A meta-human is an individual who acquired superhuman abilities through a certain means. Most obtained their powers after surviving an explosion caused by a malfunction of the S.T.A.R. Labs particle accelerator on December 11, 2013. They were exposed to particles and dark matter that altered their genetic structure, or even atomic structure, giving them a variety of abilities. These abilities seem to often relate to what energy or matter they were directly in contact with at the time of exposure.

On Earth Two, rather than the particle accelerator exploding, Dr. Harrison Wells of that world allowed excess radiation to flow underground, with the first meta-human appearing 11 hours following.[1]

Powers and abilities

Main article: List of powers

There are a wide range of meta-human powers, including everything from time distortion to elemental manipulation. Meta-humans who gained their abilities from the dark matter explosion in Central City often have powers influenced by unusual conditions at the time of exposure: Barry Allen was struck by lightning and gained access to the Speed Force, giving off electricity when he runs at superhuman speeds, while Tony Woodward and Joseph Monteleone gained the power to transform into the substance they were immersed in during the explosion (steel and tar, respectively).

Due to their altered physiology certain meta-human powers affect meta-humans differently than normal humans. Barry remained infected by Bivolo when the effects only lasted 5 minutes in a normal person.

The emotional state of a meta-human also has an influence on their powers; reacting and strengthening when the meta-human is in a state of emotional stress.

Known meta-humans

Earth One meta-humans


Earth Two meta-Humans


Behind the scenes

  • The term "meta-human" essentially refers to a powered human, hence the suffix. However, ironically, Grodd is one such meta-human that is not in fact human that still displays meta-human powers.
  • Valentina Vostok, Jake Simmons and Eliza Harmon are the only meta-humans that were not affected by the particle accelerator.


  1. "The Darkness and the Light"
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