YMMV / The Flash (2014)

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    General 
  • Actor Shipping: Some have paired Grant Gustin (Barry) with Candice Patton (Iris).
  • Awesome Music: The main theme of this series gives you the imagination of running at super speed, getting fun while doing so and doing badass actions.
  • Base-Breaking Character:
    • Iris West. In Season 1, she was either considered heartwarming for the way she cares for Barry or annoying with her Locked Out of the Loop subplot. Season 2 she was more liked outside of shipping wars, but over season three the "Save Iris" arc made people split on if she was an annoyingly useless Damsel Scrappy or a compelling character that was being poorly used and handled her apparently upcoming death with grace. In the fourth season, the fact that she became a leader in Team Flash was divisive, with some people thinking her role is unjustified thanks to her lack of both a scientific background and general experience, while others praise her new role as making great use of her journalistic instinct and the fact that as the least-suited for field work, manning tactics back at base made sense. She also got attacked for her initial tension with Barry when he returned while others actually agreed with her complaints regarding Barry's post-return attitude.
    • Wally West is rather divisive. His initial angst, rudeness and his extreme Chronic Hero Syndrome made him come off as unsympathetic to some, which was not helped by his controversial Race Lift to a black lad. Once he gains powers and the team stop trying to push him away from heroics, though, fandom seems to have split between if he's a good part of the show for being Fun Personified in his role as Kid Flash and bringing levity to an otherwise dark story, or if he's distracting and unneeded, especially given his increased prominence as Barry's protege and the potential for him to take over the show completely. Season four's poor treatment of him however made many fans cry foul, to the point Legends of Tomorrow had to step in and transplant him over to their show.
  • Complete Monster: See this page for more details.
  • Counterpart Comparison:
    • The depiction of Barry Allen as a geeky young man with relationship issues has reminded many of Peter Parker, more than (at least in older comics) his comics self who was more of a typical square-jawed hero in the Superman mold. Grant Gustin also looks somewhat like Andrew Garfield from The Amazing Spider-Man Series.
    • Caitlin has been compared to Simmons from Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., as both have similar roles.
    • Eddie Thawne's role in the first season follows a very similar trajectory to Tommy Merlyn's in Arrow. Throughout the first seasons of their respective shows, both characters romance the main characters' primary love interests, both are vocally against the methods of their cities' respective heroes, and both end up performing heroic sacrifices in the finales of the first season.
    • Similarly Joe West is one to Quentin Lance from Arrow, both of which serving as The Commissioner Gordon to the hero, and being father to one of the hero's love interests.
    • Season 2's villain Zoom feels very similar to both of the main antagonists of the second season of Arrow. Like Brother Blood, Zoom came from a broken home with a horrifically abusive father, wears a monstrous mask during his evil-doing, and serves as a false friend to the heroes. And like Slade Wilson, Zoom is hopped up on a fantastic and dangerous drug that boosts his strength and murdered Barry's father in front of him like Slade did with Oliver's mother. And just like both villains, Zoom's endgame is to lay waste to the hero's home city with an army of vicious superpowered thugs.
    • The Pied Piper's weapon is changed to sonic blasting gloves, which together with his deafness makes him quite similar to Shriek from Batman Beyond.
    • The Trickster is pretty much the Joker here. Helps that the older one is played by Mark Hamill. For that matter, the character originated in the comics as a Joker Expy, anyway.
    • The show's version of Grodd has many parallels to Koba from the Planet of the Apes reboot films due to both of them being experimental apes who eventually revolts against humans (sans Thawne, for now).
    • Due to how his powers work, That's So Cisco jokes have been gaining steam within the fandom.
  • Crossover Ship:
    • Barricity (Barry and Felicity) is quite a popular one.
    • Laurisco/Black Vibe (Cisco and Laurel) thanks to their brief interaction in "Who Is Harrison Wells?"
    • With the announcement of the March 2016 Supergirl crossover, FlashxSupergirl is gaining steam.
    • Cisco and Felicity is pretty popular too, due to both being the adorkable Techno Wizard geeks and the comic reliefs on their respective teams. It's also viewed as a better ship than Olicity, which is considered very toxic on Arrow. The "Invasion!" crossover showing the two of them getting along well only further bolstered support for this ship.
  • Darkness-Induced Audience Apathy: A common complaint with Seasons 2 and 3 is just how depressing they are, particularly during the second half of each season, generally lacking the levity and Silver Age-era strangeness present in the show's first season.
  • Draco in Leather Pants: Hartley Rathaway. That he was disowned by his parents for being gay and was betrayed by his surrogate father figure Eobard Thawne is enough for some viewers to look the other way at his evil doings. It helps that he started out as a Well-Intentioned Extremist (trying to expose and punish Thawne for deliberately endangering the city) and that he did go through a Heel–Face Turn in the comics (and subsequently became a major figure in the Flash mythos, making it all the more likely he'll do so here as well); he did so with "Flash Back" via Barry messing with the timestream.
  • Ensemble Darkhorse:
    • Captain Cold might have mixed opinions over his Adaptational Villainy, but the character himself is an undisputed fan favorite. He is regarded as an excellent nemesis to Barry, being a Magnificent Bastard, with his episodes being among the best. He carries with him a degree of sophistication and finesse to his villainy, with his lines being very theatrical and delivered brilliantly by Wentworth Miller. Considering his popularity, it's no wonder he ended up as a main character on Legends of Tomorrow.
    • Linda Park has become one before she even appeared, simply because it was announced she was being played by Malese Jow. Technically she's The Other Darrin because Linda has had a brief cameo played by another actress, but still. She ended up proving popular enough some fans were hoping she'd avoid being a throw-away temporary love interest, leading to excitement when it was announced she'd return in Season 2, and excitement when Jow expressed interest in returning for the third. Even more so when she was revealed to be a metahuman on Earth-2, leaving some fans hoping the original gets powers as well.
    • Gorilla Grodd. His first appearance was one of the best scenes in the series up to that point. The buildup to a full appearance by Grodd has been driving the fandom absolutely crazy.
    • Mark Mardon's Weather Wizard, proved to be one of the most popular minor Rogues. He was a Magnificent Bastard in his own right and came very close to victory.
    • Likewise, the Trickster. Mark Hamill reprises the role after playing it twice before and completely steals the show with him channeling the Joker persona.
    • Add Pied Piper to the list of villains with a large following before they even appeared on the show. Being played by Andy Mientus helps, as many of his fans from Les Misérables, Spring Awakening, and Smash are willing to check out The Flash just to get more of Mientus.
    • Emily Kinney's performance as Brie Larvan the Bug-Eyed Bandit, and her unhealthy obsession with bee themes was very well received on both Flash and Arrow.
  • Fandom Rivalry:
    • With Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. — the latest front in the DC vs. Marvel war. Especially since both shows air on the same night in consecutive time slots. Daredevil also joined the fray, but it's mostly the Arrow fanbase that picks with them.
    • With the DC Extended Universe because of differences in tone. Fans were quick to point out the pilot was more lighthearted compared to the Darker and Edgier DC movies. Comics writer Mark Waid praised the creators of The Flash for "remembering he ENJOYS HIS WORK," in contrast with the movies' Superman. This got worse when it was announced that a different actor would play the Flash in the movies, only two weeks after the TV series started.
  • Fandom-Specific Plot: Many fan videos are built on the premise of Eobard Thawne/Reverse-Flash battling Zoom.
  • Fanon:
    • Due to Grant Gustin's previous role on Glee, many have presumed that Sebastian Smythe is one of the many alternate Barrys in The Multiverse.
    • A lot of fans like the idea of Cisco and/or Julian being bisexual.
  • Genius Bonus: While the show has a tendency to Hand Wave many of the science fiction elements, the science explanations that they do give are typically accurate, with the correct usage of scientific terms. Those with a background in science are able to appreciate the research that the writers have done.
  • Harsher in Hindsight:
    • Everything about Thawne's relationship with the team becomes this once we find out he's just using Barry as a means of regaining his own powers. It gets worse when we find out the real Harrison Wells died ages ago, Thawne killed him and took his place.
    • In the pilot, Oliver gives an unsure Barry a Rousing Speech, telling his friend that Barry can inspire people in a way Oliver never could. All throughout Arrow's third season, Ra's Al-Ghul orchestrates a city-wide smear campaign against the Arrow to force Oliver to become his successor in the League of Assassins. By "The Fallen", Ra's even had Ollie in his clutches and tried to snuff out any signs of empathy or humanity within him, making him renounce his old life and take up the title "Al Sah-him," the heir to the Demon. Thankfully, it didn't stick and Season 4 sees Oliver taking the steps to become a symbol of hope for Star City in his civilian and vigilante personas.
  • He's Just Hiding!:
    • Plastique/Bette, due to Never Found the Body (albeit, given what happened to it, of course they didn't), and while we see their death, being a metahuman, coming back from something which should be fatal isn't that much of a stretch. There's also the character's noted history with the Suicide Squad (see below on that) leading to some thinking that they might turn up alive later.
    • General Eiling, last seen dragged away by Grodd after just a couple appearances despite being set up as the show's equivalent to Amanda Waller. It helps that Grodd would likely want to do far more than just kill him. Confirmed, as of "Grodd Lives".
    • No one actually believes that Eobard Thawne is truly gone. Not only are there some loose threads about his character (how he got his powers, why he hates Barry, and how he discovered his identity), but he's just too iconic to truly be gone. It also helps that he returned in Season 2 (though that particular Eobard, due to the Timey-Wimey Ball, hailed from a point in history prior to the events of Season 1). Confirmed as of Season 3; due to the events of "Flashpoint", Thawne was able to subvert his fate at the end of Season 1.
    • Eddie could return since his body was swept into the timestream.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight:
    • Right around the time the pilot leaked online, a video on the Nerdist website claimed to have obtained a clip... then pulled a Bait-and-Switch by showing a clip of the 1990 Flash fighting the Trickster, joking they were impressed the show was able to get Mark Hamill since he was likely really busy with the new Star Wars movie. A few weeks later, they revealed they really did get Hamill back to play the Trickster.
    • Oliver Queen, the Trope Namer for The Cape, advises Barry to become one.
    • "The Flash is Born" had a flashback with a kid Barry practicing boxing with Joe; the Gotham episode that aired the day before ("Harvey Dent") had a similar scene with kid Bruce and Alfred.
    • The "Did Flash run backwards twice?" meme becomes this in "Going Rogue" when Barry does try to run backwards on the treadmill and is promptly thrown into the wall.
    • In the first Flash series, Barry Allen gets Ship Tease with Tina McGee, one of Wally West's love interests (at the time). In this series, starting with "Crazy for You", Barry does it "again," when he starts going out with Linda Park, Wally's wife.
    • In Glee, Grant Gustin's character has a knack of throwing red slushies really fast. Speaking of Gustin, in CSI: Miami he appeared in an episode called "Terminal Velocity". Additionally, he played twins in that episode, and Barry interacted with his doppelganger from Earth-2.
    • In the Justice League Unlimited cartoon, Lex Luthor, voiced by Clancy Brown, ultimately ended up killing Gorilla Grodd, whose last words were that he'd have his revenge. Here we have Clancy Brown playing General Eiling, who first experiments on Grodd and is later taken to the now very powered and very intelligent (and also very angry) Grodd by Reverse-Flash, thus technically giving Grodd a chance at revenge in two ways.
    • Danielle Panabaker's stint in Sky High (2005), namely;
      • Her character decided to date a pyrokinetic guy to make The Hero of said film (whom her character is in love with) jealous. And when her character finally ends up with The Hero, the pyrokinetic guy ends up with a female character with ice-based powers. Here, her character is in a relationship with Firestorm and her character is Killer Frost.
      • One of her enemies in that film has Super Speed. Here she's an ally of the Flash.
      • Her Sky High character is a heroic Captain Ersatz of a well known female DC villain, whereas here she's playing an actual DC villain, but is also portrayed heroically. For now.
      • The fact that the aforementioned pyrokinetic guy having almost the exact same build as Ronnie and the exact same hairstyle as Cisco.
    • Mark Mardon, the Weather Wizard, is played by Liam McIntyre. McIntyre played the titular Spartacus whose Red Baron is "The Bringer of Rain" (though it may be intentional).
    • James Jesse (Mark Hamill) references Breaking Bad in "Tricksters". In a script reading for The Empire Strikes Back, Luke Skywalker (originated by Hamill himself) was played by Aaron Paul.
      • In the same episode, James Jesse has a throwaway line about how when he was in his prime, "A day without casualties was like The Cubs winning the Pennant. It just never happened." Flash forward to 2016, and the Cubs win the World Series. You were saying, Trickster?
    • In The Mask of Zorro, Matt Letscher plays Harrison Love, a Historical-Domain Character who was given Historical Villain Upgrade. Here, he plays a character who came from the future who killed and replaced a character from the past also named Harrison and deliberately portrayed him much amoral than what the person was supposed to be. Additionally, Zorro marked him twice; once with "Z" and the last one with "M." Letscher's character here is Eobard Thawne aka Professor Zoom.
    • Back when she was still on The Walking Dead, Emily Kinney's (Brie Larvan/The Bug-Eyed Bandit) character briefly dates a character played by Kyle Gallner, the actor who played Smallville's version of The Flash.
    • Katie Cassidy's (Laurel Lance/Black Canary) real life father, David Cassidy, played the Mirror Master in the 90s Flash series.
    • Back when his true identity is still a secret, some fans have speculated Wells to be Vandal Savage. They were eventually disproven (of course) but Savage was later billed to be the main villain of Legends of Tomorrow.
    • Speaking of which, Tom Cavanagh's stint as the titular Ed becomes a lot funnier if you re-watch it after watching this show. Specifically;
      • The fact that the name "Ed" can basically pass as a shortened version of "Eobard."
      • It was shown in the year 2000, the same year Eobard Thawne killed and replaced him.
      • The title character lives in Stuckeyville. Eobard Thawne is Trapped in the Past.
      • An episode in its second season, ironically and prophetically titled "Nice Guys Finish Last," has him helping a man named Barry and repeatedly encourages him by saying things like, "That guy is playin' you Barry, that guy is playing you!"
      • One of his first cases as Stuckeyville's "pro lane lawyer" is against a young man named Howard Pissle running around exposing the secrets behind the tricks of a locally famous magician. This exchange takes place when he has the kid on the stand in response to him questioning his integrity:
      Pissle: "No, sir, I do not think there is anything wrong with what I'm doing."
      Ed: "Nothing at all?"
      Pissle: "Nothing at all."
      Ed: "I see. Then why in the world do you wear a mask?"
      • In retrospect, Cisco is essentially a more endearing, less comically annoying version of Ed's second-in-command at his bowling alley, Phil Stubbs.
    • In the Season One finale, Dr. Stein is revealed to be an ordained rabbi. Victor Garber's first big movie role was Jesus in Godspell.
    • In the pilot, Oliver Queen advises Barry that he could be better than the Arrow. An oddly prophetic line, in light of the first season of The Flash being much better received by both fans and critics than the third season of Arrow which it aired alongside.
    • Hartley Rathaway/Pied Piper is a hard-of-hearing, gay, sarcastic smartass played by Andy Mientus, who went on to play Hanschen Rilow (same initials, too...), a sarcastic smartass in a relationship with another boy, in the American Sign Language revival of Spring Awakening.
    • A couple of years earlier, Wentworth Miller teams up with his character's sister to take on a man who possesses near superhuman speed and known to Flash Step every attack. Flash forward to The Flash series and Captain Cold asks for his sister's help in taking on The Flash.
  • Ho Yay:
    • Eddie's reaction to the Flash getting beat up by Captain Cold and Heatwave definitely seemed to be more than cop instinct.
    • Not to mention that Barry got flowers for Eddie then he wound up at the hospital.
    • Eddie enthusiastically hugs Barry after he's told that Barry is suffering some mental conditions that made him so forward from Iris (and caused Eddie to punch Barry).
    • In "The Trap", Eddie pulls Barry aside and shows him an engagement ring. It's meant to be for Iris, but out of context it looks like Eddie proposing to Barry.
    • In "Grodd Lives," Eobard taunts Eddie with the knowledge that Iris and Barry end up together. Amusingly, the way he phrases it is "Barry marries Iris...and not you."
    • Grant and Rick have certainly been fueling things.
    • The relationship between Hartley Rathaway and Eobard Thawne comes off as less paternal and more as a romantic relationship, making the present day Hartley Rathaway/Pied Piper come off a spurned lover towards Thawne. The fact that Hartley is openly gay certainly adds fuel to this...
    • The nature of Firestorm's powers can lead to this and is lampshaded numerous times In-Universe. When Ronnie and Prof. Stein were still learning that they're connected after being separated from each other after over a year of an unwanted Fusion Dance, the latter stated that "he's still inside Ronald" causing Cisco and Barry to laugh. During Ronnie and Caitlin's wedding, Stein volunteers to do the rights as he's a Rabbi. When Ronnie questions his legitimacy, Stein says "Let's not argue on our Wedding Day."
    • Meta, from the bloopers:
      Grant Gustin: (confronting the Pied Piper, forgets his line) Your eyes are beautiful. (releases Andy and pushes him away slightly) But we're not gonna kiss!
      Andy Mientus: (offscreen) Please?
  • Internet Backdraft: After three seasons, many fans are not pleased with Barry's stagnant Character Development as he keeps making the same mistakes instead of developing into a wise and mature hero who can lead his team of friends.
  • Iron Woobie:
    • Henry Allen was wrongfully sentenced to life in prison for wife's death, separating him from his son. He takes it all in stride and is happy to just remain in prison while Barry lives his life. When he finally does come back to Barry's life in Season 2, it's just in time for Zoom for snatch him away and kill him right in front of Barry.
    • Barry take's his father's (alleged) murder of his mother and uses it to motivate him to become a forensic scientist in pursuit of justice, largely because he wants to free his father. His response to getting superpowers is not to angst, but to genuinely appreciate life all the more. Despite his own internal insecurities, he strives to be a genuinely upbeat and kind-hearted young man.
  • It's the Same, Now It Sucks!:
    • Being a Spiritual Successor of the divisive Smallville, several elements that some feel are too similar have came under fire, such as Red Kryptonite and Bivolo's rage-inducing ability.
    • There's also some fans who feel the show follows the formula of Arrow too much:
      • For Season 1, there's the Fish out of Temporal Water-style origin, the Power Trio format for the hero, the love interest who helps the hero without knowing that their secret identity is a close friend in love with them, a love rival who they get along with but shares the name with a comic-book villain and, in both cases, serves as a Red Herring, a mysterious older figure who's got the same skills as the hero only better and is responsible for the death of their parent, and the revelation of their identity in the Christmas mid-season finale and how they had a hand in creating the hero to begin with, among other similarities. This has led to the show being a bit predictable for some.
      • This continues in Season 2. Already criticized because its big bad is something of a copycat of the previous one, but after that, it awkwardly morphs into a repeat of Arrow's second season, with the villain, who's stronger than the hero thanks to ingesting a drug that's warped his mind and made him stronger, knowing the hero's secret identity from the beginning, defeats them every time they fight, seemingly beats them for good towards the end, and then takes over the hero's town with an army of superhumans loyal to him. Nearing the end, the villain kills the hero's remaining parent which thoroughly breaks the hero. Meanwhile, a young, somewhat reckless man is introduced who's connected to the hero's family, who is, in the comics, the hero's sidekick and a founding Teen Titan and after being saved by them, tries to help them.
      • Season 3 is guilty of this as well. The Big Bad is a mysterious, dreaded overwhelmingly powerful being of legend, who is only heard of through stories and doesn't officially become the main threat until halfway through. The hero comes under fire from others for questionable choices and big mistakes and starts going through the most grief he has ever experienced. A fair portion of the season is dedicated to trying to save the life of an important female in the hero's life, which is ultimately connected to the villain wanting to forcibly make the hero turn into said villain through way of this tragedy. Before the season ends the hero departs the team, with his teammates forced to protect the city without him.
      • Even Season 4 is getting this with the reveal that the Big Bad is the Thinker, the first non-speedster to get this role, following Arrow's corresponding season which had Damien Darhk who was a sorcerer, a sharp departure from Arrow's previous antagonists. Much like Darhk he's showed off straight away in the first episode with no guesses to what he's like under a mask, which extends to the heroes knowing his real name and meeting him face-to-face. The hero returns from his leave of absence having changed greatly. Then not long afterwards, the hero's young sidekick leaves the team. The Hero also tries to get married this season, with complications. DeVoe further increases similarities to Darhk by showing he's a Visionary Villain and has a wife who is revealed to not only be aware of her husband's activities, but is an accomplice in his Evil Plan. Then there's repeated complaints from the fandom that one character was stealing all the attention at the expense of the rest of the cast, for Arrow it's Felicity while for The Flash it's Ralph Dibny. Finally, both Darhk and DeVoe's Evil Plan is revealed to be a biblical reference, with Darhk having Genesis that referenced the flood that wiped out the Earth, while DeVoe's enlightenment references God creating the Earth to begin with where he says the phrase "let there be enlightenment."
    • Viewers are starting to get REALLY sick of all the Big Bads being speedsters, with even Doctor Alchemy ending up nothing more than a brainwashed pawn of the super-fast Savitar. He's essentially a more powerful Zoom, who himself is basically an eviler and more powerful Reverse-Flash. The rest of Barry's non-speedster enemies have a much smaller presence due to being treated as weekly adversaries, disappearing for long stretches of time, and/or jumping ship to other series.
  • Jerkass Woobie: Harrison Wells of Earth-2, a.k.a. Harry Wells, comes off as arrogant, rude and lacking in empathy since his entrance in Season 2. However, Zoom has kidnapped his daughter and the Adult Fear and Heroic B.S.O.D. have worsened his social skills. His wife died when his daughter was very young, which made him fear losing people he cares about and be rude to avoid that feeling. He starts getting fond of Team Flash, but Zoom forces him to steal Barry's speed in exchange of Jesse's life. After Zoom is defeated it seems everything will be okay, but his lack of social skills has made him insufferable to a superheroic team he has created in Earth-2. Not even his daughter (who belongs to that team) wants anything to do with him.
  • Launcher of a Thousand Ships:
    • Anyone noticed how many times Caitlin's name was listed on every Shipping trope in this page?. The list includes: Ronnie, Barry, Cisco, Hunter Zolomon, Julian Albert, Savitar, Captain Cold.
    • Barry might qualify as well: In two seasons he has had Iris, Felicity, Linda and Patty as canonical love interests but he also has been shipped with Caitlin, Oliver, Eddie, Captain Cold and Kara.
    • Hartley Rathaway qualifies. Despite only being in three episodes, he is frequently shipped with Wells, Cisco, Barry, Axel Walker, Leonard Snart, Mick Rory, Mark Mardon, and Oliver Queen.
  • Memetic Loser: The Protagonist himself, Barry Allen/The Flash, has gained this status in the fandom and jokingly referred to as "Jobber Flash" due to how he's far too reliant on his team, who do pep-talks or talk him through every step of the way. He became stronger on Season 4, but even then he is mocked because he was put in the floor by DeVoe.
  • Memetic Mutation:
    • "Dammit, Barry!" — A Phrase-Catcher used by people when calling out Barry for catching the Idiot Ball, which happens too often.
    • A popular trend on Reddit is to post this paparazzi photo of Grant Gustin with only the caption "Today" whenever a new episode is to premiere that day.
    • Many fans have also started blaming some controversial changes in other franchises (and even some real-life events that are unpopular with people in general) on Barry creating Flashpoint and beyond, complete with Thawne calling him out: "What have you done, Barry?!"
    • Trying to make sense of time remnants has become a meme itself, due to the severe lack of explanation provided by the show.
