The Flash has teased rough waters ahead for Barry and Team Flash, with the bendable new villain Rag Doll set to cause problems in “All Doll’d Up.” Actor Troy James’ contortionist character may impact the West-Allen family in a potentially permanent way. Speaking with CinemaBlend, James says Rag Doll’s Barry-napping will change things up for the super-family.
It’s interesting in the sense that when you find out what Rag Doll is trying to do, and how he gets involved with the West-Allen family. You know that Barry gets kidnapped, and Iris has to step up to save the day. I think it will be really interesting seeing how that affects the family dynamic going forward in the show.
As has been the case before, Iris will have to step up and save Barry from almost certain doom. The role reversal will seemingly put Iris back in the face of danger, and recent preview footage depicts Iris ready to face Rag Doll with Ralph at her side. How Barry will react to that is anyone’s guess, although we can assume The Flash isn’t going to be too upset that his wife steps in to save him from his flexible and frenzied foe.
Perhaps the answer lies in other family ties beyond Barry and Iris’. Troy James teased that Rag Doll’s behavior could be a result of his upbringing, revealing viewers will learn more about this combination variation of The Flash villain, and the origins that inevitably lead to his situation in his Arrow-verse debut.
Rag Doll has a whole bunch of family issues, and you get to see that in the episode as well. I think you’ll find out why he is the way he is.
Troy James shared with CinemaBlend that the Arrow-verse version of Rag Doll will be a blending of the two portrayed in DC Comics. Specifically, Rag Doll will have the natural flexibility of OG Rag Doll Peter Merkel, but also the sadistic nature of his son Peter Merkel Jr. The more twisted nature of James’ live-action villain could be the result of past family trauma(s), which could have both Barry and Iris looking inward at their own parenting decisions.
Now, Iris’s mothering skills probably won’t turn out to be as bad as Rag Doll’s parents’ presumably were, but maybe the encounter will give her a bit of perspective on how heavily her and Barry’s behavior impacts their future-daughter After all, Iris allegedly choosing to dampen Nora’s powers in the future does some extensive damage to their relationship, and no amount of apologizing seems to be fixing it.
If Rag Doll is as chaotic as we hope, his actions might just be enough to convince Iris to avoid dampening Nora’s powers. If that happens, it could totally alter Nora’s timeline, which means just about everyone’s timeline would be different.
That’s just speculation, however. Promos for The Flash‘s upcoming episode do not feature Nora. We’re not sure what the future speedster’s up to during this quest to save Barry, but I’d find it surprising if she were unavailable to help daddy dearest in his time of need. Perhaps the reason she’s not involved is due to her ineffective collaborations with Iris, which would itself play into the over-arching theme of how Rag Doll may effect the West-Allens.
Troy James couldn’t reveal all the secrets of The Flash‘s episode ahead of its premiere, but told CinemaBlend he was more than thrilled to be on The CW series. The actor has found much of his work in genre series over the years, and achieved new heights of fame in 2018 for showcasing his insane flexibility on America’s Got Talent. James wasn’t sure if The Flash casting team saw his viral video, but did have his suspicions, since the turnaround time on his casting was as fast as Barry.
I’m pretty sure that the powers that be in casting saw my America’s Got Talent video. Because when I sent them my tape, the turnaround was within the hour. I sent them my demo tape, and then an hour later, they called back and said ‘How quickly can you make it to Vancouver for The Flash?’
Now also known for his stellar work in Channel Zero: The Dream Door as Pretzel Jack, and as a Mongrel on The Strain, Troy James is becoming a no-brainer choice for physically unique antagonists who are creepy as hell. Since The Flash doesn’t get too spooky all that often, CinemaBlend’s Nick Venable asked the actor if his experience on the Flash set saw him trying to get a frightening rise out of his temporary co-stars. He said this:
It’s funny, because I wanted to, but at the same time, I was very well aware that we were on the set of a superhero show, a really popular superhero show. And probably I’m like a guest star, and I don’t want to cause any mischief. I don’t want to get in trouble. [laughs] I kept feeling like, ‘What the heck am I doing on the set of The Flash with all of these really awesome people?’ But we did get into some behind-the-scenes mischief. I have some cool pictures I’d like to show everyone when the episode airs.
Troy James has already posted a couple behind the scenes photos to his Instagram, and that statement would indicate more are on the way when “All Doll’d Up” actually airs. In the meantime, fans can only guess how he used his unique bending abilities to amaze his Flash co-stars when the cameras weren’t rolling. It wouldn’t take much, as his America’s Got Talent video is still more than enough to cause a person’s jaw to drop to the floor.
People have also experienced some jaw-dropping at the expense of Troy James’ Channel Zero: The Dream Door character Pretzel Jack, who is straight up nightmare fuel for even the bravest of folks. James noted the timing of the two projects created an interesting parallel between the childhood clown and the metahuman psycho.
Both of those happened around the same time, and there are some similarities. Because you know, Pretzel Jack is a killer contortionist clown, and then you have Rag Doll, who kind of does have the clown motif going on there with the white face and, you know, the Raggedy Ann hair. But they are different. Rag Doll talks. [laughs]