For three seasons now CW’s The Flash has shown the titular hero Barry Allen (Grant Gustin) facing off against a number of villains from the DC Comics. One thing was always the same though, the show’s Big Bad, the villain that Barry and his friends at S.T.A.R Labs face off against for the entire season, would inevitably be another speedster. It’s hard to have a show that claims to be about “the fastest man alive” when his enemies can constantly outrun him.
However, during PaleyFest this year, executive producer Andrew Kreisberg revealed that next season The Flash will not feature another speedster villain. While it has been fun seeing Barry race Zoom, the Reverse-Flash, and now Savitar, the self proclaimed God of Speed, it will be interesting to see what Barry and Co. will do when faced with a slower foe. A different kind of villain means a new set of challenges for Team Flash to deal with throughout the season – rather than Barry wondering if he’s fast enough, again.
There are a lot of options for the way next season of The Flash could go. The show could bring back one of the previous villains of the week or a completely new character from the comics. Here are 15 Non-Speedsters Who Could Be the Villain In The Flash Season 4.
15. Gorilla Grodd
The sentient gorilla known as Grodd (David Sobolov) has been featured twice on The Flash now. He was most recently seen this season in the two-part episode, “Attack on Gorilla City”/”Attack on Central City”. Gorilla Grodd was subject to scientific testing and his mistreatment by humans led him to seek revenge (and come in contact with the Flash in the process). Grodd not only possesses the power of mind control, telepathy, and super strength, but is also super intelligent. He has managed to trick Team Flash into doing his bidding more than once, capitalizing on Barry’s sympathetic nature.
Grodd has become a fan favorite, especially for comic readers who never imagined they’d see the giant, talking gorilla on their TVs. Grodd would make a great Big Bad because of his established connection to the show and his history with the team, especially Caitlin (Danielle Panabaker). While it would be a challenge for the VFX team to show Grodd for an entire season rather than a few episodes, there are some creative ways they could get around this. After all, we have seen that Grodd is capable of psychic projection, which could be a way to show him in other forms.
Kilg%re is a villain who appeared in The Flash comics in the 1980s. Not quite human, Kilg%re is an organic, intelligent machine that needs electricity in order to survive. It views the Earth as a perfect place to live due to the number of machines and, like most villains, does not see the point of humans. Kilg%re can control electricity, create bodies with metal, and also take control over any electronic system, from the most basic security measures to satellite feeds. Oh, and it can also only be seen by people traveling at very high speeds, like Barry and Wally (Keiyan Lonsdale).
Having a villain that none of the non-speedster members of Team Flash can see could be difficult. It would, however, be a good way to show Barry and Wally working together to fight an enemy only they can face. It could even serve as another way to bring back Jesse Quick (Violett Beane) and give her more to do.
Plus, a villain who controls technology would mean the team at S.T.A.R Labs wouldn’t be able to just invent a quick fix, but would have to plan out a real way to take on this threat throughout the season. Who wouldn’t want to see Cisco (Carlos Valdes) going all Boy Scout trying to find a way to stop Kilg%re without using technology?
13. Abra Kadabra
Abra Kadabra (David Dastmalchian) first appeared in The Flash comics in 1962 and will make his appearance on the show in season 3. He is a time-traveling magician from the 64th Century, a time that is so advanced that magic has become obsolete. To gain the attention he craves on the stage, Abra travels to the 20th century to woo the people in the past with his advanced technology and commit some crimes in the process. (He really wants those 15 minutes of fame he was promised.)
In his appearance on the show, Abra will not just be a magician, but a figure with key information on Iris’ (Candice Patton) fate at the hands of Savitar. With Barry’s increasing desire to find any way to change the future, this could give the villain the upper hand. If Barry has to make some kind of bargain with the trickster in order to obtain the information he needs, it could help set up Abra as the Big Bad for next season. Especially given that Abra Kadabra has played such a key role in the Flash’s DC Rebirth storyline lately.
12. The Changeling
The Changeling is a Flash villain who, like his name might suggest, can change his physical form. In the comics, there have been a number of different characters to take up the name the Changeling, including some good guys. The first version was a man named Erik Razar, an inmate who was trying to escape from prison when he was struck by a massive amount of electricity (which could easily be connected to the particle accelerator explosion). Somehow, this gave him the power to change into anything he can think up – including animals.
A villain who can change his form could literally be anyone. Imagine a bad guy who is hiding behind the face of Joe West (Jesse L. Martin) or who could disappear in a crowd mid-fight. This type of adversary would not only be fun to watch, but it would also give Team Flash a challenge that could keep them occupied for an entire season.
11. White Lightning
White Lightning is one of the rare female villains from The Flash comics. She appeared as the foe of Bart Allen aka Impulse in the 1990’s comics by Mark Waid and Humberto Ramos. She uses her powers of mind control and telepathy to recruit impressionable boys to her gang. The young men are eager to impress a pretty woman and are willing to do her bidding, including engaging in criminal activity. Because of her powers, White Lightning is a much more formidable foe for Barry to face than an ordinary gangster.
