The Flash Season 4: Who is That Mysterious Young Woman?

Jessica Parker Kennedy keeps popping up in The Flash season 4, but who exactly is she playing? Spoiler-filled theories abound...

This article comes from Den of Geek UK.

This article contains spoilers for The Flash season 4, up to and including episode 20, “Therefore She Is”

With so much going on in The Flash season 4, including Clifford Devoe’s intricate plans for the bus metas and that huge Crisis On Earth-X crossover event, it’s been easy to ignore a little mystery that has been bubbling away in the background.

But as the season finale looms and Team Flash needs all the help it can get, perhaps it’s time that we gave this enigmatic plot point a proper looking at: just who is that mystery girl, played by Jessica Parker Kennedy, who keeps popping up and talking to the main characters? Let’s see if we can work it out…

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Sightings so far

This young woman of unknown origin first appeared in the Supergirl chunk of the Crisis On Earth-X crossover. She was working as a waitress at the wedding of Grant Gustin’s Barry Allen and Candice Patton’s Iris West. She offered Barry some sparkling water and enthused at length at how excited she was to be at the wedding. She described the wedding as “one for the ages” and said, “I’m really happy I got to see it.” Barry, slightly taken aback, asked, “Have we met?” The girl said she was “a complete and total stranger”, before wishing Barry luck and segueing out of the conversation.

She was next seen in The Flash season 4 episode 11, in Central City’s branch of the Jitters coffee house chain. When Carlos Valdes’ Cisco and Hartley Sawyer’s Ralph realized that neither of them had the cash to buy their coffees, the mysterious female interjected and popped a few bucks onto the counter. “No worries,” she said. “Always pay it forward, you know? That’s my motto, because at any given moment, one of us could need a helping hand. Like now, you two total strangers were short of cash.” She then started enthusing at length about karma and “the principle of infinite consequence”, prompting the boys to end the conversation and leave. She then returned to her table, smiled and wrote some strange symbols on a pad.

Then, in The Flash season 4 episode 15, this unidentified young woman popped up in Jitters again. This time, Danielle Panabaker’s Caitlin and Tom Cavanagh’s Harry were chatting about Killer Frost when the mystery girl walked past and ‘accidentally’ dropped her whole cup of coffee – which just so happened to be a branded Killer Frost Frappuccino of some sort – right onto their table. She apologized profusely and said “I just get so clumsy when I’m nervous.” Harry asked what she was nervous about, to which the girl replied, “I’m supposed to be meeting some people here for the first time, and I’ve got the jitters!” She then started rambling again, prompting Caitlin and Harry to leave. This time, as she watched them leave, the girl looked a bit more serious.

Most recently, at the end of The Flash season 4 episode 20, our girl showed up at the baby shower being hosted by Jesse L. Martin’s Joe and Danielle Nicolet’s Cecile. Pretending to be a deliverer, she presented the expectant parents with a diaper bag. “It looks like it’s a gift from someone who wanted you to know how special you are,” the girl said. “Someone who understands that time is precious, and right now is all we’ve got… relatively speaking.”

When Iris asked Joe who the present was from, the mystery girl snuck off. We then saw her hiding around the corner in the corridor, looking even more serious than she did at the end of her previous scene. Then she showed off her speedster powers, whizzing off and leaving a trail of red, yellow, and purple sparks behind her. 

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What we know

There are a few things that we know for sure about the mystery girl: she seems to know all about Team Flash, she is friendly towards them, she is deliberately visiting each of them, she draws funky symbols in a pad, she has speedster powers, she likes coffee, and she seems to be interested in the future, karma, and the big events in the West-Allen family’s lives.

The symbols she drew after meeting Cisco and Ralph were similar to the Speed Force symbols that Barry scribbled when he was out of it at the start of the season. If they are Speed Force symbols and she is able to draw them and understand them, it would seem that the mystery girl has a fairly advanced knowledge of the Speed Force.

Further to that, the mystery woman’s speedster trail of colorful sparks seems like an amalgam of the traditional colors (the red and yellow we’re used to seeing from Barry, John Wesley Shipp’s Jay Garrick and Keiynan Lonsdale’s Wally West) and the purple alternate version that Iris had when she briefly became a speedster earlier this season. We’ll get onto the connotations of that in a moment.

Also, the fact that the mystery girl knows who Team Flash are, but none of them seem to recognise her, seems to strongly suggest that she is from the future. A bit like in Doctor Who, when River Song and The Doctor met each other in the wrong order, perhaps the mystery girl knows Team Flash from a future point in the timeline, but – for some reason – she has travelled back to this point in the timeline, when none of them have met her yet.

Option 1: she’s Joe and Cecile’s baby

Is it a coincidence that the mystery girl began showing up around a similar time to when Cecile was revealed to be pregnant? It’s impossible to say for sure at this stage, with the current stack of information, but we certainly can’t rule it out.

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Cecile’s pregnancy has already been linked to metahuman abilities, after all. Upon falling pregnant, Cecile awakened a latent set of telepathic powers that had been lurking within her since season one’s particle accelerator explosion. Within the flexible science logic of the show, there’s no real reason why Cecile and Joe’s baby couldn’t emerge from the womb with powers of its own.

If the mystery girl is Joe and Cecile’s kid from the future, that would explain why her interaction with Joe and Cecile was such an emotional one. Noticeably, she didn’t spill a coffee on them or crack any jokes this time. Perhaps that’s because meeting Joe and Cecile was a bigger deal for her, because they’re her parents.

