Flash Theory Makes Green Lantern's Strongest Enemy The Next Crossover Villain

Warning: Spoilers for The Flash season 8, episode 11

A new theory spinning out of The Flash’s Deathstorm story makes the Green Lantern’s most powerful enemy the next Arrowverse crossover villain. The series created a massive Green Lantern connection by introducing a character with ties to DC’s Blackest Night event. Blackest Night was a comic book crossover that shined the spotlight on Green Lantern’s corner of the DC Universe.

Just a few episodes after beating Despero and stopping the Reverse-Flash from causing Armageddon, The Flash kicked off a new multi-episode arc with a character called the Black Flame filling the role of the central antagonist. The ending of The Flash season 8, episode 11, titled “Resurrection” confirmed the identity of the mystery villain. The character stood revealed as Deathstorm, a twisted version of Robbie Amell’s Firestorm, who gave his life to save Central City from the singularity in The Flash season 2 premiere. By tricking Caitlin (Danielle Panabaker) into giving him a corporeal form, Deathstorm has emerged as the next big threat to Central City and Team Flash.

Related: The Flash Explains Why Superheroes Are So Rare Outside Central City

Deathstorm’s debut on The Flash has given birth to theories that the Arrowverse is using him to set up the next major crossover. The Arrowverse took a break from its usual crossover format after “Crisis on Infinite Earths”, but could always go back to it for the 2022-2023 season. If so, there’s a chance that Team Flash’s latest adversary is part of the groundwork for the next villain who threatens the Flash, Superman, and all the rest. Here’s how Deathstorm can lead to Green Lantern’s strongest foe fighting the heroes of the Arrowverse.

Introduced in 2010, Deathstorm is a minion of Nekron and a member of the Black Lanterns. Both were antagonists in the Blackest Night crossover. In the story, the Green Lantern Corps and the Justice League joined forced to take on Nekron. As the Lord of the Unliving, Nekron is an all-powerful, cosmic entity that personifies death itself. With his abilities to raise the dead, Nekron resurrected dead heroes and villains from across the DC Universe and assembled them into an army known as the Black Lantern Corps. Among the reanimated DC Comics characters in Nekron’s service were Martian Manhunter, the Elongated Man, Batman, and Firestorm, who had died in “Infinite Crisis”.

As one of Nekron’s undead servants, Ronnie’s corpse became Deathstorm, an incredibly powerful Black Lantern and one of many weapons at Nekron’s disposal. In an effort to kill Entity (the personification of life), Nekron deployed his Black Lanterns across the universe, forcing Earth’s heroes and the seven different Lantern organizations to work together to stop him from achieving his goal. By creating the White Lanterns, Hal Jordan’s Green Lantern found a way to finally bring Nekron’s crusade to an end. And interestingly enough, his greatest ally in Blackest Night was none other than Barry Allen, who played an integral role in the fight against Nekron and his Black Lantern army.

The Flash season 8, episode 11 officially introduced Deathstorm, albeit with an origin that differs from what was offered in Blackest Night. Deathstorm told Caitlin that he was born from Ronnie’s sacrifice. When he died to stop the singularity, he “gave his life to its power” and inadvertently created Deathstorm. This implies that Deathstorm is an independent entity, rather than an undead lackey of Nekron. And while the Arrowverse’s Deathstorm has a comic book accurate design, all apparent connections to the Black Lantern Corps have seemingly been removed, thus allowing him to stand on his own as the main villain of The Flash season 8’s new story arc.

Related: The Flash Just Created A Major Superpower Origin Plot Hole The Worst Way

By reimagining Deathstorm, The Flash has separated Deathstorm from the Black Lanterns in a way that works, but it’s not implausible that a connection between the two exists. It’s important to note that Deathstorm’s talk with Caitlin never rules out the possibility that Nekron is behind his Arrowverse origin. Nekron could be possessing Ronnie’s body. Or, he used the singularity incident and the energy released from Ronnie’s sacrifice to create Deathstorm. His origin was presented as an accidental consequence of the season 2 premiere, but that may not be the whole truth. It could have been the secret work of the Arrowverse’s Nekron, who is now using Deathstorm as his weapon against Earth. In the comics, several Black Lanterns visited Earth, but Nekron may believe that only one of his minions is enough to advance his goals.

The Nekron theory is supported by a Green Lantern Easter egg in the episode. Before the show’s big Deathstorm reveal, the phrase “blackest night” was spoken by Allegra when she was talking about death. Of course, this could have been a tease from the show intended to foreshadow Deathstorm’s grand entrance in the last scene, but it could also be a hint at Nekron’s involvement.

Given that Nekron is one of the most powerful beings in the entire DC Universe, it would be a waste of his potential for him to appear as a villain in any single Arrowverse series. For that reason, it’s hard to imagine the fight with Deathstorm leading to Nekron being The Flash season 8’s final villain. That being said, what happens with Deathstorm could serve as setup for a future Arrowverse crossover where Nekron is the main villain. Since there’s no Green Lantern Corps yet, a Blackest Night event couldn’t be a completely faithful adaptation, but it could still retain some of the story’s most important concepts. For instance, it could keep the central premise, which involves Nekron reviving dead heroes and villains and using them to do his bidding.

A crossover event where Nekron is the main antagonist would feel incomplete without any Green Lanterns, but the inclusion of at least one may very well be on the table. The Arrowverse has been building toward a Green Lantern transformation for John Diggle for a while now, but has thus far held back on letting him wear the ring. With a pilot for a Diggle-centric Arrowverse TV series titled Justice U on the horizon, it’s possible that the Arrowverse shows will eventually payoff its Green Lantern setup. A potential place for that to happen would be a Nekron-focused crossover, where Diggle could fight alongside Team Flash and other Arrowverse heroes against the villain’s army.

More: The Flash Rumors Are Ignoring Arrowverse's Best New Spinoff Idea

The Flash releases new episodes on Wednesdays on The CW.

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