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The Thinker

After 6 months of waiting, The Flash has finally come running back home for fans. Caitlin Snow is showing even greater signs of a modern Jekyll and Hyde, Iris is taking charge, and Joe is rocking a new pair of shades. However, tying off the episode in a clinically modern setting is what looks to be this season’s villain.

You’d be forgiven if you thought this seemingly chair-bound man was Brainiac, but he is in fact “The Thinker”. As with many comic book characters, multiple people have taken up the mantle of The Thinker. Here is one version of this DC villain.

Created in 1943 for the All-Flash #12 comic, The Thinker was once a DA with the name Clifford DeVoe. Devoe came to know failure and alcohol, and soon sort out a career in crime.

His vast knowledge and ability to prepare alibis and legal precedents was put to good (evil?) use, and after the death of mob boss Norvock, Keystone City’s senior bosses voted Devoe as their new leader. He soon took up the title The Thinker.

He went on to become mortal enemies with the original Flash, Jay Garrick, while also seeking out new scientific devices for his criminal endeavours. One of which was the “Thinking Cap” which could project his mental force.

Since then, The Thinker has worked with the Injustice Society and the Suicide Squad. More recently, after working with the Suicide Squad, The Thinker revealed that the Thinking Cap had given him cancer. The Flash offered to save him by using the Thinking Cap but Devoe declined.

Mr Terrific then used the Thinking Cap to create a computer system based on Devoe’s brain-patterns. Over time, the system gained consciousness and took on a holographic form.

With this new form, The Thinker provided the Injustice Society with information about the Justice Society of America’s members. However, he was soon defeated by the Star Spangled Kid, and after another villainous attempt to control the brains of everyone in Keystone City, he was defeated by Wally West and Cyborg.

And after each loss, The Thinker would retreat into cyberspace.

Although it’s too early to pin this history to The Flash’s latest villain, there are some key points I suspect will affect this season. More specifically, his fascination with scientific devices.

Cisco has a seemingly never-ending supply of fresh scientific devices, but I would argue that The Thinker is actually after what Barry brought back with him from the Speedforce. These symbols which have been roughly translate to “This house is bitchin’” come with the promise of greater significance, and I have no doubt that this is what The Thinker is after.

Mr Terrific from Arrow might not often have much to do with The Flash, but there is the possibility that The Thinker could become an AI. Cisco is constantly upgrading various weapons and tools and he could easily start tinkering with the wrong thing. If the series does take this path, there is the opportunity for an incredible AI battle between The Thinker and Gideon from the Time Vault.

As for the woman found with The Thinker, she has been credited as the Mechanic and the information for her character is minimal. The comics have the builder of Samuroids as Baron Katana, who took the designs from T.O. Morrow. Baron Katana had also made an undercover Samuroid called Daisho in order to get close to the Flash. And with the Central City Police Department looking to fill Allen’s job on the CW, there’s no reason why we won’t see this robotic imposter.

The Thinker brings the possibility of many more tech and science-like villains for the Flash to fight. And although possibly nothing more the first episode’s villain, the Samuroids have created the opportunity for an imposter to infiltrate the team.

Article by Brittany Howarth

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