Much like the comic books that inspired it, The Flash hasn’t been shy when it comes to exploring the multiverse. To date, we’ve seen the Scarlet Speedster and his pals team up with or battle heroes and villains from a variety of parallel Earths, be they do-gooders like Jay Garrick or those as vile as the New Reichsman from Earth-X.
That said, you’ve probably noticed by now that some Earth designates we’ve thus far encountered share a lot in common with what’s been found in the source material, while others are more unique to what’s been created for television. But the focus of today’s discussion, Earth-15, is one that’ll make comic book aficionados smile.
To be honest, I’ll count myself among the lot that’ll dig this reference because I’m actually a fan of legacy superheroes and alternate takes on them. In other words, I like reading about a Dick Grayson that inherits the mantle of Batman from Bruce Wayne, or perhaps about a world where Superman’s rocket landed in Russia instead of Kansas.
Well, on last week’s episode of The Flash, our hero was forced to go up against the tragic Fallout, who was living up to his namesake and just moments away from releasing nuclear energy into Central City. Luckily, Cisco was able to open a breach to Earth-15, thus transporting said energy to an uninhabited Earth at the advice of Harry Wells.
Sure, the reference was subtle, but do keep in mind that, in the the comics, Earth-15 was once home to Batman (Jason Todd), Superman (Zod), Wonder Woman (Donna Troy) and Green Lantern (Kyle Rayner), among others, and was detailed in the pages of Countdown to Final Crisis. Unfortunately for them, though, their world was destroyed by one Superboy-Prime.
For those unfamiliar, this different take on Clark Kent originates from Earth-Prime – our Earth – and pretty much went mad with power, becoming one of DC’s most prominent villains in the years preceding Flashpoint. Having played a vital role in major story arcs such as Infinite Crisis, Sinestro Corps War and the aforementioned Countdown to Final Crisis, we highly recommend reading each of those as a primer if indeed he should ever rear his head in the Arrowverse.
Now, don’t take this as confirmation that such a thing may happen because it’s probably just a polite nod given by the producers, but you never really know. With everyone from Marc Guggenheim to Kevin Smith formulating ideas for next year’s crossover, pretty much any major DC baddie should be regarded as a viable antagonist right now.
The Flash airs on Tuesday nights on The CW.