Let me start off by saying that I know a lot of people are offended by the name “Gypsy”. It’s a racial slur that has been used to describe Romani people and many fans on social media are refusing to say it, write it, or even forgive Greg Berlanti for keeping it. That being said, it’s been Cynthia Reynolds’ alias in the comics since her first appearance in 1984 and unless/until the show gives her a different name, we’ll be using it for continuity purposes.
Cynthia first appeared in Justice League of America Annual #2 and was created by Gerry Conway and Chuck Patton. Her powers of illusion began to manifest at age fourteen and she ran away from home. When she got off the bus in Detroit, she met the Justice League and–after aiding them in a battle against Overmaster and his Cadre–was granted an invitation to join them.
This new version of the Justice League not only consisted of Zatanna and Elongated Man but also the more familiar faces of Martian Manhunter, Vixen, Steel, and, most importantly, Vibe. During a mission, Cynthia had a premonition of Vibe and Steel’s deaths. When Professor Ivo sent an android to destroy the JLA, she survived but her vision came true.
After Cynthia was safely returned to her parents (who were then murdered by Despero), she joined Booster Gold’s Conglomerate…then the Justice League Task Force where she died and was subsequently brought back to life by Martian Manhunter…then Oracle’s Birds of Prey where she once again worked closely with Vixen.
And then Barry created Flashpoint and DC revamped everything.
The next time we saw Gypsy, she was Cynnthia Mordeth, a member of an inter-dimensional, nomadic tribe, and stranded on Earth after having accidentally been separated from them. Amanda Waller had ARGUS targeting her as she believed Cynnthia was declaring war on Earth. Newly recruited ARGUS agent Vibe (the Cisco Carlos Valdes’ version is based off of) found her and attempted to protect her…thus forming the relationship we’ll see being recreated on The Flash starting in episode 3×11.
In the comics, Cindy has a wide range of abilities. Aside from limited precognition, her ability to cast illusions allows her to camouflage–essentially becoming invisible–and project peoples’ worst fears into their minds. She also has astral projection. Only expect to see a few of these abilities to be utilized on The Flash, however, as the ‘Dead or Alive’ synopsis refers to her as “a bounty hunter with vibe powers”. Executive producer Aaron Helbing expanded on that description in an interview with TVLine:
“Well, she essentially can cross dimensions. She’s a much more advanced Vibe, I would say, and she is a badass. She doesn’t take any prisoners. She’s very good at her job, and she’s a very formidable adversary for the team.”
Therefore, in order to teach Cisco more about his powers, it seems like they’re going to stray from comic book mythology and give her his powers. (For those keeping score, that’s the third person we’ll have met with these abilities–the second being Cisco’s Earth-2 doppelgänger, Reverb.)
Helbing previously described what impact Gypsy (Jessica Camacho) will have on Cisco, explaining that she’ll help him “become more and more in tune with his powers and what he can do”. He also mentioned that Barry (Grant Gustin) is going to get “critical assists” from both Kid Flash (Keiynan Lonsdale) and Vibe in his attempt to save Iris (Candice Patton). (Recently released photos show Carlos and Keiynan on set for a redo of Iris’ death scene in episode 3×15.)
Two pertinent comic book powers Cisco has yet to learn on the show are A) his ability to see things that vibrate at different frequencies (things/people from other dimensions) and B) his ability to disrupt a speedster’s connection to the Speed Force.
Let’s start with the first one. Obviously, as has been established on the show, everyone is able to see inter-dimensional beings. One person only speedsters are able to see, though, is Savitar. Helbing announced today that there’s going to be a “pretty big reveal” as to why that is. Will that reveal coincide with Gypsy teaching Cisco how to use his “Vibe vision”?
The second one…well, there’s nothing really to explain. It’s an ability that Cisco has yet to discover and is a surefire way to take down any speedster. My theory all throughout Season 2 was that, because Harry (Tom Cavanagh) was teaching Cisco how to use his powers all season, that was how Team Flash was going to defeat Zoom (Teddy Sears). While that ended up not being the case last year, with another mentor for our fledgling superhero joining Team Flash, it could very well be the case this year.
If there’s anything else I want to see coincide with Gypsy’s arrival…it’s the return/resurrection of Cisco’s older brother, Dante (Nicholas Gonzalez). Let me explain.
In the New 52 run, Cynnthia was not only hiding from ARGUS, but the Hound of Mordeth–her father’s servant–Rupture. You may remember Rupture as Dante’s Earth-2 doppelgänger on The Flash. In the comics, however, Rupture is Cisco’s other brother, Armando. Armando was thought to have died when he sacrificed himself saving Cisco from Darkseid’s Boom Tube. What actually ended up happening is that they both received similar powers and Armando got trapped in another dimension. When he finally arrived on Earth to capture Cynnthia, Cisco realized that the brother he had mourned all those years was actually alive.
Sound familiar? My own personal wish list item is for Dante to return as another version of Rupture, mirroring the comics. It may just be me, but I feel like anything could’ve happened to Cisco as a result of Flashpoint…but there must’ve been a specific reason that the EPs decided to kill off his brother.
In any case, Cisco’s about to become confident enough in his powers to suit up and start fighting meta-humans alongside his friends. That development alone is more than enough to keep me excited.
Is there anything you want to see happen when Gypsy arrives on Earth-1? What abilities do you hope she teaches Cisco? How do you feel about the show changing her comic book origins?
While we won’t be meeting her until January 31st, make sure to tune in to The Flash‘s midseason premiere, ‘Borrowing Problems from the Future’, tomorrow at 8/7c on The CW.