Did ‘The Flash’ have to go dark like ‘Arrow’?

Question: When The Flash first started, there was a big contrast between the tone of the show (lighter, breezier) compared to Arrow. In Season 2, though, things got much grimmer, with the Zoom storyline dragging out the whole season. And I could not help but groan as Barry went back in time and appeared to erase the entire first two seasons by saving his mother. I miss the Season 1 version of The Flash. I was wondering what your thoughts were on where the show is headed in Season 3? — Brian

Matt Roush: To be frank, this doesn’t feel like the show I signed up for, either. I understand the third season will most likely be an attempt to replicate the “Flashpoint” storyline from the comics, which is why they’re going there. (You should understand that I approach this type of show from a purely TV perspective — I haven’t read comic-book series for eons, though maybe if I had my own alternate timeline I’d be able to fit it in.) But with all this hoohah about Earth-2 and Earth-3 and altered timelines, I’m afraid The Flash is no longer the fun, even charming, escapist lark I initially embraced. I need some shows of this ilk to feel less like homework, and I’m with you that I once enjoyed The Flash for its more hopeful, less gloomy, tone. If that’s missing as the show goes into even more complicated and tortured territory, I may find myself MIA as well.

To submit questions to TV Critic Matt Roush, go to: tvinsider.com