Spoilers are lurking below for the early episodes of The Flash Season 5, so be sure to watch before continuing.
Cicada took little time in commanding the full attention and speculative brainpower of The Flash‘s fanbase when he was introduced as Season 5’s big bad. In his limited appearances, far more questions than answers have been provided, but star Chris Klein dropped a couple of extremely interesting factoids that could mean big things for Cicada and Team Flash. Let’s take a look at Klein’s claims.
Cicada Is Getting An Origin Episode
As it usually goes with The Flash’s more museum-ready nemeses, Cicada arrived in full glory, complete with a spooky costume and metahuman-weakening abilities. It’s not as if The Flash could possibly keep the villain’s backstory a complete mystery, though, and Chris Klein revealed the show will indeed soon show audiences how Orlin Dwyer became Cicada.
There is going to be an origin episode, a few weeks down the line. But we are going to learn little tidbits moving forward. In [last week’s episode], we got a lot of clues.
A few weeks down the line isn’t far away at all, so expect to learn some (presumably even more confusing) facts about Cicada’s past. Or will it be his future? Knowing that Nora West-Allen’s timeline jumbles brought this anomalous iteration of Cicada into existence, we can’t really say for certain when the mysterious killer’s origin story will even take place.
That Girl Might Not Be Cicada’s Daughter
After Nora’s pleas stalled Cicada from killing Barry, many viewers concluded the villain was also a father. That assumption was strengthened when we saw an unmasked and very worried Orlin Dwyer at the bedside of a sick young girl, but I don’t think that’s the case. Speaking with TVLine, Chris Klein made specific word choices that avoided any familial references to the unnamed young girl. According to Klein:
What I love about Orlin is he’s in it for a reason. It’s too soon to say if it’s the right reason or the wrong reason, but the reason is heavy. We were introduced to a little girl in a bed at the end of [Episode] 503, and we see Orlin kiss her forehead, and the one thing that I can tell you and the audience is that that little girl is going to be very, very, very important to our story moving forward. She is one to watch and learn about.
Surely, Chris Klein would have made SOME kind of reference to fatherhood if the hospitalized girl was actually his daughter. With Barry awkwardly coming into his own as a father to a grown-up offspring, I assumed The Flash would explore patriarchal parallels between the opposing forces. However, that may not be the case. The question now obviously becomes, “Is she actually Cicada’s future wife, suffering from a Flashpoint-esque effect that would negate their future children?” Give me all the weird twists, Flash.
Cicada Might Not Be Human
So, Cicada walks like a human and talks like a human, but don’t go thinking that makes him one. After all, he also sounds like a bunch of insects, but that doesn’t make him an insect, does it? Hmm. Let’s just leave this part to Chris Klein, who gave a cryptic answer when asked if it was the power of flight he’d used to escape his fight with Barry and Vibe.
Call it a flying leap. [Laughs] That dagger can do a lot more than just dampen metahuman powers. And another thing that you’re going to want to keep your eye on — it’s not just the dagger. That doctor in the hospital wanted to take a look at a scar on his chest…. Is he a human? Because if he’s a human, why was that thing glowing? What is that about? Now we know there’s something going on inside of him, and that’s going to play a big part in how difficult he is to capture.
Obviously, that scar on his chest was already a point of intrigue, but it seemed more like a metahuman wound gone awry. Not necessarily proof of an alien being, though, or a radioactive insect-man. What cut Cicada like that, and what does it say about whatever is coursing around inside him? (Does he eat?) Also, how is that element going to be even more of a boon for his war against Team Flash, since he already has the ability to take their powers and beat their faces in? And what else does the dagger do?
Sadness Is A Major Part Of Cicada’s Inspiration
Reverse-Flash was a ball of angry nerves throughout Season 1 of The Flash, with Savitar also largely guided by time-strengthened rage. The evil actions of Zoom and The Thinker, meanwhile, were largely inspired by the vastness of their respective egos. Cicada is on another level when it comes to his own motivational emotions, and Chris Klein said that fans will be witnessing a villain whose reign of terror is marked by sadness.
There’s a reason why as Cicada he wants all metahumans to die. We will learn what that reason is, and we’ll get to judge Orlin for it. One of the coolest things about The Flash is that with every villain, the fans get an opportunity to judge them on their merits. Every villain has a reason for being, and Orlin’s is a pretty heavy one. This guy comes with a lot of sadness. . . . Things have gone on in Orlin’s life that make him sad. He’s got some regrets. And there’s a bit of self loathing. We’re going to learn that there was a time in Orlin’s life that he is making up for. He made some promises that he is pretty keen on keeping.
So maybe that young girl is actually the child of Orlin’s sibling, whose death he promised to avenge. Or one of several other worthwhile hypotheses. In any case, it’s extremely interesting that the Flash star describes Cicada’s emotions as if the character is in a bubble. He’s sad about what has happened in his life, and he kind of hates himself for whatever it was, without mention of any others.. Of course, his therapy is murdering other metahumans, villainous or virtuous, so we probably don’t have to worry about Cicada falling prey to self-harm.
Let’s hope Cicada’s dagger doesn’t sap the power away from your televisions, because The Flash airs every Tuesday night on The CW at 8:00 p.m. ET. (I guess your TV would have to have been altered by the particle accelerator explosion.) While waiting to devote more obsession to Cicada, be sure to note all the other great shows that are populating the fall TV schedule.