  • More Popular Spinoff: In its first season alone, this show surpassed Arrow for being the most watched CW show, it's premiere earning the highest ratings in the history of the network. Arrow took some time to settle into its groove, and was often criticized for being excessively dark and drama-filled, not helped because of its Seasonal Rot then. The Flash received acclaim almost immediately for having a better balance between humor and drama, leading many critics and casual viewers to consider it to be the better show, even receiving a rare 100% approval rating on Rotten Tomatoes for the second and fourth seasons, being listed in Rolling Stones as the 23rd greatest Sci-Fi show of all time. Alongside fellow 2014/2015 critically acclaimed premiers Jane the Virgin and iZombie, it has also formed a triquetra many people believe has led to a renaissance for the CW, finally reaching former The WB (ie. Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Charmed, Gilmore Girls, 7th Heaven and Smallville) quality-type programming, and is still viewed as The CW's flagship series.
  • Narm: In general, any time in the series when characters express doubt about whether or not "Barry could run that fast." In the early episodes of the show it is somewhat understandable, but in only the 15th episode of the first season Barry runs back in time, implying his speed has exceeded that of light itself. From then on, we often hear of "Mach-2" or "Mach-3" as being some pie-in-the-sky speeds, which again make no sense when Barry has already traveled faster than light.
  • Narm Charm: The romantic dialogue between Barry and Iris can reach almost Lucas levels of awkwardness, and yet the two remain as one of the more popular pairings currently on television due to the ability and chemistry that Grant and Candice have in selling the relationship.
    • In general all of the narmier moments on the show just help to sell the show as what it is, an escapist fantasy comic book adaption, when compared to the likes of its dark and dreary rooted in reality big brother Arrow, and fans wouldn't have it any other way.
  • Never Live It Down: Barry Allen is best remembered as someone who ruins the timeline with time travel, even if he did not travel in time that much and has deemed it a Dangerous Forbidden Technique.
  • Newer Than They Think:
    • While the character of Killer Frost initially debuted back in 1978, the Caitlin Snow incarnation of the character actually only first appeared in the comics in September 2013, i.e. only about 13 months before this series premiered and in fact only seven months before her first appearance in the Arrowverse in the episode of Arrow "The Man Under The Hood".
    • People may be surprised to notice that earlier depictions of the Flash like in the 1990 series, Smallville or the DCAU don't generate lightning when he runs. This only started in the mid-1990s when writer Mark Waid introduced the Speed Force concept, which the show uses heavily as opposed to the others.
    • Barry's tragic backstory with his mother and father and Thawne, who killed/framed them only dates back to 2009 with Geoff Johns' The Flash: Rebirth, which reintroduced Barry after over two and a half decades of being dead. Not only is this show using it, the DCEU appears to be as well.
  • One True Threesome: Barry/Iris/Eddie gathered a noticeable following that is prominent even today, after Eddie's death in Season One. The pairing was supported by the fact that it was obvious that Iris was in love with both Eddie and Barry (though oblivious, and later in denial with the latter), while Barry and Eddie, despite the slight jealousy over Iris (Barry for Eddie actually being with Iris, while Eddie for Iris being much closer to Barry even though she was dating him), grew to become close friends and shared a lot of Ho Yay together.
  • Rescued from the Scrappy Heap: Vibe/Cisco Ramon provides a cross-media example. In the comics he was seen as a lame, faddish and ethnically stereotypical character, being a breakdancing Puerto Rican superhero with Totally Radical lingo. In the TV series, Cisco is one of its most beloved characters, though the difference in popularity may be because he was changed radically from the comic book version.
  • Ron the Death Eater:
    • Some fans thought Eddie Thawne, a heroic cop who sacrificed himself to save his friends, would turn out to be the true identity of Savitar. Others hold out hope he'll come back as Cobalt Blue, the supervillain identity of his loose comics counterpart Malcolm. It's an odd case in that viewers hardly dislike Eddie, but wish more could have been done with his character.
    • For a portion of the fanbase, but especially people that ship Barry with other women, Iris West gets a lot of this, being accused of being manipulative, abusive, and generally toxic, 'forcing herself' into the team despite not being a scientist, as well as accusations of her being useless and generally horrible. How much of this is down to Iris' race is debatable, but generally she gets a very unfair amount of hate from a Vocal Minority of the fanbase.
  • Ship Mates: Snowbarry shippers happen to get along rather well with Olicity shippers, in fact the two ships are often shipped by the same people. Many of these shippers were shipping Snowbarry before the show even started, in large part because it was perceived their dynamic would mirror Olicity (the female friend and Mission Control with the male lead).
  • Ships That Pass in the Night:
    • When Linda Park became a recurring character on Season 1, she was paired with Wally even if he didn't appear at that point. Wally's arrival to the series on Season 2 made bigger the shipping hope although they never met. Of course, the two were Happily Marriednote  in the original comics. In the series, Linda was put in a Long Bus Trip and Wally transferred to the Legends, which diminishes the possibility of this pairing.
    • Many fans of the original Flash series pair Henry Allen and Dr. Tina McGee since their actors worked on that series as well. After Henry Allen's passing, fans inevitably started shipping Tina McGee with the real Jay Garrick instead (Jay is Henry's Alternate Self on Earth-3), for the very same reasons.
  • Supercouple: Barry and Iris, quite possibly for the Arrowverse in general. Case in point, the comic-style promo poster for the massive crossover event Crisis on Earth-X feature the two of them, dressed for their wedding, front and center. Though the ship (and Iris' character) has a sizeable Hatedom, compared to the big ships of the other shows, not to mention the other ships in this show, the Hatedom is pretty much a Vocal Minority.
  • They Changed It, Now It Sucks:
    • The changes made to the Flash's costume from the comics have received some criticisms — namely that the Chest Insignia lacks the white centerpiece and that the character nicknamed the Scarlet Speedster isn't actually wearing his distinctive scarlet/bright red, but rather a darker maroon or burgundy. However, the final shot in the pilot reveals that in the future, the Flash will have a costume that has these alterations.
    • The portrayal of Captain Cold as being more of a straight villain has received some criticism from those who prefer his Anti-Villain portrayal from the comics canon. However, it should be noted that Cold mainly became an Anti-Villain when Wally West was the Flash, not while fighting Barry. Conversely, when Cold does go through a Heel–Face Turn in Legends of Tomorrow, some fans felt it was undeserved given the extent of Snart's villainy previously (particularly him stabbing Barry in the back when the two have a brief truce).
    • As to be expected, there was some people who were befuddled by the show giving a Race Lift to the West Family, since Wally West has historically appeared as a red-headed Caucasian. The fact this lead to the New 52 giving Wally a Race Lift probably helps with that despite the other Wests being white in the comics. Eventually, Andrew Kriesberg revealed that, yes, the show caused the comics to do the Race Lift.
    • Pied Piper's Weapon of Choice being sonic frequency-producing gloves rather than a pipe with sonics and hypnotic technology. It raises the question as to why he'd go by the name "Pied Piper," if he doesn't even use a pipe. There's also his lack of any Socialist leanings, which were a big part of his character in the comics but that might just be due to only appearing twice so far. The removal of his status as the Rogues' Token Good Teammate by making him just as villainous as the rest of them is also a point of contention with the character's fandom.
    • Doctor Light being a Composite Character between the villainous Arthur Light (a particularly detestable villain) and the heroic Kimiyo Hoshi (one of the few Asian female heroes who aren't stoic martial artists), resulting in a villainous female Doctor Light (albeit a sympathetic one), while when this was done in the New 52, it resulted in a sympathetic heroic male character. More so because she's also a Composite Character of Linda Park, being her Earth-2 counterpart, which is a particularly odd choice that feels like they only did so because Hoshi and Park were both Asian women.
  • They Wasted a Perfectly Good Character:
    • Sometimes the villains are killed off or forgotten, to the dismay of fans/viewers who wanted more of them. Season One started with that, then Team Flash started locking them up, which came back at them with a vengeance. Then Season Two started with that again.
    • A large contingent has been calling this about the show's use of Wally. Season 2 doesn't give him any powers and Season 3 seeks to develop him more until The Speed Force discourages Barry from assigning Wally to help against Savitar, which made his development stagnant. In Season 4 Wally is not allowed to take Barry's tenure as The Flash; he only tries to impersonate him for a brief time and after Barry's releasing Wally gets demoted again as a sidekick. In the following episodes, Wally is barely used and leaves the team after his amicable break-up with Jesse. He returns sometime later, but he gets sidelined again on Crisis on Earth-X and leaves. Finally, his transference to Legends of Tomorrow was confirmed, which only created a wide divide in fan opinion and premature accusations of wasting characters for that show.
    • The focus on S.T.A.R. Labs and Team Flash and the forced balance between having Barry as the protagonist and having a team has caused everyone's development to mostly be lacklustre: Cisco and Caitlin are almost always nerfed or taken out of the equation before the fight starts and their personal lives have been largely ignored, while Wally had to be transferred to the Legends so he could have his development. This even extends to characters like Barry and Iris, whose individual jobs and lives have been sorely neglected in favour of having their lives revolve around Team Flash as well. The only characters who seem to be involved in the plot with jobs and personal lives are Joe and Cecile - and their stories largely take place offscreen. Regardless of the cause, many fans agree that the show's current formula is wasting the potential of their characters.
  • The Woobie: Caitlin. She lost her husband Ronnie twice. She tries to fill that hole with with the Flash of Earth Two, but he turns out to be completely evil and even puts her in PTSD. And now thanks to Barry's Cosmic Retcon she's slowly turning into Killer Frost. The poor woman is so freaked out that she doesn't tell any of her teammates about it for several episodes. And then Cisco spreads the news against Caitlin's wishes in "Shade," causing the situation to spiral further.

    Season One 
  • Accidental Innuendo: "The Trap" reveals that Thawne has spy cameras in everyone's homes, including one in Eddie and Iris' bedroom... (Eddie mentioned he and Iris used to be sexually active)
  • Alternative Character Interpretation:
    • Does Thawne really care for Cisco, Caitlin and Barry? Or is he just faking it all to move them like pawns? In "Out of Time", Thawne himself admits that it's some of both. At least that's how he feels about Cisco and Caitlin. His feelings for Barry are a little more...complicated.
    • When Captain Cold spared the Flash's life in "Going Rogue", was he really tricked by Cisco's fake cold gun? Did he suspect that Cisco was bluffing but felt like he couldn't take the risk? Or did he want the Flash to live so he would continue to have a Worthy Opponent? Continued when he doesn't kill a helpless Barry again in "Rogue Air" where he claims it's just so Barry will owe him a favor, but also could come off as realizing his crime spree is no fun without someone who might be able to beat him.
    • In respect to talking to (and flirting with) Iris as the Flash, is Barry taking the step he never took and is becoming more romantic and confident? Or is he a pathetic creep who's pining after a woman who already has a boyfriend and encouraging (instead of discouraging) Iris to continue writing about him?
    • Speaking of Iris, what about her dad and Barry's foster dad, Joe West? The show makes him out to be The Paragon but with keeping his daughter out of the loop and constantly putting down Eddie, you can't help but think he is a manipulative jerk who comes off as more of a Designated Hero.
    • Was Iris trying to pull a Relationship Sabotage by telling Linda about his feelings for her, or was she genuinely trying to give Linda advice?
  • Anti-Climax Boss: Deliberately invoked twice.
    • Prism/Roy G. Bivolo: After Barry was cured from the Hate Plague he caused, the Flash and the Arrow handle him entirely off-screen.
    • Weather Wizard/Mark Mardon: After accidentally traveling back in time roughly a day whilst trying to stop a tsunami Mardon was sending to Central City, Barry uses his knowledge of what was going to happen to apprehend him before Mardon could do anything he did in the first timeline.
  • Arc Fatigue: Everyone's insistence on keeping Iris Locked Out of the Loop gets pretty tiresome as Barry becomes more and more casual about his secret, especially in light of the increasing number of people in the know. Especially considering she is literally the only main character to not know at this point, barring the Cosmic Retcon. "All Star Team-Up" and "Grodd Lives" lampshade both how ludicrous it is that Iris is the only one to not know the secret, and their weak justifications for lying to her.
  • Ass Pull: Boy, Oliver, it sure is convenient that Ray, who knows next to nothing about how Barry's powers work and absolutely nothing about the Speed Force, was able to make power-be-gone arrows to cancel out Reverse-Flash's speed, so you could contribute and actually do the most damage in the fight against Reverse-Flash. It would've been a lot harder for you guys otherwise.
  • Author's Saving Throw:
    • Iris West is changed from a journalist to a criminal psychologist, likely to avoid Lois Lane comparisons. However, in the second episode, we learn she's taking a journalism class for an elective, and she's soon doing articles about the Flash, ultimately being offered a job as a reporter.
    • In "Rogue Time" after learning Barry's Secret Identity, Captain Cold makes a deal with Flash. He gets to be a supervillain like he wanted, and doesn't tell Barry's secret, but he won't kill anyone anymore.
    • For those who think Barry is depicted as too young compared to the comics (see Older Than They Think below), "Tricksters" reveals the in-universe justification for this, as Thawne completed the Particle Accelerator — and caused Barry to become the Flash — at least 7 years earlier (2013) than the real Wells did in his original timeline (2020).
    • After Iris finally finds out the big secret, she unloads on Barry and Joe with everything the fans had been saying for months about how silly and counter-intuitive their insistence on keeping her in the dark had gotten, for which we're clearly supposed to be on her side.
    • After fans had debated on the legal and moral ramifications of the Pipeline, "Rogue Air" has Joe claim he's not been comfortable with it since the beginning even though he never voiced any complaints before, and when the DA hears of it (as a "hypothetical" situation, mind), she reacts with realistic concern and disgust at the idea.
  • Base-Breaking Character:
    • Cisco. Either an Adorkable nerd who loves his job and good comic relief, or someone not annoying enough to be The Scrappy, but still annoying enough to let the show down. This largely went away as the series went on and he was given more things to do beyond being the comic relief.
    • Caitlin, largely due to her rather quick rush to abandon Ronnie, even wishing he was dead, after finding out he became Firestorm, which irked many of the fans, while others consider her a much better female lead than Iris and should replace her in the role, similar to Tina McGee in the 90s series or Felicity in Arrow.
    • Pied Piper. Either he's a badass Chessmaster who should replace Cisco as the Flash's gadget guy (his common role in the comics), or an annoying little Smug Snake; it largely comes down to if you think he's as smart as he thinks he is. There's also the numerous changes from his comic book self which has irked some people.
    • Captain Cold. There's a split on if he's really a competent Chessmaster or everyone else just becomes an idiot around him while he gets off scot-free, then gets rewarded for it by becoming a hero in the spin-off.
  • Broken Base:
    • Borders on Ship-to-Ship Combat, but the Ship Tease between Barry and Caitlin has both fans and detractors, some adoring the idea of them as a couple and finding their moments together far more enjoyable than Barry and Iris, others finding it an unfortunate reminder to how much influence the Olicity ship had on Arrow (which has caused a lot of grief for those who didn't ship the pair), or just generally finding it awkwardly written and rather annoyingly cliché for the hero's female friend to develop feelings for him rather than remain platonic.
    • For comic fans, how much the show takes from Geoff Johns' Flash work and the New 52 Flash run. Johns is heavily involved in the show's writing and production, and a number of his additions to the franchise are very apparent (particularly Barry's mom's death and the situation with his father). However, Johns' contributions are highly controversial due to how it handled Barry's character (who became a Creator's Pet for Johns) at the expense of Wally West, so the fact these aspects are present in the show burns some fans while others enjoy the show all the same due to how well they handle the contributions.
  • Captain Obvious Reveal:
    • The stinger at the end of "Flash vs. Arrow" — Ronnie being alive as a fire-wielding metahuman — was not a surprise at all, even for those who don't read comic books, as fans figured out the twist given that they Never Found the Body.
    • The stinger that reveals who is "The Man In the Yellow Suit": The guy we've known was evil from the very first episode turns out to be evil? What a twist! Subverted in that the real twist was that he was really Eobard Thawne and had killed the real Wells to take his place.
    • The revelation that one of the speedsters from the night Nora died was a time-traveling Barry. Given that time travel was established back in the pilot, most viewers had already guessed that even without being familiar with Flashpoint.
    • The Season One finale tells the audience that Cisco is a metahuman and Caitlin will eventually be one too because of their exposure to the particle accelerator. However, anybody who has read the comics or even read their characters on the internet was aware of where their characters would be heading the whole time.
  • Cargo Ship:
    • Cisco is way too attached to Barry's suit.
    • Captain Cold is "intimately familiar" with his gun.
  • Catharsis Factor:
    • In "Fast Enough", Barry refusing to let Eobard Thawne escape scot-free to the future, and then Eobard's death moments later by his ancestor's Heroic Suicide. Especially since this comes right after both Barry and the viewer have to heartbreakingly relive the murder of Nora Allen.
    • Several fans noted that as aggravating as Iris being Locked Out of the Loop for almost the whole first season was, it was worth it when she finally did learn the truth and was allowed to be just as angry about not being told as they were hoping for.
  • Counterpart Comparison:
    • Plastique's power allows her to overcharge inanimate object to the point of explosion with a glowing purple energy, giving her a lot of aesthetic similarities to Gambit of the X-Men.
    • The show's version of Girder (Tony Woodward) looks more like Colossus than comics Girder, who looks like a man made of rusty scrap metal.
    • Blackout has been jokingly called Electro, another Shock and Awe villain from Marvel comics.
    • For those who don't watch Arrow and had no idea who Deathbolt was, the first character that came to mind from his Eye Beams was Cyclops.
  • Creepy Awesome:
    • The Reverse-Flash.
    • The Trickster, with a dash of Crazy Awesome as well.
  • Evil Is Cool:
    • Captain Cold, (no pun intended) just like in the comics.
    • Grodd gets the fans cheering every time he appears. In fact, the scene of him attacking two innocent sewer workers seems to have been thrown in specifically so we'll understand he's one of the bad guys.
    • The Reverse-Flash mainly due to being a Magnificent Bastard.
    • Pied Piper, who also crosses into Evil Is Sexy for fans who swing that way, but damn is the little bastard smart.
    • The Trickster.
  • Evil Is Sexy:
    • Lisa Snart. So much that both Cisco and Barry find her very attractive.
    • Weather Wizard/Mark Mardon is played by Tall, Dark, and Handsome Liam McIntyre.
    • And even though we see a brief glimpse of her, Killer Frost is at least trying to invoke this trope with her new black costume and dye-job.
    • Girder/Tony Woodward is played by Greg Finely is always in a sleeveless outfit. Averted to hell and back in his return as a zombie.
  • Fan-Preferred Couple:
    • Barry and Caitlin (Snowbarry) were a popular alternative to Westallen in season one. Dies out to the point of Vocal Minority after Caitlin marries Ronnie and has subsequent love interests in later seasons, and Barry and Iris become a couple.
    • Barry and Eddie were a popular ship for the Yaoi Fandom due to their huge amounts of Ho Yay.
  • First Installment Wins: The first season is still considered by many as the show's best season by Season 4. While Seasons 2, 3, and 4 have their fans, they are firmly balanced out by the critics. The second and third seasons are heavily criticized for being increasingly darker and gloomier, albeit Season 2 is being remembered more fondly. While Season 4 mends that to some extent, all three have been criticised for how much Barry and the team cling to the Idiot Ball to allow their season's Big Bad to get away for so long. Another major issue is that the Big Bads of season 2 and 3 have generally felt repetitive, both having kept insisting on playing the "who is the mystery speedster?" game, with each season dragging it out longer past its welcome. (For context, S1 unmasked the Reverse-Flash to the audience in Episode 9, S2 showed Zoom in Episode 15, and S3 waited to reveal Savitar until Episode 20. Of 23.)
  • Foe Yay:
  • Fountain of Memes:
    • The Tom Cavanagh version of Reverse-Flash, spawning some of the most memorable quotes in the entire Arrowverse.
    • Grodd comes in at a close second, with his lines being frequently quoted, despite his limited appearance.
  • Franchise Original Sin:
    • The bad guy being a speedster involved with Team Flash starts from the very first episode. The first season at least teased the possibility that it might have been Eddie Thawne, though, and "Wells" had been a member of Team Flash since before Team Flash existed. The third season introduced a Decoy Antagonist in Alchemy, only to revert to form with Savitar.
    • The second and third seasons got flak for their Darker and Edgier tone, but Season One was not without its dark moments. Thawne brutally maims Barry, kills Barry's mom, Alt!Cisco, and Mason Bridge on-screen, and the season ends with the threat of the entire world being destroyed. However, while Season One may not be as goofy and light as people sometimes make it out to be, it did balance the comedy and the darkness better than Season Two and especially Season Three, which went for an all-out doom and gloom atmosphere.
    • From season 2 onward there's been criticism of the episodes, particularly the filler ones, often following a repetitive formula of having the badguy somehow beat Barry in their first fight, then during their rematch Barry is able to overcome them through the coaching of Team Flash. This was actually common enough during the first season that it was cited as a Common Knowledge trope that fans had to argue wasn't an every episode occurrence.
    • The criticized overuse of pep-talks has always been there from the beginning, but there Barry was a newbie vigilante.
    • Team Flash. This formula has created limitations on character development since its very application note , but at the beginning the teammates had their own lives and occupations. Now everyone is just centered on S.T.A.R. Labs and their work as a team.
  • "Funny Aneurysm" Moment:
    • Seeing "Caitlin" (actually Everyman) fight Barry, and later at the Pipeline trying guilt Team Flash into releasing "her," would be a little more poignant when you consider Caitlin might potentially go down the route of a supervillain, as per her comic book counterpart Killer Frost.
    • In the pilot, Oliver gives Barry an uplifting speech about how "the lightning didn't strike him. It chose him." We later find out that Oliver is indeed correct, but there are much more sinister reasons behind it.
  • Growing the Beard:
    • While many praised the show from the start for being Lighter and Softer (or rather, balancing levity and seriousness better) than recent DC live-action fare, it was also criticized early on for having a Monster of the Week setup with mostly lackluster main villains, some of whom weren't even linked with the Flash in the comics. But this lessened once major enemies like the Reverse-Flash (the overall Big Bad), Captain Cold, and Gorilla Grodd, not to mention the hero Firestorm, started showing up or having more time devoted to them, showing a stronger sense of plot.
    • The crossover with Arrow also helped reinforce that there is a shared live-action DC Universe for the first time, beating the DC movies to it. On a similar note, the character-building involved with Firestorm has been speculated as possibly being a backdoor pilot due to how strong it was. Indeed, the character is one of several appearing in the next spin-off, Legends of Tomorrow.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight: The episode "Rogue Air" features all of the Flash's super powered villains escaping from a prison bus and wandering into Central City to destroy it. The second season finale of Gotham ended on this exact same premise.
  • "Holy Shit!" Quotient:
    • The end of the first episode, with The Reveal that "Dr. Wells" is not only not crippled, but also from the future.
    • "Dr. Wells'" reveal as the Reverse-Flash. Especially as there was a scene where the Reverse Flash was beating what would eventually be revealed to be himself to a pulp.
    • Thawne using the Tachyon device because his connection to the Speed Force isn't strong enough.
    • Bloodstains are found in Barry's house from the night of Nora's murder and neither of them belongs to Thawne. But one of them is a match for an adult Barry.
    • The Reveal in "Fallout" that Gorilla Grodd and the Reverse-Flash are actually working together.
    • In "Out of Time," Barry his love and secret identity to Iris, Thawne reveals to Cisco that he is from the future and killed Nora. Then he speeds his arm through Cisco's heart. Topped off with Barry time traveling for the first time at the end.
    • In "Tricksters," we learn that Eobard Thawne is really blonde and built like Eddie. But as soon as he left the Allen House his speed ran out. Desperate to return to his own time, he stalked Harrison Wells and his wife Tess. He was the one who caused the car crash that killed Tess, so he could get Wells alone and use some device to make himself look like Wells so he could build the Particle Accelerator early (it was supposed to be built by Wells and Tess in 2020). So who knows how Thawne screwed the Timeline up by doing that.
    • "The Trap" had a few. It starts off with Barry meeting Gideon and finding out not only does he disappear in the future, he's the director of the CSI division of the PD as well as married to Iris and Gideon's creator. Later on it's revealed that Harrison Wells had been spying on everyone the whole show (and earlier, as he had watched Barry grow up), with cameras placed around the city. Thawne then abducts Eddie, reveals his identity and mentions that they're related. Finally, Iris finds out Barry is The Flash after brushing hands reminded her of something that had happened while he was in a coma. Hoo boy.
