I am a father of twin boys. Well, twin men. My sons are 20 now, and our relationship has moved into a more mature zone. And while in that uncharted territory, I find myself grateful for being able to watch the best father and son relationship I have ever seen on television. That virtual how-to on parenting is a featured element of the CW show The Flash.
Grant Gustin plays Barry Allen/The Flash and the great Jesse L. Martin offers a master class in parenting as Det. Joe West, who took Barry into his home when his father was wrongly convicted of his mother’s murder.
The relationship between these two delineates the perfect modern father and son bond. There is clear love, respect, and communication that many parents would pay considerable money to enjoy. Again and again, Joe Allen offers his guidance and support and makes the effort to understand who his adoptive son is becoming. There are no preconceived expectations other than wanting to be in Barry’s life. Joe is equally good at working through problems with his natural born daughter Iris, the love of Barry’s life. Navigating that particular minefield gives Joe a platform to truly show what a role model he is to parents everywhere.
In a show that offers everything from the perfect execution of sci-fy 101 tropes to compelling characters, the parenting and Barry’s relationship as adoptive son shine as bright or brighter than all other elements of this classic television series.