Why Cisco is The CW’s Best Arrowverse Character

Ron Robbins
TV Arrowverse
TV Arrowverse

Towards the end of the second season of Arrow, about 10 episodes after we first meet soon-to-be-Speedster Barry Allen, we are introduced to Francisco “Cisco” Ramon. He was in Starling City to do some inventory of the local S.T.A.R. Labs facility being closed down, due in part to the disastrous particle accelerator explosion at their location in nearby Central City. Impressed with the facility, Cisco proudly proclaimed, “I hereby christen this building as ‘the bomb.'” And with that, a career of winning wisecracks was born.

Cisco is a mechanical engineer at S.T.A.R. Labs. And that unfortunate particle accelerator explosion was responsible for Barry’s super speed and a whole onslaught of other meta-humans, thrusting Cisco to become an integral member of Team Flash.

Cisco has made a name for himself on Arrow, The Flash, Legends, and Supergirl, making him the best character in the Arrowverse. With dozens of meta-humans, superheroes, and valuable sidekicks abound, we realize the boldness of this statement. Without further ado, here are the facts.

Cisco is relatable

Carlos Valdes as Cisco
Carlos Valdes as Cisco

Cisco has the wonderful ability to interfere with our suspension of disbelief just enough to remind us that while he may exist in the Arrowverse,  he is actually our real-life spirit animal. He is a fanboy, and geeks out whenever he gets to meet another hero. He is a pop-culture junkie, rattling out references to Harry Potter, Indiana Jones, Spongebob Squarepants, iZombie, Friends, The Princess Bride, Star Wars … literally, if you can name it, he’s probably referenced it. He’s a stickler for proper grammar. He has comic collectibles in his bedroom. He wears hipster T-shirts. He’s even scared of bees. Cisco is all of us.

Cisco is incredibly intelligent

As we mentioned, Cisco is a mechanical engineer at S.T.A.R. Labs. He helped build the infamous particle accelerator with baddie Eobard Thawne, who, of course, was posing as the good Harrison Wells. Cisco was unaware of the nasty explosion that Thawne had in mind to ensure that Barry would become The Flash. It was part of his devious plot to course-correct the future. Or was it the past? Yeah, it’s confusing. We bet Cisco could explain it.

Anyway, ashamed of the havoc caused by the particle accelerator explosion, Cisco put his genius abilities to work for Team Flash. He uses the facility to humanely imprison dangerous meta-humans, and is always designing high tech gadgetry, weapons, and some marvelous suits. He constantly tweaks and updates his creation of Flash’s suit. He made a strikingly awesome yellow suit for Kid Flash, and even made a suit for substitute speedster Iris West.

This season he also made a high tech suit for the newest member of Team Flash, Elongated Man. It doesn’t look like much when it’s not on, but as Cisco affirms, “This tarp is your super-suit. When you stretch, it stretches. When you squish, it squishes.”  Outside of Team Flash, Laurel Lance had Cisco create a suit for her sister, who would become White Canary. Cisco was even sought after by Ray Palmer for advancements to his impressive A.T.O.M. exosuit. Trust us, Cisco gets around.

As far as weaponry, he created the infamous cold gun for Captain Cold, the heat gun for Heat Wave, and the gold gun for Golden Glider. Mind you, all of this was under duress, but the savviness on display is still wildly impressive.

Cisco is extremely clever

Keiynan Lonsdale and Carlos Valdes
Keiynan Lonsdale and Carlos Valdes

Aside from his witty pop culture references and his saucy banter with, well, everyone, Cisco is also known for his prideful talent of naming all of the bad guys. A true moniker master, he is responsible for countless nicknames. Some require second or third drafts, but he’s extremely proud when he gets one to stick on the first try. His creative darlings include, but are certainly not limited to Captain Cold, Plastique, Girder, Prism, Captain BoomerangReverse Flash, and The Thinker. Cisco is deeply opposed to anyone naming their own alter-ego, and once bemoaned, “Oh, why do the crazy ones always name themselves?”

Cisco is a superhero

Carlos Valdes as Cisco
Carlos Valdes as Cisco

After nearly three full seasons, Cisco developed into a meta-human superhero in his own right, and the world rejoiced. After reluctantly curating his various abilities, Cisco became Vibe. Vibe has incredible abilities to see visions from other timelines, create sonic blasts from his hands, and open breaches to other dimensions.

Cisco had thought that he was unaffected by that gnarly particle accelerator explosion. But then he started having visions that he couldn’t quite explain. They were from other timelines, past and future, and he eventually accepted that he was now a meta-human. In the second season, he takes the name Vibe. While on Earth-2, he encountered his villainous doppelgänger, Reverb, who unknowingly taught Cisco much of what he needed to know about his own powers. Best of all, Cisco was now able to tailor his own amazing suit.

Cisco faced off against Danny Trejo

Danny Trejo and Carlos Valdes in 'The Flash'

In Season 4, Episode 4, “Elongated Journey into the Night,” Cisco faced off against his girlfriend’s truly intimidating father, Breacher, played by the legendary Danny Trejo. The relationship evolved wildly over the course of the episode. Initially, Breacher was hunting Cisco for sport, believing him to be no good for his daughter, Gypsy. By the end, however, he respected Cisco as a fellow breacher and a suitable boyfriend for his daughter. He even felt comfortable enough to reveal his real, and rather less intimidating name: Josh.

We think we’ve made a strong case to support Cisco’s title as the best Arrowverse character. In fact, we hereby christen this character as “the bomb.”

Ron Robbins
Ron is fascinated by Max Headroom. His top three favorite things of all time are macaroni & cheese, General Hospital, and Archie Comics. Ron is easily triggered and living in West Hollywood, CA.
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