    • "Fast Enough": Thawne convinces Barry to try and turn back time in exchange for letting him get home as well. On the way backwards, Barry sees the Flash Museum, the Legends of Tomorrow, and Killer Frost. But when Barry goes back, the future version of himself sees him, and waves him off, so Barry ends up only saying good-bye to his mother. Meanwhile, in the present, Thawne sees a metal helmet with wings like Jay Garrick's come out of the time portal, and takes that as a sign to leave. Barry comes through the portal and superspeed punches Thawne and his machine, trapping Thawne in the present. Thawne proceeds to hand Barry a No-Holds-Barred Beatdown, starts making with the threats towards the rest of the cast...and then Eddie shoots himself to erase Thawne from existence. Oh, and now there's a black hole that Barry has to run into to try and stop.
  • Idiot Plot:
    • "Who is Harrison Wells?" features a shape-shifter named Hannibal, leading to two big Idiot Ball moments to keep the plot going. First, Hannibal frames Eddie by turning into him, and yet Barry fully accepts Eddie abruptly showing up at his door with a half-baked story about the judge just deciding to let him go. Then he turns into Barry and gets to Star Labs, where Caitlin's suspicions are just barely piqued by his increasingly odd behavior which ultimately includes making out with her.
    • An even stupider plot occurs in "Rogue Air." With the particle accelerator in danger, Barry somehow can't reach Firestorm and the Arrow, even though they show up not three hours after the attempt to remove the Pipeline prisoners. So, who do they reach out to? Captain Cold and Lisa Snart. You can guess how well that goes.
  • Jerkass Woobie:
    • Blackout, who's only evil because his powers killed his friends, disfigured him, and wrecked his mental state. Not only that, but he constantly has to feed on energy and feels perpetual hunger.
    • Tony Woodward in Episode 7. He may be a huge bully and jerkass, but he didn't deserve to get manipulated by Thawne and then murdered by Blackout like that.
    • Hartley Rathaway. Child prodigy who was rejected by his parents when he came out as gay, was betrayed by Thawne when he tried to warn him about the dangers of the Particle Accelerator, and was left suffering from constant, chronic pain and deafness as a result of the explosion. He was fairly antisocial beforehand, but its easy to sympathise with the guy.
    • Shawna Baez tries to broke her boyfriend out of jail who ends up abandoning her. Even after that she can't stop loving him. In "Rogue Air," the captivity appears to have an impact on her sanity.
  • Like You Would Really Do It: Cisco's death. Less because fans think the writers wouldn't kill him, but because the same episode has Flash accidentally travel back in time and getting stuck several hours before Cisco's death. Not to mention that the trailers for the following episodes show Cisco being threatened by Leonard Snart and interacting with Laurel Lance.
  • Love to Hate: The takers are the Reverse-Flash, the Rogues (Captain Cold especially), Gen. Eilling, Hartley Rathaway, and James Jesse.
  • Magnificent Bastard:
    • Captain Cold, a Badass Normal full of Crazy-Prepared plans, who ascends to a worthy superhero foe when he gets his hands on Star Labs technology. He's also the one who comes up with the idea of the various bad guys in Central City teaming up to take on the Flash. Also, despite his team-up of him and Heat Wave failing, he had a backup plan, his main goal of Flash being forced into the open is accomplished. His sister breaks them out of prison. The Glider appears, the Rogues are on there way to being formed.
    • Everything Eobard Thawne has plotted has gone according to plan. He stole Harrison Wells' identity to deliberately blow up Wells' collider give Barry his powers with everyone working in the lab none the wiser. The closest anyone came to exposing Thawne was Rathaway leaking that there was a chance of the collider exploding, Wells just uses that to discredit Rathaway. Moreso, Thawne gradually tipped the hand of his own secret while both preparing his escape and training the Flash to the point of accessing time travel.
    • Hartley Rathaway, AKA Pied Piper, sure tries to be this. Like Cold, he's got plans-after-plans, takes advantage of his Glass Cannon status to lure Barry into traps, and was Crazy-Prepared enough to hide explosives in his hearing aides; however, he's too arrogant to be more than a high-functioning Smug Snake.
    • James Jesse, aka the Trickster. The man's bonkers but he's able to use that to his advantage by running rings around the police by having an accomplice pose as a copycat Trickster, so the police will go to him for help and he can pretend to be outraged that somebody stole his gig, when in truth it's all one big distraction so he can be broken out of Iron Heights. He then holds an entire gala hostage using poisoned champagne, and when the Flash shows up he pulls out a kinetic bomb. The only thing that ruins his plans is he doesn't realize there's more to the Flash's powers than just running fast.
  • Memetic Mutation:
    • "My name is Barry Allen and I'm the fastest man alive" has been used as a Mad Libs Catchphrase for everything in the form of "My name is X and I'm the Y-est Z alive." For example, "My name is Ray Palmer and I am the smallest man alive", "My name is Matt Murdock and I'm the blindest man alive" (after an error with IMDB switched around the shows' descriptions), "My name is Sonic and I'm the fastest hedgehog alive," "My name is Barry and I'm the most enraged rune dragon alive."
    • "Lightning gave me abs?", from the scene where Barry wakes up from his coma and discovers his powers have made him more physically fit.
    • "Run, Barry, RUN!" the reoccurring phrase first said by Eobard Thawne, before becoming a bit of a Phrase-Catcher for Barry.
    • "Did Flash run backwards twice?", from the posters showing him running with a lightning bolt shaped speed trail, suggesting he just randomly decided to run backwards twice for some reason.
    • "Every episode of The Flash should end with Eobard Thawne getting up from his wheelchair and doing/revealing something unexpected," from the episodes where Thawne would stand up from his wheelchair and perform some sort of plot twisting-reveal while smirking menacingly.
    • The answer to absolutely anything? "Speed Force."
    • "IT WAS ME, BARRY!" Explanation 
    • Oliver's line from the team-up ("Barry, how can you have Super Speed and still be late?") has been used to mock his lateness for nearly everything.
    • The fact that Reverse-Flash was frequently referred to as "The Man in Yellow", led to him be compared to The Man with the Yellow Hat. Made even funnier by the fact that he's associated with a gorilla, who got dubbed "Curious Grodd".
    • "X is not like Y at all. Some would say it's the reverse."Explanation 
    • "A speed mirage, if you will."Explanation 
    • "To me X has been Y for centuries."Explanation 
    • "Not God, GRODD."
    • "Barry is so fast he ran himself back into the friend zone," after Barry time traveled back a day and negated Iris' Love Epiphany and their Big Damn Kiss.
    • Immediately after "Tricksters" aired, clips of the opening scene of said episode (the one where Future!Flash and Reverse-Flash are having a slugfest) were uploaded in YouTube and commented on by various users with the "My name is Eobard Thawne" Opening Narration similar to that of this show and Arrow.
  • "Hi, I'm Ray!"
  • While everyone agrees Eddie's death was completely heartbreaking to watch, many fans are now joking on how this could have all been fixed if he just got a vasectomy.
  • Speed Weed, co-executive producer and writer of later Arrow episodes, being likened to the Speed Force or an actual drug with various superspeed-related effects.
  • "Grodd. Hate. BANANA!"
  • "NANITES COURTESY OF RAY PALMER. THEY'RE DELIVERING A HIGH FREQUENCY PULSE THAT'S DISABLING YOUR SPEED. YOU'RE NOT GOING TO BE RUNNING AROUND FOR QUITE A WHILE"note 
  • Theorizing the Reverse-Flash's identity to be a refrigerator or other extremely ridiculous objectnote .
  • Moral Event Horizon: The Reverse-Flash passed this long ago. First, he traveled back in time to kill a young Barry Allen, but failed thanks to interference from the Flash. Instead, he settles on killing Barry's mother then leave. Since he's Trapped in the Past, he kills Wells' wife for no reason, takes the genetic code of the real Dr. Wells, and causes all the disasters in Central City on purpose, with complete disregard for all the lives of others. All so he can get revenge on Barry and steal his speed for himself.
  • Narm:
    • When Multiplex gives a group beatdown to Barry, you don't even have to be paying attention to notice that at least one of his clones was literally punching thin air. Not even punching, more like slowly swinging his forearm.
    • The Kid!Barry flashbacks can cross into this, largely due to the weak dialogue the kid actors are given and how the scenes play out.
    • "Flash vs. Arrow" has an interesting splitting the difference with Roy G. Bivolo. He keeps that cringe-inducing name, but they draw the line at calling him the Rainbow Raider, turning it into Caitlin's pitiful attempt at giving him a supervillain name.
    • In "Fallout," Ronnie gives a critical message in Morse Code in a completely serious voice, "Tap, tap. Tap, tap. Tap..." and so on. It's as silly as it sounds.
    • The show generally does a good job at giving little nudges and such to the counterparts some characters have in the comics (and may turn out like in the future). But Caitlin saying that Ronnie thought they were so different that they were "like fire and ice" is just a little too narmy to hear.
    • Eddie's shouting Joe's name when Mardon pulls Joe out of a window by controlling the wind in "Out of Time." It lasts too long and his weird pronunciation make it impossible to take seriously.
    • By just the end of the first season, the idea that the Flash is Barry's secret identity is a complete joke, with an exponentially increasing number of people learning about it until Joe is literally calling him "Barry" in front of criminals they just took down. And yet they still insist that Iris is apparently the one person in the entire world who can't possibly know, acting like it would kill her on the spot.
    • The ending scene of the episode "Who is Harrison Wells?" loses its drama for non-fans of Battlestar Galactica (2003) when, upon seeing the future newspaper feed, Cisco mutters, "What the frak?" Those not familiar with the sci-fi series don't recognize that Cisco is just being a geek per usual.
    • Iris asking the meaning of the radar dots representing Barry and Grodd probably worked on paper. Unfortunately, the effects guys decided to make the dots clearly labelled on the screen, giving the impression that she can't read.
    • The much-advertised return of Firestorm and Arrow in "Rogue Air" ends up having no set-up in the episode itself, followed by their immediate departure. They just walk off and leave, barely saying goodbye, as if they never showed up (and really not helped by Ronnie's skip to catch up to Oliver, looking like the Amell boys were splitting a cab or something). It feels like a Deus ex Machina or an Ass Pull, only far more silly because this was the one moment they advertised the episode by the most.
    • The finale of Season One features the inexplicable use of Caitlin as The Watson to explain what singularities are, instead of non-scientists like Iris or Joe. And that's assuming they even needed one at all, given the kind of people who'd be watching a show like this in the first place.
  • Narm Charm:
    • Oliver's line in the pilot about the lightning bolt "choosing" Barry. Even if electricity isn't sentient, the whole scene is momentous enough with Oliver then telling Barry how he can be a different kind of hero from him and making the first ever Title Drop in the show, that it just works in context.
    • Barry's speech in Episode Two to the STAR Labs gang about how "they all got struck by that lightning" can be a little cringe-worthy to viewers, but Grant Gustin sounds earnest enough (and Barry is enough of a dork) to make it heartwarming enough to work.
    • The titular battle in "Flash vs. Arrow" is both cheesy and awesome, what with Oliver having to duck under Barry's super-fast punches.
    • From "The Man in the Yellow Suit," Reverse-Flash saying "Merry Christmas" in his otherwise terrifying Voice of the Legion should sound ridiculous, but being part of the big reveal that of the Reverse-Flash, and a definite Wham Line from the character saying it, it works perfectly, and even gets a Call-Back in Season Two.
    • James Jesse telling the new Trickster that he is his father. It comes right out of nowhere, serves little to no bearing on the plot and is never mentioned again. However, since it's Mark Hamill saying "I am your father" in a tone that makes it clear he's wanted to say that line for years, the end result is gloriously cheesy.
    • Grodd speaking through General Eiling seems like it ought to be funny — after all, it's a middle-aged man talking like a gorilla and saying things like "Caitlin...good" and "Eiling...bad." As it turns out, though, Clancy Brown is such a seasoned voice actor that he actually manages to pull it off.
    • The lines "Why'd you kill my mother?" being replied with "Because I hate you" would seem absolutely childish if said by someone else but Tom Cavanagh manages to deliver it sounding completely genuine.
    • Nearly every line out of Pied Piper's mouth, especially when he uses chess metaphors. Helps that Andy Mientus' acting is awesomely magnetic.
  • Nightmare Retardant: "Grodd...hate...banana!"
  • Older Than They Think: Many feel that Barry seems somewhat younger than the Barry of the comics when he becomes the Flash. He is usually drawn to look older, like early to mid-30s, and in the fifth episode, he is stated to be 25 years old. Though the passage of time in the Silver Age comics was always wonky, modern stories such as "The Flash: Rebirth" establish the fact that Barry was a rookie CSI tech when he became the Flash, and so was in the early-to-mid 20s range at the time.
    • Later episodes reveal that, thanks to Reverse-Flash messing with the timeline, Barry has indeed become the Flash at a younger age than was originally the case.
  • Rescued from the Scrappy Heap:
    • Much like The Originals, the show has quite a talent for doing this with characters from its parent show. Ray and Laurel's guest spots were both better received than just about anything they've gotten up to on Arrow, as has Felicity's (who many fans had turned on due to the way her character developed).
    • Barry himself wasn't very popular among comics fans at the time the show premiered, due to having become a Creator's Pet who completely overshadowed the people to don the costume after him. This show portrayed him well enough that those fans were largely able to forget their feelings about comics Barry.
  • Romantic Plot Tumor: Like Arrow, fans are divided on the lead female and designated love interest. While the romance is popular, some fans would rather focus on action while others would rather Barry romance some other female.
  • The Scrappy: Roy G. Bivolo, one of the most generic villains to ever appear on the show with the least amount of character exploration. Even his codename "Rainbow Raider" doesn't make sense since the full extent of his powers don't get shown. In the comics he could induce all sorts of emotions in his victims with different colors, while here he only does anger. It doesn't help that he's just a Plot Device to get Flash and Arrow to fight each other.
  • Ship-to-Ship Combat:
    • The battle between the Westallen and Snowbarry shippers started before the series even began.
    • There's also the previously established Baricity from Barry's initial appearances on Arrow.
    • Throw in SnowStorm (Caitlin and Ronnie) in the mix.
  • Special Effect Failure: Though it is understandable that the series doesn't have a Hollywood movie budget, the fact that Grodd is an obvious CGI character is just...both unsettling and ridiculous at the same time.
  • Squick:
    • Eiling's Kryptonite Ring for the Flash, in which a grenade fires hundreds of sharp needles, piercing him all at the same time. And Thawne mentions that they should pull them all out. Comments indicate that the fragments have tiny splinters inside to lock them in place once they break the skin, which would be even more painful and messy to remove. Who wouldn't wince at a situation like that?
    • The Reverse-Flash's preferred method of killing people involves impaling people with his arm. It raises the Nightmare Fuel of the show to a whole new level.
    • Eobard Thawne "absorbing" Harrison Wells, especially the end result for the latter.
    • The brief moment in "Tricksters," where James Jesse comes on to Iris, a girl easily young enough to be his daughter. Eww.
  • They Wasted a Perfectly Good Character:
    • Many weren't expecting Plastique to be written out so quickly because of the character's history with the Suicide Squad aka Task Force X, which already exists in Arrow. It becomes even worse since the character was built up as a very interesting metahuman and potential ally of Barry before dying.
    • Roy Bivolo's so under-utilized that his nickname, "Prism", ends up making no sense—he never demonstrates any color-based powers besides flashing red eyes. He's just there as an excuse to put Barry and Oliver into a Let's You and Him Fight situation.
    • Linda Park is reduced to a Romantic False Lead and is then sent to a Long Bus Trip in season 2, despite being a very popular supporting character in the comics, one of Iris' closest friend at her station, and a potential love interest for the soon-to-be introduced Wally.
  • They Wasted a Perfectly Good Plot:
    • Remember that episode where Flash was infected with a Hate Plague that led to not only Eddie starting a manhunt on Flash but also Flash losing Iris' trust? Neither does anyone else.
    • Fans initially assumed that with Firestorm and Arrow returning at the same episode that the Pipeline's inmates are going to run loose, there will be a battle royale of heroes vs. villains. Nothing of the sort actually happens in the episode in question: only the Flash and his support are the ones to deal with the breakout, and the heroes only showed up at the end to help defeat the Reverse-Flash.
    • The last episode of the first season. They build up everything and leave us wondering how the future is going to be after he changes it, but then Barry decides not to, leaving things worse than if he hadn't done it in the beginning. Eddie kills himself to stop the Reverse-Flash, Nora is still dead, and a black hole is consuming the city. Where they end it on a cliffhanger.
    • Even though Eobard Thawne was a mentor and even father figure to the entire team for years, once the team does believe he's the Reverse-Flash, he's instantly relegated to "generic evil guy who must be stopped" status. Shouldn't the team still want to trust this father figure, and want him to be redeemed, even if they know it's an empty hope? Shouldn't his time with them have changed him in some way, and if not then why not? There's an entire mountain of emotional and ethical dilemmas here that the show could have mined, and totally let pass by.
  • Uncanny Valley: Some of Multiplex's clones move in a shuffling and unnatural way after he spawns an entire army of them to deal with Barry. The show justifies this by noting that the more he spawns, the weaker the original becomes and his control over them gets spotty. The result is easy-to-miss, but rather spooky when noticed.
  • What an Idiot!: Really Barry? You're chasing after a shapeshifter, after he just framed Eddie for murder, and you don't think it's a little suspicious that he turns up on your doorstep after just giving you a lecture about clearing his name through legal means?
    • In the very same episode, Caitlin heads off to confront Thawne about Barry's allegations, which she admittedly doubts but would have gotten her killed if she'd managed to get through with it.
    • The plot of "Rogue Air." Sure, trust a murderous criminal to help you instead of your friends Oliver and the men of Firestorm, what could possibly go wrong? Everyone, even Captain Cold, calls him out on it.
  • The Woobie:
    • Plastique. She can barely touch anyone or anything without making it explode and has Eiling hounding her to try and exploit her powers.
    • Ronnie Raymond + Martin Stein = Firestorm. The two are clearly disturbed and hurt by their fusion and both are desperate to reunite with their fiancé and wife respectively.
    • The real Harrison Wells. He was happily living with his wife only to be killed by Eobard Thawne and have his identity taken by him. His good name and life's work is then ruined by Thawne as part of the latter's plans. By extension, Tess as well, who was killed by Thawne and had her significance to history swept under the rug, when originally she was evidently an equal part in STAR Labs' success.

    Season Two 
  • Accidental Innuendo: In "Gorilla Warfare", Grodd kidnaps Caitlin, hoping she would help him create more super-intelligent gorillas like him. What Grodd meant was that for Caitlin to repeat the experiment that gave Grodd his powers, but with the allusions to King Kong and his pre-established soft spot for Caitlin, some viewers might get misled...
  • Alas, Poor Scrappy: "Jay Garrick" was not widely hated, but was rather divisive for essentially being a Replacement Scrappy and an Adaptational Wimp; still, many were shocked to see him fulfill his role of getting Impaled with Extreme Prejudice by Zoom right in front of his Love Interest and friends, before having his slowly dying body forcibly dragged into Earth-2 by the villain. This gets pretty soundly undone, however, once it's revealed that "Jay" was really Zoom the entire time and the person they saw die was simply a time remnant who intentionally let himself be killed. It's also undone in a meta sort of way as Zoom, while not without his criticisms, is far more popular side of the character.
  • Angst? What Angst?:
    • Caitlin moving on from Ronnie's death by the time she meets "Jay." Some have complained it's too soon after Ronnie's death, others have pointed out it's been six months since his death and she spent an entire year mourning Ronnie after the Particle Accelerator explosion.
    • Zig-zagged. Even though Iris reacted with heartbroken disbelief that her mother abandoned her because of a drug rather than passed away, she was very understanding and quick to forgive Joe for keeping a secret from her for 20 years, as opposed to when Joe lied to her about Barry being the Flash for months. Justified by context: with the Flash secret, everyone around her knew but her, including the very villain they were trying to protect her from, yet Joe and Barry had insisted on keeping her in the dark. She had to find out through an incidental sensation at the end of a rescue, and after chewing them out and watching them almost die against Grodd, she and Joe came to the understanding he needed to start telling her the truth more often. This time proved that Joe had learned his lesson, as he confessed himself before Iris was any the wiser about her mother's return, and he was already in tears assuming that he'd once again earned her anger before she even reacted.
      • That said, some fans are happy because this trope is in effect, pointing out that at least it means Iris' plot isn't more soap opera angst.
    • The real Jay Garrick is a minor case, as he doesn't seem too adversely affected by his time as Zoom's prisoner. Apart from destroying the mask Zoom kept him in and keeping Zolomon's helmet for himself, Jay seems perfectly fine.
  • Anti-Climax Boss:
    • Once again, Weather Wizard is defeated with unsatisfying ease. After Team Flash defuses the Weather Wizard and the Trickster's evil plan, the Flash effortlessly beats them up. It may be justified in the Trickster's case, since Mark Hamill is too old to perform his own stunts, but that doesn't let his younger, superhuman cohort off the hook.
    • Geomancer, who singlehandedly brought Central City to its knees, fought off Zoom, and tracked down the Flash's base ends up getting defeated by Caitlin using the "Boot" on his neck.
    • Trajectory, who was a fully badass Dark Action Girl who outran the Flash and defeated him every time they fought, ends up killing herself by Velocity overdose and disintegrates.
  • Anvilicious: Thanks to the introduction of the Velocity enhancer, basically a steroid for Super Speed, the show really hammers it in how Drugs Are Bad. At least three characters have become addicted to Velocity drugs because they feel that they need more and more of it to feel powerful, and it's caused Trajectory to die from an overdose and provided Zoom with a super disease that's slowly killing him due to overexposure to the drug. Taken Up to Eleven when Barry attempts to try out the drug himself only for Wells to confront him about it and give him a pep talk about why it's bad for him like some after-school special.
  • Arc Fatigue:
    • The lack of resolution or even solid hints as to who Zoom is behind the mask grated on the nerves of fans as the season went on, especially when compared to Thawne's early reveal. Even when Zoom's mask finally came off, the reveal came almost out of nowhere, and raised more questions than it answers.
    • Building up to the introduction of Wally West way too long, since it takes until the Winter Finale before Wally even makes an appearance and the season never gets to his role as Kid Flash. There's also the fact that he's Locked Out of the Loop until just before the second season finale. For Wally fans who only watched the show in the hopes of seeing Wally West as the Flash/Kid Flash, it becomes waiting for Wally turns the show into a huge slow.
    • The man in the mask who Zoom has imprisoned. Episode after episode after episode of the guy banging out coded messages, and the occasional coy hint that we just won't believe who it is, until just about everyone has given up hope that any reveal could possibly be worth dragging the mystery out this long. He is unmasked in the Season Finale.
    • Cisco's metahuman abilities also are progressing too slowly. It started off well in the first half of the season, but after his Earth-2 counterpart Reverb demonstrated powers closer to his comic counterpart, people expected that he would learn to use these soon. He didn't until the second to last episode, and even then it was by accident. There are even some episodes where it's easy to forget his powers are still a thing, with quite a few missed opportunities where he could have used them to find people. Luckily Flashpoint somehow upgraded his powers, but even then he is not that well exploited.
  • Ass Pull:
    • Having Henry released from prison, only for him to decide to leave Central City. As noted on the WMG page, it feels like a convenient way for Barry to be able to abandon his original motivation and thus story arc in Season One, but also prevent Henry's presence from messing up the character dynamic of Team Flash (and the writers either having to make the effort to give Henry decent screen time, or otherwise frequently Hand Wave his absence).
    • In "Running to Stand Still", the villains' plan involves sending bombs to a hundred random children all over Central City, with Cisco pointing out there's no way to find them all. Okay, so how do they get all the bombs in time? Turns out, by finding one bomb and sending that into a portal, all of the bombs are somehow magnetically attracted and pulled into the portal where they harmlessly explode. What? Umm, so why do the bombs all conveniently have magnetizable capabilities? And how the hell does Wells know that before even seeing one of the bombs? Also, the bombs were seen crashing through windows, meaning any of them could have been stuck in the house while being pulled into the air.
