In 2016, Rolling Stone ranked the show #23 on its list of the “40 Best Science Fiction TV Shows of All Time”.
Critics’ top ten lists
The first episode of The Flash was watched by 4.8 million viewers and had a 1.9 18–49 demographic rating, making it The CW’s most watched and highest rated series premiere since The Vampire Diaries in 2009. It also became The CW’s second-most watched series premiere ever, behind 90210, and the third-highest rated in the 18–49 demographic. Factoring Live + 7 day ratings, the pilot was watched by a total of 6.8 million viewers, becoming The CW’s most-watched telecast and the highest-rated premiere among men 18–34 (2.5 rating). It broke the previous record for the most-watched telecast held by the cycle 8 finale of America’s Next Top Model in 2007 (6.69 million). Additionally, across all platforms, including initiated streams on digital platforms and total unduplicated viewers on-air over two airings the week of October 7, 2014, the premiere was seen more than 13 million times.
The Canadian premiere was watched by 3.11 million viewers, making it the most-watched broadcast that night and the second for that week. In the United Kingdom, the premiere was the fourth highest-rated broadcast of the week and the eleventh of that month, with 1.53 million viewers. The timeshifted version got 82,000 viewers. The premiere in Australia was the most-watched broadcast on pay television, with 129,000 viewers tuning in.
In 2016, according to an analysis from Parrot Analytics, which used ratings data (where available), peer-to-peer sharing, social media chatter, and other factors to estimate viewer demand for various shows, The Flash was the 5th most popular show in the world with 3.1 million demand expressions per day, behind Game of Thrones, The Walking Dead, Pretty Little Liars, and Westworld. TorrentFreak also gauged The Flash as the fourth most-torrented television show of 2016.