Spoilers blow for The Flash season finale.
As huge narrative-driving mysteries go, The Flash’s Man in the Iron Mask definitely wasn’t as high-ranking as the secrets behind Reverse-Flash and Zoom’s identities. But it still had us incredibly curious for the past couple of months, halfway helped along by knowing we’d be waiting until the finale to see who was under there. And now, we know it was actually Earth-3's Jay Garrick all this time, and he also happens to be another version of Henry Allen. Cue the lightning bolts and fans screaming "I knew it!"
The huge and slightly depressing reveal came via the most Villain Monologue of all the villain monologues out there, with Zoom sharing his story with the imprisoned Joe. (The way he talked about the Speed Force not liking manipulation made it obvious he'd been practicing that story in his head for some time.) But it was still a good story that connected some of the other nuggets of information that we knew about Hunter Zolomon and his costumed reign of terror. But mostly, Henry Allen with a beard!
Oddly enough, Zoom became more powerful by developing and using Velocity 9, which started to kill him, giving his time as "Jay Garrick" on Earth-1 more of a basis in truth than it had formerly seemed. In any case, he became so powerful that he started breaking through dimensional barriers, at which point he found the real Jay and kidnapped him, aiming to steal his speed. Though that didn't exactly work, the Speed Force wasn't able to stop him from stealing Barry's speed.
And so Jay Garrick has been locked up inside Zoom's lair all this time as a trophy of the villain's ability to steal someone's speed. As well, he used Jay's persona to bring up Earth-2's Flash, so that he could also become his city's hero, so that he could also take himself down as the villain. And then time remnants and time wraiths and so on. We know the rest.
Thankfully, this restores the glory of the classic character Jay Garrick and hopefully soothes the angered fans who thought that the show was tarnishing the hero's name by making him a fake Zoom alter ego. I mean, not that having him locked up and masked for half a season is the most fantastic way of honoring Jay. But the future...well, a whole lot might happen in the future. And I hope it all does.
Like, how do the Allens and Garricks connect on Earth-1, and what other doubles are we going to meet? So many questions. So many Earths. Well, at least three. But what about Supergirl's? Did Hunter ever see Barry's dad? And did Barry really just reset EVERYTHING? More questions.
Sadly, we won’t be losing our breath to catch up with Barry for quite a while, since Season 3 won’t be on The CW for several more months. Now we’re just going to have to go out and start finding random people wearing masks out in the real world, and then trying to figure out who’s wearing them. Are you guys with me? No?
Be Honest, Did You See That Coming?