    • Patty's decision to leave Central City in "Potential Energy", as her dream to become a CSI had never even been casually alluded to prior to this episode.
    • Caitlin's discovery that "Jay" has a potentially terminal illness, which wasn't foreshadowed even in that very episode.
    • "The Reverse-Flash Returns" pulls some especially nonsensical Timey-Wimey Ball shenanigans to explain how Eobard Thawne can still exist after Eddie's death. It also suddenly pulls out the idea that Nora Allen's death is a fixed point in time that can't be changed, which everyone talks about like they knew it all along, despite the whole climax of last season being based around Barry trying to stop it. In fact, the writers seemed to anticipate how the audience would tend to reject this, as the episode of Legends of Tomorrow that aired two days later clarifies how something can become a fixed point in the Arrowverse.
      • This gets worse in "Versus Zoom" as the same explanation is trotted out to explain how Zoom pulled off the trick of appearing to kill himself in front of the team, making even less sense as there's no reason he would have a time remnant like Eobard did. And even if you accept this, the remnant being killed should start unraveling time like Eobard's did. "The Race of His Life" fixes this to some extent by showing that the time remnant is actually the version of Zoom who appears from the future, explaining how he could die without the original being harmed.
    • "Flash Back" introduces the time wraiths, Dementor-like beings who track down speedsters who travels through time without taking certain precautions. While based on the Black Flash from the comics, it's still quite weird how Barry is told it was simply dumb luck he never ran into them on his previous trips through time.
    • The reveal that "Jay Garrick" was Zoom all along and his real name is Hunter Zolomon comes off as this. Though there are hints such as his Adaptational Wimp stays and the fact his Earth-1 counterpart's name is different, and according to his actor he knew all along about the twist, it really feels like it came out of nowhere just to be a shock to viewers, and raises a lot of questions that aren't properly answered.
  • Author's Saving Throw:
    • The Flash gets a white background on his logo in place of red, as many had clamored for the suit to be closer to the comics.
    • Characters comment on the lax security of STAR Labs, which viewers and reviewers noticed, and Cisco claims to have made improvements to the system so nobody can just walk in. Then Hunter Zolomon does just that.
    • After all the fan debate about the legal and moral implications of the Pipeline prison, Joe reveals that Iron Heights is now equipped to house metahuman inmates. The Pipeline itself seems to only be used during the second season to house the metahumans who know too much about the team, and only until they can be persuaded to keep quiet.
    • Many complained that Cold was just too powerful in Season One, as he always managed to wriggle his way out of justice in every one of his appearances. In his first appearance in Season Two, he finally gets sent to Iron Heights and stays there a good long time until the mid-winter finale.
    • Barry is now far less cavalier about his secret identity than in the first season, to the point where Caitlin almost blowing it to Lisa Snart is treated as a shocking moment.
    • They seem to be using Earth-2 as a placeholder to introduce elements they couldn't squeeze into Season One, like Atlantis (although the character associated with it might still get Exiled from Continuity) and Gorilla City (an important part of the Flash mythos in general and Grodd's backstory in particular).
    • A common complaint after Season One's finale is that the writers killed off Eobard Thawne without explaining the origins of his grudge against Barry. "The Reverse-Flash Returns" takes the time to do exactly that, with Thawne's motives being almost identical to his origin from the comics.
    • Due to the outrage of Deadshot's death due to blatant Executive Meddling during Arrow Season 3, an Earth-2 version of him shows up.
    • Barry has caught a lot of flak from fans for claiming to be "the fastest man alive" while every enemy speedster introduced so far has been much faster than him. It was later revealed that Zoom, like Trajectory, is using the deadly V9 drug to increase his speed, while Reverse-Flash fueled his powers with a tachyon device, meaning that Barry may well be faster than them without their enhancements.
    • In Season One, Hartley got a lot of hate for being a far cry from the Hartley people wanted to see: namely one who was a good guy or at least Affably Evil and a friend of the Flash. Well, "Flash Back" is basically one long apology for that and retcons Hartley's current personality into what fans wanted, so he's now a stable guy who helps the Flash and is far less of an asshole even in the "original" story.
    • Similar to Deadshot above, an Earth-2 version of Laurel Lance appears only a few weeks after the Earth-1 character was killed off on Arrow to massive Internet Backdraft. For added measure, while Laurel's counterpart is a criminal and goes by the alias Black Siren, she is a metahuman and her outfit downplays Black Canary's Adaptational Modesty in Arrow.
  • Base-Breaking Character:
    • The portrayal of Patty Spivot is very popular with some viewers, while others call it a contrived attempt to give the show its own version of Felicity whose Adorkableness is forced (being a fan of Barry's lab reports, seriously?). Not to mention she's just another Romantic False Lead to keep Barry from being with Iris.
    • "Jay Garrick" was anticipated eagerly when his helmet appeared in the Season One finale, but has become divisive ever since he made a physical appearance. Some sympathize with a man who lost his speed and in a world he doesn't know, while others find him useless most of the time he is on screen since he hasn't done much to train Barry since teaching him to throw lightning which happened very early on in the season and just seems to stick around to either comment on how dangerous Zoom is or get into fights with Earth-2's Harrison Wells. Add on the fact he has a polarizing romance with Caitlin as well as how people fear the show might drag him out his lack of speed for a majority of the season and the (false) Crimson Comet doesn't have much of a middle ground of fans or haters. This got rendered moot with the reveal that "Jay" was actually Hunter Zolomon pretending to be him. The real Jay Garrick, who was a completely separate character altogether, was far better received.
    • Zoom, depending on who you ask, is either a Generic Doomsday Villain with an anti-climactic Evil Plan and a poor substitute for the more engaging Reverse-Flash, or a terrifyingly intimidating villain and worthy successor to Thawne. While he does become more nuanced after his true identity is revealed, fans remain split on whether he's an awesome villain with a tragic backstory or a cheap Replacement Scrappy who just retreads the same ground as Reverse-Flash and ruins the comics' version of Hunter Zolomon with his Adaptational Villainy.
    • Jesse was anticipated by Flash fans and her own fans since she's long been in limbo in the comics, due to the edict that Barry not have a Flash family. The show's version of her however; either she's another poor attempt to make yet another adorkable girl character in a franchise that already has too many, and her workaholic personality was removed for no reason to make her yet another Damsel in Distress who needs to be rescued, or she's a good character who grounds Harry and gives the viewer not only a more normal character in general, but also a more normal Earth-2 character, in terms of how she reacts to everything. Even supporters want her to eventually move more in-line with her comic counterpart, however.
  • Broken Base: The sheer number of speedsters, potential or confirmed, that are going to be in Season Two (Jay Garrick, Wally West, Zoom, Thawne, Jesse Quick, Eliza Harmon) has some people concerned that it will be too crowded. Others, especially those who follow the comics, are happy to see the Flash Family on screen. This was lessened by the time the season ended by the fact that, of those characters, the only speedsters who actually appear as speedsters were Zoom, Reverse-Flash, and Trajectory (the latter only in a villain-of-the-week capacity while Thawne only has guest appearances); in fact, this somewhat reversed with some people feeling They Wasted a Perfectly Good Plot by not having Barry working with any of the other speedsters.
  • Catharsis Factor:
    • After all of the hell that Eobard Thawne put the Flash and all of Central City through back in the first season, it's extremely gratifying to see Barry finally kick his ass.
      • The scene where Cisco later confronts him and gloats his victory over him is quite cathartic on its own, given Eobard killed him in an alternate timeline.
      • As divisive as the overall scene may be, Barry easily overpowering Thawne during his mother's murder is very satisfying to watch.
    • From the same episode as the above, Patty using her detective skills to deduce that Barry is The Flash is extremely cathartic to viewers feeling frustrated by Barry insisting she be Locked Out of the Loop.
    • He's nowhere close to beaten, but after Zoom has spent the entire season appearing all but invincible, it's very satisfying to see him held off by Killer Frost while Harry finally saves his daughter and slips through Zoom's fingers in "Escape from Earth-2."
    • Barry successfully overpowering Zoom twice in "The Race of His Life," with the latter being capped off by two Time Wraiths dragging Zoom to a very well-deserved fate.
  • Counterpart Comparison:
  • Creepy Awesome: Zoom is described as "an unstoppable demon with the face of death." His terrifying presence and the savage beating he dishes out to Barry in "Enter Zoom" solidifies his status as the show's scariest, yet most badass villain. The voice really sells it.
  • Cry for the Devil:
    • The episode "Family of Rogues" shows the Snart siblings at their most sympathetic portrayal by introducing their abusive father, Lewis.
    • Zoom's backstory reveals that he was abused as a child, saw his mother get murdered before his very eyes, was sent to an orphanage before becoming a crazy serial killer, and was eventually driven into becoming Zoom because he felt nothing but hate all of his life.
  • Ensemble Darkhorse:
    • King Shark proved extremely popular and memorable despite only appearing for 45 seconds. Positive fan response even led the creators to bring him back as the main villain in a self-titled episode later in the season.
    • Earth-2 Iris is also very popular in the fandom. Many see her as much more badass than her Earth-1 counterpart, a given as unlike the original Iris, this Iris went through the police academy.
    • The man in the iron mask in "Escape from Earth-2" has gained a lot of interest for his mysterious background.
    • Out of Zoom's Earth-2 minions, Killer Frost and Black Siren (for obvious reasons) became instantly adored by the fanbase.
  • Evil Is Cool:
    • Zoom, wearing a black version of Flash's suit, with a monstrous face and the addition of Tony Todd's voice. He also easily defeats Barry in their first fight, temporarily cripples him, and publicly humiliates him by showing his broken body in front of his friends, allies, and the entire city in order to crush their faith in the hero. An impressive feat that not many DC supervillains have accomplished.
    • Several of the Earth-2 metahumans, particularly those who are evil counterparts to the heroes of Earth-1 such as Reverb, Killer Frost, and Black Siren, also qualify. Both the characters and their actors look to be having a lot of fun playing the villain.
  • Evil Is Sexy:
    • Atom Smasher to an extent. Being played by a sleeveless, former WWE wrestler does win him over with some fans.
    • Doctor Light also qualifies, seeing as she's the Earth-2 Linda Park. She even gets naked at one point, though we don't see anything because she's invisible.
    • Even before her actual appearance, Killer Frost already had dozens of fans. The leather outfit helps.
    • Behind Zoom, there is the well-built, handsome man who has been impersonating Jay Garrick, Hunter Zolomon.
    • Much like Doctor Light and Killer Frost, Black Siren is an evil doppelganger of an established character in the Arrowverse, this time being Laurel Lance/Black Canary. Bonus points for looking more like Black Canary than the actual Black Canary (the choker, fishnets, heels, lipstick, and trench coat are a plus).
  • Fanfic Fuel:
    • The show drops a tantalizing starting point for stories about the Earth-2 versions of the Arrow cast, with Robert being the Hood after Oliver died in the shipwreck. Black Siren's appearance also has some fans thinking about what her Start of Darkness was.
    • "Welcome to Earth-2" reveals that the 1990 Flash series is part of the show's multiverse. Have fun with stories of Barry meeting another Flash with his name who looks like a younger version of his dad.
    • After The Reveal of the man in the mask being the real Jay Garrick, fanfics of his adventures before being captured by Zoom and his post Season Two adventures on Earth-3 are bound to appear.
  • Harsher in Hindsight:
    • After "Versus Zoom," Jay helping Barry defeat Sand Demon comes off as Zoom bringing Sand Demon to Earth-1 just to kill him. By extension the same applies to every Earth-2 metahuman he sent after Barry in the early part of the season, as he never intended for Barry to actually lose to any of them. Meaning whether it was in the process of falling to the Flash or by his own hand as punishment for failure, they were all going to die.
    • In "The Reverse-Flash Returns," Patty Spivot wants to help Barry fight crime, but he refuses, unilaterally deciding that he is going to keep her safe by preventing her from working with him. About the same time on Arrow, Diggle, Laurel, and the rest want to help Oliver Queen fight crime, but he refuses, unilaterally deciding that he is going to keep them safe by preventing them from working with him. Diggle chastises him, saying "That's not your call to make." The fact that Diggle was seen as right on that show makes it all the more harsh that Barry did this to Patty; it was the same decision, and according to Arrow, it wasn't his call to make.
  • He Really Can Act:
    • Teddy Sears' initial portrayal of the square-jawed but depowered superhero "Jay Garrick" was somewhat bland, but his eventual portrayal of Zoom proved to be quite entertaining and a good counterpart to Tony Todd as his masked self.
    • If the first season didn't sell you on Tom Cavanagh, the second will. He creates an Earth-2 Harrison Wells who's very different from both of Thawne's personas — and then steps back into those personas perfectly for one episode, "Flash Back." And if that wasn't enough, in the third season he's back and playing yet another version of Wells – in fact, in one episode he plays 5 different Wells' in less than 5 minutes.
  • He's Just Hiding!:
    • Many doubt Ronnie Raymond is truly dead, because they Never Found the Body like last time, and since singularities have never been established to be a guaranteed way to kill someone. This is especially the case due to the involvement of alternate Earths leaves it open for him to have been transported elsewhere instead.
    • Atom Smasher to a lesser extent; while it's largely unquestionable that he's dead, the fact a) he's from an alternate universe, b) it's confirmed there are more than just two worlds, c) Smasher in particular, along with others, existed on both Earth-1 and 2 (albeit, he was a powerless muggle on Earth-1), meaning he could exist in one of the other universes as well, and d) Smasher is usually a hero in the comics while the one encountered in the show was a villain all mean it's likely there's a heroic version of the character floating around somewhere.
    • Trajectory's death looked suspiciously like being absorbed into the Speed Force.
    • Zoom looks suspiciously like the Black Flash as he's dragged off by the Time Wraiths, so many fans expect him to show up again sooner or later. And even barring that, there could easily be a time remnant of him still around somewhere considering how casual he is about creating them. He does end up returning, as the Black Flash, where he has been rendered in a decaying state with all traces of Hunter Zolomon gone and being a slave of the Speed Force.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight:
  • "Holy Shit!" Quotient:
    • Zoom's entire performance in "Enter Zoom": catching lightning and throwing it back at Barry, beating Barry senseless, breaking his back, and parading his broken body around town in an extended Kick the Dog moment.
    • From "Welcome to Earth-2," Zoom coming out of nowhere to kill Deathstorm and Reverb, kidnap Barry, lock him in a cell next to Jesse's, and brag about it'll be the last place he ever sees.
      • Not to mention the trip to Earth-2 that offers a glimpse of "everything," meaning the likes of Jonah Hex, the Legion of Super Heroes, the 1990 Flash, and Supergirl.
    • "Versus Zoom" reveals Zoom's true identity: Hunter Zolomon of Earth-2, and he (and a time remnant in the Earth-2 two parter) has been posing as "Jay Garrick" all along. Hand in hand with that is the reveal that Hunter created the persona of Earth-2's Flash to give people hope just so he could rip it away as Zoom.
    • THEN it turns out in the finale that Jay Garrick actually does exist...on yet another Earth. He has a bright red and blue suit and is the Earth-3 counterpart of Barry's father. And HE's the man Zoom kept locked up in the iron mask — as a trophy.
  • Internet Backdraft:
    • Season Two's Darker and Edgier tone has been criticized not only because The Flash is supposed to be the Lighter and Softer show in comparison to Arrow but the show going darker just took the fun out of it. Some warmed up to it, though.
    • The whole concept of a "time remnant" has been widely mocked for its sketchy logic and abuse of the Timey-Wimey Ball.
    • Zoom killing Henry. Barry spent all of the first season trying to get his dad exonerated for Nora's murder and Henry's murder pretty much means that was all in vain. The fact Henry died just as sparks were flying between him and Dr. McGee makes it more irritating. Plus a hero losing both parents seems to work better on a darker show like Arrow than The Flash.
    • The season ended without either Wally or Jesse getting their powers even though they were caught up in the second dark matter wave.
    • Barry saving Nora at the end of the finale. It left bad taste in many viewers' mouths since there was an entire episode dedicated to having Barry learn to accept his mom's death and that he isn't immune to tragedy simply because he's a hero. Given how Season Two was...uneven many feel that this will continue the show's decline in quality, rather than reverse it.
  • It's the Same, Now It Sucks!:
    • Two key story elements are copied from Season One. Joe's police partner is left Locked Out of the Loop of Barry's identity as the Flash despite working closely with him, and the Big Bad is a mysterious Evil Counterpart to the Flash who wants Barry to become faster to further his evil plans. Both of these make Season Two just a tiny bit repetitive. Even Zoom's reveal is an exact copy of the reveal of the Reverse-Flash in Season One — the team's kindly mentor is actually their worst enemy and has been playing them all for fools.
    • Zoom's Evil Plan of wanting to conquer the hero's city is something that's been been done to death on Arrow. Although it's eventually revealed he also wants to destroy the multiverse.
  • Jerkass Dissonance: Harrison Wells of Earth-2 may have good intentions (Zoom is holding his daughter captive), but he's definitely an unpersonable grump nonetheless. However, his snappish, biting remarks have provided some of the best lines of the season, if not the entire show. A lot of fans are liking Wells for his incredibly blunt and confrontational personality, providing a stark contrast from both the cool, analytical, and methodical Eobard Thawne and the nice guy Wells of Season One.
    Cisco: "Our 'Wells' might've been evil, but you're just a dick!"
  • Jerkass Woobie:
    • Killer Frost is quickly established as a cold-blooded killer, but she's clearly as terrified of Zoom as anyone else on Earth-2, and she loses her husband when he gets carried away brutalising the Flash and is murdered by Zoom for it.
    • Hunter Zolomon watched his father kill his mother, an experience that warped him into a psychotic serial killer. And, unlike Barry, Hunter had no one to care for him after losing his parents. None of this excuses his actions, but it's not hard to see how he wound up becoming what he is. His increasingly heinous and sadistic crimes in the rest of the season, however (especially his murder of Henry Allen), ruin any sympathy the audience may have for him.
    • King Shark is a Humanoid Abomination introduced trying to eat The Flash, but his powers making unable to live anything even remotely resembling a normal life, to the extent he's likely never been inside a house, eaten a cooked meal,or had any kind of emotional or physical relationship with anyone since he got them,getting knocked out by Harry and captured by Argus,only escaping after Barry has closed the breaches and unable to go home to earth two after he's defeated by The Flash and taken back to Argus,make it all but impossible not to feel sorry for him.
  • Love to Hate: Zoom is a sociopathic Serial Killer, completely devoid of any redeeming factors, but his Creepy Awesome portrayal and sheer intimidation factor has endeared him to many fans. So people want him to get taken down and pay for all of the bad things he's done, but can't help enjoying him while he's around.
  • Memetic Badass: Zoom gets this treatment, being the biggest, baddest speedster to have existed.
  • Memetic Mutation:
    • Patty is Zoom. Explanation 
    • Fans are also joking that Sonic is Zoom because of the blue colour scheme.
    • Following the deaths of Ronnie, Hunter's time remnant and Earth-2 Ronnie, fans have jokingly come to the conclusion that every person who becomes Caitlin's boyfriend will inevitably be killed. This trend was eventually broken with Julian in the third season, but not before once again claiming Hunter, who as Black Flash was frozen and shattered to pieces by Earth-1's Killer Frost.
    • Everyone is Jay Garrick. Explanation 
    • After "Flash Back," referring to Hartley as if he's been a regular character since his Season One appearance has become quite popular.
    • Earth-2 Lives Matter! Explanation 
    • "YOU CAN'T LOCK UP THE DARKNESS."Explanation 
      • It's part of a joke to respond with this line to someone saying "What?"
      • The meme also isn't restricted to "darkness" with people claiming all sorts of things that "you can't be lock up...".
    • After the end of Season 2, some people (like so) have been making jokes that every season finale will feature more and more Barrys from different futures (and timelines) at his mother's murder scene.
      • Some fans have even jokingly begun to ship Barry and the timeline due to Barry's meddling often being referred to as him fucking the timeline.
  • Moral Event Horizon:
    • Lewis Snart put a bomb in his own daughter's head to make his son work for him.
    • Zoom's first appearance on Earth-2 was to fake a call about hostage situation and kill 14 out of 15 cops that came to rescue them. The last one was spared to tell the tale and when he did, Zoom murdered him too.
    • In "Running to Stand Still," the Trickster and Weather Wizard pass out hundreds of bombs to children all across the city by disguising the Trickster as Santa Claus. When the Flash discovers this, the two gleefully laugh about how they will blow up multiple families if the Flash doesn't let them beat him to death slowly.
    • Deathstorm's casual admittance that he hasn't let Martin Stein out in years.
    • Zoom's father murdering his wife while making his young son watch.
  • Narm:
    • The "Flash signal" is fine as a little reference. The average viewer will immediately notice that the thing, by all logic, should have projected a Reverse-Flash symbol onto the clouds...
    • Captain Cold's gun being able to freeze laser beams is a breach of science so blatant that it even stands out on this show. Until you actually look up the science and find that it IS possible...
    • Snart's dad killing one of his cronies by blowing his head up should be horrifying, but the guy getting his head blown up just sounds kind of bored about the whole thing.
    • Almost every scene with Francine. Her actress just overacts so hard that it becomes hard to take her seriously.
    • "Legends of Today" has so much plot to chew through that Kendra's introduction to both the Flash and Arrow teams is treated absurdly casually. First Cisco rather unbelievably blows Barry's identity to her, then with just a single edit she's in Star Labs with the whole team, and then all of Team Arrow apparently has no problem with her knowing all about them too.
    • At the end of "Potential Energy" Eobard Thawne arrives in our present and asks Gideon "Where the hell am I?" But Gideon apparently has a sense of drama and says nothing at all as the music flares up, while Thawne just keeps staring at his hand.
    • "Trajectory" has Team Flash coming to the realization that "Jay Garrick" is Zoom, after Barry shatters the display case with the helmet for Cisco to "vibe," when he could have opened it normally instead. But how does the episode ultimately end? With Barry suddenly speeding away, running miles without hesitation to a faraway cliff, and then angrily ripping his mask off to scream his lungs out. It's as over-dramatic and ridiculous as it sounds. The fact that it's nearly identical to a joke from The Big Bang Theory doesn't help. Even worse, beyond their first few episodes Barry and Jay didn't really have much to do with each other on a personal level, yet Barry is reacting like he's been stabbed in the back by his oldest and closest friend.
    • The origin story of Zoom, in which Hunter's father is wearing his old war helmet for no reason as all as he abuses and murders his wife, followed by a downright Dickensian scene where Hunter is dropped off at an orphanage with the social worker sneering, "He's all alone."
      • From the same episode, Zoom has to ask how the team figured out his identity, when you'd think the biggest risk of exposing it he ever took would stick in his mind.
    • The "villain" Griffin Grey comes off slightly less intimidating when you find out that he shares a similar name to Grey Griffin the famous voice actress, rendering anytime the characters call out his name unintentionally humorous.
    • Zoom having flashbacks in every single conversation he has with Caitlin feels like a running gag after a while.
    • Henry's reveal that Garrick was his mother's maiden name. It's clearly setting up something for later, and is better than whatever that is being a complete Ass Pull, but it still comes off as a very contrived line, stretching belief that Barry wouldn't already know this tidbit.
    • The ending of "Rupture". The team tries to give The Flash his speed back, only to apparently kill him instead. They react with well-acted, mostly silent horror. But then Zoom shows up, takes a look around, and in his creepy villain voice, tells us what we just saw:
    • Greg Finley aka Tony Woodward trying to walk like a zombie after the character's short-lived resurrection looks nothing but incredibly stupid.
    • When Black Siren, Laurel Lance's Earth-2 villainous counterpart, shows up, Wells asks the team if they know her. Caitlin replies that they "loved her." Which, would be a reasonable response from True Companions...except for the fact that, save for Cisco, none of Team Flash had a direct conversation with her on-screen. Hell, Caitlin in particular never shared a scene with Laurel period, so her delivering the line is particularly odd.
