The Flash - Season 1 - "City of Heroes" - Jesse L. Martin and Candice Patton

The Flash – Season 1 – “City of Heroes” – Jesse L. Martin as Det. Joe West and Candice Patton as his daughter Iris West, Barry Allen’s best friend.

*Jesse L. Martin sure knows how to pick projects.

He was a part a TV’s longest-running crime drama as Det. Ed Green on “Law & Order,” and his new series, where he also plays a detective, just made ratings history at the CW with its pilot episode, alone.


“The Flash,” a spinoff of CW’s “The Arrow,” just saw its Oct. 7 pilot episode become the most-watched telecast in network history.

“Glee” alum Grant Gustin stars as Barry Allen, a socially-awkward crime scene investigator for the local police department who’s obsessed with paranormal-type cases. A freak combination of accidental radiation, being struck by lightening and being doused with chemicals eventually renders Barry “metahuman,” able to move at superhuman speeds. He decides to use his power for good against other metahumans who were also affected by the radiation accident, but are using their powers to terrorize the city.

And The Flash is born.

Martin, 45, plays Flash’s surrogate daddy, Det. Joe West.

The Flash -- "Things You Can't Outrun"  (L-R): Grant Gustin as Barry Allen and Jesse L. Martin as Detective Joe West

The Flash — “Things You Can’t Outrun” (L-R): Grant Gustin as Barry Allen and Jesse L. Martin as Detective Joe West

“I didn’t know anything about ‘The Flash,’ other than he had a red suit and he could run real fast. That’s all I knew,” Martin told the TCA in July. “I didn’t grow up on comics really. And the way they were talking about it, I was like, ‘I would be so stupid not to get involved with this thing. I don’t care if I’m playing another detective. I don’t know how it’s going to play out. I know it’s going to be different than “Law & Order,” dunt dunt.’”

Martin’s character takes in a young Barry Allen after he witnesses his mother’s bizarre murder and sees his father unfairly convicted for the crime.

Producers took the actor to a tea house in Midtown Manhattan and pitched him the role.

“Why were we at a tea house anyway?” Martin recalled, laughing. “I don’t even really dig tea that much. But we sat down, and they immediately launched into the pitch, if you will. And they were so excited about what it was.”

Martin continues below:

“The Flash” airs Tuesdays at 8 p.m. on The CW.

Watch a clip featuring Martin from the Oct. 28 episode “Going Rogue,” below: