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Was that major 'Flash' death for real? Showrunner dishes on *that* character's future in Season 8

To quote Albus Dumbledore: "The ones we love never truly leave us."

By Josh Weiss
The Flash Armageddon Part 1 Press Still

To quote Albus Dumbledore of Harry Potter fame: "The ones we love never truly leave us." 

Part 2 of the "Armageddon" storyline in Season 8 of The Flash delivered an emotional gut punch to fans this week with the tragic news that Joe West (Jesse L. Martin) — father of Iris West (Candice Patton) and father-in-law to Barry Allen (Grant Gustin) — is dead. Whether or not the character stays deceased for the remainder of the season is another question entirely.

Speaking with TVLine about the devastating development, Flash showrunner Eric Wallace hinted that Joe's experience may only be near-death.

"Let’s just say that Joe is going to get an incredibly different perspective on life, and it’s going to lead him to, I think, a really big choice," he teased. "Everybody seems to think the big choice he made was last year, to put down his badge, but there is a much bigger choice coming his way in Season 8 that takes the character down a path that he didn’t know he was on, but that will feel like it’s the place he always needed to go."

The reveal was a shock for fans, and there remain about a billion questions left to be answered. Hopefully the next few episodes can provide some clarity.

Wallace alluded to a major struggle for Iris and Barry over the summer during an interview with Deadline, but assured viewers that it would all work out in the end.

"[They’re] in a really great place at the end of Season 7, and that will obviously continue, but I think their biggest challenge that they’ve ever faced lies ahead, and it’s going to be tough," the showrunner said. "It’s going to take what I consider to be one of the great love stories in the history of television to survive what they are about to go through, especially in the back half of Season 8. But don’t worry. It’ll be a happy ending."

As the crossover event moves forward over the next several weeks, Barry will get a chance to fight alongside other DC heroes like Batwoman (Javicia Leslie) and Black Lightning (Cress Williams, whose solo series came to a close back in May).

“I could not tell Armageddon as a story in five parts without Black Lightning and Batwoman,” Wallace said earlier this month. “They had to be in this story. I was actually sweating bullets, quite frankly, early on because I didn't know if I would be able to get them, especially Javicia, who is shooting her own show as the lead while trying to do our show. We had to pull off a logistics nightmare, but we did it. We did it so well that quite frankly — Javicia is amazing in this — she ended it by saying, ‘Hey can I come back? I just want to be in more of this.’ To which I replied, ‘You are welcome any time, ma’am.’”

"Armageddon, Part 3" (there are five in all) airs on The CW next Tuesday (Nov. 30) at 8 p.m. EST. In the meantime, click here for our official ranking of all the Arrowverse crossover events thus far.