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How ‘The Flash’ Could Accelerate Warner’s DC Movie Prospects

Will we have a series order for The Flash television series starring Grant Gustin even before we get to see the pilot? There's reason to believe so, Fool contributor Tim Beyers says in the following video.

During the winter press tour for the Television Critics Association, The CW's president, Mark Pedowitz, said he was "bullish" about the future for the show even though audiences have yet to see a single episode. Press reports from the tour say he wants to launch The Flash "with a bang, like we launched Arrow." Signs don't come much clearer than that, Tim says.

Why the optimism? Several factors could be at play, but it's worth noting that Gustin's appearances on Arrow drew more than 3 million viewers, with his first appearance drawing a season 2 high. Meanwhile, Time Warner (NYSE: TWX  ) has announced plans to delay Batman vs. Superman till 2016, leaving a dearth of live-action DC Comics content that The Flash could help to fill.

The CW is under no obligation to help Warner, of course, since CBS (NYSE: CBS  ) remains a 50-50 owner of the property. So why would Pedowitz fast-track The Flash? The network has developed a niche fan base that craves a taste of the fantastic wrapped in eye candy. Just look at the success of The Originals, a Vampire Diaries spinoff that The CW renewed for a second season in November. Viewership was up 9% at the time. Add it up, Tim says, and The CW -- first with Arrow, and soon The Flash -- is looking increasingly like Warner's best option for furthering the DC Movie Universe.

Now it's your turn to weigh in. What do you think of Warner's DC movie prospects? Will you be watching The Flash pilot when it airs? Please watch the video to get Tim's full take and then leave a comment to let us know whether you would buy, sell, or short Time Warner stock at current prices.

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Read/Post Comments (4) | Recommend This Article (1)

Comments from our Foolish Readers

Help us keep this a respectfully Foolish area! This is a place for our readers to discuss, debate, and learn more about the Foolish investing topic you read about above. Help us keep it clean and safe. If you believe a comment is abusive or otherwise violates our Fool's Rules, please report it via the Report this Comment Report this Comment icon found on every comment.

  • Report this Comment On January 23, 2014, at 3:17 PM, JerseyRick wrote:

    Not a DC realm fan but I remember years back when "The Flash" was on CBS and it was pretty good. I'm actually curious to see how it would translate this time around.

  • Report this Comment On January 23, 2014, at 5:14 PM, PAJohnDoe wrote:

    A TV audience, particularly one as niche as anything on the CW, does not translate to box office dollars. Even if the TV cast made the jump to the big screen, they'd need to reintroduce nearly the entire histories of the characters that the TV audience already knows, because if they just threw a movie out there like it was a season/series finale or merely an extended episode of the seekeies, it's not going to attract any new eyes, or it will just confuse anyone that hadn't already been tuning in. They'd basically have to start over.

  • Report this Comment On January 24, 2014, at 12:00 AM, MontyMoonlight wrote:

    Is there any official word that the CW DC Universe will be part of the feature film universe, or are people just making wild assumptions due to the Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. series that spun off of the Marvel Cinematic Universe? I am genuinely curious about this. At this point it seems like the CW shows and the Man of Steel movie series leading, potentially, to a Justice League film, are probably not going to be entangled. But that is just an impression I get. So, has anyone involved in the films actually linked them to the TV shows?

  • Report this Comment On January 24, 2014, at 3:10 PM, Guysez wrote:

    As long as the iconic Flash uniform is used precisely, and he actually fights members of his Rogue Gallery, this show will go the way of the original Flash TV series.

    I own the complete DVD collection of the original series, and it was borderline lame: the absurd muscle-bound costume (Flash has always been slim, as he is a runner) and the weak villains, it was pure camp.

    Taken and done seriously, the show could be a hit.

    But this is just a wishful thinking, considering how TV has always managed to mangle the original concepts.

    I've always loved the Flash, and considered him to be one of the most powerful of the Justice League, but he's rarely, if ever, employed his super-speed to its full potential.

    but good or bad, i'll probably watch...if for no other reason than he's on the screen.

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Tim Beyers

Tim Beyers first began writing for the Fool in 2003. Today, he's an analyst for Motley Fool Rule Breakers and Motley Fool Supernova. At, he covers disruptive ideas in technology and entertainment, though you'll most often find him writing and talking about the business of comics. Find him online at or send email to For more insights, follow Tim on Google+ and Twitter.

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