    • At the end of the season finale, when Harry, Jesse and the real Jay Garrick leave for Earth-2, Jay puts on his helmet...and it's crooked. Seriously, no one on set caught that?
  • Narm Charm:
    • The mayor presenting the key to the city to the Flash. It's a classic superhero cliche that should be unbearably cheesy, but instead is a [1]. It really sums up how this series is a love letter to the superhero genre, rather than trying to distance itself from it like so many recent adaptations.
    • "Jay" describing Zoom as an "unstoppable demon with the face of death" sounds a little awkward until we see Zoom in action and it becomes clear that "Jay" wasn't exaggerating. The fact that it's later suggested to be some subtle Evil Gloating on Zoom's part helps, too.
    • Zoom catching lightning in slow-motion. It's obvious that he's defying the laws of physics, but it makes him look so epic.
    • Zoom, of all people, saying "Merry Christmas" in "Running to Stand Still" is simultaneously unsettling and hilarious. It also serves as a nice Call-Back to Eobard Thawne saying "Merry Christmas" in "The Man in the Yellow Suit."
    • From "Versus Zoom," Zoom's over-the-top declaration that "YOU CAN'T LOCK UP THE DARKNESS!" should come off as silly, but the effect of Teddy Sears delivering the line with Zoom's Black Eyes of Evil combined with Tony Todd's voiceover performance makes it terrifying.
  • Older Than They Think: Jefferson "Jax" Jackson is not, contrary to popular belief, merely a Decomposite Character/Composite Character of aspects of both Ronnie Raymond and Jason Rusch, but was originally a member of Ronnie Raymond's supporting cast.
  • One-Scene Wonder:
    • King Shark shows up at the end of Episode Four, looking far better than you'd expect from the show's budget, and promptly gets knocked out, only serving as the means to introduce Barry to Earth-2's Harrison Wells. Luckily for fans, he got his own episode later.
    • Damien Darhk's cameo in "Legends of Yesterday". He gets one scene where he kills some Argus personnel and menaces Oliver. Neal McDonough plays up the Evil Is Hammy aspect of it for all it's worth.
    • Reverb, aka Cisco Ramon of Earth-2, only gets one scene before being killed, but he makes an impressive showing with his menacing demeanor and using his powers to subdue and beat down Barry.
  • Replacement Scrappy:
    • Ronnie has two: Hunter Zolomon pretending to be Jay Garrick as a love interest for Caitlin and Jax as the other half of Firestorm. For comics fans, Jax is also this to Jason Rusch, the second canonical Firestorm in the comics. The fact that Rusch already appeared in Season One doesn't help his case. Fortunately, Jax's role on Legends of Tomorrow seems to be redeeming him in the eyes of the fans.
    • Zoom is a downplayed case. He is generally considered a good villain, but is not as acclaimed as Eobard Thawne. Some of Zoom's critics were against him for repeating elements from Thawne.
  • Rescued from the Scrappy Heap: "Jay Garrick." Fan reception early on in the season to the character was lukewarm, mainly due to being seen as an Adaptational Wimp. However, the revelation that the Jay Garrick persona was just an act from the start and he's actually been Zoom all along certainly changed a lot of minds. This is especially true since many fans feel that Teddy Sears' performance as Zoom/Hunter Zolomon is superior to his as Jay Garrick.
  • Romantic Plot Tumor: Barry and Patty's turbulent courtship was just shoehorned. It was evident that the relationship is disposable and Barry would ultimately end up with Iris.
  • Ships That Pass in the Night: Black Siren is shipped with Oliver by comic fans due to being more similar to the comic Black Canary than Laurel ever was.
  • Ship-to-Ship Combat: With the addition of "Jay Garrick" and Patty Spivot (respective love interests of Caitlin and Barry), the naval battles from Season One have only become that much messier.
  • So Okay, It's Average: While enjoyable, some fans aren't enjoying Season Two as much as Season One (which admittedly set the bar pretty high). There are several reasons for this: accusations that Zoom is too similar to the Reverse-Flash to stand out on his own as a Big Bad; him being a Spotlight-Stealing Squad as most of the metahumans this season have been his lackeys at the expense of the Rogues (all of whom have been Put on a Bus), while other fan favorites like the Trickster and Grodd were used pretty quickly in the first half; the big reveal of Zoom's identity causing some Pacing Problems; the way the main characters have been forced to act like idiots to justify Zoom' threat; Barry's romance with Patty being seen as a Romantic Plot Tumor for those who didn't care for them while she was never properly used as Joe's new police partner because she was always kept Locked Out of the Loop before she was quietly written out. But the final straw for many was Zoom's plan to conquer Central City, which was seen as a blatant copy of Arrow, since many a villain on that show has tried to conquer Star(ling) City. Regardless of its problems, this was seen by many as the best Arrowverse season during 2015-2016.
  • Special Effect Failure:
    • Atom Smasher's transformation in the season premiere is painfully CG, looking like something we might have seen twenty years ago.
    • Barry saving Dr. McGee looked like an animation of an old 3D Videogame.
  • Strangled by the Red String:
    • Caitlin and "Jay" really come off as this, especially considering that Caitlin just lost her husband and basically runs after him like a hypnotised puppy from the very start.
    • Some think this of Barry and Patty as well, since a lot of people felt like Barry was settling, and the typical "I have to keep my identity a secret from my lover" thing being beyond outdated by this point. It doesn't help that her comic counterpart was a very obvious place holder for Iris, so those who knew that felt this way about the show's version by default.
  • They Changed It, Now It Sucks:
    • The Rogues despite being a big part of Season One, have all been Put on a Bus meaning that the Big Bad, Zoom gets all the attention and there's little break from that particular arc.
    • The Adaptational Villainy of Hunter Zolomon was badly received by some. In the comics, he was a tragic figure who had a lot of bad days before he snapped, and even when became Zoom his main motivation was to make the Flash suffer tragedy so it would turn him into a better hero. Here he had a really horrible childhood before being shunted off to foster care and was a notorious serial killer all before he got his powers, and he makes people suffer just for the hell of it.
    • The apparent nonexistance of Jay Garrick. Considering Jay is one of the oldest heroes in DC Comics, not to mention the first Flash, this particular plot twist was seen as disrespectful to Jay's legacy. It's subverted when the finale reveals that Henry's counterpart is the real Jay Garrick.
  • They Wasted a Perfectly Good Character:
    • Atom Smasher, who undergoes Adaptational Villainy and appears to die in his debut episode. Counts for double since he's from another Earth and he's implied to have murdered his counterpart on this Earth, who apparently never got powers.
    • Patty Spivot, due to Joe and Barry arbitrarily keeping her Locked Out of the Loop she never contributes anything to plot, even though she's a very keen-eyed detective. It's very telling when she's Put on a Bus, Joe doesn't get a new partner.
    • Tar Pit has a power set that fits especially well to be a foil to the Flash, and the episode even includes a scene based around Barry being slowed down enough to keep him from saving Iris from being hurt. But by the time he shows up, the needs of the ongoing arc mean that he and Barry hardly even fight at all.
    • Cisco's Evil Twin Reverb has tons of potential because him being essentially what Cisco could be if he learns to perfectly master and develop his abilities would make him a perfect rival for Cisco in future seasons. He's killed off in his debut episode.
    • Deathstorm, Ronnie's Evil Twin, doesn't get fleshed out very much, is Out of Focus compared to Killer Frost, and, like Reverb, is offed by Zoom in his debut episode.
    • Trajectory had a ton of potential with being the shows first ever female speedster, as well as having conflict with a voice in her head encouraging her to continue using Velocity 9. It's implied that the only reason she has resorted to crime is a result of low wages and her lowering mental state from continued use of the substance. When given the offer by Barry to stop what she is doing and try to fix her wrongs which could lead an interesting plot of the two sides of Trajectory at ends while battling the illness effects of Velocity, she instead takes more Velocity 9 and runs until she evaporates into thin air.
    • Killer Frost, who showed signs that she was possibly redeeming herself, ends up locked in a cage by Zoom and executed after the very first time she interacts with her Earth-1 counterpart. It doesn't help that her possible chance at redemption was dropped entirely from her character as well.
    • Killing the Turtle. A Man of Kryptonite for speedsters seems like it would come in handy on a show with so many of them.
    • Not once was Eddie's Earth-2 doppelgänger seen or even mentioned, especially jarring as much of the fandom is hoping to see the return of Rick Cosnett portraying a version of the super villain Colbalt Blue.
  • They Wasted a Perfectly Good Plot:
    • "The Reverse-Flash Returns" could have been a triumphant return for Season One's well-received Big Bad and a possible hint that fan-favorite Eddie might somehow be alive. Instead, we got a timey-wimey bit of technobabble that is generally considered an Ass Pull, with Thawne's return only lasting a single episode (albeit one that tied up a couple of loose ends from Season One, such as the reason for Thawne's hatred for the Flash). Although given the fact the two's timelines are in reverse, the door's still open for him to come back.
    • "Flash Back" brings us Hartley's Heel–Face Turn which a lot of people wanted. However, while the episode did show him helping with the Time Wraith, the details are glossed over once Barry get to the future, with him now being a lot friendlier and saving Barry from the Time Wraith. Those wanting a redemption arc for the character unfortunately didn't get it.
    • Subverted with the apparent inexistence of Jay Garrick. Apparently he was a character invented by Hunter Zolomon to bring a false hope, but The Man in the Iron Mask was the real Jay Garrick and the Earth-3 counterpart of Henry Allen. Jay becomes a recurring character and ally of Team Flash.
    • Zoom. In the comics he's an Anti-Villain with a unique motivation, but the writers decided to add more mystery to the character and thus confirmed he wouldn't be Hunter Zolomon, indicating that this Zoom, who was introduced as a terrifying villain who utterly breaks Barry in their first fight, would at least be an interesting new character. Then they proceed to leave his Zoom side underdeveloped for the bulk of the season. Then there is the reveal that he really is Hunter Zolomon, except he's basically In-Name-Only without any of the nuance, making it feel like they wasted both the opportunity to create a new Big Bad for the Flash and waste a popular comic character with potential. The only thing that softens the blow is that it's the Hunter Zolomon of Earth-2, meaning his counterpart on Barry's world could potentially be more like the comic version.
    • From "Back to Normal" to "The Runaway Dinosaur" Barry was without his powers, and the episodes revolved around stopping the threats in other ways. You'd think this would be a good time for Cisco to learn to use more of his powers like Reverb, especially since one of the enemies is his brother's Earth-2 counterpart, but that doesn't happen.
    • The show's budget limitations force the "Metapocalypse," with every remaining Earth-2 metahuman attacking Central City at once, to be crammed into all of about five minutes. It's played up as a massive catastrophe, after which Barry speeds in and cleans up the whole problem save for a few stragglers.
    • With Captain Cold and Heatwave having transplanted to Legends, things seem to be set for Lisa Snart becoming an independent villain on her own, and maybe even becoming leader of a new iteration of the Rogues (just exactly like what happened in the comics). Sadly, as of Season 4 Lisa has never been seen since.
  • Trapped by Mountain Lions: Ironically played. For the first half of the season, no one really cared about Iris' mother when she had nothing to do with the more interesting main plot, until it introduced Wally to the show, while the "more interesting main plot" became an infuriating Arc Fatigue plot that ruined several popular characters, while the plot that came from Francine's introduction, Wally slowly building a relationship with Joe and Iris, ends up becoming one of the best parts of the season.
  • Unexpected Character:
    • Nobody thought that Joe's wife would show up - the implication for the whole first season being she's been dead for all these years.
    • King Shark, a giant talking shark, appeared out of nowhere at the tail end of a season 2 episode well before he would become important, becoming one of the biggest talking points after the episode's release due to the shock factor.
    • Earth-2 Deadshot's appearance is considered a (pleasant) surprise, considering his main counterpart was killed by Executive Meddling during Arrow Season Three due to the upcoming Suicide Squad (2016) film.
    • No one, both In-Universe and out, expected the appearance of Reverb, an supervillain version of Cisco.
    • Since Word of God claimed that Zoom would not be Hunter Zolomon in this rendition even before Season Two aired, it surprised a lot of people when Zolomon showed up. Turns out that claim was a Red Herring; the Zoom of Earth-1 isn't Zoom. Earth-2 Zolomon, on the other hand, is.
    • An Earth-2 character is introduced to the Arrowverse shortly after the very dramatic death of their Earth-1 counterpart, Laurel Lance, over on Arrow.
  • Unfortunate Implications: Some people feel that Francine West's characterization is full of this: a black parent who abandoned her child and had a drug problem. This was upsetting to fans who felt the West Family had transcended the stereotype.
  • Unintentionally Unsympathetic:
    • Joe and Iris telling Francine to stay out of their lives comes more across of Kick the Dog than anything else. Joe at least realized he made a mistake when he learns they have a son who grew up without a father because of this, not so much Iris, who treated it like a complete betrayal when Francine never had a chance to tell her.
    • Other fans are calling foul of Henry Allen's abrupt departure in the premiere, pointing out that Barry had been working for years to free him and wanted nothing more than to spend time with his dad, and finding his on-screen reason for leaving less than convincing.
    • Wally at first, blaming Joe for not being around when he was a kid, despite the fact that his mother left before Joe even knew she was pregnant. Joe even points out that as a detective's wife Francine knew how to disappear. The next episode shows that he's angry at Francine too, even more so, and he quickly learns to get past it and bonds with Joe.
    • Barry ends up being even more of a jerk to Patty over his secret identity than he was to Iris, openly lying to her face when she figures it out while claiming that it's for her own good, as if her not knowing would protect her if Zoom found out how much Barry cares about her.
    • Scott Evans' being disappointed that Iris wasn't asking him out on a date and was instead trying to talk about work seems to be an attempt to humanize a rather one-note Flash hater. Instead it makes him appear even worse since he proceeds to get angry with Iris and guilt-trip her. Considering that he was the one to assume there was a date and that he holds power over Iris (being her boss and all), some fans were not amused when she expressed an interest in pursuing the relationship.
  • Vindicated by History: At the time, season 2 was seen as a massive step down from season 1, with many viewers voicing annoyance at how the plot had issues with too similar to both the past season and ''Arrow'' Season 2, the confusing nature of the reveal of Zoom's identity, and a number of the comic fandom that watched the show really grew to hate what it apparently did to Jay Garrick and Zoom. However, seasons 3 & 4 generally poor reception seems to have made a lot of the people who liked this season become more vocal, and so its more fondly remembered among the fandom. Zoom in particular is mostly remembered for his first few episodes, where he was an enjoyably dark badass with a cool air of mystery, rather than later when he acquired an inconsistent plan and New Powers as the Plot Demands.
  • What an Idiot!:
    • Doctor Light discovers that she has a double on Earth-1 and decides to replace her to hide from Zoom. She does this by going to her crowded workplace in supervillain gear, refers to her as her double, and tries to murder her in front of a dozen witnesses. Uh Light, are you clear on the fundamental concept of Kill and Replace? It requires people not to know the original is dead. As for the next episode stating that she specifically wanted to use Linda's body to convince Zoom she was dead, and then run, rather than taking over Linda's life? Again—killing your double in front of a dozen witnesses kinda blows the cover.
    • Topped by Cisco falling for one of the oldest tricks in the book, and blithely opening Dr. Light's cell once he sees it empty. Granted, the team had no idea she could turn invisible, though you can argue he still should have considered the possibility given that her powers are based on light.
    • Pretty much the entirety of Barry's "impersonate my alternate universe self" plan in "Welcome to Earth-2." Unsurprisingly, it gets Earth-2 Joe killed and Barry himself captured by Zoom. Comes off as particularly egregious considering that he spends a lot of time angsting about putting his loved ones in danger (even pushing Patty away because of it) and yet does it to his Earth-2 counterparts without much thought.
    • In "Escape from Earth-2," Zoom begins a manhunt for Dr. Wells and warns the entire town that he demands his head. However, it never occurred to Zoom to search STAR Labs—Wells' place of work—first. His warnings indirectly cause Wells to realize that Zoom's hunting him and gives him time to escape.
    • Barry Allen decides to travel in time to ask Thawne (in his Wells facade) to create a tachyon device for him. He learned little of his time on Earth-2 and impersonates his past self. If Barry could get alive and keep most of the timeline intact, it was because he could deceive Thawne.
    • Barry using the "Boot" to trap Zoom...and then deciding to gloat for a bit, giving him ample opportunity to escape (which he does) instead of knocking him out and taking him to the S.T.A.R. Labs prison. This is despite Barry knowing that a) the Boot has already failed several times before in holding a villain and b) Zoom is a speedster that knows how to vibrate through solid objects. The entire scene is pretty much an Idiot Plot.
    • In The Race of His Life, the Team, fearing Barry is too blinded by rage to face off against Zoom, decide to lock him up and take him down themselves, instead of trying to calm Barry down and work together, which is supposed to be the team's modus operandi. And the plan itself is equally stupid: trick Zoom into approaching a hologram of Caitlin and open a breach to Earth-2 where he will supposedly be trapped forever. The problem with this plan is that Zoom will be free to terrorize Earth-2 and every other universe in the multiverse, in the end that wouldn't work and worsened Barry's temptations.
  • The Woobie:
    • Patty when it's revealed to the audience how much pain and anger the former still carries over her father's murder.
    • Jesse Wells, held prisoner and tortured by Zoom to be used against her father. The scene where Zoom allows her to see Harry for a brief moment before taking her away again is heartbreaking.
    • Wally West, though of the Jerkass Woobie variety, at least at first. Raised by a single mother in poverty, who then contracts a fatal degenerative disease that they can't afford treatment for, forcing him to become an illegal street racer as a means to pay the medical expenses for. Then, out of nowhere, he finds out that he has a father and sister he was never told about, and his mother intentionally never told him about them, while said father never tried to track her down. He reacts terribly, but it's hard to not feel bad for the kid.
    • Assuming he wasn't evil himself, Earth-2 Martin Stein is kept in a permanent And I Must Scream situation by Deathstorm, their death at Zoom's hands really being a mercy for him. Knowing Earth-1 Martin Stein, it is hard to think about.
    • Griffin Grey was going to live happily with his girlfriend, but the powers he gets from Thawne's particle accelerator have ruined his life, since every time he uses them he ages quickly. He is no longer recognizable by his former girlfriend and has desperately been seeking a cure to his deadly powers, to no avail.
    • The man in the iron mask. Held prisoner by Zoom for who knows how long, with his mask preventing him from even speaking, and it sounds as if it gives him difficulty breathing as well. His attempt to get a message across to Jesse and Barry only makes matters worse for him; they fail to understand the message, and Zoom threatens the man into keeping quiet. Finally, despite Barry's promise to come back for him, the man in the iron mask is left behind when his fellow prisoners escape, and he remains at Zoom's (distinct lack of) mercy. The Reveal in the finale makes his situation even worse: he's the real Jay Garrick, whose identity was stolen by Zoom for the sake of Zoom's twisted idea of "playing hero." Once he's freed, however, he seems to have held together fairly well.

    Season Three 
  • Alas, Poor Scrappy: Despite the lukewarm reception that he initially received, fans were saddened when H.R. sacrificed himself in Iris' place, which really made up for his shortcomings.
  • Angst? What Angst?:
  • Anti-Climax Boss:
    • Despite all his glory, the fight between Solovar and Flash was very underwhelming, with Barry defeating him very easily in what was originally built up as a fight to the death.
    • The great Gorilla Grodd ends up defeated by Solovar in a CGI fight that doesn't even last two minutes. In all fairness, the show had exhausted its budget on CGI gorillas.
  • Anvilicious: The "you shouldn't kill but be merciful" message was told too much times by Team Flash, to a point that it makes the episode seem less as a superhero series and more of a preachy chapter. The fact that Barry has used lethal force before sure doesn't help.
  • Arc Fatigue:
    • Just like with Zoom in Season Two, Savitar's true identity and motivations ended up being dragged out way too long. Longer than with Zoom in fact. This bordered on Trolling Creator territory by "Abra Kadabra" and if it didn't cross the line then, it definitely went there in "The Once and Future Flash".
    • Some also feel that Barry still being blamed for Flashpoint by Lyla in Episode 22 is a bit wearying, as they feel that while Barry did accidentally Ret Gone her daughter, he's already apologized and paid for it enough.
  • Author's Saving Throw:
    • Wally becoming Kid Flash in the premiere, since he went all through Season Two without getting powers. While this only occurred because of the Cosmic Retcon at the end of the previous season, Wally eventually gains his powers "for real" in the post-Flashpoint timeline as well.
    • Doctor Alchemy, Mirror Master, and the Top, high-profile Flash Rogues in the comics, are confirmed to be joining the show, after Season Two didn't introduce any new members from the comics' Rogues Gallery apart from Zoom (who operated independently from the Rogues in the comics).
    • The revelation in "Killer Frost" that Savitar may be responsible for the changes to the timeline and not Barry since many viewers thought that Barry was being punished way too harshly for wanting to save his mom.
    • For those who fall in the "cut Barry some slack for Flashpoint" camp, the fact that both Oliver and Kara show unwavering trust in Barry during "Invasion!" despite learning of his hand in changing history was a welcome sigh of relief following an entire season's worth of people pouring their grievances upon Barry's head. Oliver goes the extra mile by a) telling everyone to save the drama until after the Dominators are dealt with, b) confiding in Barry about how helpless he was to save his parents, and c) assuring Barry that anyone else—himself included—would've done what Barry did if they were presented with a chance to save their family, all in all trying to get Barry to realize that, contrary to popular belief, he's not entirely to blame and should stop agonizing so heavily over what happened.
    • Supergirl being the only one of the brainwashed superheroes to be presented as a possible threat to Barry in the second part of the "Invasion!" crossover after many believed he jobbed to Arrow and Vandal Savage in the previous crossovers.
    • Several fans have complained about too much of Iris' character is being strong for everyone else and rarely talking about her feelings, despite the numerous upheavals she's been through (boyfriend who killed himself, back from the dead mother, long-lost brother, aforementioned mother dying). This is especially because of the potential Unfortunate Implications of the only black woman on the show not getting to express her emotions, instead swallowing pain to help everyone else. These fans are gratified that she seems to be expressing some emotion and vulnerability regarding her possible death at the hands of Savitar.
    • It's frequently complained that when a new speedster comes that's faster than Barry, the focus is for him to get faster than before. With Savitar, no mention of trying to get Barry faster, only prevent the events of Iris dying by Savitar. With Reverse-Flash and Zoom, there was at least a gap that Barry could reach and could keep up with them for a time. Savitar's speed was enough that Barry's speed was in slow-motion by comparison. It's a welcome change to see the team deal with an evil speedster in a different way.
    • After worrying about Solovar's Adaptational Villainy, the second part of the Gorilla City arc implies that he's going to have a Heel–Face Turn and grow into a benevolent leader, much like his comic counterpart.
    • Cisco's falling out with Barry as well as the disdain he held for him was thankfully put to rest in "Invasion!". Now in the second half of the season, especially in "The Once and Future Flash" the writers have followed this up by making the effort to include scenes of Cisco and Barry happily hanging out and Cisco reaffirming that Barry is his best friend.
    • Towards the end of the season it seemed the show’s writers were also acknowledging fan complaints by slowly reintroducing the show's original lighter tone by averting Iris' death and having Barry reach out to Savitar and offer him redemption (albeit unsuccessfully) before finally displaying Character Development as a more mature hero by owning up to Flashpoint and taking Jay's place in Savitar's prison within the Speed Force.
  • Awesome Ego: Savitar, not unlike Zoom, spends a big chunk of his dialogue boasting about his status as the god of the Speed Force. It helps that, as he's the first speedster and so fast that even other speedsters can't track his movements, his claims of godhood come off as very credible.
