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Premieres: October 7
Why it might be good: With "Arrow," Greg Berlanti, Andrew Kreisberg and company proved they could do a grim, gritty and very effective Batman-in-miniature series revolving around a DC Comics second-stringer (who was conceived in the first place as a Batman clone). With this spin-off about the crimson-clad DC speedster (played by Grant Gustin), they're doing something trickier: sincere, sunny, unapologetically upbeat superheroics. And they pull it off. There are some corny spots (just as there are on "Arrow"), but Gustin's charming and believably noble, Tom Cavanagh and (especially) Jesse L. Martin lend tremendous gravity to the proceedings as Barry Allen's two adult mentors, and the pilot's big emotional and action beats land. There's also the danger that on a weekly schedule and budget, the world's fastest superhero may look more like a jogger, but he has a head start on most of the season's other newbies.
- Alan Sepinwall