Time is running out for Barry and the gang on Earth-2. Will they rescue Barry? Will they stop Zoom? Who is the Man in the Iron Mask? And most importantly, will they Escape from Earth-2? Take the jump as we ask questions, provide some answers and explore moments from comic book history that tie-in to this week’s episode of The Flash.

ESCAPE FROM EARTH-2

On Earth-2, the team asks for help from an unexpected source to find Zoom’s lair, while on Earth-1, Caitlin tries to perfect Velocity-9 so Jay can stop the Geomancer.

THE MAN IN THE IRON MASK

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What’s going on with Jay Garrick? Is the person calling himself Jay Garrick, the real Jay Garrick?

MTE1ODA0OTcxMjk3MTc5MTQ5There are a couple of possible answers, and the show runners may be telling us exactly who it is based on the the mask worn by the prisoner in Zoom’s cell on Earth-2; a man literally wearing an Iron Mask. The Man in the Iron Mask is a prisoner who was arrested in France in 1669, and held in a number of jails until his death in 1703. The identity of this prisoner is, to this day, still unknown, and many conspiracy theories have sprung up over the centuries. The biggest, created by writer Alexandre Dumas, postulates that the Man in the Iron mask is Louis XIV’s identical twin brother.

If the creators really are that blatant, are we to believe that the Man in the Iron Mask is the real Jay Garrick, and the Jay Garrick running around as the Flash is the imposter? During the Jay Garrick/Hunter Zolomon reveal a few episodes ago, we learn that Jay Garrick of Earth-1’s mother died in child birth… an only child. If things really are flipped around on Earth-2, could Jay be a twin? Could the Jay Garrick we’ve seen throughout this season be the “evil twin” that we’ve heard and talked so much about? Twins among speedsters are not uncommon – specifically the Tornado Twins, and Wally and Linda’s twins, Jai and Iris.

Or could it simply be a rival… or more precisely Dr. Edward Clariss, aka Rival.

RIVAL

As we’ve discussed at least three different times in this ongoing Flashback series, Rival first appeared in Flash Comics #104 in February 1949. In that issue, we meet, Dr. Edward Clariss, a professor from the same University Jay Garrick attended when he discovered his powers. Clariss believes he’s created a formula that will give him super speed like The Flash, but instead of becoming a hero, Clariss uses “Velocity 9” to become a dark villain – a “Rival” of Jay Garrick. Rival was created by John Broome and Joe Kubert.

With “Jay’s” initial reluctance to use Velocity 6, but more than willing to let Caitlin develop Velocity 9 for him, this repeated connection between Jay’s foe, and the speed formula seems to point toward this reveal. And because he is working with Zoom, Dr. Clarris, it makes sense that he would be yanked back through the portal at the end of the episode to share knowledge about Earth-1, or even share the speed formula with Zoom.

From JSA #16 (Nov. 2000)
From JSA #16 (Nov. 2000)

Could it really be that simple? This is the theory that I’m going with, but there is one other that is worth mentioning.

Throughout the second season, we’ve seen duplicates of characters we’ve seen previously pop up in a variety of different roles. Henry Heweitt’s appearance, and the reveal that Leonard Snart is the Mayor of Central City, so the creators are more than willing to bring back old villains to make our heads spin. If The Man in the Iron Mask is Jay Garrick, and hiding his identity is so important to Zoom and everyone else, could the person going by “Jay” actually be Everyman?

EVERYMAN

hannibal-bates-everyman-003-132906Everyman (aka Hannibal Bates) first appeared in 52 #21 in 2006. The character’s name is a combination of Hannibal Lecter and Norman Bates. Everyman was created by Grant Morrison, Geoff Johns, Greg Rucka, Mark Waid, Keith Giffen, and Joe Bennett.

While Everyman in the television show simply has to touch another person to change his identity, in the comics, Hannibal had to eat living matter from others to gain their powers. This became quite a surprise point in the series, when it was revealed how far down the Hannibal the Cannibal road he had gone, when it was revealed he was eating members of Infinity, Inc. I remember this being quite a talking point during the 39th week of the series. In the end, Steel and the Teen Titans were able to bring him down, showed up for a while in One Year Later, before being killed, buried in the tomb below the Hall of Justice, and returning from the dead during the whole Blackest Night debacle.

Everyman in the television series is just a regular guy, he doesn’t absorb knowledge, or powers, so the Everyman angle, while possible, pales compared to the Rival theory.

What do you think?

Scott Evans

The new editor at Central City Picture News is a welcome addition to Earth-1. Who else is going to call Iris out on her fluff articles about how great The Flash is? There is not a DC Comics equivalent for this character, so the name could be based on anyone related to The Flash series in some way shape or form. Because of the press Tone Bell received when cast as Scott Evans, I think we’re going to see much more from this character in the future.

