Danielle Panabaker Is Totally Cool With Her Villainous Turn as Killer Frost on ‘The Flash’

The Flash - Danielle Panabaker
Dean Buscher/The CW
"I am so excited," says Danielle Panabaker about finally going all-out as Flash villain Killer Frost

We got chills, they’re multiplying! And we’re losing control over Danielle Panabaker finally getting to go full badass as The Flash‘s Killer Frost in Tuesday’s episode, “I Know Who You Are.”

After mini-samples of her super-powered alter ego over the last three seasons, sweet scientist Caitlin Snow has been entirely overtaken by her ice-shooting inner villain and now it is so on. Can she revert to her mild-mannered self? What is her connection to speed god Savitar or Iris’ imminent death in the future? And how fun is it for the delightfully down-to-earth Panabaker to camp it up as this cold-hearted crazy? We went straight to the source for some non-spoilery scoop!

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OK, this is so great!
Danielle Panabaker: Oh, I am so excited.

Though, does it add a lot of extra time in the hair and makeup room now for you?
You know what, honestly it doesn’t. On a normal day, it’s about an hour for me to get through hair and makeup, and we’ve gotten it down to a science, so now it’s about an hour and a half [for the Frost look]. The biggest difference is that they have to basically gel my hair back, paint it white so that my brunette hair doesn’t shine through and then put the wig cap on.

Hilarious. Did you ever think that this would be a thing that you had to worry about?
You know what, it’s fun. That’s what’s a great part about my job as an actor is—I play make-believe for a living. It’s fantastic. I’m excited about it.

(L-R): Grant Gustin as The Flash, Jesse L. Martin as Detective Joe West and Danielle Panabaker as Killer Frost (Dean Buscher/The CW)

So where do we go with Killer Frost from here? Now that Caitlin’s kind of fully embraced the bad, how do we resolve this? I mean, we love Caitlin!
[Laughs] We do love Caitlin. I think Killer Frost is just winning right now. The way it’s been explained to me…it’s like there’s dual personalities who live inside Caitlin, similar to Magenta from earlier in this season, and right now Killer Frost is winning 100 percent. She’s really squished Caitlin down deep inside of her, and she’s out for blood.

As Killer Frost gains more power and possibly does more irreversible damage, even maybe death, when Caitlin reemerges, she’s going to be devastated.
If she can. The question is, is Caitlin strong enough? Maybe with the help of Team Flash, she could be, but I’m not sure. Killer Frost thinks she’s here to stay.

Do you think her connection to Julian could help draw Caitlin back out? He’s clearly into her…
I think Julian is pretty committed to helping Caitlin, to try and find a cure, particularly in that episode that we saw that flashes forward. We see that he has made it his life’s mission, so I think Julian will be there for Caitlin. I think Caitlin has had her own struggles with that relationship, in particular. And while I think Julian was definitely into Caitlin, I’m not sure how into Julian Caitlin is. I think she’s a little wary, having had two of her previous boyfriends ripped from her in very devastating ways. I think, hopefully, she’s a little bit more trepidatious this go-round with romance. [Laughs]

That has been a big discussion among the fans this year, the collateral damage of being a friend of Barry’s.
Yes, everybody seems to [suffer]. Three seasons in, we’re still finding ways to torture Caitlin. [Laughs]


How early will we find out who is in that Savitar costume?
I think it’s coming. I’m pretty sure, if my memory serves, you will find out very soon who is in Savitar’s suit [and] it’s going to be a pretty big shock to the team. Obviously, they’re going to be dealing with that the rest of the season.

In that final scene last week, it really seemed like Caitlin knew who this person was and also felt some sort of loyalty to this person.
Yes! I’m glad you were able to get that much just from a look!

So then I was thinking, “Could it be Ronnie? Could it be Eddie?” We knew Rick Cosnett was coming back, but maybe he filmed more scenes. Can you tell us if it’s somebody that Killer Frost would have loyalty to, or that Caitlin has a past with?
Because the two are still sort of duking it out inside of Caitlin’s body, I think it’s safe to assume that either one or both could feel loyalty for the person inside the suit.

The Flash, Tuesdays, 8/7c, The CW