“All I can say is if you like Caitlin Snow you’re going to love this season and if you like Killer Frost you’re gonna love this season,” Todd Helbing told reporters at San Diego Comic-Con. Those sentiments were echoed almost word for word by actress Danielle Panabaker, as she has clearly been sworn to secrecy about her character’s villainous arc in The Flash Season 4.
That’s certainly not a lot to go on. But considering that the first trailer for The Flash Season 4 prominently featured both Caitlin Snow and Killer Frost, it’s safe to assume that they’re both right, even though the suspicion is that the Caitlin Snow we see aiding Team Flash is probably not the same one who turned into a cold-powered supervillain last year. After all, this is the show that introduced DC’s Multiverse to the CW TV shows, and it we can get a different Harrison Wells each year, who’s to say we can’t get a different Caitlin Snow, right?
But while Ms. Panabaker couldn’t talk about any story specifics, she was quite open about the challenges of playing Killer Frost and her transformation from hero to villain.
“Honestly, the hardest part is the contacts and then shooting outside in the snow in Vancouver,” Ms. Panabaker said. “It’s dark, it’s hard to see, the actual, physical long hours. That part of it is tough, but it’s fun.”
Fortunately, the show has made it a little easier on her. Don’t forget, we got our first glimpse of Killer Frost briefly at the end of The Flash season one finale, and met her as an Earth-2 doppleganger several times during the second season. But with season three, the actress had to spend a lot more time as her villainous alter ego. “Last year the more I was the character and the more time I spent in the suit and the hair and makeup there were certainly things that they tried to adapt to make easier,” she said. “For example, the contacts are pretty challenging and they tried to work to make it a little easier for me to see out of them and that sort of thing. It’s a fun work in progress.”
Ms. Panabaker has her own idea of what she’d like to see Caitlin/Frost get up to, though. “I would have liked to see, and maybe we can see more in the future, a little bit more of an understanding as to why Killer Frost is evil,” she says. “I’m not clear, and I don’t think the audience is clear that Killer Frost manifests herself in such an evil way or what her motivation is.”
As for the challenges as an actor who has to balance such polar (sorry) opposites?
“What’s exciting to me is the struggle and balance in finding the lightness in the dark or the darkness in the light,” she says. “It’s fun to play with those.”‘
The Flash Season 4 premieres on October 10.
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