So far actor Tom Cavanagh has died twice on The Flash. The first time was in the episode “Tricksters” when we saw the flashbacks of Eobard Thawne killed the original Harrison Wells and stole his identity. The second time was in the Season 1 finale when Eddie Thawne shot himself, thus erasing Eobard Thawne from existence. Despite these two events, Cavanagh will remain in the main cast for Season 2, leading fans to wonder how exactly he’ll be involved. Now we have an idea of what’s in store for Cavanagh next season, and it will involve the multiverse.

At San Diego Comic-Con, series star Grant Gustin mentioned that Wells and Barry won’t be interacting at all when the show kicks off, and his next statement hints that it’s because they may not even know each other. According to Gustin:
Wells is on the show, but we’re introducing the multiverse concept, so that’s why he exists still somewhere.

Time travel is a complicated concept both on The Flash and any piece of fiction, but presumably when Eobard Thawne was wiped away, this meant that he never killed the original Harrison Wells, a.k.a the guy who was putting together S.T.A.R. Labs in 2000 with his fiancé Tess Morgan. Thus, some speculated that Cavanagh would be playing a still-alive Wells in the present day. However, according to Gustin, we’re not getting a Wells from The Flash’s main world, which we’ll call Earth 1. Instead, next season’s Wells will be from an alternate universe; one where he was never killed and most likely hasn’t led as chaotic of a life. That would explain why he and Barry won’t have the same relationship: they haven’t even met each other! Take a look at Mirror Universe episodes of the various Star Trek shows if you want to get a better grasp on alternate universes.

It was teased shortly before the season finale that The Flash Season 2 would be exploring alternate timelines and parallel universes. This was verified when Masters of Sex’s Teddy Sears was cast as Jay Garrick. In the comics, Garrick debuted as the Flash 16 years before Barry Allen was created, and within DC continuity is the Flash on Earth 2. Fans saw his trademark winged helmet in the season finale, but so far little is known Garrick other viewers will see “his origin unfold” as a speedster from Earth 2. While the DC multiverse contains countless Earths, it’s possible that to keep things simple for the audience, the new Wells will also hail from Earth 2.

The Flash Season 2 will debut on Tuesday, October 6 in its normal timeslot on The CW.

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