Barry Allen and Moving Forward

I have mentioned before on here how much I’m a fan of the comic book character “The Flash”.  I feel like in a lot of ways I can relate to Barry Allen.  So of course I was excited to see the return of the series.  And along with the return gives a lot of entertainment as well as a lot to think about and ponder.

At the end of last season, Barry went back in time to try and fix a problem.  That problem was one that had defined him.  That problem was the death of Barry’s mother by Reverse Flash.  Barry goes back and stops Reverse Flash and prevents the death of his mother.  The season premiere of this season showed the effects of this “Flashpoint” which changed the timeline of what happened not only for Barry but for everyone else.  When things began to spiral out of control, Barry goes back and allows Reverse Flash to kill his mother.

Last night’s episode showed the effects of what happened when Barry “fixed” the timeline.  Relationships were damaged between family and friends.  New enemies began to appear in Central City.  So Barry decides to go back again and try and fix it.  However before he got too far, he was stopped by Jay Garrick (Earth 2 Flash), who knocked him out of the Speed Force and into 1998 (which wasn’t a bad year to be honest).

barry-and-jay

Jay and Barry then sit in a diner and have a conversation.  During that conversation, Jay tries to share with Barry about how trying to “fix” the timeline doesn’t work.  He uses the example of a coffee cup and how it can be broken.  Once it’s broken, even if you try and put it back together again, it still has the cracks and isn’t the cup it once was.  The same for the timeline.  The more one goes back to try and “fix” things, the more it breaks.  Jay then tells Barry that he has to accept what has happened and move forward.

I know for myself that there are those certain moments in my life that I wish I could go back and change or “fix”.  Painful times that I wish didn’t happen or good things that I wish had lasted.  But I cannot go back in time and change things.  All I can do is move forward.  That’s all that all of us can do.  We have to persevere and move forward.  We have to trust God that what hurt and pains that we’ve experienced are not the be all end all of our lives.  That we are not defined by those moments only.  But that we are defined by Him.

It is not easy to move forward sometimes, even for a speedster like Barry Allen.  But it is possible.  It is a daily struggle but it is possible.

The 25th Anniversary Edition 1990 Version: TV Shows

It’s time again for the Anniversary Edition. This is a series where we highlight the 25th anniversary of some of our favorite things. These include movies, TV shows, video games, comics and music that came out during the year of 1990, the first year of the decade of the 90s. A lot of big things debuted or made a huge impact that year and so we will highlight some of those in this series.

We have previously looked at the year in music, video games and movies in 1990. We now turn to the TV shows of 1990. There were some pretty big TV shows that debuted in 1990. As I mentioned last year, this was still the era of Saturday morning cartoons as well as weekday afternoon cartoons. Along with that, there were some pretty significant prime time TV shows that debuted that are still adored to this day.

A special event that came in 1990 was the cartoon special Cartoon All Stars To The Rescue. It was a cartoon that featured numerous Saturday morning cartoon characters & was essentially a public service announcement against drugs. It aired on April 21st simultaneously on ABC, NBC, CBS, FOX, BET, USA and Nickelodeon.

Speaking of cartoons, there were some pretty big ones that debuted in 1990. Before getting into specific shows, two blocks of shows debuted in 1990. On September 8th, FOX Kids debuted on FOX. A few days later on September 10th, Disney Afternoon, a block of Disney cartoons debuted in syndication. Onto the shows, Talespin, a kind of remaking of the Jungle Book characters debuted on May 5th on the Disney Channel (it would go on to be a part of Disney Afternoon). When FOX Kids debuted, two big cartoons in that block were Bobby’s World and Tom & Jerry Kids. Two other big cartoons that debuted were Tiny Toons Adventures and Captain Planet and the Planeteers. Tiny Toon Adventures (September 14th) debuted in syndication and features some new characters in the Warner Bros animation world as well as some classic characters. Captain Planet and the Planeteers (September 15th) debuted on TBS and was a ecological slant as they fought against those that would pollute the Earth.

One of the most influential dramas on television debuted on September 13th. That show was Law & Order. This procedural crime drama looked at both the cops and the lawyers as a crime and case developed. It would go on to be one of the longest running series in the history of television and would have multiple spinoffs (including one that is still running in Law & Order: SVU). Another extremely popular TV show that debuted in 1990 was Beverly Hills, 90210. Making its debut on October 4 on FOX, it would be one of the first hits for the network & be one of the defining shows for teens and young adults of that decade.

One show that lasted only one season but was ahead of its time was The Flash. This superhero show based on the DC character The Flash, debuted on CBS on September 20th. It would last only one season but elements (and some of the actors from that show) have made their way into the new version of The Flash that is airing on the CW now.

One of the most popular sitcoms that made it’s debut that year was The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air.  The show which starred Will Smith made it’s debut on September 10th.  It’s theme song was one of the most popular and recognizable of the decade and the show would later propel Smith onto success on the big screen.

Some other popular TV shows that debuted in 1990 included Twin Peaks (April 9th), In Living Color (April 14th), Wings (April 19th), Northern Exposure (July 12th) and Evening Shade (September 21st).

