This week, The Flash closed out a two-parter in which Barry, Harrison Wells, and Cisco travel to Earth 2 to help Wells save his daughter from Zoom. These episodes have sparked even more interest and theories about Zoom’s true identity, which will likely remain a mystery until at least the season finale. Spoiler alert – read no further unless you are completely caught up with this season!
All season long, there’s been speculation as to Zoom’s identity. Top candidates include the Earth 2 versions of Barry’s dad, Henry Allen, and Joe West. Obviously Joe West is no longer in the running after the events of last week’s episode. Henry Allen is still a candidate, but after this visit to Earth 2, it’s also feeling less likely. After the conversation between Barry and his mother over the phone, we get a sense that Barry’s parents are fairly happy, so creating a motive for Henry to be a psychopathic villain who is hell-bent on killing another version of his own son might be a pretty far stretch.
Who does that leave? Our best guess is Earth 2 Eddie Thawne, who on Earth 1 was the ancestor of Season 1 villain Eobard Thawne. We haven’t seen any details of Thawne’s life on Earth 2, but we know it must be different. Joe West isn’t his partner, and neither is Iris – nor is she his girlfriend, for that matter. It’s uncertain if Thawne is actually a detective at all on Earth 2, whether he harbors feelings for Earth 2 Iris, or if he sees Earth 2 Barry as a competitor. Holding back any details on his character might allow the writers to create a compelling narrative for Thawne’s transformation into Zoom. We know the actor who plays Thawne, Rick Cosnett, is on another series right now, but the use of a costume throughout the season and a transformed voice mean that Cosnett would only have to make a brief guest appearance to fulfill the role.
As for the man in the iron mask on Earth 2, here’s another theory: Jay Garrick.
The lost-his-speed-trapped-on-Earth-1-and-also-dead Jay Garrick, you ask? Well, sort of. Something has been up with the Garrick on Earth 1. He obviously looks the part, because Earth 2 Wells accepts him as Garrick, but he’s lost his speed and doesn’t seem to factor into many of the episodes until recently. My guess is that he’s not Jay Garrick, but Earth 2 Hannibal Bates, a.k.a. Everyman. Everyman made an appearance in The Flash season 1 as a villain who could shapeshift; he even impersonated Earth 1 Eddie. Zoom has surrounded himself with henchman on Earth 2, so it would be no surprise if he used Everyman to infiltrate the group on Earth 1 and keep an eye on Wells by posing as a powerless Garrick. Frankly, it’d also explain why Garrick has felt like such an unrealized character all season.
This would also explain why the man in the mask tapped out “JAY” to Barry when he was trapped in the cell and seemed so upset when Barry described knowing Garrick. It’s a bit odd that Zoom would kill his own team member, but not when you consider that the portal between the two Earths was closing indefinitely, and he may have considered leaving Bates alive on Earth 1 a liability (also, he generally doesn’t seem to mind killing his own guys based on last week).
Lastly, when all is settled with Zoom, it means Earth 2 will still have its own version of the Flash intact.
Any other thoughts/theories out there? Please share!