Dragon Con 2017: Danielle Panabaker Teases What’s in Store for Caitlin Snow and Team Flash in Season 4


By: Haylee Fisher (@haylee_fisher)

With the season four premiere of The Flash a little over a week away, audiences are abuzz with excitement to see what’s in store for their favorite superhero team.

While the cast has been working on the CW and in the Arrowverse long enough to know not to spoil too much, Danielle Panabaker was more than happy to give a group of journalists at Dragon Con little tidbits about what’s to come.

The biggest reveal to come out of the press conference?

“Caitlin is not on Team Flash at the start of the season,” Panabaker said.

She said Caitlin is trying to handle things “own her own” while Team Flash tries to pick up the pieces in Barry’s absence.

“Team Flash is certainly trying to function even without Barry,” she said. “I think Iris certainly has a bigger role in Star Labs at the top of the season. [She] has stepped up and taken more of a leadership role. And obviously Kid Flash is still out there trying to fill Flash’s shoes. And you’ve got Cisco trying to help as well.”

One person who’s not going to be seen in Star Labs is Tom Felton’s Julian Albert. As for addressing what’s going on between Caitlin and Julian, Panabaker explained, “There is a time jump. I think it’s about six months between the end of season three and the beginning of season four. Tom Felton’s absence will be addressed, yes.”

Though Panabaker enjoyed the relationship that developed between Julian and Caitlin, she respected the fact that Caitlin didn’t dive headfirst into it. In fact, she mentioned being vocal with the writers about Caitlin needing to be cautious when it came to romance and perhaps taking a break in her love life.

“I said that last year!” she told us. “I said, ‘Caitlin needs a break!’ And they said no. What I did like about her relationship with Julian last season is that while you could definitely sense his affection for Caitlin, she, I think, was a little bit more hesitant. She didn’t quite jump in the same way he did, I think because of her past relationships and her current dilemma of dealing with this crazy person inside of her. So I did appreciate seeing that change this past year for sure.”

Another aspect of the show both Panabaker and fans enjoy is the crossovers between Arrowverse shows. But being that all of those shows are very ensemble-heavy, it’s hard for Panabaker to have screentime with everyone. But when asked who she would want to work with more, she quick with her answer.

“I have worked with Melissa [Benoist] from Supergirl very briefly, [and] I would love to go over and be on Supergirl,” she said. “They have such incredible women on that show. We keep adding more and more men to our show; Supergirl keeps adding more and more women. So I wanna go hang with them. That would be my choice. If I got one.”

However, one woman joining The Flash in season four is Katee Sackhoff as DC Comics villain Amunet Black AKA Blacksmith. She is described as a steely and badass boss of an underground black market for supervillains and her appearance will serve as a mini-crossover: Arrow’s Emily Bett Rickards will also guest star in the hour.

“I’m so excited to have Katee. I feel very lucky that we were able to get her on our show. I am so excited for her to come back. I think she did a fantastic job,” Panabaker said.

Other villains that have been announced for season four include Kim Engelbrecht as the Mechanic, Sugar Lyn Beard as Hazard, Neil Sandilands as The Thinker, and Danny Trejo as Earth-19 bounty hunter Breacher AKA Gypsy’s dad.

Panabaker didn’t have much in the way of news about The Thinker, but she did offer an amusing anecdote about Trejo.

“Danny Trejo is awesome. I really want his donuts and his tacos. He has a taco store and a donut store in LA and I really want to go,” she said. “It’s so funny, the first time I met him, I went up to introduce myself and threw up his arms and gave me a big hug and pulled down his shirt and went, ‘Look, I have your name tattooed on my chest! It’s my daughter’s name!’”

When asked who her favorite villain has been so far (besides Killer Frost, of course), Panabaker had a hard time picking just one.

“We’ve had some great ones! Tom Cavanagh season one, with all of the different versions of Harrison Wells and Eobard Thawne and Reverse Flash [that] were fascinating the watch, especially with that little gleam in his eye at the beginning of the season. I think The Trickster is so good. Weather Wizard. Trajectory was great. Grodd’s cool, but he’s a hard one for us because Grodd is a tennis ball!”

As for the villainous side of Caitlin Snow in Killer Frost, Panabaker said playing the duality has been a blast and everything she imagined it would be.

“It’s so cool to do all of that and be something totally different, particularly from the character that I play on such a regular basis. It’s actually more fun than I thought it would be, too, because there have been so many iterations of it. Obviously there’s Earth-2 Killer Frost, who we saw a little bit in season two, and season three brought us post-Flashpoint Killer Frost and so it will be interesting to see who’s around for season four!”

When asked if she had a preference between playing Killer Frost and playing Caitlin, Panabaker just couldn’t choose, but said that’s what’s so enjoyable about living and playing in a world of superheroes.

“Honestly, I love that I get to play both. I love Caitlin. I love that she’s such an intelligent woman and that her intelligence is celebrated and encouraged,” she said. “And then to have the opportunity to be on a superhero show and to play a villain and to really get to take it very far. I mean, that’s the fun of being a villain on our show, too; you really get to push it. You’re not limited to trying to keep it real. It’s a show about superheroes! So you get to have a lot of fun with it. So truly, I love that I get to play both.”

Fans will have to tune in to see which side Panabaker will be playing when The Flash returns Tuesday, October 10, but is certain they will be pleased either way and offered this tease about what’s in store for season four:

“If you like Caitlin Snow, you won’t be disappointed and if you like Killer Frost, you won’t be disappointed.”

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