  • Badass Decay: Savitar's powers seem far more impressive early on in the season than later. Initially he's trapped in the Speed Force and so while he can only seldom appear in the real world, he's an absolute beast when he does, whose battle scenes are both terrifying and pure Scenery Porn...not to mention, he has a plethora of other cool powers. When he's freed from the Speed Force, he loses most of his powers other than his Super Speed, and is now only slightly faster than Barry, much like Zoom or the Reverse-Flash, meaning his scenes are no longer spectacle. So, this is a somewhat Justified Trope, but still disappointing nonetheless. Also, many people were impressed by his appearance in his introduction episode, liking the idea of a god-like speed entity. Alas, it turned out it was all just posturing and he was Human All Along, which disappointed many people.
  • Base-Breaking Character:
    • Barry's actions have really divided the fanbase. Some see him as a self-absorbed crybaby who thinks he has it harder than those who are suffering because of his actions, while others see him as a flawed human who made one mistake in a moment where he was going through some extreme emotional pain and is doing his best to make amends to those he has (accidentally) wronged. He divided the fanbase even further in "The Wrath of Savitar" when Barry runs towards the spot where Wally had inadvertently summoned the Speed Force and appears to make no effort to try to help Wally out of the Speed Force as Wally disappears and Savitar reappears despite Wally not fully disappearing into it for a few seconds. Some fans now see Barry as being incredibly stupid for not trying to help someone close to him, with a few others interpreting Flash's inaction as a possible sign of pettiness over Wally spoiling his engagement plans with Iris earlier. Others, however, defend Barry's actions and point out the possibility that had Barry tried to help Wally out of the Speed Force, he would have been sucked in too, leaving Iris completely vulnerable to Savitar's predations.
    • Julian Albert, the new CSI tech. Some loved him for Tom Felton's awesome acting and his frequent Jerkass Has a Point status. Others dislike him since he's an Insufferable Genius who nearly got everyone in the police station killed in Episode 3 because he decided to confront a metahuman all by himself just to prove his theory right rather than follow basic police protocol and he later blackmailed Barry while complaining about Barry's morality. It also really doesn't help when we learn that he's Doctor Alchemy, one of the major villains this season, though "The Present" shows he was something of a physical avatar/mouthpiece for Savitar and completely unaware of his alter-ego while giving Julian another chance to mend the fence with Barry.
    • Mirror Master was highly anticipated before his debut, especially in light of the announcement he would be adapted into a metahuman. When the episode aired, Mirror Master was subjected to criticism for having little depth—beyond a vendetta against Snart, he only displays a fondness for bank heists in his role as a throwaway villain. Part of the fanbase finds his depiction and performance underwhelming, while another segment is willing to wait and see what the show does with the newest additions to the Rogues. Though personality aside, many fans agree the live-action portrayal of his powers is pretty awesome.
    • Some fans like Earth-19 Wells/H.R. for being funny, providing a hilarious reversal of Cisco's dynamics with the previous Wells, and giving Tom Cavanagh more chances to show off his acting skills. Others see him as a Replacement Scrappy for Earth-2 Wells/Harry and think that he has nothing to do with the show's plot and he is only an excuse to keep Tom Cavanagh on the show. Then there are those who have no problem with the character, but would have preferred it if Harry stayed as he had already spent his time up to the point of his departure building a strong rapport with the team and endearing himself to the fans. His criticism gets downplayed with time, though.
    • With the fallout between him and Barry starting in the seventh episode, Cisco has been carving out some territory here, as his constant potshots at Barry are not only starting to wear thin, but are also giving many viewers flashbacks to the similarly peevish Felicity of Arrow's third and fourth seasons. For those who find themselves suddenly annoyed by Cisco, it's not so much that they feel he's without justification as it is they hate how unnecessarily petty he's being with his grudge. He manages to redeem himself in the third part of the "Invasion!" crossover, though, after finding that he and Barry are Not So Different.
  • Bizarro Episode: "Duet"; a Musical Episode that involves both Flash and Supergirl getting trapped in a world where they must sing and learn a life lesson about the meaning of love.
  • Broken Base:
    • Savitar being the main villain for the third season. Some people are tired of yet another speedster being the Big Bad, while others don't mind and feel that speed-based villains are the best to combat Barry. Other fans are taking a middle ground, with some hoping Savitar will end up being a Disc-One Final Boss to Dr. Alchemy or another villain. "Shade" establishes that the two are working together in some capacity, though the exact nature of their partnership is unknown. Then it turns out in the following episode Alchemy is nothing more than an acolyte for Savitar, and an unwitting one at that.
    • Savitar being revealed to be a time remnant of Barry Allen who has turned evil. The fandom is torn between those who thought it was a clever twist, those who were happy to have predicted Savitar's identity correctly, and those who are disappointed that the show went with the most obvious and predictable fan theory which wasn't shocking at all. There's also further divisive opinions on whether the reveal of Savitar's true identity was an improvement to his character or made him worse. A portion of the fanbase who felt Savitar was generic and lackluster before, became interested after the reveal due to curiosity over how a future Barry Allen became Savitar. Another portion felt that making him a future Barry took away his intimidation factor of being the "God of Speed" who was really a vulnerable man underneath, though others argue that Savitar was never intimidating to begin with compared to the likes of Reverse-Flash and Zoom, and was just silly prior to the reveal.
  • Captain Obvious Reveal:
    • The show making such a big deal about revealing that Kid Flash is Wally. Even if you don't know the comics, it's very easy to recognize the actor even with the blurring effect.
    • Likewise, Dr. Alchemy being Julian underneath the mask. Many fans had guessed this early on in the season, several as far back as "Paradox", and certain episodes like "Shade" and "Killer Frost" gave rather blatant hints to the revelation. Also, his last name is Albert, as in the first name of the comics' Doctor Alchemy. (It's later established via Freeze-Frame Bonus in "The Present" that Julian's full name is Julian Albert Desmond.) Though rather fewer people predicted the secondary twist that he's an innocent victim who had no idea he was Alchemy, having been used like a puppet by Savitar.
  • Catharsis Factor: Barry punching Savitar in the face in "Cause and Effect" after all the trouble the latter caused during Season 3. It's topped later on by Barry stealing Savitar's own armor and delivering a No-Holds-Barred Beatdown. And then Iris kills Savitar with a single shot through the back.
  • Counterpart Comparison:
    • Dr. Alchemy is already getting his physical appearance compared to Scarecrow, Revan, and Kylo Ren. In terms of characterization, he's not unlike Brother Blood's depiction on Arrow, being the masked leader of a cult that creates superhumans, and being under the control of the real Big Bad of the season.
    • Frankie Kane/Magenta has a quite similar story arc to Andrew from Chronicle, using her superpowers to get revenge on her abusive father and ultimately trying to kill him in his hospital bed. Luckily, she has a better ending.
    • The Top's powers are more in line with Count Vertigo, who lacked said powers on Arrow.
    • Savitar looks exactly like a member of the Covenant straight out of Halo. People have also compared his appearance to that of Megatron. His backstory shares elements of Apocalypse from X-Men; both are the first mutant/speedster and have a massive god complex.
    • When Savitar reveals his true face, viewers have frequently been thinking of Dane DeHaan...or rather, the Green Goblin as portrayed by DeHaan. Matter of fact, they have a few more similarities, not just in appearance.
    • Savitar's identity as a time remnant of Barry and his plan to ensure his continued existence by going back in time and antagonizing his past self invited several comparisons to the Cole/Kessler twist from inFAMOUS, only Savitar has no noble intentions whatsoever behind his actions.
      • Danny Phantom fans were also quick to compare him to Dark Danny.
  • Creepy Awesome:
  • Darkness-Induced Audience Apathy: The "Save Iris" arc, due to how it went from optimistic to fatalistic very quickly — Caitlin becoming Killer Frost is just the cherry on top. Ultimately rendered moot as Iris manages to survive Savitar after H.R. takes her place and Caitlin/Killer Frost ends the season still as a metahuman but in a better place mentally where she knows that she doesn't have to be a villain.
  • Dork Age: This is generally considered one of the weakest seasons of the show thus far. While it does have its defenders, most agree that the overall quality was a step down from the last two seasons. All this being said, even its biggest detractors consider it better than Season Four of Arrow, which was the absolute low point for the entire Arrowverse.
  • Ensemble Darkhorse:
    • Jay Garrick due to becoming a mentor to Barry and finally talking some sense into him, and for being just a Cool Old Guy in general.
    • Out of all the alternate versions of Harrison Wells, Mime Wells and Hells Wells were the ones who endeared the fandom the most.
    • Gypsy, due to being a sexy, badass, darker Distaff Counterpart to Cisco.
    • The Accelerated Man a.k.a. The Flash of Earth-19. His brief appearance accompanied by his very old fashioned but memorable outfit has made him a One-Scene Wonder and left many fans interested in what his story is. Plus his lightning appears to be purple!
    • Abra Kadabra, due to being one of the few Rogues adapted for the show to be close to his comic counterpart and isn't treated as a throwaway Villain of the Week; he's one of Barry's foes from the future, so he'll be back.
  • Epileptic Trees: Savitar's identity has been one of the biggest source of wild theories on the show. Some of the more popular ones include Prometheus, Wally West, Future Barry Allen, H.R., Eddie Thawne, Daniel West, and Ronnie Raymond. Turns out he was a time remnant of Barry Allen.
  • Evil Is Sexy:
  • Fan-Preferred Couple: Killervibe (Cisco/Caitlin) has a large following, given their incredibly close and nurturing friendship, some fans pointing out several parallels between the two to Barry and Iris' tight-knit bond before they became the Official Couple.
  • Fandom-Specific Plot: There are more than a few fanfics where Barry attempts suicide to Ret Gone Savitar.
  • Fashion-Victim Villain: The Rival's costume has been harshly criticized as one of the most ridiculous villain costumes in the entire Arrowverse. Basically, the Rival wears a black suit similar to Zoom's, but with red and yellow lightning bolts scribbled all over and has a goblin-shaped mask that's supposed to make him appear menacing, but doesn't.
  • Fight Scene Failure: Wally's final fight against the Rival. We're told and shown repeatedly that Wally can never beat the Rival. He then proceeds to do so easily, though Rival was merely holding back. Then Wally idiotically turns his back, leading to him getting stabbed.
  • "Funny Aneurysm" Moment:
    • The scene in Season 2's "Invincible" where Cisco and Caitlin dress up as Reverb and Killer Frost? Hilarious. The reveal that in the new timeline, Caitlin is starting to turn into Killer Frost? Not so much...
    • The same thing applies to the scene in "King Shark" where Caitlin plays a trick on Cisco by pretending she's becoming Killer Frost; now it's happening for real.
  • Harsher in Hindsight:
    • Cisco and Dante's reconciliation in "Rupture" becomes this with the reveal that some time between then and "Paradox," the latter was killed in a car accident.
    • Caitlin's insistence she'd never become Killer Frost in "King Shark" now that she's slowly turning into Killer Frost. It's not just the ice powers, it's like a virus replacing Caitlin with the "Killer Frost" persona.
    • The fall of Star City as detailed in "Star City 2046" seems more and more likely now that Sara Diggle is no more and John Diggle Jr. exists in her place.
    • Barry's oft-mocked claim in the show's opening narration of being "the fastest man alive" despite several characters being faster over the course of the show. Savitar, who is the fastest speedster on the show yet, happens to be a time remnant of Barry, proving the claim true.
  • Heartwarming in Hindsight: Barry proposing to Iris this season along with Grant Gustin's acting in both the mid-season finale and his second proposal in "Duet" becomes additionally delightful because of Grant Gustin becoming engaged to his girlfriend in April 2017.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight
    • The Rival was believed to be Savitar by some early viewers. He gets killed by the real Savitar one episode after his debut.
    • The episode "Killer Frost" focusing on Caitlin worrying that her Superpowered Evil Side would corrupt her mind and turn her against her friends becomes this when Gotham had a similar plotline where Captain Barnes ended up turning evil after corruption from his superpowers, too.
    • Also slightly sweet, but the entirety of the second half of the season dealt with Barry attempting to rescue Iris, and Grant looking out for Candice, let it slip that she would indeed have a job come season 4, assuring her Iris was gonna live. Guess both in character and out Barry/Grant will always rescue his friends.
  • Internet Backdraft:
    • Caitlin's arc as Killer Frost as there's no explanation as to why her powers turn her evil; Danielle Panabaker kept asking the crew this question and they never gave her a straight-answer.
    • Many people are becoming extremely annoyed with S.T.A.R. Labs and their effect on Barry and the show, since it prevents almost everyone who isn't native there from doing their jobs, though it has its fans. In the two earlier seasons, viewers saw Barry, Joe and Iris doing their jobs outside of it so there was balance. However, this season, especially the second half, mostly revolves around characters doing everything at S.T.A.R. Labs. Moreover, it means that Barry literally cannot use his brain because he still has his friends there to tell him what to do. This came to a head in the first part of the Grodd episodes, when Barry had to be reminded how to run away. Many are irritated that it's holding him back from being the intelligent, science-focused Barry from the comics that built Gideon and the Flash ring, preventing characters like Joe and Iris from doing their jobs, and taking up space that should be given to people more closely tied to the Flash mythos.
  • It's the Same, Now It Sucks!:
    • The Rival is considered this by some, what with him being another evil speedster after we just got done with Zoom (and Thawne in the previous season). It doesn't help that he has little backstory or motive and wears a black costume like Zoom. Of course it's a moot point since he's killed by Savitar for his incompetence in the second episode.
    • Following the winter finale, the revelation by Savitar that "one will fall, one will betray, and one will suffer a Fate Worse than Death" as well as the accompanying vision of Iris being killed by Savitar in late May 2017 seems to bring back memories of the Tonight, Someone Dies trope that was liberally used last season on Arrow, not to mention Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. as well. It certainly doesn't help that the resolution to the former was almost universally reviled by fans.
    • Many feel this season is too similar to Arrow since Barry's arc is very similar to Oliver's concurrent arc — they are both confronted by a villain of their own making (Prometheus for Oliver, Savitar for Barry) who want to destroy the hero without killing them; Prometheus wants to turn Star City against Green Arrow, Savitar wants to do it by killing Iris. Both Barry and Oliver are haunted by their past failures (Barry creating Flashpoint and Oliver's inability to save Laurel) and they let their guilt from their failures cloud their judgement.
  • Like You Would Really Do It:
    • Iris' prophesied death at the hands of Savitar had this reaction. Fans were very doubtful that spending a whole season trying to prevent her death, it was very unlikely the writers would go through with killing the female lead of the show. Seemingly averted in the penultimate episode of the season, but the person Savitar killed wasn't Iris but H.R. impersonating her, playing this trope straight.
    • The same has to be said of Caitlin, even though the way Julian had saved her still remains controversial. It was also doubtful she would be kept as a villain when she has been popular in her heroic role.
  • Memetic Badass:
    • Jay Garrick. He is often depicted as a "bitch slapper" to speedsters who fucks up the timeline due to him pulling Barry from fixing the post-Flashpoint timeline. Him volunteering to take Wally's place in the Speed Force has added more to his badass reputation.
    • After the Season Finale, H.R. Wells acquires the fame of defeating villains with his transmogrification device.
  • Memetic Loser:
  • Memetic Mutation:
    • "Now's who the villain, Flash? Now who's the villain?"note 
    • Doctor Alchemy saying "You Failed" in a Creepy Monotone is now being compared to a Game Over screen.
    • "Unclear."Explanation 
    • Harry's sarcastic remarks and outdated slang in "Magenta," appending seemingly positive comments with "Not!" have become a meme in themselves.
    • The addition of Tom Felton to the cast has resulted in several comparisons between the show and Harry Potter. There were even screencaps of Felton comparing the two leads and making him say variants of "I hate lightning."Explanation 
      • The revelation that Doctor Alchemy, who often uses the Philosopher's Stone, was actually Felton's character Julian being possessed by Savitar only served to increase the amount of comparisons, as did the fact that Julian has a deceased younger sister named Emma.
    • "Nah."Explanation 
    • Snurtle the TurtleExplanation 
    • Barry's decision to run straight into Grodd's shield during "Attack on Central City" was met with significant derision and achieved memetic status almost instantly.
    • "I'm the future, Flash." note 
    • Savitar's identity. Once again, fans are forced to play the guessing game of the Big Bad's identity, with a variety of creative theories. See Epileptic Trees for more details.
    • Similarly, who will die this season? With the show's habit of killing an important character each season, fans have been speculating on who will kick the bucket this time, with Iris and Julian being popular candidates. note  The one who ends up dying is H.R.
    • "Music by Blake Neely." note 
    • Emo!Barrynote 
  • Memetic Troll: Savitar is often joked about being just some all-powerful jokester who uses his amazing powers to screw with Barry over the maniac with a god complex with a greater evil plan. Considering that he seems to have used his powers to look into the futures of team Flash, some fans are going so far as to say that he made it up just to troll them.
  • Moral Event Horizon:
    • Grodd's attempt to nuke Central City permanently establishes how far beyond sympathy he is. Even Caitlin, who had shown affection for Grodd and was even something of a Morality Pet for him, flat-out says that there's no good left in him.
    • Savitar killing Iris in the Bad Future just to hurt Barry is already horrible enough on its own, but after The Reveal it becomes even more atrociously evil; he didn't just murder some innocent woman for his own gain, he murdered his own fiancée simply to spite his younger self and ensure that he becomes a villain.
  • Narm:
    • In "Attack on Gorilla City" Solovar uses Mind Control telepathy and speaks through Cisco. This is supposed to have a psychological intimidation effect of seeing a friend being possessed, but Carlos Valdes' attempt at impersonating a deep gorilla voice makes the whole scene either amusing or cringeworthy. While Tom Cavanagh does a somewhat better job as Harry Wells being controlled by Grodd, it's ruined by the fact that Grodd had no reason to use Harry since he shows up right outside the prison door to say the final line. It really doesn't help that the obvious real reason Grodd and Solovar use the humans to speak is because of a case of Real Life Writes the Plot, as the show only has enough budget for a limited amount of CGI gorilla shots.
    • The climatic scene in "The Wrath of Savitar" is hard to take seriously when Barry just stands afar dumbstruck instead of preventing Wally from getting absorbed into the Speed Force. Even if Barry couldn't save Wally due to Rule of Drama, fans agree that Barry should've been shown trying to do something instead of standing around.
    • Malcolm Merlyn, a previously-established vile villain from Arrow and a member of the Legion of Doom on Legends of Tomorrow, plays a singing bartender in "Duet" despite Kara never having encountered him face to face before. It also really doesn't help that Barry has to awkwardly explains who he is to Kara for anyone confused as to who the character is. Granted, part of this reaction also comes from those who have had limited exposure to the rest of John Barrowman's body of work; Barrowman was well-known for his work in music and theatre, with Merlyn being a stark departure from most of his other roles.
    • The shameless Product Placement of Hamilton in "Abra Kadabra".
    • Barry's hair in the bad future. It's just too silly looking to take seriously.
    • The Arc Fatigue of Savitar's identity reaches its apex of silliness when an episode's final scene has a whole minute-long sequence of him stepping out of his armor, the music dramatically swelling, and then we still don't see who it is.
  • Narm Charm:
    • Savitar's over-the-top boasts and declarations of godhood could have come off as ridiculous, but the combination of his power, Tobin Bell's intimidating voice-over performance, and his monstrous appearance make them terrifying.
    • Unlike the aforementioned mind-control of Cisco and Harry, Grodd controlling Joe in "Attack on Central City" is much more intimidating, thanks to Jesse L. Martin's performance and Grodd also using it as an attempt to force Joe to kill himself.
    • In "The Once and Future Flash," it's easy to dismiss Barry's second battle against the 2024 New Rogues because of the latter's Flat Character dialogue and eye-rolling cheesiness of it all, but the charm Barry brings to the scene along with the excitement of watching 2017 and 2024 Flash capture the New Rogues makes the scene work and reminds viewers of the Silver Age antics that made them enjoy the show in the first place.
  • Never Live It Down: Nobody is going to let Barry forget how many lives he ruined by going back in time and saving Nora. Fans are particularly irate how he didn't care what happened to Cisco and Caitlin in "Flashpoint" because he was so focused on himself. Even worse is the fact that because they don't remember Flashpoint, he won't ever get called out on that particular action. This is similar to some fans' reactions to the Barry's role in the Flashpoint comic.
  • Paranoia Fuel:
    • Doctor Alchemy can track you down no matter what universe you live in.
    • Savitar escalates the threat level of previous speedsters by the simple fact he's completely invisible to everyone besides other speedsters (and Dr. Alchemy), and even when Barry does catch sight of Savitar he can barely keep pace with him. As the scene at the end of "Shade" demonstrates, you'd never know he's coming until it's far too late. The Action Prologue of "Killer Frost" further up the ante; Savitar is capable of moving so fast, the effect is akin to instantaneous teleportation.
  • Replacement Scrappy:
    • Quite a number of fans view H.R. as a completely inferior replacement for Harrison Wells as the Team Dad. The team openly admits that they dislike his presence, and Harry Wells' fans were upset or sad that he was Put on a Bus in favor of the new Wells.
    • The New Rogues, Mirror Master and the Top, are this to the original Rogues Captain Cold and Heat Wave. Granted, this is due to said Rogues moving over to Legends of Tomorrow; it doesn't stop fans from missing the duo back when they were stirring up trouble for Barry.
    • Savitar was seen as yet another evil speedster, and one who lacked the impact Thawne and Zoom had.
  • Rescued from the Scrappy Heap:
  • Romantic Plot Tumor: A general criticism of the show that's especially notable in this season, as there are literally five different romantic subplots going on at the same time, causing some of the fanbase to feel they're being overdone in general. Barry and Iris bring too much emphasis in minor conflicts. There is also Mon-El and Kara's romance from the crossover; Supergirl was suffering this very problem in Season 2.
  • Seasonal Rot: Although starting off quite strong with the introduction of Flashpoint and Wally becoming Kid Flash, the season took a decline with the introduction of Savitar, making the season switch from "fix Flashpoint" to "Save Iris", which was a very tedious arc for many.
  • The Scrappy:
  • Seasonal Rot: Season Three tends to be the least well-regarded season of The Flash, due to Darkness-Induced Audience Apathy with regards to Savitar being seemingly destined to kill Iris, fans feeling tired of the Big Bad being another evil speedster, too much filler episodes, Savitar's goal not being enough to sustain a big bad and the fan perception that Barry just hadn't grown as a hero at all, with him seemingly being unable to dodge attacks he should easily be able to and being almost totally reliant upon his Star Labs crew to win his battles for him.
  • Ship Mates: Snowbarry (Barry/Caitlin) and Savifrost(Savitar/Killer Frost), this may be due to the fact they are technically the same ship.
  • Ship-to-Ship Combat:
    • The introduction of the Caitlin/Julian (Snowbert) romance has led to ship wars between Snowbert, Snowbarry (Barry/Caitlin), Killervibe (Caitlin/Cisco) and Savifrost (Savitar/Killer Frost) shippers.
    • Downplayed with the Wally/Jesse ship. While generally accepted, there are fans who are unsure if the romance will ultimately work out and wonder what its development will mean for Linda (Wally's wife in the comics) who hasn't been seen since the first half of Season 2 and thus has yet to meet Wally. The very next season, Jesse dumps Wally, and not even in person at that.
  • Slow-Paced Beginning: The season's first two episodes turned a lot of people off with their aggressively dour tone, reminiscent of the infamous Season 6 of Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Many fans even declared that The Flash was the weakest Arrowverse show of the season. Luckily, things picked up quite a bit afterwards as it again starts fully (albeit temporarily) playing into the goofy Silver Age stuff that was the whole draw of the show in the first place.
  • Take That, Scrappy!:
    • Julian finally being punched out by Barry/The Flash, after putting up with half a season of his constant complaints and whining.
    • Likewise, while more of a Base-Breaking Character by this point, Cisco chewing Julian out for his recklessness in disregarding Caitlin's wishes, and turning her into her greatest fear Killer Frost, heavily reflected a large opinion of the fan base.
    • Earth-2 Wells relentlessly calling out H.R. on his obnoxious tendencies feels like the writers acknowledging everything wrong with the character.
