The Flash Has Finally Been Canceled, Here’s What We Know About The Ending

Well, it finally happened: The Flash has been canceled and we have some information about how this happened.

By Nathan Kamal | Published

Grant Gustin The Flash

It finally happened: The Flash has been canceled. The long-running CW superhero show will officially end in 2023, following a ninth season of 13 episodes. Per a report in Comic Book, the CW and Warner Brothers Television announced The Flash was coming to an end, another in a series of cancelations and finales of programs under the Warner Bros. Discovery umbrella. The Grant Gustin-led series has consistently been one of the most popular shows on the CW and generally was considered one of the flagship series on the network. 

The Flash showrunner Eric Wallace recently revealed in an interview with TV Line that he had been preparing for the end of the show for some time; he described writing for the show while constantly prepared for its end as a “friendly challenge,” so there is probably some small relief in the other shoe finally dropping. The Flash became the tentpole show of the CW’s Arrowverse universe of shows after the Stephen Amell Arrow show ended in 2020; Grant Gustin’s version of Barry Allen was first introduced in Arrow, then received his own series in 2014. Grant Gustin is a fan favorite Barry Allen actor, with frequent calls for him to be brought into the cinematic DC Expanded Universe. The Flash/Barry Allen is currently played by actor Ezra Miller in the DCEU, though the frequent delays of The Flash film and Miller’s erratic personal behavior have put that into question. 

While the Arrowverse franchise of comic book shows does not have the same amount of cultural saturation as the Marvel Cinematic Universe films or the DC Expanded Universe, it has a devoted fan base that will no doubt be sorry to see it go. The cancelation of The Flash will leave the CW with only one remaining show, Superman & Lois (starring Tyler Hoechlin and Elizabeth Tulloch as the titular characters). At one point, the Arrowverse included Arrow, The Flash, Batwoman, Supergirl, Legends of Tomorrow, Black Lightning, and several web series; slowly but surely, the comic book adaptations have been winnowed down. Now that Arrow, The Flash, Supernatural, and Riverdale are all either over or coming to a close, the CW’s lineup is beginning to look pretty thin. 

Part of this can be speculated to be due to the recent merger of WarnerMedia (which owned the CW) and Discovery Inc to form Warner Bros. Discovery. Any large merger will inevitably result in reorganization and some canceled projects (like The Flash), but Warner Bros. Discovery seems to specifically gunning for former WarnerMedia programs. In general, it seems CEO David Zaslav has it out for scripted programming and a whole lot of shows have been shut down as part of his plan to reduce costs company-wide. 

However, nine years is still a pretty good run for The Flash, or any show for that matter. While we are losing one Scarlet Speedster on television, the character will no doubt be revived in some fashion elsewhere in the company. After all, in an infinite multiverse, there have to be multitudes of Barry Allens.