Radarmen2Commander Karl: Space Marshal of the Galaxy

There are ton of references tossed out this week including the “heavy” reference from Back to the Future, the Cliffs of Insanity from Princess Bride, and of course, Commander Karl…

Since we have to flip things around on Earth-2, Commander Karl is more than likely a nod to Commando Cody: Sky Marshal of the Universe.

The Commando Cody character was first introduced in Republic’s earlier serial Radar Men from the Moon. The odd choice of character name “Commando Cody” was possibly an attempt to make young audiences think they were going to see the adventures of Commander Corry, the hero of the ABC TV and radio series Space Patrol (1950–1955). The equally strange title Sky Marshal of the Universe was probably the studio’s imitation of Corry’s title, “Commander-in-Chief of the Space Patrol,” proclaimed at the beginning of every Space Patrol radio and TV broadcast. There is, however, no concrete evidence this was ever a consideration by anyone at Republic Pictures.

 

IT’S CALLED A SECRET IDENTITY FOR A REASON!

flashunmaskTeam ups are always going to cause problems… especially if you are running around with your mask off.

  • Dr. Harrison Wells (deceased)
  • Eobard Thawne (as Dr. Harrison Wells)
  • Dr. Harry Wells (Earth-2)
  • Dr. Caitlin Snow
  • Dr. Cisco Ramon
  • Detective Joe West
  • Ronnie Raymond (deceased)
  • Dr. Martin Stein
  • Mrs. Clarissa Stein
  • Hartley Rathaway (Pied Piper)
  • Felicity Smoak
  • General Wade Eiling
  • Oliver Queen (Green Arrow)
  • John Diggle
  • Bette Sans Souci (deceased)
  • Dr. Henry Allen (out of prison)
  • Iris West (in another timeline)
  • Iris West-Allen (in the future)
  • Iris West (via spark touch)
  • Iris West (of Earth-2)
  • Leonard Snart (Captain Cold)
  • Detective Eddie Thawne (deceased)
  • Ray Palmer (The Atom)
  • Brie Larvan
  • Laurel Lance (Black Canary)
  • Hannibal Bates (Everyman) (deceased)
  • Gorilla Grodd
  • Lyla Diggle (Harbinger)
  • Jay Garrick (The Flash of Earth-2)
  • Dr. Henry Hewitt
  • Jefferson Jackson (Firestorm)
  • Linda Park
  • Malcolm Merlin/Al Sa-Her/Ra’s al Ghul
  • Vandal Savage
  • Kendra Saunders (Hawkgirl)
  • Cater Hall (Hawkman)
  • Thea Queen (Speedy)
  • Patty Spivot
  • Barry Allen (of Earth-2)
  • Killer Frost (of Earth-2)
  • Jessie Quick (of Earth-2)

And that should be everything! What did I miss? What did you catch? Use the comment section below to share your thoughts on this episode, and until next week – RUN, BARRY! RUN!

Next week, King Shark is back!

FLASHBACK: THE PODCAST

Want to hear Matthew Peterson and I sit down to discuss this episode in detail? If you are a Major Spoilers VIP, look for the Flashback Podcast hitting the VIP site very soon!

The Author

Stephen Schleicher

Stephen Schleicher

Stephen Schleicher began his career writing for the Digital Media Online community of sites, including Digital Producer and Creative Mac covering all aspects of the digital content creation industry. He then moved on to consumer technology, and began the Coolness Roundup podcast. A writing fool, Stephen has freelanced for Sci-Fi Channel's Technology Blog, and Gizmodo. Still longing for the good ol' days, Stephen launched Major Spoilers in July 2006, because he is a glutton for punishment.

You can follow him on Twitter @MajorSpoilers and tell him your darkest secrets...

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3 Comments

  1. February 17, 2016 at 6:09 pm — Reply

    I think the Man in the Iron Mask is Jay Garrick. Here are my two theories.

    1) The Jay Garrick on Earth-One is an impostor. We really don’t know how fast Zoom is. It’s possible he’s so fast he can be two places at once, or perhaps alter time to suit his purposes. Regardless, Zoom could still be a version of Jay Garrick.

    2) The Man in the Iron Mask is an embodiment Jay Garrick’s Speed Force, kind of like the Flash in Kingdom Come. It’s a little more out there, but it does explain why Jay Garrick’s body is breaking down if the Speed Force has been separated somehow.

  2. February 17, 2016 at 8:39 pm — Reply

    Nice nod to Aquaman on next episode’s trailer!

  3. Bob
    February 18, 2016 at 4:02 am — Reply

    Did anyone else notice the man in the mask has black hands? I think its Wally that is kept locked up.The Wally of Earth 2.

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