PopCultHQ TV Theory – ‘The Flash’: Is Dr. Harrison Wells the Reverse Flash?!

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Character development on a television series is an integral component in generating a response from a viewer. Be it a reaction of excitement or celebration when a protagonist adds another layer to their identity, or perhaps when feelings of hatred or disgust arise when the show’s antagonist further grows in power or notoriety. It is this evoked emotion on behalf of the viewer which is vital to a person going from occasional watcher to regular fan of a series. Characters you can cheer, ones who make you laugh, and the ones who always keep you guessing. Today, we look at the latter and give you our thoughts on just where the writers may be taking the character… Dr. Harrison Wells.

WARNING – SPOILERS AHEAD

Since Season 2, I have been working on a theory that may blow your minds. I am going to do my best to explain my theory without writing an entire book (which I easily could) on all the reasons that we believe there is something fishy going on with Earth-2 Dr. Wells.

hw3I want to take you back all the way to the season one finale, where Jay Garrick’s helmet falls from the breach and the Reverse Flash goes, “I believe that’s my cue to leave.” This is an important note as we find out later the Jay is from Earth-2. So not only is he from the future but also another Earth. Keep that in mind as we fast forward to the episode where Barry time travels back in the past to talk to Wells on how to get faster. As we ALL expected it took very little time for Wells to figure out that the Barry from the future is an impostor, which then gives Thawne the idea of failure. While Barry plays it off well, it doesn’t mean that their encounter won’t have a lasting effect on him.

hw1Barry also told him about the singularity being created. That doesn’t seem like a big deal… WRONG. The singularity happened because Barry came back to stop Reverse Flash from leaving. Sooner or later Thawne would have put the two together and figured out what really happened and set precautions. But knowing that he shouldn’t change the timeline he decided to live out the events all the way up to his death. He then altered things just a tiny bit so he wouldn’t get erased from the timeline. Upon returning to Earth-2 to go see his family again, they didn’t recognize him with the body of Wells. He then decided to take the life of Harrison Wells on Earth-2. He obtained Wells’ memories and feelings (which we learned in season one that’s what happens when you take someone’s body). So when Jessie was taken, he felt sadness and anger just as the real Wells would have. This prompts him to go back to Earth-1 for Barry’s help. Now if your’e wondering why he didn’t do it himself, it’s because his speed force is very low from the night he time-traveled to kill Barry’s mom and avoid his own death.

hw2Now let’s look at some evidence in the show that has sparked this idea. We first meet him in the episode where Barry and King Shark where battling it out. Wells steps in and helps Barry use a cold gun. Now remember a cold gun is one of the few weapons that can hurt a speedster (so he could have brought it just in case things didn’t work out the way he wanted it to).

If that’s not concrete with you, then let’s go to when Wells had to “pretend” to be the Reverse Flash because of Grodd. Cisco is trying to get him to nail the voice of the Reverse Flash. At first, it is really bad but then it gets so accurate, that it is scary. Now how would Wells be able to do the exact voice if he wasn’t Thawne?! And if you write this off as, “Oh, well, it’s the same actor” you are sadly mistaken as Tom Cavanagh has proven he moves, looks and talks for specific reasons! Plus that man is an amazing actor and has proven he plays different characters so well (See what I did there).

hw4Once Wells goes to save Caitlin, Grodd quickly asks how he is still alive. Wells then responds with, “No… no buddy I didn’t die, I just was gone for a while.” He follows it up with, “I am father. And you hit father. Grodd… look at me (screams), look at me! I would never leave you here alone Grodd. I made you a promise… I have bigger plans for you, remember? One day, this city will be yours. I promised you, I intend to honor that promise.” Also right before he started talking, it was playing the Reverse Flash’s theme music. Now at first, you could say it was just good acting. But when he is talking about the promise Reverse Flash made, Grodd started to hang his head in shame realizing he’s just hit “father” because the Reverse Flash made that same promise. How does Wells knows that’s what Reverse Flash promised him? How does he just suddenly change his voice and tone into the same way Thawne talks?

These questions never get answered! Which makes me believe that he is Reverse Flash as there is no other way he could know those things. Not even Barry or the rest of the team knew that (we know this as it shows their faces and how they’re confused/scared)! Also, throughout season two Wells seems to know things about the speed force or speed-related problems. For example when Barry comes back from the speed force and touches Jesse, Joe goes,”What the hell did you do,” to which Wells responds with,”It’s the speed force.” How does Wells know it’s the speed force? No one at the time knew Barry was stuck in the speed force. Even if he did, it wouldn’t explain how he just magically knows that the speed force woke her up.

hw5Now let’s fast forward to the scene where Barry was giving up his speed to Zoom. Zoom is talking to Barry when Wells goes up to him and says, “Some day, I’m going to knock that smug expression clean off your face.” Which leads to Zoom shaking by the threat.  Now it takes a certain amount of evil to scare a speedster, let alone the likes of Zoom. So little old Wells with no powers wouldn’t be able to scare him unless he was the Reverse Flash.

As my last statement, I will only be using ONE episode with Wells in it. I will be using the fourth episode from season three. Let us start with something Wells said to Jesse when talking to her about becoming Jesse Quick-“my fear, my guilt has kept us back for too long.” At first glance you wouldn’t think twice. You would think that this is just a father saying he wants his daughter to spread her wings and reach her full potential. But, if you take a deeper look into his character, you will realize that it has deeper meaning (as do all things in this show and especially with Dr. Wells). What fear and guilt does he have?  If you take this quote in conjunction with his constant warnings about time travel, and the looks he would give when Barry would talk about Reverse Flash in season 2, you may start to suspect that he is the Reverse Flash. I will be excited to see where they go with this character as they keep building and building for this big reveal!

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About Garrett & Melissa Anderson 12 Articles

We are a mother-son writing team that absolutely loves the world of superheros and especially The Flash. With Garrett’s comic book knowledge and Melissa’s background in writing, it just made sense to team up and start a blog on something we both love together!

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