    • "Into the Speed Force" sees Jesse deck H.R. in the middle of a dramatic speech when he tries to dissuade her from going after Savitar alone while fueled by her grief over Wally being trapped in the Speed Force. After H.R. goes down, Jesse remarks how that was "oddly satisfying."
  • They Changed It, Now It Sucks:
    • In the comics, the Top is an inexplicably awesome badass with psychic powers and enough super speed to blitz Barry or Wally; here, she is reduced to Jesse Quick's Starter Villain, in addition to a rather pointless gender flip from a man to a woman.
    • The Music Meister is an undeveloped Trickster Mentor with completely different powers (to the point that 'Music Meister' is completely ill-fitting as a namenote ) from his animated counterpart and wants to help the good guys learn a lesson about love instead of the flamboyant, over-the-top showman who wanted to conquer the world by mesmerizing them through his beautiful singing.
  • They Wasted a Perfectly Good Character:
    • Many were unhappy how Shade was reduced to a sub-average Villain of the Week with no motivation or even characterization other than being as a distraction by Dr. Alchemy.
    • Grodd has a two-parter story arc about him leading an army of gorillas to attack Central City, but the villain gets absolutely zero character development and is defeated anti-climatically. Solovar counts too, since he was only featured three times in the arc, with the episode only implying that he'll perform a Heel–Face Turn before he departs.
    • Many fans have expressed disappointment that Alchemy ends up only being The Dragon to the true Big Bad Savitar and not even that, given Savitar is literally just possessing him. Thanks to Arc Fatigue over speedster villains, many were hoping for a full season about a non-speedster Big Bad.
    • The show's version of Music Meister is essentially a completely different character. The original Music Meister was a flamboyant supervillain with the ability to make people burst into song, but the show instead opts to make him into a Trickster Mentor with a set of vague omnipotent powers which, bafflingly, have nothing to do with music. He doesn't even get a solo! It doesn't help that, by establishing that this was the Music Meister (given how he doesn't act anything like the actual Music Meister), and not another Trickster type character that could have fit the role in the episode much better.
    • Many fans feel that the Big Bad Savitar had a lot of wasted potential, largely due to the writers dragging out the reveal of his identity until so close to the end of the season that there wasn't really enough time left to actually develop his character. The backstory of how Barry's time remnant became Savitar is never actually shown (the only explanation we get is that he decided to become a god to escape his pain) and we also never learn how he got his suit or scars. He was also defeated in a rather anticlimactic way. Others also thought that it would have been much better if Savitar was the time remnant that sacrificed itself against Zoom instead of one that fought (off-screen) against...himself.
    • Tracy Brand had potential to reach Ensemble Darkhorse status that was squandered when her main plot contribution, the Speed Force Bazooka, apparently the only thing able to stop Savitar according to Future Barry, was rendered moot by the philosopher Stone, and thus being degraded to a Satellite Love Interest spending the entirety of the season finale mourning and weeping over the loss of her beloved H.R., a man she had only met a few episodes prior. Her promised comeback on Season 4 never happened and she was The Ghost.
    • The Cult Alchemy had been building in the name of Savitar during the first half of the season had a chance at fully realizing a small army for the Big Bad to command in the same vein as the Meta-Apocalypse Zoom had attempted prior, while much more manageable due to a smaller mass. Unfortunately they appear in one episode after being mentioned, and Killer Frost was the only minion seen working with Savitar after his escape from the Speed Force.
  • They Wasted a Perfectly Good Plot:
    • The much anticipated "Flashpoint" world is over in a mere episode. Exactly how Barry's meddling in time caused Cisco to take Wells' place as a tech guru (it's also unclear if he still has his powers or not), Caitlin to end up as an eye doctor, and Joe to be a miserable drunk who hates his job go unexplained, not to mention any effects it would have on Star City and Team Arrow. Though to be fair, despite "Flashpoint" no longer being present, it still has a very big impact over the season due to Dr. Alchemy.
    • On "Flashpoint" we could have known better about Earth-1 Harrison Wells since his murder was negated, but that point is not developed at all.
    • The return of Rick Cosnett and Robbie Amell was disappointing for many fans since they were expecting them to reprise their roles or act as alternate versions of their previous characters rather than them portraying the Speed Force. People were interested on what happened to Eddie on "Flashpoint" as well, but it did not appear.
    • Jesse finally gets her powers and becomes Jesse Quick and then goes back to Earth-2 just as quickly. Many were hoping she'd stay on Earth-1 long enough to form a Power Trio with her, Barry, and Wally (when he got his powers). Jesse decides to stay on Earth-1 to be with Wally, moving in with him at the end of "Attack on Central City," but at the end of "Into the Speed Force" Jesse temporarily migrates to Earth-3 to substitute Jay while he is trapped in the Speed Force and negate Savitar's plan with her.
    • "Duet" squanders its entire premise, with only two original songs in the entire episode and a lion's share focused on bringing Kara and Mon-El's Romantic Plot Tumor over to another show. By limiting the concept to just a dream, it also meant that the cast were mostly singing songs about the dream personas, where as their actual character arcs at the time (such as Wally's trauma from being trapped in the Speed Force) could have gotten musical ques instead (particularly as Keiynan Lonsdale is a singer as well).
    • In "Cause and Effect", Cisco and Julian have the idea of giving Barry anterograde amnesia, but their Laser-Guided Amnesia-style procedure accidentally gives him Identity Amnesia instead. This is somewhat disappointing since anterograde amnesia is utilized far less often in fiction, and the plot that results from Barry's amnesia is somewhat cliche.
    • Many people were intrigued by the idea of redeeming a Big Bad for a change instead of killing him off. Had he gone on to live his own life, maybe as the Flash of another Earth or just living out his life on a different part of Earth-1, we could have had a fascinating Redemption Quest and the occasional cameo. Well, it didn't take long until Savitar ditched the attempt. Others are interested to see what would happen if Savitar succeeded in his plans, as the few instances we got of how he acts when he wasn't messing with Team Flash or building up to killing Iris, he was shown to be boastful and somewhat demanding yet still kind and reasonable; heck, his first appearance as Savitar was him coming to the rescue of his followers. Plus outside the stuff he did to ensure his own existence, he never really did a lot of evil stuff. In fact his evil deeds can be counted on one hand: 1) Killed the Rival for failing him, 2) Tried to get Magenta to kill her abusive father.
    • The quick resolution of Iris' death in general. While of course it was well known that they weren't going to actually go on with the show without Iris, the fact that Barry was robbed of a downright Big Damn Heroes moment going against the grain to save the love of his life, which in the comics was a heart-wrenching, slightly confusing, but overall pretty epic quest Barry undertook, including traveling far into the future and facing off with Abra-Kadabra. This could have been the plot basis for, if not just the season finale, but season 4, with several open possibilities of multiple Crossovers with other "Arrowverse" properties, and making a Big Bad out of an Ensemble Dark Horse character like the aforementioned Abra-Kadabra and lead to a giant heartwarming reunion between the Star-Crossed Lovers.
    • Caitlin's transformation into Killer Frost is caused by an unknown source following the alteration to time post-Flashpoint, and her exact motivation for turning evil as a result is poorly explained at best (there's some degree of Sanity Slippage and she treats using them as if being demonically possessed, with her succumbing to a Superpowered Evil Side). The comics actually gave Caitlin a very good reason for why her powers turn her evil (she needs to feed on organic body heat or else she'd freeze to death, and doing so is lethal for those she drains heat from), which could have made both her Face–Heel Turn as well as her eventual redemption make far more sense.
  • Unexpected Character: Fans were on the whole taken aback when it was announced the Music Meister, an obscure villain from one episode of Batman: The Brave and the Bold, would appear in a crossover between The Flash and Supergirl, titled after two characters who have nothing to do with Music Meister. Turns out it was a musical episode, so It Makes Sense in Context.
  • Unintentionally Sympathetic:
    • Barry is berated for changing time to save his mother and father, but as selfish as his actions were, however, he only did so to release his enormous pain. The fact that The Legends have done worse time aberrations and yet aren't that punished makes it seem like Barry is being unfairly punished for a hasty but relatable human mistake (and it's not until seven episodes in that anyone notes that what Barry did just makes him human). It's difficult to fault Barry for the consequences of his actions when he couldn't possibly have predicted them.
    • Barry's journey back into the Speed Force also elicited this reaction for many in several different ways. When confronted by the Speed Force's manifestations, Barry is chastised for creating Flashpoint, as the Speed Force only gave back his speed in "The Runaway Dinosaur" because it thought Barry had come to terms with his mother's death. Barry says he did, right up until Zoom killed his father, which is heavily implied to be an event the Speed Force allowed in order to test Barry's resolve. The Speed Force also faults Wally for his current imprisonment within the Speed Force, ignoring the fact that Savitar clearly set up Wally to take the fall and is now running free because of it. Barry then gets blamed again for handing off the task of defeating Savitar to Wally, disregarding that Barry had a good reason to do so — Wally, who also has a personal investment in saving the life of his sister, had the potential to succeed where Barry had failed countless times before, and Barry, out of feasible options when it came to changing the future, took it upon himself to train Wally. Even for a Sentient Cosmic Force operating by Blue and Orange Morality that is trying to impart the lesson of accountability, and even if it holds Barry to a different standard from other speedsters because he is its champion, the Speed Force comes across as excessively harsh.
  • Unintentionally Unsympathetic:
    • A lot of fans are annoyed with the fact that Barry didn't go looking for Cisco and Caitlin during the three months he spent in Flashpoint until he needed them, making his claim that Cisco is his best friend in "Killer Frost" ring hollow. They're even more angry at the fact that since they asked Barry not to tell them about their Flashpoint lives, it's likely that they won't ever call him out on this despite the fact. There's also the fact that he seems to ignore everyone telling him to leave them alone just because he wants things to go back to the way they were, when giving them the space they need may be more effective than talking to them and blaming everything on himself. Many viewers are starting to like Barry a lot less than they did back in Season 1.
    • Iris chews out Barry for being too uncomfortable to kiss her around Joe in "The New Rogues." The thing is, they weren't just kissing. They were full-on making out, which is inappropriate around, well, pretty much anyone.
    • Most agree Cisco has a right to be angry at Barry for messing with time and that he shouldn't give Barry a free pass, but still find his attitude to be overdramatic and sometimes downright whiny. He didn't do himself any favors in "Invasion!" by forcing Barry to reveal the existence of Flashpoint to everyone, an incredibly dickish move that went against Cisco's promise to be professional and not let the rift between them interfere with the mission. However, in the third part of the crossover, he has a Jerkass Realization, gaining back some fans' respect for him.
    • To an extent, Joe and Iris trying to give Wally the cold shoulder when it comes to his newfound speed and discouraging him from training in "Invasion!" They're clearly concerned about his well-being (and Wally's actions throughout the previous episodes didn't do anything to alleviate their fears), but fail to realize that, with his personality, strong desire to help people, and insecurities about being The Un-Favourite of the West-Allen family, Wally's bound to rush head-first into danger anyway, as shown with his Big Damn Heroes moment later that episode; many feel it'd be a great deal more helpful for them to ensure Wally is better prepared instead of limiting him and giving the boy an earful, which was the lesson Harry learned about Jesse in "The New Rogues."
    • It's very hard to feel sympathetic towards Caitlin in "The Wrath of Savitar" when we find out that she kept a piece of the Philosopher's Stone to see whether she could use it to get rid of her Killer Frost powers. When you consider that Savitar was going to kill Iris, mind-controlling Cisco and Julian, giving Wally hallucinations, and threatening Barry, keeping the Stone seems selfish, since she knew the Stone kept Savitar from being fully defeated. It doesn't help that Caitlin can be talked down from her Killer Frost persona, has both power-dampening cuffs AND the necklace that Julian made her, and that we've never seen her actively try to get rid of her powers. What makes it even worse is that she's barely reprimanded for her actions, when earlier in the episode Wally was kicked out of the Cortex for his secret and Barry has been punished for pretty much every mistake he's made on the show.
    • Barry and Iris when they try to forgive Savitar due to Iris not being the victim and not causing Barry's Despair Event Horizon. The idea was that Barry was trying to go back to his heroic routes and do things the more noble way, not to mention the fact that Barry was trying to get Savitar to release Caitlin and Cisco, but to some it came across as H.R having less importance to the team than Iris since he was negotiating with Savitar soon after he sacrificed himself for Iris. Worsened by the fact that he likely wouldn't be so merciful if Iris was the murdered one.
  • The Untwist: Savitar bluntly stating "I am the Future Flash" was deemed too obvious by many for him to be a Future Barry Allen, but turns out that's exactly who he is.
  • Visual Effects of Awesome: If there is one shining achievement to be taken from this season, it's that the show has come a long way with its all-CGI characters. Grodd looks better than ever, while Savitar, Solovar, the residents of Gorilla City, the Time Wraiths, the Black Flash, the hologram monster and Killer Frost's ice trail have all showed up in CGI form, and all look very nice and convincing. note 
  • Wangst:
    • Barry's guilt over Flashpoint grows old after a while.
    • Wally's desire to become a superhero because he feels so useless to the team begins to get a little grating on fans who're tired of him complaining about not having powers as opposed to actually doing something about it.
    • Cisco's resentment over Dante's death also left a number of fans annoyed, since he stopped being fun and he caused problems in the Invasion! crossover with that attitude.
  • What an Idiot!:
    • Barry just saw the Rival literally stab Kid Flash in the back, nearly killing him. After he fights the Rival, he gets the upper hand, and proceeds to turn his back on the murderous supervillain. Guess what the Rival tries to do? Barry only escapes because Joe showed up at the last moment.
    • In "Magenta," Wally wants to see if he has Super Speed, so he jumps right into a speeding car to see how he'll react to it. For bonus points, he actually tells Barry that he didn't know what he'd expect from doing this. Barry proceeds to chew Wally out so thoroughly that Joe feels there's nothing more for him to add to the discussion.
    • In "Duet," a depowered Flash and Supergirl try to stop a gang war from breaking out by running right in the middle of the crossfire. Fortunately, this didn't end fatally for them.
    • In "Infantino Street," H.R. tells Savitar Iris's location due to Savitar pretending to be Barry and simply asking where she is. He should have known not to tell Barry where Iris was when the last thing Barry told the group before leaving for the heist was not to tell him where she was since Savitar would learn where Iris is. H.R. does make up for his mistake, though.
    • In the finale, Barry has commited a near lethal stupidity. Having assumed Savitar to be down and out, Barry walks towards as friends, while Savitar rises up and rushes Barry from behind. This time, Iris saves him.
  • Win Back the Crowd:
    • After Barry's highly controversial actions at the end of Season Two, the Comic Con trailer for Season Three got a lot of fans back on board by spending its whole length promising that the show wouldn't be skimping at all on addressing Barry's own responsibility for the Flashpoint timeline, even ending with Reverse-Flash shouting at him "Now who's the villain?!"
    • Earth-1 Caitlin getting Killer Frost's powers has gone over very well, after many fans were displeased that her comic identity was apparently shunted entirely onto the Earth-2 version in the previous season.
  • The Woobie:
    • Magenta. She's abused by her father, suffering from a severe Split Personality disorder giving her powers, and is used by Dr. Alchemy into committing mass murder for his cause.
    • Julian as he's forced into becoming Alchemy against his will by Savitar and doesn't even know it until after Barry locks him in the Pipeline during the mid-season finale.
  • WTH, Casting Agency?: With the announcement of the Music Meister appearing in the series, many fans were up in arms that they didn't bother trying to get Neil Patrick Harris for a Role Reprisal.
  • WTH, Costuming Department?:
    • The Rival's costume having no resemblance whatsoever to that of his comic counterpart, looking more like that of the Black Racer or Daniel West's Reverse-Flash, was met with some skepticism. Critics particularly noted his mask, comparing it to a goofy evil Hawkman.
    • Dr. Alchemy's costume looks a little too much like Prometheus' traditional comic book costume, not helped when the actual Prometheus appeared in Season 5 of Arrow, ironically looking nothing like Prometheus in the comics.
    • The Music Meister never gets to wear any of his flamboyant performance costumes and just dresses in all-black.

    Season Four 
  • Alas, Poor Scrappy: Polarizing as Ralph was, people were saddened when DeVoe stole his body.
  • Alternative Character Interpretation: The apparent failure of Harry Wells' cerebral inhibitor has made some speculate that Savitar was using Exact Words, since Savitar only said that Team Flash used the cerebral inhibitor against DeVoe, not that it succeeded; however, it is possible Savitar said the truth, and that the cerebral inhibitor worked in his timeline but things have changed enough so that it no longer does.
  • Anvilicious:
    • The episode "Girls Night Out" is felt by some to have overused the concept of feminism in a rather unsubtle way.
  • Arc Fatigue:
    • Clifford DeVoe may have been known as the big bad earlier than his predecessors, but his actual motivations or intentions have been kept in the dark for a long time.
    • Ralph's constant cycle of becoming a hero, becoming dissuaded, being pep-talked into heroism again and then promising that he's determined to stop DeVoe before promptly getting scared again so he can repeat the whole scenario in a later episode has proved extremely unpopular.
    • In the episode "Think Fast" it's revealed that Killer Frost was part of Caitlin even as a child, making it the third time they've rebooted the character. Many fans are tired of the constant rigmarole surrounding her powers and origin story.
  • Audience-Alienating Premise:
    • Iris' detractors weren't happy with the idea of giving superpowers to Iris in "Run, Iris, Run" and either stopped watching the series or ignored the story, even though it was only for a single episode.
    • In general this season went for a lighter approach, but many found that to do so the show opted to just really sink to bottom of the barrel humour. For a lot of people it made the show less Lighter and Softer and just more a gross version of Denser and Wackier, which isn't what fans wanted.
    • "Harry and the Harrisons" already alienates people tired of Tom Cavanagh Acting for Two, but its seemingly comedic tone right when DeVoe is very close of executing his plan and the return of the not so popular Amunet Black had made people uninterested on this episode. The premise was criticized specially because it was Padding added at the episode 21 out of the 23 of this season.
  • Author's Saving Throw:
    • The showrunners were very aware of how sick fans had gotten of the repetitive season arcs of the first three seasons, and were quick to assure us Season 4's Big Bad would not be another speedster. He's also revealed in full right in the season premiere rather than the increasingly ridiculous attempts to build a mystery around their identities. Furthermore, the end of the sixth episode has Team Flash pinpoint his location and prepare to apprehend him, with Barry actually noting they have an opportunity to get a drop on the bad guy for a change.
    • There had been complaints from fans that Barry wasn't as fast as he ought to be, given that not one, not two, but three evil speedsters were shown to be faster than "The Fastest Man Alive" and that he struggled against villains who, by all rights, should have been severely outclassed against him. "The Flash Reborn" rectifies this, making it abundantly clear that post-Speed Force Barry is faster than any speedster has ever been (counting Wally) and showing him defeating the Samuroid with minimal effort.
    • After many complaints about the Darker and Edgier take of Seasons 2 and 3, the series has become more comical as an attempt to be more like Season 1. During SDCC, producer Todd Helbing directly stated in a very rare admission of guilt on the part of a creative team that they realized how dark the Savitar plotline had become and that Season 4 would be much funnier in comparison.
    • Season 1 and 2 would provide lovely scientific Hand Wave explanations for the various metas, while Season 3 tended to plonk them in with no justification behind their powers, aside from Mirror Master. Season 4 has gone back to its roots and has Wells or Cisco unloading the science, and either they, or Barry, Iris or Caitlin putting it into more general and understandable terms.
    • After The CW has overused the Relationship Revolving Door to the point that the couple loses popularity, the creators have outright assured the audience that Barry and Iris' wedding will indeed be happening as a part of the epic crossover event Crisis on Earth-X, after events from Season 3 threatened to have them follow suit.
    • After Caitlin's situation with Ronnie and Hunter, Caitlin will not be, aside from slight flirting here and there, thrown into yet another doomed love story. Both the creative team and Danielle confirmed this, firm in their belief that Caitlin needs to focus on herself before even considering getting back into the dating scene.
    • Regarding the overwhelming fan outcry over Barry and Iris' wedding being spoiled by Felicity's last-minute hijacking so that she could abruptly get married to Oliver (and the crossover as a whole doing nothing to reverse the general fandom sentiment that Olicity is a major Romantic Plot Tumor), the following episode shows that Iris and Barry weren't happy with that and just tolerated them to avoid making a scene after all the crisis on Earth-X, so they send the Queens' gift to the "return" pile. It seems the writers weren't particularly happy about that either.
    • Killer Frost developing into an Anti-Hero as many fans were annoyed how last season she was evil for no other reasons other than her powers made her so. However, this was criticized because it left Caitlin underdeveloped.
    • Season 3's take on Flashpoint was strongly criticized for being solved in just one episode, and a similar phenomenon occurred with the Season 3 finale and Season 4 premiere. In "The Trial of the Flash" arc, it's made clear Barry's imprisonment would last longer than a single episode.
    • Season 3 was criticized for not giving enough pathos or characterization to the Big Bad Savitar until very late in the season, making it difficult for the audience to really care about him and what he does or will do. note  By contrast, Season 4's Big Bad crosses the line hard in the midseason finale, the devastating effects of which we see in the following episode, leaving the audience excited for his inevitable downfall. Also DeVoe's plans are a higher menace than Savitar's, which were seen as insufficient to sustain a big bad.
    • Since Barry's acquittal and "DeVoe"'s appearance were way too suspicious, said acquittal not being the legal exit Barry was insistent about and the "Trial of the Flash" plot was unbelievable on the whole, it is revealed not everyone believes his innocence and David Singh has to suspend Barry indefinitely until his innocence is unambiguously proven.
    • The ending of "Run, Iris, Run" has Iris decide to resume her blog, after many complaints that people didn't know whether she was still a journalist or not. It finally explained unambiguously that Iris left journalism. In "Harry and the Harrisons" she uses her journalistic skills to research about DeVoe and publish an exposé against him.
    • Some complaints about the Monster of the Week format are that they barely had anything to do with the Myth Arc of the corresponding season. The batch of metas this time around figure heavily into the Thinker's plot, which also gives Team Flash a legitimate reason to Gotta Catch Them All.
    • Despite the praise some fans gave to the actors who portrayed DeVoe after he began taking over different bodies, others were disappointed that Neil Sandilands stopped playing the character so soon. After he stole Ralph's body in "Lose Yourself", DeVoe used his powers to get his old appearance back.
  • Base-Breaking Character
    • Many fans turned on Jesse Quick in "Luck Be a Lady" where she breaks up with Wally out-of-the-blue via a "breakup cube" and kicking her dad off Earth-2. Mitigated by "Enter Flashtime" where it's revealed Harry wasn't being fully honest and he was to blame for his departing from Jesse too.
    • Some love Ralph Dibny for being funny, having a good actor, being less angsty than Wally (at first) and being a protege to Barry who isn't another speedster, but others see him as a Replacement Scrappy for Wally, an out of place character in general, an annoying misogynist, and pointless comic relief with juvenile and crude humour that ruins the tone of the season, all of which isn't helped by how Ralph is portrayed as an Adaptational Jerkass. He outgrows the misogynistic aspects of his character, but his constant cycle of not wanting to be a hero only to be persuaded later, and then forget that lesson in the next episode has grated on many fans.
    • Big Bad DeVoe himself falls into this category. For instance, IGN's reviews seem to enjoy the gravitas and menace the character lends to the season along with the ensuing Story Arc it entails, while AV Club's reviews conversely feel that the show's writers themselves aren't smart enough to write for what is supposed to be the world's smartest man, making the end result seem underwhelming, and appreciating when the show takes a break from the serialized conflict. He becomes all the more polarising when Neil Sandilands stops portraying him in favor of the Bus Meta actors, whose bodies DeVoe keeps stealing. For some, the continued body theft misses the point of the intended Brains Evil, Brawn Good conflict, even if later episodes establish that DeVoe's new hosts suffer from Possession Burnout due to inheriting his ALS, thus necessitating his constant bodyhopping.
    • Recurring antagonist Amunet Black. Is her portrayal a delightful Ham and Cheese performance that neatly contrasts with the quieter and far more menacing DeVoe, or is she a cheesy under-performing villain who weakens episodes she appears in and her fake British accent so distracting that it makes the character outright annoying?
