For the time-traveling speedster who stole his identity, see Eobard Thawne.

"Research laboratories unconnected to the government, unconnected to any business interests or any of that kind of stuff. And then we build right downtown in the heart of the city, in the epicenter, and we become the heart of the city. We become the heart of the nation. We change the way you think about the sciences, and then..."
—Dr. Harrison Wells to Tess Morgan on his ultimate dream[src]


Dr. Harrison Wells (died April 16, 2000)[1] was a brilliant scientist, the husband of Tess Morgan, a close friend of Tina McGee, and an identity theft victim of Eobard Thawne/Reverse-Flash.

Biography

Early life

Harrison and Tess.

Harrison originally lived in Starling City and became a well-respected yet eccentric scientist. He was good friends with equally devoted scientists Tina McGee[2] and Tess Morgan, the latter of which he fell in love with and eventually married. In 2000, Harrison had an idea for a laboratory and discussed this concept with Tess while on a date at the beach, which made Tess smile. Harrison wanted to name the laboratory after Tess but she suggested the name "S.T.A.R Labs".[3]

Death

Harrison killed by Eobard

In 2000, while driving home after their date on the beach, Harrison unknowingly drove into spike strips set by Eobard Thawne, causing an accident which totaled their vehicle, killed Tess instantly, and injured Harrison. In shock, Harrison is pulled from the car and told of his apparent future success by Eobard. Claiming a need to do these actions much sooner, Eobard used a futuristic device, completely dissolving Harrison into a decayed, featureless corpse in a matter of seconds as his murderer took on his likeness.[3] Afterward, Eobard buried Harrison's body nearby[4][5] and pretended to crawl out from the wrecked vehicle as first responders arrived, with Eobard identifying himself as Wells.[3]

Original timeline

According to Eobard, Harrison and Tess went on to build S.T.A.R. Labs and successfully unleashed the particle accelerator in 2020 which changed the course of history. Harrison was somehow connected to creating famous superhero known as the Flash, and whose legacy would inspire Eobard in the 22nd century to replicate these powers as the Reverse-Flash.[3]

Legacy

The device that Eobard used to kill Harrison also gave him Harrison's thoughts, memories, and love for Tess, causing him to sometimes become teary-eyed over her despite never knowing her.[6]

With everyone remaining unaware of Harrison's death, Eobard would pose as Wells for fifteen years with Harrison's reputation and later legacy suffering greatly thanks to Eobard's various actions. See here for more information on Eobard's legacy as Wells.

Eobard used Harrison's identity and ambitions as part of his own plans for fifteen years.

Unknown to Eobard, Tina somehow knew something wasn't right after Tess's death, as Harrison and Tina were good friends.[2] Eobard used Tess's death as a cover story when speaking to Joe West and presumably others before that, saying he moved away from Starling City because of too many reminders of Tess.[5][7]

In 2015, Joe and Cisco Ramon went to Starling City to do research on the car accident, ultimately discovering the real Harrison's corpse. Joe kept this a secret for the safety of Iris West and others, though the discovery was shared with Barry Allen and Caitlin Snow, with Harrison's corpse being brought to Central City.[5]

When Team Flash initially met Harrison Wells of Earth-2, later known as Harry Wells, Cisco and Joe unfortunately compared Harry to Eobard, while Caitlin remembered Harry would actually be Harrison's doppelgänger.[8] Harry later suspected the Reverse-Flash's first time-travel trip to 2016 and interactions with Harry would factor into Harrison's murder.[9] In 2017, H.R. Wells of Earth-19 trying to bond with Harry had H.R. wondering about their Earth-1 doppelgänger; H.R. could've been referring to Harrison but Harry thought about Eobard.[10]

Eobard acknowledging Harrison's face.

Eobard referred to Harrison's face as "handsome" when taunting the Flash during Earth-X's invasion of Earth-1.[11]

Eobard also remembered Harrison's love for Tess, along with knowledge of other Wells doppelgängers, and suggested in 2049 to Nora West-Allen to help Harrison Sherloque Wells fall in love (as a distraction) in 2019.[12]

After the new multiverse's creation, Harrison Nash Wells was fused with various Wells doppelgängers with Eobard included, to which Barry acknowledged Harrison's murder and genetic identity theft.[13]

Personality

Unlike his murderer/impersonator Eobard Thawne, Harrison was a very kind and humble man with a cheerful nature.[2] An optimistic scientist and loving husband, he showed and spoke of his dreams for the future while also being romantic with Tess Morgan, who he wanted S.T.A.R. Labs to be named after. Despite having far-reaching visions for the future, he was also humble, not knowing exactly how to react when Tess complimented him. Harrison was clearly very much in love with Tess; he expressed only concern for her and none for himself after Eobard's crash.[3]

Abilities

  • Genius-level intellect/Master scientist/Business acumen: Harrison was a famous scientist who (in one timeline) successfully opened and operated his own scientific company, possibly similar to his various doppelgängers. Even more, his brilliance as a scientist was proven as the only known variation of Harrison Wells to successfully create the particle accelerator without negative results.[3]

Appearances

The Flash

Season 1

Season 2

Season 3

Season 4

Season 5

Season 6


Arrow

Season 6

Novels

The Chronicles of Cisco

Trivia

  • As he does not appear Post-Crisis, it is unclear whether he was absorbed into the Artificial Speed Force. However, it can be assumed that Nash replaced him Post-Crisis, much like how Earth-2's Laurel Lance remained while her Earth-1 counterpart remained deceased.
  • Harrison wore translucent-framed glasses, while Eobard wore dark-framed glasses when impersonating him.
  • Harrison is the third character in the Arrowverse to have an episode ("Who is Harrison Wells?") named after him in a civilian sense, after Sara Lance ("Sara") and Felicity Smoak ("The Secret Origin of Felicity Smoak").
  • Like Eddie Thawne, Harrison's fate is largely unknown during the Flashpoint timeline but it can be presumed that he and Tess Morgan were still alive since Eobard was prevented from committing the murder.
  • Harrison was one of three individuals who have an encounter with Eobard Thawne involving identity theft. The other two are Martin Stein and John Swigert.[14][15]
  • In "All's Wells That Ends Wells", it was confirmed that H.R. Wells, another Wells doppelgänger who had died before the Anti-Monitor Crisis, had been drawn into Nash Wells' body along with every other Wells as a result of the crisis. This confirms that even deceased Wells doppelgängers were present in Nash's mind, implying the original Earth-1 Wells was there as well. However, he was neither seen nor mentioned in the episode.

Behind the scenes

  • Harrison Wells uses elements of several DC comics characters:
    • A character only known as "Dr. Wells", who briefly appeared in the tie-in DC comic book of the 1990s The Flash TV series titled, "The Quick and the Dead" (January, 1991).
    • Even before that, a villainous character also known as Dr. Wells, sporting similar looks, appeared in the 1973-1985 animated series Super Friends episode "Elevator to Nowhere".
    • Harrison's overall characterization resembles Garrison Slate, the creator of S.T.A.R. Labs. Both wanted a government-free network of laboratories.
  • When asked about which Wells he would play in Season 3 of The Flash and if he would be this version, Tom Cavanagh said "This guy won't be that guy. If the show has strengths, I would argue that we're not repeating ourselves generally, and specifically I'm trying not to repeat myself."[16]

References


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