Last week’s episode of The Flash had a very dramatic ending as we saw Zoom amassing a huge army of meta villains to unleash on Central City so he can take it over and Barry came back from within the Speed Force. With these events, it didn’t come as a surprise that this week’s installment began with plenty of villains running around and wreaking havoc on the city while the cops tried to handle the sudden onslaught. Sadly, the meta humans were not able to accomplish much other than the huge bang as the army was taken down by The Flash and the city returned to normal or as normal as it can get in this climate.
The entire episode brimmed with confidence just like its title character, something we haven’t seem much this season. There was plenty of action in the episode, but it still had time for some humorous moments and heart to heart talks. The only question is why they decided to stuff all of this in just one episode because they could have drawn it out, but maybe the CW budget didn’t have enough room for it. Regardless, it was one of the most satisfying Zoom episodes for this season. It is obvious from the get go that Barry has changed since he returned from the Speed Force.
It is similar to a religious conversion and the rest of the Team Flash also considers him a zealot whenever he expresses his unbridled enthusiasm and lack of fear about defeating Zoom and his army. Barry believes that everything is possible because the Speed Force is with him. Luckily, this brings out the leader in him and he doesn’t mope around waiting for a father figure to give him the encouragement he needs. As a matter of fact, it is completely opposite as both Joe and Henry and even Iris try to reel him a bit. Barry is in charge this time around and he is the one who actually comes up with the idea of using the vibrational frequencies of Earth-2 meta humans to neutralize them.
Sure, Barry’s newfound confidence is a nice change, but it also blinds him to some things that are staring him in the face. For instance, he doesn’t acknowledge the fact that if Wally hadn’t shown up just in time and run her down with his car, the Black Siren would have probably killed him. Also, Wally wouldn’t have shown up if he hadn’t been so careless in blurting out the address when Cisco told him so maybe it was justified. Above all, he doesn’t notice the target sign hanging around his father’s neck. It is all very typical; beloved character returns, has a heartfelt chat with his son, expresses his belief and love and this ends his purpose.
Obviously, he gets murdered by the villain to spark the hero’s quest for revenge just in time for the season finale. This was a little disappointing as they couldn’t find another way to raise the stakes other than getting the Big Bad kill the hero’s loved ones. This is exactly what Arrow did and why Katie Cassidy was able to show up on The Flash to be Black Siren. Yes, there is no place for Henry Allen on Team Flash, but this feels a little cheap considering the effort Barry put in the last season to get him out.
However, this doesn’t mean that we have said goodbye to Henry Allen; we still don’t know who the man under the iron mask is. Also, Garrick is the maiden name of Barry’s mother so that could amount to something. But, aside from the painful death in the end, the entire episode was thoroughly entertaining. Katie Cassidy turned out to be a much better and fun presence on The Flash as opposed to Arrow. Another high note in the episode was when Cisco and Caitlin go undercover as Reverb and Killer Frost in order to distract Black Siren and give Barry and Harry time to pull off the whole vibrational frequency thing. They were definitely well-played and Cisco even ended up discovering a new power in the time of crisis, even though it didn’t work for him the next time around.
Likewise, Caitlin was also able to face her demons or at least most of them, and get over her PTSD once she got the chance to do some good and really feel part of the team. One touching moment of the episode was when Harry switched headphones with Jesse since hers had malfunctioned and she was suffering due to the change in vibrational frequencies. The Wally conflict this week was also worth noting. It did give us one of the best Wally moments when he helped Barry get away from the Black Siren, thereby saving his life. It was nice to see that the show is not running into turning Wally and Jesse into speedsters, although it is inevitable.
Instead, the show is heading towards making Wally his father’s son by turning him into a cop. This could be a good subplot for season 3. Bringing Tina McGee into the fold and introducing her to Henry Allen was also a nice touch since it was a ‘tip of the hat’ to the Flash show in the 90s. Other than that, it was also quite obvious that introducing the Black Siren was nothing but a distraction by Zoom to keep the whole Team Flash occupied while he does what he wants and Barry remains in the dark.
Apart from that, the episode hammered the fact again and again that it was going to be Barry’s recklessness that got his father killed. The penultimate episode drew to a close with Wally finding out that Barry is the Flash. It remains to be seen how this is going to affect his arc. Furthermore, Cisco vibing Earth-2 splitting into two doesn’t seem to be a good one, but it is a given that Barry is going to be ready for vengeance when the finale opens next week.