None of the Arrowverse shows have ever featured a female Big Bad and overall have lacked in the number of female villains of the week they have shown. Featuring White Lightning on The Flash season 4 would be a step in the right direction for the shows. A woman mind-controlling half the population of Central City (including maybe some members of Team Flash as well) would provide a unique challenge for the team. It would also be a good opportunity to show off the skills of the lady members of Team Flash as they fight to rescue the guys from Lightning’s grip.
Brainwave is a 1940s comic book villain whose real name is Henry King. As a child, Henry realized he had the power to create realistic illusions as well as the ability to control others. He turned to a secret life of crime, hiding his true nature behind his psychology degree. His immense power gives him the ability to control a number of people at once and to trap them in fantasy state. Upon his death, Henry passes his powers onto his son, Henry King Jr., who struggles with becoming a hero or remaining a villain like his father.
Brainwave would be another interesting villain for Barry and the team to face off against, especially because of his powers of manipulation. The show could even take place inside one of Brainwave’s illusions for a few episodes before revealing the truth. Making viewers question reality alongside the characters would be a compelling story and a different direction for The Flash to go in. (Just look to Legion for a mind-bending superhero show that really works.)
9. Captain Boomerang
Although he originally appeared on the third season of Arrow, George “Digger” Harkness, aka Captain Boomerang (Nick Tarabay), is a villain better known for antagonizing the Scarlet Speedster. In the comics he is an Australian thug who uses a variety of different high-tech boomerangs to fight the Flash. His talents have earned him a spot in the Suicide Squad (as shown on Arrow), the Rogues, the Black Lantern Corps, the Injustice Gang, and the Secret Society of Super Villains. (Apparently evil boomerang-throwing is very in demand in the villain community.)
After his appearance in the Arrow episode, “The Brave and the Bold”, it is confirmed that Captain Boomerang is imprisoned on Lian Yu. To have him reappear as a villain on The Flash, he could escape (maybe even as some kind of result of Flashpoint). Barry has experience fighting this character alongside Oliver, but facing him alone may make him a more formidable foe. Plus, with lots of time imprisoned on a deserted island, Harkness has had plenty of time to think of more deadly boomerangs to create – and to grow an even stronger resentment towards Barry and his friends.
8. Brother Grimm
Not to be confused with the writers of the same name, Brother Grimm is a Flash villain with a complex background. A child of war in an alternate dimension, Brother Grimm escaped the fighting and found his way to Earth. His people wanted him to rule, but under the counsel of Kid Flash, Brother Grimm decided to forge his own path instead. However, when he realizes Kid Flash has not taken his own advice and is only following in the footsteps of his mentor, he grows angry and blames the young speedster for problems of his people. Using his magic and ability to sense the Speed Force, Brother Grimm decides to eliminate all of the Flashes.
Having a villain who can predict the moves the Flash will make while fighting would add another layer to the usual fight scenes we have seen between Barry and Wally and their villains. It would require them to be smarter than their opponent. Plus, with all the time-traveling and multiple Earths introduced in the show, a magical warrior king from another realm would not be that much of a stretch.
David Hersch, aka Cicada, was a not-so-nice guy who killed his wife. But soon after he became wrecked with guilt and tried to kill himself to atone for his actions. However, instead of dying, he was struck by lightning which granted him eternal life as well as the power to drain the lifeforce of others. David becomes obsessed with the Flash, seeing their futures as linked because of the lightning that granted them both their powers. David sets out to kill everyone the Flash has saved, absorbing their energy along the way in an attempt to bring his wife back to life.
Cicada would make a good villain for Barry to face, especially if the team does not understand at first why everyone they’d previously saved are being killed. He has a connection to the Flash that is only in his mind; unlike the other big villains of previous seasons who have been revealed to be someone the team knows and trusts. David’s human story underneath his evil persona adds a layer of complexity to the villain.
6. Mirror Master
Sam Scudder, aka Mirror Master (Grey Damon), was featured in the season three episode of The Flash titled “The New Rogues”, where he was thwarted by Barry Allen and a well-placed hologram. Since his appearance, the actor has hinted that we might see the reflective rogue on the show again before the season ends. It makes sense; Mirror Master has been a rival of the Flash since his introduction in the comics back in the 1950s. He has the ability to enter into the Mirror World through reflective surfaces and create holograms, although in the show he is shown without his signature mirror gun.
As one of the Flash’s classic villains, having Mirror Master in just one episode is not enough. He would be a great antagonist for Barry to face for an entire season. His powers are complex enough to keep the gang guessing (and inventing new gadgets to stop him). There are a lot of fun ways Mirror Master could keep Barry and the gang occupied. The show could also have an entire episode that takes place in a Mirror World version of Central City, where everything is almost the same, but reversed.