    • Killer Frost has her fans, but her detractors accuse her of being useless and having a cheesy Jekyll and Hyde situation. The "sending notes to my other personality" did not resonate well with them.
  • Broken Base:
    • With the addition of the Council of Wells, the trend of having Tom Cavanagh portray more versions of Harrison Wells has become divisive. Some find the new Wells popping up to be amusing and creative, while others feel the joke has gotten old and tiresome. They lack the disposable side of two of their counterparts (Earths-1 and 19), but the concept of Harrison Wells is seen as putting throwaway characters. Another criticisms are that the writers are overworking Cavanagh or that they are trying too hard to keep him relevant for the series.
    • How much Barry needs Team Flash and whether he even needs them at all, especially at this stage of his superhero tenure, has become a major source of contention this season. They can generally be split into groups. Those that think the team should be disbanded argue that Barry didn't have a team in the comics, and that this one is severely limiting his opportunities to shine because they build his tech and think for him, since they all need things to do, thus preventing Barry from being as intelligent as his comic book counterpart. It also stifles the storytelling, since Cisco, Caitlin and Harry specifically have limited stories outside of the team so the action is always focused in S.T.A.R. Labs. Those that want to keep the team argue that this is an adaptation of the show and so a team makes sense, especially since non-Flash characters can help make the story richer. Then there are some in the middle who think the team can stay, but want it scaled back so Barry gets more focus or only certain members should be on it - but that's another Broken Base because people can't decide who they want on the team; some want characters from the comics to have priority, while others think it should be limited to just the scientists. A Vocal Minority started a campaign to bring back the "Original Team Flash", which they take to mean Barry, Cisco, Caitlin and Harry, despite him only coming in season 2. It should be noted, however, that the campaign was started by Snowbarry shippers and is strangely focused on getting rid of Iris (and Joe, sometimes) specifically, which people have noticed. And that's all we'll say about that.
  • Captain Obvious Aesop: This article criticizes Ralph Dibny's episodes for, among other things, being centered on pretty obvious morals: "Care about people that aren’t you, don’t give up, don’t give up, again, stop hiding, and take your life seriously".
  • Creepy Awesome: DeVoe's overall appearance sitting on his hover chair, with wires connected to his Thinking Cap, while speaking in a very mechanical way, gives off a very unsettling air.
  • Counterpart Comparison:
  • Darkness-Induced Audience Apathy:
    • The fact no matter what the situation, DeVoe always gets what he wants in the end and has never suffered any kind of setback.
    • Team Flash made it their mission to stop the Thinker from getting his hands on the metas he created on the bus. They fail spectacularly; in the end they can't save of any of them (sans Fallout who's in Tracy's care). So even when DeVoe is eventually defeated, it'll be a pretty hollow victory since it comes after the deaths of eleven out of twelve people they failed to save.
  • Don't Shoot the Message: Even feminists thought the overuse of "#feminism" was forced due to its overuse and cheesy tone.
  • Ensemble Dark Horse:
  • Epileptic Trees: Ever since Cecile was revealed to be pregnant, a popular fan theory that arose was the baby would be Daniel West and become the Big Bad of Season 5. The baby being established as female has not discouraged this theory, with fans pointing out how much CW loves doing Gender Flips and could easily make her Danielle West.
  • Evil Is Sexy:
    • Marlize DeVoe is extremely beautiful and, while the lesser evil of the DeVoes, is working against the heroes for a villainous endgame.
    • Her husband Clifford isn't particularly sexy, being a mostly normal-looking middle-aged man, but once he starts body-hopping, he generally seems to land exclusively in attractive, young people of both genders. Of course, the fact he's stealing these bodies gives it a strong dose of Fan Disservice.
    • Earth-X Laurel Lance is a replacement clone of her Earth-2 counterpart but she looks great.
  • Family-Unfriendly Aesop: "Lose Yourself" seems to show that Thou Shalt Not Kill is not necessarily a good policy.
  • Fountain of Memes: Drunk!Barry note 
  • "Funny Aneurysm" Moment:
    • Ralph's sexist behavior in his earlier appearances is supposed to be comedic, but in light of Andrew Kreisberg's termination for sexual harassment, it can be hard to watch for more than a few fans.
    • Fans made jokes about DeVoe being revealed as the season's Big Bad much earlier than previous main villains. It only culminated in Barry getting so paranoid about DeVoe (because of his own prior knowledge) that gets him in trouble with the CCPD, even becoming an indirect catalyst for DeVoe framing Barry for murder.
    • Ralph's impersonation of Clifford DeVoe is less badass or funny when DeVoe takes Ralph's body for real.
    • Cisco mistook a sexy cube from Gypsy for a break-up cube. Cisco and Gypsy do break up for real, albeit amicably.
  • He Really Can Act: Miranda MacDougall was not very convincing at first, but later manages to capture DeVoe's creepy feeling.
  • Heartwarming in Hindsight: The entire first half of the season is spent building up to Barry and Iris' wedding, just hot off the summer that the cast celebrated Danielle's real life wedding, and Grant's engagement and planning of his soon to be real wedding.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight: "Girls' Night Out" had a drunk Barry asking about the death of Jack during Titanic. A few months later, the film's director would actually answer that very question.
  • Internet Backdraft:
    • Many fans were upset by the announcement that Julian Albert (Tom Felton) won't be returning as a series regular, especially since, during Season 3, a sizable group of fans were only watching to see him in it. The unsatisfying conclusion to his character arc and the fact that he became nothing more than Caitlin's lapdog in the second half of the season doesn't help.
    • The wedding. Not Barry and Iris', but Oliver and Felicity's. See Crisis on Earth-X for more details on the fandom's anger.
    • Barry's trial and stint in jail. The trial was completed within a day, which is unbelievable even taking into account artistic license for drama, and Cecile did a horrible job as their lawyer despite supposedly being the best attorney. This could have been a good opportunity to develop Caitlin and Cisco as superheroes, but they are left as useless without Barry or Ralph to assist them. Some Wally fans were especially angry, since for them having Barry in jail could have been the perfect time for Wally to step out of Barry's shadow in this series, but that doesn't happen.
  • It's the Same, Now It Sucks!:
    • The "There are a bunch of new metahumans in Central City!" plot is pretty much yet another retread of the previous seasons, with the only difference being the source of metas. In Season 1, it was the Particle Accelerator explosion; in Season 2, it was Zoom bringing them from Earth-2; in Season 3, it was Savitar giving people their powers from Flashpoint; and now it's people who were hit by dark matter on a nearby bus when Barry exited the Speed Force. "Don't Run" provides some justification for this, as it's likely none of them had the mental powers that DeVoe was hoping to use in order to switch bodies with them, meaning he probably created more in hopes that one of them would develop said powers.
    • Ralph Dibny's entire character arc over the season consists of him either not wanting to be a hero and then being dissuaded from retiring, or clashing with everyone else about what it means to be a hero before someone will inevitably teach him how to be one. He then forgets this the next episode and repeats the same arc.
    • Some did not like that Laurel Lance from Earth-X was a carbon copy of her Earth-2 counterpart.
  • Jerkass Woobie: Marlize can hardly be called a saint, but given that the once-loving relationship she had with Clifford DeVoe is dead and her husband is drugging her, it is hard not to feel bad about her.
  • Like You Would Really Do It: It is unlikely DeVoe's plan would succeed, since it would have terrible repercussions on Arrow.
  • Love to Hate: At least people who like The Thinker love how he puts Team Flash to suffer and the defeats he did on them.
  • Memetic Mutation:
    • "THIS HOUSE IS BITCHIN'" note 
    • "We are the Flash." note 
    • Joe West has shut down and is not responding. note 
    • #feminism note 
    • "Because of Flashpoint" note 
    • "What am I thinking now?" note 
    • Prison Break note 
    • Harry Wells is Reverse-Thinker!
  • Memetic Hair: Wally, due to his constant hair style changes throughout his appearances.
  • Misblamed: The season has, so far, been met with a lot of negative opinions regarding its quality, but for a Vocal Minority of fans everything wrong is somehow because of Iris West (and, in some cases, Candice Patton). Even when other factors are in play (i.e. Wally being written out being blamed on her prominence rather than due to Keiynan Lonsdale's schedule, the clunky development Wally had, how it forced the writers to put The Worf Effect on either Wally or Barry and the introduction of Ralph Dibny, or Barry's Idiot Ball grabbing being blamed on her influence rather than to make him fall into DeVoe's plans), it's not uncommon when a problem is brought up on a discussion board for someone to insist it's somehow because of Iris, no matter what leaps of logic are needed for it.
  • Moral Event Horizon: Clifford DeVoe's possession of an innocent man and incrimination of Barry was heinous, but the line was crossed when he become abusive to his wife and created a loop in which he drugged her with The Weeper's tears to keep her seduced and whenever she discovered the truth, he would wipe her memories. Basically he put the one person he loved in a fate worse than death.
  • Narm:
    • The overuse of #feminism, which was seen as preachy and out of place by some. Making matters worse, in light of Andrew Kreisberg's harassment and assault accusations and subsequent firing, the message comes across as disingenuous, too.
    • In the first episode featuring Amunet, she apparently carries around a bucket of metal pieces she needs in order to use her powers. This results in scenes where she slowly reaches over to the bucket, then slowly draws the metal out of it to form a metal gauntlet, and then is finally ready to attack, all while her opponent just stands there watching. Most of the time her opponent could have taken her out easily long before she was ready. Wisely, later episodes with Amunet in it omit the bucket entirely.
    • Cecile's excitement over discovering that she has super powers would've been alright if she didn't go overboard and act like a child who just stole from the cookie jar. As cool as this reveal would feel to somebody, it's just a little hard to take in seriously when she jumps up and cheers like a Genki Girl when this is supposed to be a dignified character on par with Joe West.
  • Never Live It Down: Fans won't ever let go of Iris' "You are not the Flash. We are" line, even though it's barely ever mentioned, along with the fact Barry actually said a similar line previously.
  • Nightmare Retardant:
    • DeVoe's debut would have otherwise been very creepy, had it not been for him making an allusion to his codename by saying "I'm thinking." The line comes off as so cheesy it's hard not to laugh when hearing it.
    • Veronica Dale's video about Central City's bombing should have been creepy, but the actress does so badly that the video may even be cheesy. The worst part are those "Eden Corps" shouts.
  • Paranoia Fuel: Clifford DeVoe can watch over the heroes at any time with his hidden cameras. Not even his wife is safe.
  • Replacement Scrappy: Ralph Dibny has become one of the bigger Base Breaking Characters this season for replacing Wally West as Barry's protege. Wally's fans thought his slot could have been used to develop Wally after all the mishandling he had so far.
  • Rescued from the Scrappy Heap: Inverted with Ralph. While he was received quite warmly during his introduction, his popularity kept waning as the season progressed. Many, many, many fans and critics alike turned on him after the episode "Null and Annoyed". Not only was it another personal growth story for Ralph after he's had so many this season, he spent the entire episode being obnoxious to the other team members, especially Barry, who most people sided with even though he was supposed to be in the wrong. Many people pointed out that his screentime could have gone to Iris, who had just decided to be a journalist again, or Cisco and Caitlin, who have been sidelined for Ralph all season. His hypocritical rebuttal to Iris and his sob story about cracking jokes during times of crisis also weren't well-received. Having said that, most did not want him to die at DeVoe's hands.
  • Seasonal Rot: There are debates on whether this season is better or worse than Season 3, but it is generally agreed upon that this season pales in comparison to the two earlier seasons.
  • So Okay, It's Average: For many, the series still has its awesome moments and likeable characters, but this season has been derided for mishandling the team characters even more so than previous seasons, still developing characters at the expense of at least another one, the action being lacking, an overcompensating use of comedy, the long time of teasing plot twists for its own sake, its poor execution of "The Trial of the Flash" arc, a villain whose strategic skills seem unconvincing and lacking, and a plot disconnected from the Big Bad.
  • Some Anvils Need to Be Dropped:
    • Barry and Iris attending counseling after the problems that have arisen due to the trauma they experienced last season, and apparently continuing off-screen, as well as Barry's very natural aversion at first. A reminder that even the most loving of couples can still have issues, and that a third person advocate can help resolve those, diminishing the negative stigma usually associated with counciling.
    • Joe's continued mixed emotions to Cecile's surprise pregnancy, partially ecstatic at being a father again and partially anxious about having another baby at his age. Barry and Cecile remind him it's a very normal and relevant reaction at any age, so he therefore has no reason to feel guilty, with Cecile admitting she's been feeling the same, and it's all right to lean on his loving family for aid and support in raising and caring for the soon to be Baby Horton-West.
    • The horrors of human trafficking is demonstrated, simply in a case of Show, Don't Tell. They show Weeper's plight as a human commodity to Amunet, and Iris, Caitlin/Killer Frost, Felicity and others' pitying reactions instead of harping on how slavery is wrong.
    • "Fury Rogue" addresses constantly that one should give themselves the time to grieve the lost loved ones, which is an important message.
  • Strawman Has a Point:
    • Ralph Dibny inverts this when in "Run, Iris, Run" he accuses Iris of not being the one who goes out into the field to risk her life, unlike the powerful metas. In-universe, the line is treated as Jerkass Has a Point, but it overlooks that Iris did risk her life despite her lack of powers before and after resigning journalism — at one point, specifically to help him — and Ralph is acting hypocritically and selfishly for most of the episode.
    • Barry plays this straight in "Null and Annoyed", where he scolds Ralph for his tendency to do jokes and his lack of cooperation. Barry is supposed to be an overly harsh mentor, but his position is at least understandable.
  • Take That, Scrappy!: After Oliver and Felicity interrupted Barry and Iris' wedding to put on their own during Crisis on Earth-X made a LOT of fans turn on them, it is revealed Barry and Iris did not approve of said disrespect either but preferred to tolerate it to avoid creating more conflict. They send the Queens' gift to the "return" pile.
  • They Changed It, Now It Sucks:
    • DeVoe's change from Neil Sandilands to multiple actors had alienated some people, since Neil Sandilands did a good portrayal of DeVoe.
    • Ralph Dibny in the comics is defined by two main traits: A completely infallible Nice Guy who's maybe a bit too goofy at times, and being Happily Married to his partner-in-crime-fighting, Sue Dibny. Neither of which are true for the show version, as the show turned him into Plastic Man with Ralph's name, and for a lot of fans, this was a really bad idea. Doesn't help that many of the things people hate in particular about Ralph in the show (being a Dirty Coward, his initial lecherous attitude towards women, his stinted character growth, etc) are the things completely original to the show, so one can't wonder if he'd have been a much better received character had he been Truer to the Text.
  • They Wasted a Perfectly Good Character:
    • Cisco and Caitlin are metahumans whose powers could be used more often, but their powers are overlooked this season and only Barry and Ralph are really given a chance to shine as the heroes. They are kept as Voice with an Internet Connection, despite Iris and Harry already having this role. Though their case isn't as bad as Wally's, many feel they've been unfortunately pushed aside to provide comic relief almost exclusively.
    • Several of the interesting Bus Metas were all underused and promptly killed off by DeVoe when he either drains their powers or steals their bodies. A common complaint is that DeVoe's actions are destroying any potential additions to "The Rogues", an element that has been fairly underdeveloped as a whole. Two attempts of "Rogues" in the previous seasons were dropped.
    • Dave a.k.a. Big Sir was almost a throwaway character.
    • While many of the Bus Metas qualify, special mention goes to Matthew Kim, the first asian member of Team Flash...who ends up being nothing more than a willing prisoner, never interacting with anybody after his debut episode and who gets killed by DeVoe in his second appearance, and offscreen at that.
  • They Wasted a Perfectly Good Plot:
    • A common criticism is that Barry returned too early in the season. Particularly, we see almost nothing of how the team has operated without him outside of a single fight scene, before Cisco and Caitlin put into action a plan to get Barry back, which completely nullifies the way the last season ends as well as involving a lot of Fridge Logic (the Speed Force is sentient; the idea it could be tricked so easily is pretty ridiculous). As a result, Wally, Cisco and Caitlin have been ignored in favor of Barry and Wally departs. The "Trial of The Flash" subplot could have been a good opportunity to develop Wally or at least Caitlin and Cisco, but it is used just to develop Ralph Dibny and even he is misused in a cycle of not wanting to be a hero to then be dissuaded.
    • Somewhat more specifically, but Wally's final episode before he left could have had an opportunity to develop him more before he left, but doesn't. The episode had the team taking on Hazard, an Anti-Villain who is just frustrated with how she's been a continuous Butt-Monkey in life since she was born. Given that Wally had just been dumped (something she also had to deal with), as well as having been similarly Born Unlucky and mistreated in life, could have had a chance to try talking Hazard down by noting how they're Not So Different (Barry tried to talk her down earlier, but failed as he couldn't connect to her).
    • Caitlin Snow returns to the team too easily and her Journey to Find Oneself is swept under the rug, when her journey could be used to develop her as a solo vigilante, aside that it could have been a gradual development of her Killer Frost side to explain how she became an anti-hero.
    • The arrival of Earth-X Laurel Lance could have been used to show another character and to take another route with her, but she is just a clone of her Earth-2 counterpart. Fans of Laurel Lance were not happy with this, since for them the Arrowverse writers seem to dislike her and they wanted to see a heroic Laurel Lance.
  • Unexpected Character:
    • The Weeper, whose special ability involves crying, was a DC villain not many expected to see on the show.
    • Nobody expected Laurel Lance from Earth-X. While Katie Cassidy was intended to appear on Crisis on Earth-X, she could not since she was mourning the death of her father.
  • Unfortunate Implications:
    • Comicbook.com pointed this out with regards to Barry's return, prior to the season starting. While the idea of having Wally suit up as the Flash only to be demoted back to Kid Flash for Barry's sake would be a kick in the teeth to his comic book fanbase, there's also the uncomfortable depiction of having a person of colour like Wally be forced to step down so that a white man can take his "rightful place" as the lead instead.
    • This article points out the implications of Black Bison being villainised for trying to get her people's artefacts back while treating Ralph as a white saviour, as well as treating Ralph Dibny's casual sexism and misogyny as a mere character flaw - especially in light of the sexual harassment allegations against Andrew Kreisberg.
  • Unintentionally Unsympathetic:
    • During "Run, Iris, Run", Ralph refuses to go back into the field because he's scared of DeVoe possibly coming after him, and after Iris confronts Ralph, he answers by accusing her of hiding at STAR Labs when the rest of them are risking their lives. While his fear is justified, it looks extremely hypocritical that Ralph is accusing someone of hiding when several Ralph-focused episodes consisted of him either giving up because of his own selfishness or fear, or merely wanting the glory of being a hero instead of wanting to help people, especially when Iris has willingly risked her life many times without even being asked. It gets worse when Ralph spends the rest of the episode belittling Iris' efforts and demeaning her when nobody did the same when it came to his failures, and still chooses to hide in the bunker while accusing Iris of doing the same thing.
    • It is hard to sympathize with Caitlin Snow when she asks Amunet to help her restore her Killer Frost side with the condition to do any favor for her. Amunet is not a kind ice cream seller, but a human trafficker who is not above asking Caitlin to do something very immoral. While Amunet is not completely evil, Caitlin acted very selfishly with her request. This review adresses it.
  • The Untwist: Clifford DeVoe's deadly condition was supposed to be solved by stealing Ralph Dibny to gain his resistance and shapeshifting. DeVoe ends up stealing Ralph Dibny's body.
  • Visual Effects of Awesome: Ralph's elasticity, while not entirely perfect (his sequence of turning his gut into a six-pack just looks off), has been praised overall for its well-done implementation and excellent comedic usage. Scenes such as Ralph sneezing off his face (and the general horror Team Flash expresses, Joe vomiting in particular) have been very effective.
  • Wangst:
    • Ralph Dibny's attitude of hiding in S.T.A.R. Labs while hypocritically berating Iris and being happy that DeVoe apparently isn't possessing him has alienated a few people. Those who loved Ralph as a fun character were annoyed and those who already hated him dislike him even more.
    • Some people thought that the team's grief over Ralph's death was overblown, especially given that they didn't know him all that long and the show was trying too hard to make it seem like Ralph was a better person than he was.
  • What an Idiot!:
    • In "Mixed Signals," Shelia finds herself with her ex colleague Tim who tells her that their old partner Decker (who they screwed over) is a meta and has been hunting his old partners. Shelia doesn't believe this but then comes face to face with Decker himself who confirms what Tim said.
      You'd Expect: Shelia to realize that at the very least a confirmed killer is in her room with his sights set on her and try to resolve things peacefully or at the very least try to escape.
      Instead: She walks right up to Decker and tells him it's his fault that he got screwed over and that she's glad she did it because he finally grew a pair.
      The Result: Decker uses his new found technopathy to inject her with a lethal dose of insulin and nearly kills her. The only reason she survived was because Wally and Joe had been expecting this and were able to save her.
    • Towards the end of "Girls Night Out," Caitlin finally has Amunet, who the CCPD have been searching for a while now, at her mercy. Iris convinces her not to kill her.
      You'd Expect: Caitlin to just knock her out, or at least freeze her hands and feet together to keep her restrained for the police to take her away. AND nobody has to die.
      Instead: Caitlin decides to let her go. Why? Most likely to give the writers a chance to bring her back later in the season.
      The Result: The girls celebrate what they consider to be a victory, completely ignoring the fact that they let a dangerous, sadistic, and amoral Amunet escape so that she can continue with her criminal activities and put the rest of the city in danger. Caitlin's decision seems almost certain to come back to bite her hard.
    • In "When Harry Met Harry," Barry and Ralph are fighting a meta who can bring statues to life. This is their second encounter as Barry previously let her get away to save an innocent man's life. However, this time no one is in danger and the conflict only involves Barry, Ralph, the statue, and Mina (the meta). Barry is about to catch her, but then Mina's statue hits him.
      You'd Expect: Barry to forget about the statue as no innocent people are in danger and he could easily use his Super Speed to arrest her and carry her to the Pipeline so that no one else will be hurt by her powers.
      Instead: Barry tries to fight the statue, forgetting that no one is in danger and thus leaving the inexperienced Ralph to catch Mina.
      The Result: The statue ends up throwing Barry into a utility pole meaning innocent lives actually are in danger from the severed electrical cables. Because of this, Barry is also injured to the point where he cannot move and save a little girl from being crushed from the falling utility pole.
    • In "Therefore I Am," upon discovering a hidden camera inside the Samuroid head, what does Barry do? Rather than track the IP address like Harry later suggested, he promptly runs to the DeVoe household and breaks in to do a blind hunt for clues that he's guilty. This was an extremely stupid and reckless move, with all of Team Flash calling him out on this. At that point there was no solid evidence to suggest Clifford DeVoe was the one responsible. Also having just found a camera, Barry should have expected there would be security cameras around the DeVoe household. Along with the fact Harry had already pointed out DeVoe had orchestrated everything move by move and should have anticipated and been prepared for Barry doing something like this. It came as no surprise that Marlize filed a restraining order given Barry did something genuinely incriminating.
  • Win Back the Crowd:
    • After two straight seasons of doom and gloom, the show has finally gone back to the light-hearted and funny mood that made people fall in love with the show in the first place. However, the execution became controversial as time went on.
    • The show simply bringing back Harry Wells rather than trying to come up with another new role for Tom Cavanagh got a lot of people on board.
    • "Enter Flashtime" was well-received by the fandom and for a few people brought comparisons to the two earlier seasons, which for some are better than the third and fourth.
  • The Woobie: Becky Sharpe has had bad luck all her life. She got hit constantly, got a cheating boyfriend, was sexually harassed and then unjustly fired from a job. She earns good luck after her exposure to dark matter, but at the expense of causing bad luck to other people around her. When she was remorseful of robbing a bank and unwittingly harming people of Central City and remained loyal to Barry during his team-up with the captured Bus Metas, she was possessed by Clifford DeVoe in a cruel Heel–Face Door-Slam.

http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/YMMV/TheFlash2014