The Lois Lane Problem

by Rachel Baker on November 26, 2014

Here is a fascinating article that takes a look the wet blanket problem with TV sidekicks.

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The Lois Lane Problem: Enough With Clueless TV Sidekicks.

For a freshman show, the CW’s The Flash has taken off on the, ahem, right foot: Grant Gustin’s Barry Allen is appealing, the villains of the week are challenging, and the storytelling is, so far, thrilling. The lone Achilles’ heel in all this? The character of Iris West.

It’s not her fault, nor is it actress Candice Patton’s. Iris is a compelling and necessary asset to Barry Allen’s origin story. She’s the girl he grew up with, making her his best friend and confidante. She’s smart, she’s cool, and she’s got a mean right cross.

But because she’s also his love interest, she’s the only character in Barry’s inner circle to not be in on his superhuman secret. That makes her, unfortunately, the one who constantly stands in Barry’s way—both emotionally as his friend who suspects something’s up, and physically as the blogger tracking The Flash’s every move. More important, any meaningful character developments meant for Iris have become tethered to Barry’s secret, abandoned in favor of having her blindly chase after him like a wannabe Lois Lane. (Even when she, as in Tuesday’s episode, has to save herself without The Flash, he feels the need to apologize to her about not being there.) It’s a plot that feels well-tread and, in turn, utterly stale.

In other words, Iris West is this fall season’s newest wet blanket.

This article was written by: Rachel Baker – Click to Become a Patron or to follow on Twitter.

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