None of the heroes in The CW's DC universe are without their flaws, and it's pretty easy to criticize some of them. The Flash's Barry Allen has been getting quite a lot of criticism from fans over the past season, and star Grant Gustin is very much aware of their reactions. He recently came out and addressed how he feels about fans hating on Barry, saying this:
Barry Allen is one of those characters who always has the best intentions, and he tends to have a more upbeat outlook on the superhero lifestyle than most of his pals over on Arrow. Unfortunately for fans, Barry has the habit of making decisions that turn his good intentions into huge mistakes, and he doesn't always learn from those mistakes. If he did, he might not be having such a hard time with his third speedster supervillain in as many years. Grant Gustin's reveal at the recent PaleyFest panel (via TVLine) that he actually frequently agrees with fans' frustrations at least proves that one of the folks working on The Flash is aware of how Barry's actions are being received by viewers.
Going by social media reactions, I'd argue that some fans have been especially inclined to hate on Barry because he doesn't seem to get blamed for much in-universe. His friends often excuse his mistakes and misbehaviors, which fits with the lighter tone of The Flash and its happy hero... but doesn't always make for a guy everybody wants to root for. The boy didn't even face too much criticism in the show for creating the new Flashpoint timeline for personal reasons, and a good amount of the mess in Season 3 has been connected to Flashpoint.
Personally, I'm just hoping that the lessons Barry does learn when his plans go horribly wrong actually start sticking with him. I've lost count of how many times he's learned that using time travel recklessly and/or for personal reasons inevitably backfires, but he seems to forget whenever he comes across a new catastrophe that might be fixed with a jaunt to the past or future.
All of this said, Barry does at least deserve points for persistence. He doesn't always go about trying to make up for his mistakes in the best or most productive ways, but he gets an A for effort a lot of the time. We can bet that he will stop at nothing to find a way to save Iris from Savitar by the end of Season 3, and we shouldn't expect him to stop figuring out daring new ways to use his powers to battle bad guys. Hopefully for Grant Gustin's sake - and the sake of viewers - Barry will start behaving in a way that the hate can stop.
Tune in to The CW on Tuesdays at 8 p.m. ET to catch new episodes of The Flash. The Scarlet Speedster will soon team up with Supergirl to battle the Music Meister in an epic musical crossover that should be worth the watch. Don't forget to take a gander at our midseason TV premiere guide and summer TV premiere schedule.