Why The Flash Keeps Using Speedster Villains

The Flash has incorporated all kinds of crazy villains over its two seasons, ranging from a man-shark to a gigantic telepathic gorilla. Both big bads so far have had one thing in common, however. Reverse-Flash and Zoom have both been speedsters, and Season 3 is set to feature a third in the new antagonist Savitar. Considering Barry himself is a speedster and The Flash hasn't been shy about teasing others, three fast-footed supervillains in a row runs the risk of becoming repetitive, but executive producer Todd Helbing has a solid reason for why speedsters are perfect big bads for the show:

I think in general if you have some of these other meta humans, it gets hard to show how Barry can't get them. If you have another speedster, especially someone like Zoom, or Reverse Flash, you need somebody on an equal level to provide that threat that a lot of these other metas can't do.

Barry Allen does have quite an edge over most of the villains that have vexed him on The Flash thus far. In fact, some of his enemies only lasted as long as they did against him because Barry needed to learn his Lesson of the Week. He was truly pushed to his limits with Reverse Flash and Zoom. The Scarlet Speedster vs. Sinister Speedsters 1.0 and 2.0 worked well enough in Seasons 1 and 2; who's to say that Sinister Speedster 3.0 won't be the most compelling of all? The show could always craft a new kind of meta who can rival Barry without superspeed and force him to adapt, but another speedster could be entertaining. Savitar has the potential to be the most dastardly yet.

Todd Helbing went on to reveal an edge that Savitar will have over his two predecessors. Savitar will trouble Barry on a psychological level as well as on the fighting front. Unfortunately, Helbing didn't share any details with IGN about how Savitar will gain this psychological edge on Barry. Presumably, he'll actively do something to Barry and the Scarlet Speedster won't just be psyched out by the fact that he keeps running into bad guys with superspeed. Considering how often Oliver Queen seems to come across other archers over on Arrow, maybe the big crossover should feature the boys griping to each other about constantly facing off against enemies with their same skill sets.

Season 3 of The Flash looks like Barry will face more superspeed problems than ever. The Flashpoint storyline means that he'll be dealing with the effects of his ill-advised interference with time during the first couple of episodes; Savitar will probably make his grand evil debut shortly after Flashpoint is settled. Barry may actually consider Savitar's co-big bad Dr. Alchemy a nice break from all the speedy shenanigans. A nice Central City-destroying break.

The Flash returns to The CW on Tuesday, October 4 at 8 p.m. ET. Take a look at our breakdown of what we know so far about The Flash Season 3, and check out our fall TV premiere schedule to see what else you can catch on the small screen in the not-too-distant future.

Laura Hurley
Senior Content Producer

Laura turned a lifelong love of television into a valid reason to write and think about TV on a daily basis. She's not a doctor, lawyer, or detective, but watches a lot of them in primetime. CinemaBlend's resident expert and interviewer for One Chicago, the galaxy far, far away, and a variety of other primetime television. Will not time travel and can cite multiple TV shows to explain why. She does, however, want to believe that she can sneak references to The X-Files into daily conversation (and author bios).