The identity of Zoom has been one of the most fascinating aspects of The Flash season two. Episode 14 may have contained a few hints about the identity of this enigmatic speedster. I’m going to use this space to discuss a pair of Zoom theories and some of the circumstances that may support them. Naturally, please turn your spoiler shields on.
Let’s start with one of Zoom’s prisoners — the guy in the iron mask. Using his keen and scientific mind, Barry deduces that Iron Mask Cage Guy is tapping out letters using a code favored by prisoners of war. The guy spells out “Jay” and has a fit when Barry says that Jay Garrick is safe on Earth-1.
Theory: The guy in the mask is the real Earth-2 Jay Garrick.
If that theory pans out, then who the hell is the “Jay Garrick” that has been hanging around with the Earth-1 heroes? Remember when Caitlin tried to find “Jay’s” Earth-1 counterpart? She ended up finding a man named Hunter Zolomon. “Jay” explains that Zolomon has a different name because he was adopted. Is it possible that “Jay” is a big fat liar? The answer to that would be no, because he’s a physically fit man, but he could still be lying.
Theory: The guy Earth-1 heroes think is Earth-2 Jay Garrick is actually Earth-2 Hunter Zolomon.
Comics fans know that Hunter Zolomon is Zoom’s Christian name, but there’s more to it than that. One of the more interesting Zoom theories I’ve read comes from this Reddit thread. A few posters suspect that Fake Jay Garrick is actually Zoom. He’s messing around on Earth-1 to monitor Barry’s powers and waiting for the right moment to steal them. Using my Seinfeld voice, “Did you ever notice that ‘Jay’ and Zoom are never in the same room together?” I’m going to zip through the old episodes to make sure, but the only time I remember them sharing a scene was during a flashback sequence narrated by “Jay.” That tale could be part of Zoom’s big ruse.
Theory: Fake Jay Garrick and Zoom are the same person.
Fake Jay and Zoom being the same guy would also explain the scene above. The heroes have escaped Zoom’s clutches in Earth-2 and “Jay” has just closed the breech. While everyone else is standing a safe distance away, “Jay” is lingering in front of the yet-to-completely-close portal, smiling like a jackass. Seconds later, he’s impaled by Zoom’s arm and is dragged back to Earth-2. It all seems rather silly. Either Jay Garrick is a world class moron or he wanted the Earth-1 heroes to think “Jay” died. The way the scene was filmed, it was completely obvious that something bad was going to happen to “Jay.” Perhaps “Jay’s” fake death was another layer of Zoom’s master plan.
Theory: Fake Jay is Young Zoom
A few Reddit posters believe that Fake Jay is Earth-2 Hunter Zolomon, while Zoom is a future iteration. Fake Jay said that he was obsessed with getting faster, ergo his Velocity-6 abuse. Zoom is quite clearly obsessed with getting faster. I’m not as big on this theory, but it does have a certain symmetry with the baddie from The Flash season one.
Theory: Dude in a Mask is Max Mercury.
This is almost definitely not going to happen, but I would love it if Dude in the Iron Mask was Max Mercury. DC Comics’ “zen master” of speed has been a father figure to many speedsters. He’s also the most knowledgable person in the world when it comes to the “speed force.” That could explain why Zoom wants him locked up; he can’t have the Yoda of speed teaching young heroes how to defeat him.
The Flash television series will definitely have Kid Flash (Wally West) in the future and possibly Jesse Quick as well. The new speedsters could use a fatherly tutor like Max Mercury, while Barry is off doing the heavy hero work. But like I said, Max Mercury is almost definitely not going to happen. It’s a long shot, combined with wishful thinking on my part.
Anyway, those are some assorted theories on the identities of Zoom and Dude in the Iron Mask. I’d love hear some of yours! Kindly share your theories in the comments section.