Russell Tovey has been cast as DC superhero The Ray in this year's Arrowverse crossover. Tovey will also voice the character in his own animated series that will air on CW Seed, Freedom Fighters: The Ray. The Ray has been touted as the first gay superhero to headline his own series.
It was previously announced that The CW would add a new show to its Arrowverse lineup called Freedom Fighters: The Ray. Developed as an animated series, the show will be streamed on CW Seed, a digital streaming service. CW Seed is already the home of Vixen, another animated series set in the Arrowverse. Like Vixen, Freedom Fighters: The Ray will feature various guest stars such as Arrow's Stephen Amell and The Flash's Grant Gustin. An image of The Ray can also be seen in artwork for the upcoming Arrowverse crossover, "Crisis on Earth-X", which will encompass all four of the live-action shows: Arrow, The Flash, Legends of Tomorrow, and Supergirl.
TVLine reports that English actor and Quantico star Russell Tovey will play Ray Terrill in the Arrowverse crossover and voice the character in the animated series. It had been hinted last year that The Ray would eventually appear in one of the live-action shows, just as Megalyn Echikunwoke's Vixen guest-starred in a season 4 episode of Arrow.
The CW's version of The Ray is described as a reporter who is exposed to a "genetic light bomb" that gives him light-based powers. The Ray is recruited by Uncle Sam and the Freedom Fighters to "fight violence and oppression wherever it exists."
There have been four DC superheroes to carry the name of The Ray. The first was Lanford "Happy" Terrill, who debuted in Smash Comics #14 in 1940. The Ray was originally published by Quality Comics before the company was purchased by DC. He was a member of a group called the Freedom Fighters who fought Nazis on an alternate universe called Earth-X, a world where Germany won World War II. His son, Ray Terrill, developed a similar set of powers and eventually discovered that his father was the Golden Age hero, inspiring him to take up the mantle. Ray Terrill was revealed to be gay during "DC Rebirth".
It appears that the heroes of the Arrowverse are headed for a clash with Earth-X that will somehow involve The Ray and possibly the Freedom Fighters. The crossover is set to feature villains from Earth-X who interrupt Barry and Iris' wedding.
The Arrowverse crossover takes place across two nights on Monday, November 27th and Tuesday, November 28th on The CW. Freedom Fighters: The Ray airs on CW Seed later this year.