Which of these TV shows listed was your favorite? Is there a TV show not listed that premiered in 1990 that you enjoy? Leave a comment and share them here. Next time, we will look at the year in comics in 1990. Until then, crank up the old VCR and enjoy some classic TV shows.

Flash vs. Arrow: A Case Study (Of Sorts)

FlashvsArrow

This week featured the “crossover event” of two comic book TV shows.  They are The Flash and Arrow, both on the CW Network.  They star two DC superheroes, the Flash and Green Arrow.  The Flash is a newly spinoff show (debuted this season) of Arrow (now in its third season).  They are different shows with different environments but have a “shared universe” (as in they are connected and interact with each other as opposed to another DC show on TV right now, Gotham).

The two night events (last night and tonight) was not the first time the two shows interacted.  Last season on Arrow, Barry Allen was introduced as a character (pre acquisition of his powers) as well as the introduction of two supporting characters Caitlin Snow and Cisco Ramon.  The season premiere of The Flash featured a cameo by Oliver Queen/Arrow as well as an early season guest appearance by Felicity Smoak (a part of Team Arrow).

The Flash episode was appropriately entitled “Flash vs. Arrow”.  It featured what you would expect in pairing of two superheroes, a fight.  The fight (which was brought on by Barry being affected by a metahuman) ended in a draw but was a valuable lesson to Barry.  The Arrow episode was entitled “The Brave and the Bold”.  For those that don’t know, that is the title of a comic book series that featured superheroes pairing up to fight villains.  This episode was more of the Flash and Arrow working together, but not without some tension and disagreement.

There is a dynamic between the two which lends itself to good storytelling.  This is because not only of their stark differences but also their shared commonalities.  The differences are somewhat obvious.  Barry has superpowers (super speed/quick healing) and Oliver does not.  Barry has to fight villains that are meta humans (for the most part) and Oliver does not (for the most part).  The cities in which they live (Barry and Central City/Oliver and Starling City) are a reflection of them and are in contrast.

However, both have experienced great loss.  Both have seen their mothers killed in front of them.  Both have a team around them that helps them in their fight (Barry has Caitlin, Cisco, Dr. Harrison Wells and Det. Joe West while Oliver has Felicity, John Diggle and Roy Harper).  Both are in love with someone they can’t be with at the moment (Barry with Iris West/Oliver with Felicity or Laurel Lance depending on the season).

I’ve always been a fan of the character of The Flash and I think the TV show has done a great job depicting Barry as the superhero as well as the “alter ego”.  He is a balance to Oliver Queen/Arrow who is darker but yet is still a hero.  Both learn from each other about being a hero.  Barry learns from Oliver about not rushing into danger but knowing what the dangers are.  Oliver learns from Barry about being hope to others.

Barry and Oliver

It is true that when you bring Barry types together with Oliver types that you do have conflict.  However, there is also a lot of good that can come about the pairing.  Because the things that make Barry Allen special help where Oliver Queen isn’t good at and vice versa.  It makes for good storytelling and in real life it helps people grow and do good.

The Flash and Trying to Outrun Pain

The-Flash

One of my favorite new TV shows is The Flash.  I’m a huge fan of the comic book character and I am really enjoying the TV show.  It tells the story of Barry Allen, a scientist who works for the Central City Police Department.  He gets struck by lightning and the mix of the lightning, chemicals and a blast from a particle accelerator grant him the ability of super speed.  He uses his new found abilities to fight crime in the city.  He also is dealing with the death of his mother as a child and his father being wrongfully accused of the death.

In one of the first few episodes of the show he made the following statement:  “I thought being the fastest man alive would make my life easier.  That I could outrun anything.  Turns out, no one can outrun pain.”  Through the course of the episode he was trying to “outrun” or not deal with pain which included still wrestling with the loss of his mother.  But by the end of the episode he realizes that even the ‘fastest man alive’ can’t outrun pain.

We all want to outrun pain.  We all have something or someone that hurts us.  And we want to run away from the pain and not deal with it.  But like Barry Allen, we can’t outrun pain.  It’s there and it’s something that we have to deal with.  But the good news is we don’t have to deal with the pain alone.  God knows this and He’s right there with us.  He sends the Holy Spirit to us.  Part of the Holy Spirit’s job is to comfort us, to be with us when we are hurting.

We may not have super speed like Barry Allen.  But we do know what it feels like to deal with pain, whether it’s physical or emotional.  And we know that we can’t outrun pain.  But it’s great to know someone who understands pain.  Someone who has dealt with pain and who can sympathize and empathize with us.  And we know that we are not alone and have to deal with the pain by ourselves.  We have Jesus with us.  There’s no pain and no problem that can get ahead of Him.

The Flash Trailer

One of my favorite superheroes is The Flash.  I always thought his super power of super sonic speed was so cool and loved watching cartoons (and even the old 80s TV live action show) that featured the Flash.  Now, the CW network is coming out with a new The Flash TV show this fall.  It’s another of a line of superhero TV shows that are becoming more and more prevalent on TV.  They released a teaser trailer tonight during the season finale of Arrow (based on Green Arrow).  I’m excited about it.  Here it is:

Update:  The CW posted a new extended trailer that’s cooler than the teaser trailer: