Spoilers ahead for the Season 5 finale of The Flash, called "Legacy."
The stakes are always immensely high when the shows of the Arrow-verse head into their season finales, and The Flash delivered a Season 5 ender that sent off a number of characters. There were deaths as well as some less permanent departures, but the status quo of the series has definitely been changed moving forward into Season 6. Now, as we head into another Flash hiatus, check out a rundown of the characters who left or died in the Season 5 finale.
Yes, The Flash wrote out Barry and Iris' enthusiastic daughter from the future, and in a truly heartbreaking way. After she spent Season 5 and a chunk of Season 4 messing up the timeline, she finally lost her life because of it. Reverse-Flash's grand plan to escape prison in 2049 came to fruition after Team Flash was forced to destroy Cicada's dagger, which set off a chain of events that resulted in the timeline rewriting itself, and that timeline wrote out Nora.
She had one chance to survive, as Reverse-Flash informed Team Flash that using the Negative Speed Force could prevent Nora from being wiped from existence. Barry and Iris wanted their daughter to do whatever it took to save herself, but Nora refused to do something that would make the dark Negative Speed Force permanently part of her. She took responsibility for her actions, and she died/disappeared for it.
Eobard Thawne's disappearing game continues. Nothing Barry ever does seems to work to contain Reverse-Flash, and in his rush to try and save Nora in "Legacy," he gave Reverse-Flash the opening to escape. In rare show of humanity, Reverse-Flash wanted Barry to save Nora, as he'd come to care about the young speedster during their many conversations.
I'm guessing he won't lose much sleep over his failure, though. We may get to find out, based on his final comment to Barry before racing away. Reverse-Flash promised to see Barry at "the next crisis," and that wasn't the only development on the "Crisis on Infinite Earths" front in "Legacy."
The departure of Cisco Ramon has been rumored for months, and naturally fans worried that Cisco would be killed off (again). The good news is that Cisco was alive and well at the end of "Legacy." The bad news is that Vibe is no more. Cisco has been feeling the strain of living his double life and lying to new girlfriend Kamilla about his work at STAR Labs, and he just wasn't feeling like Vibe should be what defines him.
So, by the end of the hour, he asked Caitlin to give him the metahuman cure, and she did. While a non-superpowered Cisco could obviously still be part of Team Flash -- see: Iris and Joe -- there was a sense of finality in his goodbye to Caitlin. He left her a suit as a way to say "thank you" for being such a good friend, and that didn't strike me as Cisco saying "I'll see you tomorrow, pal."
Sherloque also survived but departed in "Legacy." After spending Season 5 alternating between comic relief and mystery-solver, Sherloque decided that his work was done, and it was time to return to his own Earth. He decided to upgrade Ralph Dibny from "frightened baby giraffe" to "adult giraffe," so that's progress! If his relationship tanks, I could see him returning.
The Flash will likely want to keep Tom Cavanagh on board, and there are only so many times the show can reasonably yank a new Wells from a new Earth. He may not need to reprise his role as Thawne until "Crisis on Infinite Earths."
The second Cicada bit the dust in the Season 5 finale after coming very close to killing members of Team Flash in the past couple of episodes. She died after trying to grab the dagger after Barry shot it with the mirror gun to destroy it. Before it could be totally vaporized, however, Cicada II grabbed it, and she was ultimately vaporized along with the dagger. She died, the dagger was gone, and Thawne was able to escape. It was an unceremonious end for a major Flash villain, and she's likely gone for good.
Those are the big deaths and departure from the Season 5 finale of The Flash, but not the only big developments. Singh got a big promotion in the episode, and he called Joe, Cecile, and Barry to the CCPD to share the good news in person. After announcing that he was promoted to Chief of Police, Singh stated that he got to name his successor as Captain, and he wanted Joe to have the job. Yay for Joe!
That did raise the question of why Singh would ask Barry to join Joe and Cecile for the good news. As much as Barry is Joe's surrogate son, Singh didn't ask Iris to come, so what was up? In a pretty awesome twist, Singh just came out and told Barry that he knew his secret identity as The Flash. He is a detective, after all! Singh doesn't intend to out Barry as the Scarlet Speedster, though, so it was a fun turn of events rather than an emergency.
Nora's diary hadn't popped out of existence when she died/disappeared, so her parents do still have a piece of her left. She even recorded a video message for them just in case the worst happened in the final mission to take down Cicada II. It was a bittersweet ending for the fifth season, and it didn't actually end on a cliffhanger like seasons past. Season 6 is something of a blank slate at this point, other than the "Crisis on Infinite Earths" crossover.
Once Arrow ends following its shortened eighth season, The Flash will officially be the oldest active series in the Arrow-verse. The end of Arrow won't mean a smaller Arrow-verse, though, as Batwoman officially got its series order. There's plenty of superhero goodness returning to The CW in the 2019-2020 TV season.