5. The Thinker
Clifford DeVoe is a lawyer who realizes that he is smarter than most of the criminals he encounters in court. He starts lending his talents to small-time villains until he works his way up to becoming a mob boss and adopting the name The Thinker. Using his genius-level intellect as his greatest superpower, Clifford creates a Thinking Cap – a metal hat that projects his mental force.
Team Flash is smart. They don’t try to out-punch the bad guys, but out-think them, or they invent a weapon that can help them get the job done. But what if the villain they were facing was even smarter and always two steps ahead? Can’t you see that driving Cisco crazy? So crazy that he has to call Harrison “Harry” Wells (Tom Cavanagh) and beg him to come back from Earth-2?
Amunet Black, aka Blacksmith, is another woman who would make a great villain for season 4 of The Flash. She first appeared in the comics in 2001, running the Network, an underground black market in Central and Keystone City. She is a cunning villain whose powers include the ability to merge metal with flesh and shape it to her will. She is not completely human, but somewhere in between; both organic and inorganic at the same time. Like The Thinker, she is extremely intelligent and plans out her attacks well in advance, taking into consideration not just the Flash, but ways to get rid of his allies as well.
In the comics, Blacksmith comes close to beating the Flash and only fails because of the meddling of her ex-husband, a villain named Goldface. Her powers of persuasion are also not to be underestimated, as she convinces a number of other bad guys to join her cause. A smart female villainess who can turn her body into metal would be a fun character to see Team Flash take on.
3. The Anti-Monitor
The Anti-Monitor is one of comics’ biggest Bads, appearing in the 1985 crossover event “Crisis on Infinite Earths”. He controls the Antimatter Universe, opposite his brother, the Monitor, who watches over the Multiverse. But like any good villain, he wants to destroy the Multiverse and replace it with his own. The Monitor gathers a number of superheroes from different Earths to fight against his brother, leading to a battle that eventually kills both the Flash and Supergirl, and collapses the Multiverse into one coherent universe.
The Flash has hinted at a “crisis” appearing sometime down the line in 2024 with the newspaper headline from the first Harrison Wells’ secret vault. So, while it might be a little too soon in the show’s timeline to introduce the Anti-Monitor just yet, he is coming. (Although with all the time travel on the show, anything is possible.)
The Anti-Monitor would not just be a villain for the Flash to face, but all the members of the Arrowverse. So while we can hope to see him in season 4, it’s more than likely we might have to wait a little longer before the DCTV heroes face such a completely universe-altering threat.
2. Cobalt Blue
This one’s a doozy. Cobalt Blue’s real name is Malcolm Thawne and he is Barry Allen’s evil twin brother. (Really.)
A drunken doctor was unable to save Charlene Thawne’s newborn son, but luckily Nora Allen was at the hospital having twins at the same time. To “fix” his mistake, the doctor gave Charlene one of Nora’s twins and told Nora that her second baby was stillborn. Malcolm grew up a Thawne, in a family of con artists, while Barry Allen went on to become the Flash. When Malcolm found out the truth, he grew resentful of the life he believed should have been his. From his adopted grandmother, Malcolm learned how to control the Thawne family power of the blue flame, which can absorb power, heal, and create objects, and used these powers against his twin.
It might sound a little crazy to introduce Barry’s evil brother to The Flash, but this is also the show with a giant shark and talking gorilla. One of the main themes of The Flash has always been about the importance of family. What better way to cement the idea than showing the dark path Barry could have gone down without people like Henry (John Wesley Shipp), Nora (Michelle Harrison), and Joe in his life. It could provide some really poignant moments, as well as show Barry’s struggle at having to fight his own brother. Plus, playing both Barry and Malcolm would give Grant Gustin a chance to really stretch his acting muscles.
1. The Rogues
As Legends of Tomorrow has show this season, why have one villain when you can have a whole legion of them? The Flash also has his own team of super-criminals, known as The Rogues. Led by Captain Cold (Wentworth Miller), the group contains a number of characters we’ve seen before, including Heat Wave (Dominic Purcell), Golden Glider (Peyton List), Weather Wizard (Liam McIntyre), Mirror Master, Top (Ashley Rickards), and Captain Boomerang. These aren’t the only members of the Rogues, though, as the team has gone through many transformations and leadership changes over the years. They have mostly come together because of their common enemy in the Flash and status as minor criminals.
The Rogues have been some of the best parts of The Flash already, so it only makes sense to bring them back to torment Barry for an entire season. Captain Cold and Heat Wave are favorites fans would love to see back on the show (and back to their more anti-hero roots). Having a group of colorfully-dressed, eccentric villains with wacky powers is about as comic-booky as the show could get, and would be a lot more fun than the sense of impending doom that has clouded much of this season.
Who do you want to see as the villain next season on The Flash? Let us know in the comments.
The Flash airs Tuesdays @ 8 PM on the CW.