lot of mistakes. He can stop normies engaging in petty theft, but larger fights can get overwhelming.
Sound like anybody else we know?
Peter Parker’s inexperienced Spider-Man in Captain America: Civil War was full of wonder and awe. He was great in a fight but still made some mistakes, as he went on to do in Spider-Man: Homecoming.
Peter’s entry into the MCU shows us a kid that gets overwhelmed when thrust into the exciting world of superheroes. But he’s totally game for a fight because he knows that he can rely on his powers, along with a totally awesome suit.
Peter’s situation is remarkably similar to the DCEU’s Barry Allen. They’re two novice superheroes that get in over their heads
Fans of the CW’s Flash are used to seeing Grant Gustin’s Barry Allen act like a noble, self-righteous hero willing to go above and beyond to protect the ones he loves. They might be thrown to see Ezra Miller’s version of the hero be so meek and timid. He’s closer to a goofy sidekick than anything else.
In an effort to give a movie full of dour heroes a bit of levity, could Justice League be turning one of its most iconic characters into a walking (er, running) punchline?
We’ll have to wait and see just how sheepish the DCEU Barry Allen is when Justice League hits theaters.
Justice League hits theaters on November 17, 2017.