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Jesse L. Martin has returned to duty on The Flash following medical leave

By Brian Silliman

Detective Joe West is healed, rested, back in the saddle, and ready to help Team Flash however he can. Good timing, too, as the gang looks to take on Cicada.

According to TVLine, actor Jesse L. Martin, the man behind Joe West, is back on set of The Flash following a necessary medical leave. He is expected to pop back up in Episode 15 of this current season, having not been a part of the action since Episode 4. The medical leave came after Martin endured an injury to his back over the summer hiatus — fans may have noticed that in the episodes he did appear in this season, he was almost always sitting. 

This is great news for Flash fans, as Martin is, quite often, the heart and soul of the show. His absence will not be ignored in the show's storyline, either— showrunner Todd Helbing told TVLine that there will be an on-screen explanation for the absence, saying, “There’s an explanation, and then there’s another sort of thing down the line that will give more explanation as to why [Joe] was gone for so long." 

Helbing adds to this, insinuating that the often-malfunctioning tech of S.T.A.R. Labs could have something to do with it — “I’ll just say there’s some technology that S.T.A.R. Labs has [though which] he’s gone and he’s not gone at the same time." We could hear about West's absence before he pops up in the flesh in Episode 15, theoretically. With this show, anything can's not impossible that Barry went for a run down the block in Episode 5, accidentally changed time for the millionth instance, and accidentally got Joe sent back to VIctorian England for 10 episodes. 

We'll know more when The Flash runs back into our lives on Tuesday, January 15 on The CW. Until then, you know the deal — run, Barry...RUN.