The fastest man alive

A freak ac­ci­dent turns or­di­nary sci­en­tist Barry Allen into a su­per­hero in The Flash.

TV Plus (South Africa) - - SCI-FI -

Grant Gustin is a TV heart­throb thanks to his new role as Barry Allen – aka The Flash. Sea­son 1 Thurs­days (from 28 July) SABC3 (*193) 22:30

Barry Allen (Grant Gustin) is an or­di­nary sci­ence geek work­ing in the foren­sics depart­ment of the Central City Po­lice Depart­ment in sci-fi show The Flash (2014- cur­rent). As the adopted son of cop Joe West (Jesse L Martin), Barry’s grown up with the Wests af­ter his dad was wrong­fully jailed for mur­der­ing Barry’s mom when Barry was a kid. But thanks to a sci­ence ex­plo­sion at the STAR Labs Par­ti­cle Ac­cel­er­a­tor fa­cil­ity, Barry – and a few other Central City cit­i­zens – are given su­per­pow­ers. Barry is now “the fastest man alive” and he’s got one mis­sion: to find his mom’s real killer and free his dad. Here’s what Grant had to say about sea­son 1 of the show that’s just ar­rived on SABC3 screens…

Barry has a com­plex fam­ily back­ground… His bi­o­log­i­cal fa­ther Henry Allen (John Wesley Shipp – he played Barry Allen/ Flash in the orig­i­nal 1990-1991 se­ries The Flash) has been in pri­son for 14 years. Barry also has adop­tive dad Joe, who’s been an amaz­ing fa­ther fig­ure. Now that Barry has these pow­ers, Joe wants to keep him safe but Barry wants to keep the city safe. There is a lot of head-butting be­tween the two. Does Barry find it a strug­gle to cope with his new pow­ers? He puts other peo­ple first and that’s go­ing to get in his way some­times. When he’s try­ing to stop a bad guy, he wor­ries about the in­jured per­son left be­hind on the street rather than chas­ing af­ter the bad­die. Dr Har­ri­son Wells (Tom Ca­vanagh) in­vented the par­ti­cle ac­cel­er­a­tor that caused Barry’s ac­ci­dent. How will their re­la­tion­ship de­velop? Be­fore they met, Har­ri­son was some­one who Barry had looked up to in a pro­fes­sional sense. Now that they’ve met, he’s not ex­actly what Barry ex­pected. He is one of the only peo­ple Barry can trust… he knows ev­ery­thing about what’s go­ing on with the pow­ers. Will Barry have any time for love? Be­fore his ac­ci­dent, he had feel­ings for [Joe’s daugh­ter] Iris West (Candice Pat­ton), but she’s dat­ing some­one else and Barry wouldn’t get in the way of that. I don’t think that he’s putting love at the top of his pri­or­ity list be­cause he feels a re­spon­si­bil­ity to use his pow­ers to pro­tect the city. What’s been the most chal­leng­ing as­pect of your role? At first I thought it would be pres­sure from the fans, but they’ve been re­ally ac­cept­ing. Now the main chal­lenge is work­ing with the shoot­ing sched­ule while try­ing to main­tain my body. I’m eat­ing as much as I can be­cause I’m a thin guy! [Laughs] So what train­ing do you do? I’ve al­ways been pretty ac­tive, so I haven’t had to make any dras­tic changes to my work­out sched­ule. I go to the gym of­ten, but I’d prob­a­bly be 20 pounds [9kg] lighter than I am now if I didn’t. I grew up danc­ing, so I have a pretty in­ten­sive dance back­ground, which makes it a lot eas­ier to pick up fight chore­og­ra­phy. How do you guys get The Flash’s su­per­hu­man speed right on­screen? When we’re film­ing, there’s a day for “green­screen” work and I spend the day run­ning on a green tread­mill in front of a green­screen. The special ef­fects team also took thou­sands of pho­tos of my body and face. They have amaz­ingly de­tailed shots of me, right down to the pores in my skin. They’re us­ing these im­ages to cre­ate com­puter-gen­er­ated im­ages of me run­ning. It’s fas­ci­nat­ing. Did you have to learn how to run cor­rectly? I’ve al­ways been a fast run­ner, but I worked with a track and field trainer to get the right move­ments. You don’t re­alise that there is a real way of run­ning cor­rectly. Well, I didn’t! [Laughs] And what was it like to try on The Flash cos­tume for the first time? I knew the suit would be the thing that made this en­tire ex­pe­ri­ence feel real be­cause it’s such an iconic part of the char­ac­ter. It’s so dif­fer­ent to any suit that’s ever ex­isted be­fore, which is ex­cit­ing. See­ing pho­tos of me in the suit and see­ing the mer­chan­dise makes me feel re­ally cool! Barry as The Flash.

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