You may not remember, but we've actually seen Heat Wave on The Flash before. Sort of. At the end of Episode 4, "Going Rogue," we see Captain Cold approach someone named Mick to form a new crew. Mick is mostly off screen, except for a lit match, but we do hear him accept the offer. In the Jan. 20 episode "Revenge of the Rogues," Mick Rory, aka Heat Wave, gets a full blown introduction. As the episode's trailer reveals, we will see him team up with Captain Cold just as The Flash is training to be better prepared for the Reverse-Flash. Things only get worse when this villainous duo kidnap Caitlin. Looks like Barry Allen won't have much time to rest after everything that went down with the Reverse-Flash in the midseason finale.
The upcoming episode also doubles as a Prison Break reunion. Wentworth Miller and Dominic Purcell, who played brothers on Prison Break, will have a much different relationship on The Flash as Captain Cold and Heat Wave, respectively. I'm super excited to see their natural chemistry and how difficult they make things for The Flash. Heat Wave has been an antagonist for The Flash in comic books since the 1960s, so I expect him to be a reoccurring villain on the show. But just who is Heat Wave?
A Long-Time Villain With A Sad Backstory
As a kid, Mick had a strong fascination with fire that quickly turned into an obsession. One evening he sets his family's house ablaze. He's too dazzled looking at the fire to get a neighbor or the fire department for help, which leaves him without a family. He's eventually taken in by his uncle, but runs away after locking a classmate in his home and setting it on fire. This was after the classmate had bullied him by locking him in a walk-in freezer. These incidents are important to the formation of the character. He runs off to the circus as a fire eater, which is a storyline that seems a bit too wacky for The Flash.
He's then asked to join The Rogues by Captain Cold, a group of villains who steal and take on The Flash. This is when Mick takes on the name Heat Wave. Other members include Weather Wizard, Captain Boomerang, and Trickster. It's been announced that Mark Hamill will return as Trickster on The Flash after playing him in the 1990s version of the show, albeit in a very different form, so Mick's introduction could help setup the addition Trickster. Of course a lot could change between the comic book and TV versions of Heat Wave.
Not Quite An Ally
As Purcell told Entertainment Weekly, Heat Wave and Captain Cold aren't exactly friends. The two tend to fight with The Flash as much as each other. Purcell also said, "It’s a very powerful love/hate relationship. My guy is volatile. He’s a force of nature and he needs to be reined in. Cold has that ability to rein him in."
He Could Develop Superpowers
In the New 52, both Captain Cold and Heat Wave end up getting abilities that suit their names. After the Genome Recorder has a power surge, Heat Wave is able to control fire from his hands and chest. The downside? The majority of his body has been badly burned. I honestly prefer Captain Cold and Heat Wave as smart, tech-savvy thieves rather than more superpowered criminals among the many others in The Flash's rogue's gallery.
Heat Wave is a villain that has the potential to keep appearing on The Flash. While he isn't as major as the Reverse-Flash, the series' writers are a smart group of people who know they need to develop more than just one important villain from the comics. So don't be surprised if we eventually see Heat Wave gain superpowers and become even more of a threat, but I highly doubt all that will happen in the Jan. 20 episode of The Flash.
Images: Cate Cameron/The CW (3); theflashgifs/Tumblr(2)