ED. NOTE: A bolt of lightning provides not only an instant six-pack of abs, as our newest incarnation of Barry Allen says. It also provides a jet-pack of programming liftoff, as The CW today unveils a full trailer for “The Flash,” the fall spinoff to the DC hit “The Arrow.” As DC Entertainment works to go all-in on the small screen, the studio hope is that lightning will strike twice for its comics characters. Comic Riffs contributor David Betancourt breaks down the new, five-minute-plus trailer.

Grant Gustin IS the Flash. (courtesy of the CW 2014.)


AFTER GETTING a live-action glimpse of Grant Gustin as the Flash in a promo ad that debuted with the Season 2 finale of “Arrow,” fans today were gifted with a five-minute trailer that provides a deeper look into a show that at first glance, could be the CW’s next DC Comics-sprung hit.

So judging by the first full trailer, here’s what we can expect from the Scarlet Speedster this fall:

1. Classic villains and a heavy Geoff Johns influence:

Within the first 30 seconds of the trailer — as Gustin provides a Barry Allen voice-over, we view not only the origin-story basics (Barry’s mother was murdered when he was a child, right in front of him, and he’s determined to find out who did it); we also glimpse the murderer, running at blazing speed in a yellow suit. So far, the tagline for “The Flash” is “don’t blink,” but if you did in the trailer, you might have missed what looked to be legendary Flash bad guy the Reverse Flash. And is that the Weather Wizard causing a lot more than humidity issues in the streets of Central City? DC exec/writer Geoff Johns’s involvement in this show is obvious. And if his critically acclaimed run on Flash comics is going to inspire this series, fans should be in for a good ride.

2. Iris West

We get a first look at Candice Patton as Iris West, the love interest for Barry Allen for those of you familiar with the Flash universe. There’s clearly some chemistry, but they are far from a super couple to start. Iris is the girl Barry referred to when he made his CW debut, in a guest appearance on an episode of “Arrow” this season. And what about those sparks with the Arrow’s top tech-gal, Felicity? But what we really want to know is: Does Iris have a nephew named Wally?

3. Superhero help

A particularly fun aspect of these trailers is the universe that the cast of “The Flash” shares with “Arrow.” How great it is to see the Green Arrow and the Flash chatting it up on a rooftop. (We only get to see both of them in their superhero garb in the shorter sneak peek.) In the extended trailer, Barry, in civilian garb, is chatting with Stephen Amell’s Arrow about what to do with his sudden superpower. The Arrow looks at Barry and tells him to use his new gifts to inspire his city. He also gives the future Flash a dose of his own advice: “Wear a mask.” Let the speculation as to whether these two will join forces with Henry Cavill and Ben “Bat-fleck” Affleck in a Justice League movie in the near-future. This DC/TV universe is starting to build quite nicely. It would be a shame to waste it, wouldn’t it?

4. The power of the suit

Perhaps we have Christopher Nolan to thank for this, but if you’re putting on a superhero costume, you had better have a logical and advantageous reason for it (Batman with his neck-moving cowl; Superman wearing his Kryptonian heritage suit). With Barry moving at the speed of lightning, he’s presented with a dark-red polymer suit that’s designed not only for streamlined speed, but also to conceal identity. Explanation for wearing a superhero suit: Solved.

Time will tell, of course, whether “The Flash” can live up to the success of “Arrow.” But at first glance, electric buzz should build around the fastest man alive.