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In S02E16 of 'The Flash' it is revealed that...

The man played by Teddy Sears (whom the heroes thought was Jay Garrick, is actually, Zoom.

At first I thought that perhaps Zoom had...

Killed Jay and impersonated him.

However, in S02E18 we see a flashback in which we see Hunter Zolomon's father wearing,

What will eventually become Jay Garrick's helmet.

This begs the question...

Did Jay Garrick ever actually exist?

I know that Zoom's masked hostage is most likely

The real Jay.

But In Earth 2's Harrison's flashback, we clearly see the Flash depicted wearing the helmet.

So how does the show explain that Jay's helmet is something from Hunter's past and not his?

  • The show does not explain it, But the helmet is part of a Earth-2 military outfit. So Jay Garrick could've been part of the military on Earth-2 and thus have a similar helmet. But it's not clear at the moment if there really is a Jay Garrick, it's all speculation at this moment. – DLE May 20 '16 at 8:26
  • You put a lot of things in spoiler tags but not the thing related to Earth 2's Harrison's flashback, why ? This is the latest event, so it is the most likely to be a spoiler :( – Kalissar May 20 '16 at 8:41
  • @Kalissar I do not know which flash back you are referring to but I was referencing one early in the series. – Matthew Stevenson May 20 '16 at 8:49
  • Oh ? I think I misunderstood your sentence But In Earth 2's Harrison's flashback, we clearly see the Flash depicted wearing the helmet. I thought you were talking about the masked hostage being the Flash. I hope they will not pull out something as easy. sorry for the inconvenience. – Kalissar May 20 '16 at 8:51
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    I'm pretty sure there isn't, and never was, a Jay Garrick in the sense of another, physically existing person. Jay is just a persona Zoom/Hunter invented so he could play the hero, giving the people of Earth-2 hope that he could eventually rip away as Zoom. – Anthony Grist May 20 '16 at 8:53
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Now that the season finale has aired, we can more definitively answer this question.

"Jay Garrick" is an assumed identity by Zoom / Hunter Zoloman. He traveled the multiverse and in so doing, met another speedster, named Jay Garrick, on Earth-3. He kidnapped Jay and brought him back to Earth-2. Feeling that being the ultimate villain wasn't enough for him, and also wanting the glory that goes with being a hero, he stole the name and the Flash concept from Earth-3 Jay Garrick and began fighting crime in Earth-2, all while still being Earth-2's prime super-villain, Zoom.

So, in one sense,

There never was a "real" Jay Garrick from Earth-2, it was just a pseudonym that Zoom used, inspired by an actual speedster named Jay Garrick from Earth-3.

As for Jay/Zoom's helmet,

that was a piece of costuming actually originating on Earth-2, where it was a "symbol of hope". Zoom used it in his Jay Garrick persona as part of his hero identity. Later, Earth-3 Jay Garrick would use it (for the first time) as a way of paying tribute to the concept of "hope" that it embodied.

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tl;dr: Zoom is Hunter Zolomon from Earth-2; Jay Garrick is just a fake identity he made up.


The helmet belong to Hunter Zolomon's father, as part of his usual military outfit. When his father went crazy and murdered his mother, Zolomon also snapped, and became a mass murderer. At one point he was capture and committed to a mental ward. While undergoing shock therapy, he was struck by the dark matter and became a speedster.

After escaping from the mental ward, Hunter changed his name to Jay Garrick and adapted the Flash persona. But this was all just a trick: he wanted to give the people of his city hope so he could then take it from them. He explains a lot of this information in the S02E18, "Versus Zoom".

Later, after trying to boost his speed with the Velocity serum, he got sick, and needed to start stealing other speeder's powers to live. This is when he decided to become Zoom. He would act as both hero and villain, to maintain the illusion that the city had a chance to fight Zoom when there really was none.

Once the breaches opened, Zolomon continued to play both sides, Flash and Zoom, but at some point he realized that eventually he would need to be in two places at once without using his speed (since "Jay Garrick" was supposed to have lost his speed). Using some unknown and unexplained process, he went and found a copy of himself in an earlier time that had no speed powers, a "time remnant", and convinced that version of himself to impersonate Jay Garrick. This is the person that was killed by Zoom when they closed the portals.

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Greg Berlanti have made it clear that they love the character of Jay Garrick, and did not plan to simply use him as a baddie. This was in response to a series of tweets from Flash-scribe Mark Waid https://twitter.com/gberlanti/status/722882921854427138 This implies that there are plans to show the "real" jay at some point. There's a chance he's the one in the iron mask, or possibly even a member of the JSA as teased at the end of Legends.

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