Life has not been too kind to Wally West and Cisco Ramon, played by Keiynan Lonsdale and Carlos Valdes, respectively, on season three of The Flash. Cisco lost his brother as a result of the Flashpoint paradox created when Barry twice altered the timeline while Wally lost the powers he gained in the Flashpoint timeline, only to see Jesse Quick enjoy the power of speed in his place. Needless to say, neither character has been particularly pleased about their current situations, but both Lonsdale and Valdes explained that their characters aren’t going to lose the wide-eyed enthusiasm fans have come to love from them.
Speaking to the press during a set visit, Carlos Valdes discussed his thoughts on balancing Cisco’s comedic side with the characters grief.
“It’s been really interesting, really challenging in a lot of ways, too. I feel a lot of ownership over this character and so I’ve found it interesting to balance the comic expectations of this character while at the same time grounding him in the realistic grief that he’s undergoing at this moment. It’s been interesting and continues to be interesting to explore how that grief defines Cisco and his trajectory from here on out. It becomes clearer as more episodes transpire how Dante’s death plays a role in Cisco’s growth as a person.”
Lonsdale explained that while his character is not aware of the powers he lost from the alternate timeline, the sense that something in his life is missing is a familiar feeling for Wally.
“For Wally, I think before we ever met him, he’s always been missing something in his life. I think initially that was his father and his sister, in spite of not knowing them. Now that he has that, it’s discovering that there’s something missing within him. I think he has always felt a little bit unsure of his place and what he’s supposed to do in this world. Now especially dealing with the fact that he’s having dreams and knows that there’s potentially another path for him, he’s sort of mad about that.”
That anger has led to some extremely rash decisions from Wally, with the character even going as far as jumping in front of a moving vehicle in a desperate attempt to gain super speed. However, Lonsdale explains that Wally’s hasty actions also come from a place of desperation.
“He’s not reckless for no reason. We’ll see his passion. Obviously there’s a desperation there because he wants to prove himself an I think we start to understand why he is reckless. I think he sometimes doesn’t put enough value on his own life, which is something that he needs to learn, but it’s definitely going to go deeper and deeper as the dreams go further and start to manifest in different ways, he’ll be more affected.”
Only time will tell if the characters will be able to find peace in their current situations, but for the time being it appears both Keiynan Lonsdale and Carlos Valdes are enjoying the challenge of portraying their characters’ dark sides.
The Flash airs on Tuesday at 8/7c on The CW.