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Flashpoint comic book

It’s been a long time coming, but it looks like Warner Bros finally has things lined up for The Flash movie to its upcoming DCEU slate. Although COVID-19 concerns may have affected its planned schedule, the movie is currently sitting at a summer 2022 release date right in between sequels to Shazam and Aquaman. For some time The Flash has continued to be characterized as an adaptation of the 2011 DC Comics storyline Flashpoint – yet as director Andy Muschietti recently put it, Ezra Miller will front a “different version” of the popular comic plot.

Flashpoint is one of the most well-known stories in the DC Universe, but it is almost a decade old now. It’s a vastly important storyline in the comic books since it launched “The New 52” continuity. As The Flash nears production and release in the next two years, knowing the basics can only benefit comic book genre fans. Here’s everything you need to know about Flashpoint ahead of The Flash movie and with the current DCEU timeline kept in mind for added context:

Ezra Miller as The Flash in Justice League

Barry Allen’s Flash Origin Story Becomes Erased

Flashpoint is a miniseries that was published back in 2011 with Geoff Johns and Andy Kubert behind the writing and art respectively. In the story, Barry Allen wakes up one day without the powers that make him the Scarlet Speedster and living in a completely different world than the one he knows. The major change he notices in his own life is that his mother Nora is actually alive, but his father Henry died from a heart attack a few years prior.

In the classic Barry Allen story, his mother was killed when he was very young and his father is living out his years in jail under charge of her murder. Reverse-Flash is the true murderer and framed Henry. You’d think this would be a dream come true for Barry since he’s spent his life wishing he could be with his mom, but the cost is too high. The world is a much darker place with this small shift in time. He must try to replicate the incident that turns him into the Flash.

The Batman test footage, Robert Pattinson suit, Matt Reeves

Thomas Wayne Is Batman Instead

During Flashpoint, at one point in the story it moves to Gotham to reveal a completely new story about Batman as well. Barry Allen learns that the man under the cape and cowl is Bruce Wayne’s father Thomas Wayne instead. In this alternate timeline, Bruce was the one who was murdered on that famed night where his parents were slain. Thomas decided to become Batman and his wife Martha actually becomes the Joker.

This Batman is Barry Allen’s greatest ally in Flashpoint who stands beside him as he tries to figure things out but they also enlist Element Woman, Shazam and this timeline’s “Superman” or sorts Cyborg. That’s right: Cyborg is the United States most trusted hero in Flashpoint. The Walking Dead’s Jeffrey Dean Morgan briefly played Thomas Wayne in Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice and has shown interest in playing this version of Batman in a Flashpoint movie. However, with Robert Pattinson set to be introduced as the character a year prior to The Flash, why would the DCEU debut an alternate version of him played by another actor already? Seems unlikely.

Jason Momoa as Aquaman and Gal Gadot as Wonder Woman

In Flashpoint Wonder Woman And Aquaman’s Worlds Are At War

The main incident that makes the Flashpoint timeline the most concerning is there is a massive war going on between Wonder Woman’s world of Themyscira and Aquaman’s kingdom under the sea of Atlantis. Knowing how powerful each of these places are from their big-screen introductions in 2017’s Wonder Woman and 2019’s Aquaman, if they both clashed it would be disastrous. In Flashpoint, the war leads to the death of millions of people and both Aquaman and Wonder Woman are caught up defending their own lands.

This is an especially interesting aspect of Flashpoint today with Wonder Woman and Aquaman being the most successful entries into the DCEU so far. To see these worlds go to war in a movie would be nothing short of epic and could be a good excuse for the universe to operate on a grander and interconnected scale since The Flash ends up erasing that timeline as Flashpoint comes to an end.

Henry Cavill as Superman in Man of Steel

Kal-El Never Becomes Superman

In an additional shakeup for the DC Universe, Flashpoint readers learn that when Kal-El’s ship landed to Earth from Krypton it falls into the hands of the U.S. government in Metropolis instead of Smallville, Kansas. Clark Kent never gets the kind upbringing on a farm, becomes a reporter or meets Lois Lane. He never becomes Superman. When he is introduced in Flashpoint, he is very weak and imprisoned for much of his life.

The idea of Superman having ties to Flashpoint is especially interesting for Henry Cavill’s big-screen character since his storyline that began with Man of Steel and ended with Justice League has been tied up at Warner Bros for some time. If there’s a place for Cavill’s Superman to make a return or be given a reset, The Flash is the place to do it – likely with a completely new take on Superman’s alternate timeline.

Reverse Flash in The Flash television series

Reverse-Flash Is The Main Villain To Appear In Flashpoint

Flashpoint has a unique twist to it because it involves Barry Allen’s greatest foe but he is technically not the villain of the story. Barry is. For much of Flashpoint, he believes Eobard Thawne/Professor Zoom to be the speedster behind the new timeline. But in a shocking twist, when Barry confronts Zoom we learn that it was Barry who traveled back in time and changed things for the worse in an effort to change the incident of his mother’s death.

Barry did go back in time in order to stop Reverse-Flash from committing the murder and ended up folding the entire Speed Force into himself to stop him. There’s a valuable lesson to be had here about the idea of wanting to change the past in order to bring one’s loved ones back. Even if Flashpoint doesn’t go so far as to include the alternate origins of Batman or Superman or the war between Wonder Woman and Aquaman, Barry’s odds with Reverse-Flash feels central enough to his origin story to serve as a perfect villain for his standalone debut.

There's the basics of Flashpoint to know as The Flash is expected to begin production sometime this year. Which aspect of the storyline would you like to see play out in the movie? Sound off in the comments below and vote in our poll.

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