This season of The Flash has progressively gotten darker and darker with the vicious Savitar serving as the big bad. The identity of the God Of Speed, who has been threatening the life of Iris, remained a mystery until the May 2 episode. The show had been teasing several different possibilities before that, but in "I Know Who You Are," Savitar was finally revealed to be a future version of the Flash. This unmasking has set fans spinning and trying to put together the pieces. How can future Flash be Savitar? There are many complicated pieces of this speed puzzle.
It was important to unmask Savitar if the team had any chance of defeating him. Now, the team will have to figure out how a future version of the Flash will become Savitar in the first place. Fans have been speculating about how Barry could go this bad since the episode that exposed the evil speedster. There is no simple explanation: the answer is a complex web of time travel, time remnants, and speculation to fill in the blanks. For me, answers can't come soon enough. Here are the various components that play into how it's possible for future Flash to be Savitar:
The Flash has developed some new tricks over its first three seasons. Initially, fans just watched Barry run really fast. But now, besides being capable of time travel, phasing and other nifty tricks, the Flash can now create time remnants.
Time remnants were the trick to defeating Zoom in Season 2. To simplify, Barry runs fast and creates copies of himself due to ruptures in time. Fans watched as a time remnant of Barry saved the day before dying in his battle with Zoom. Perhaps Savitar is a future version of a time remnant of Barry, yet to be created.
Flashpoint created many problems for Barry and his gaggle of good guys. The new timeline he created by going back in time to save his mother changed the present in irreversible ways including killing off Cisco's brother; Caitlin transforming into Killer Frost; and the existence of Julien Albert. A future Barry being Savitar could be connected to the existence of Flashpoint. This Barry doesn't feel love, and Flashpoint Barry didn't have the same support system he does in the current world.
Barry at his core is a person who wants to do good. Iris is often Barry's grounding force, the person who pulls him out of himself. Barry doesn't get to the level of rage he needs to achieve to turn into Savitar without the death of Iris. So, in killing Iris, Savitar is essentially creating himself. This means that if the gang can stop him from killing Iris, that may be the key to destroying Savitar for good.
Being Trapped In The Speed Force
Savitar went crazy because he was trapped in the Speed Force. Those trapped there have to relive their worst memory over and over again. For Barry, this probably means the death of his mother. True loneliness leads Flash to turn into Savitar. But that also doesn't happen without the insanity caused by extended time in the Speed Force.
A Truly Alone Barry
Often, love is what grounds Barry to the world, keeps him from going mad with all of his responsibilities. Love and friendship tie him to normalcy in many ways and keep him from becoming the monsters that he faces. This may seem like a more meta Savitar component, but it is still important.
Barry Allen is the hero of The Flash. But with just a few tragic changes, he becomes the villain too.