When she said that “time is precious, and right now is all we’ve got,” was the mystery girl alluding to a future event when Joe and Cecile lose contact with their child? Taking that train of thought to its darkest conclusion, has the mystery girl travelled back from a future where Joe and Cecile are dead?

Option 2: she’s Barry and Iris’ future kid

The most popular fan theory about the mystery girl is that she is Barry and Iris’ child. They have a daughter called Dawn Allen in the comics, and it seems highly likely that this is the character that Jessica Parker Kennedy has been secretly playing.

It’s worth remembering that the mystery girl first popped up in the present day to give Barry a bit of a pep talk before his wedding with Iris. In that scene, were we actually seeing a daughter talking to her father on the day of his wedding to her mother? Again, there is absolutely no reason to rule this theory out.

If the mystery girl is Barry and Iris’ child, that would explain why her speedster spark trail looks like a combination of their versions. The scientific logic of The Flash can bend to whatever the writers want it be, so perhaps that red/yellow/purple streak was a big clue as to the mystery girl’s parentage.

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If we choose to believe this theory, why did the mystery girl get a bit misty eyed and nostalgic talking to Joe and Cecile at their baby shower? Well, perhaps the mystery girl, in that scene, was talking to her beloved grandparents that aren’t alive anymore at her native point in the timeline. And perhaps the baby Cecile is carrying is a much-loved aunt or uncle to the mystery girl in the future.

Interestingly, the one core cast member that the mystery girl hasn’t met in the present day is Iris. And when she had the chance to say hi to Iris, the mystery girl scarpered while no one was looking. Does the mystery girl have issues with Iris, her mom, in the future? Or has the mystery girl lost Iris under tragic circumstances, and can’t stomach seeing her alive? That feels like a traumatic little twist that the writers could deploy at a later date, even if ‘Iris dies in the future’ is a plotline we’ve seen before.

Any other guesses?

DC TV is a vast multiverse of possibilities, so we shouldn’t rule out a weird and wacky revelation that doesn’t jive at all with the prevailing theories on the mystery girl’s identity. Arguably, it would be a nice surprise if the theories were all wrong, and the writers threw us a real curveball instead of something guessable.

Certain sectors of the web have pointed to the possibility that the mystery girl could be from even further into the future than we initially thought. What if she’s a granddaughter of Barry and Iris, like Jenni Ognats from the comics? There are so many options as to who she could be, and no metric by which to measure their plausibility.

Here’s yet another option for you. During a brief visit to Earth-19 in episode 20, we saw an unidentified speedster streaking through the Agency’s HQ. Could the mystery girl have something to do with this dark law enforcement agent where Breacher and Gypsy have both worked? It feels like a long shot, but you never know with this show.

In a similar vein, the last time we saw Jay Garrick, he mentioned that he was training up a female speedster to be his replacement as the hero of Earth-3. That’s another unidentified speedster right there, who could well be the mystery girl if the writing team wills it so.

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And let’s not forget that DeVoe has been making new Metahumans all season as part of his machinations towards lobotomizing the planet with his “enlightenment.” Could the mystery girl be another pawn in his plans? Her behaviour thus far doesn’t gel particularly well with this theory, but who’s to say that we’re not being smoke-screened at the moment?

Also, after the H.R./Iris switcheroo at the end of last season, I’ll never be burnt again! Let’s not forget that, with a bit of Earth-2 face-projecting tech, anyone in this universe could be literally anyone else in disguise. The mystery girl could be, um, Eobard Thawne! You heard it here first, folks.

As much as it’s easy to be consumed with all the ‘who is she’ possibilities, it’s also worth considering why the mystery girl is here in the present day. Was she sent with a mission by a future version of Barry, perhaps? Is she making intricate changes to the timeline to try and improve the future, without ruining everything (like Barry did with Flashpoint)? Once the mystery girl’s identity riddle is resolved, chances are we will be left with even more questions. That’s something to look forward to!

What the cast and crew say

Speaking to TV Line a couple of months back, executive producer Todd Helbing was asked to comment on the mystery girl speculation that can be found all over the web. Here’s what he said:

“Every year, there are theories all over the place about what we’re doing. Some of them get pretty close, some of them hit, like, one part of it, but they don’t get the other parts.”

“I don’t think anybody ever is going to guess exactly what it is,” he added, referring specifically the mystery girl and her identity. To be fair to Mr Helbing, he probably said that before he’d heard about my ‘Eobard Thawne in disguise’ theory.

Thankfully, we don’t have long to wait until we find out who the mystery girl is. Speaking to Entertainment Weekly at the end of last month, Helbing promised that, in the season 4 finale, “You get the question answered as to who she is.” He then added, “There’s actually an extra little bonus where something happens where you’ll realize exactly how she’ll play a part in the future.”

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In that same EW article, Grant Gustin revealed that he’s “known [the mystery girl’s identity] since before we started this season.” Teasingly, he added, “It’s been the thing that I’ve been most excited about all season, which sounds ridiculous because it’s really a season 5 thing. I’ve spent all of season 4 being excited about this thing that we’re going to do in season 5!”

With The Flash season 4’s finale only a couple of weeks away, consider this last orders for all your theories and predictions. Whoever gets closest to the truth wins…