The mid-season premiere of The CW’s smash hit, The Flash finds our titular hero recovering from his run-in with Reverse Flash and facing two threats for the price of one.
Let’s bitch it out…
The mid-season premiere of The Flash reveals that Barry has been spending his holidays focusing on a single target: defeating his yellow doppelganger. And since this is a superhero show featuring outlandish villains and crazy schemes, that means that he’s hanging out with the crew at the abandoned air field tossing around rockets and such. Clearly just another day at the office.
The peace and quiet is shattered by the return of Captain Cold (Wentworth Miller), who has teamed up with Heat Wave (Dominic Purcell). Despite their return Barry (Grant Gustin) decides to sit out the fight. In the interim since the last new episode, Barry has dedicated himself to increasing his speed – it has become his number one priority since the appearance of his yellow nemesis in 1×09. Part of his decision, however, may be courtesy of some subtle subconscious manipulation by Barry’s mentor, Wells (Tom Cavanagh), whose every line is laced with double meanings. It’s hard not to infer malicious intent when Wells encourages Barry to resist the impulse to deal with Leonard Snart in order to focus on his speed, even though when you think about it, we really have no idea what Wells’ plans are. It’s strange to be nearly halfway through the season and have no idea who this man really is or what he wants.
What’s alarming is when Joe (Jesse L. Martin) begins asking questions of Wells. After both Wells and Barry use the term “priorities” to defend Barry’s decision not to react to Cold’s reappearance, Joe rightfully questions who is really pulling the strings. There’s no explicit suggestion that Wells will do something to Joe, but it’s hard not to anticipate that this will snowball into something bad as the second half of the season plays out. Whereas before Barry’s two mentors represented a balance in his education and morals, now their dual presence carries more of a threat. I’m suddenly very worried about Joe.
For now, however, that hardly matters. The tension between the mentors is curtailed the moment that Snart and Mick Rory kidnap Caitlin (Danielle Panabaker). The pair of villains use her abduction to force The Flash out of the shadows, revealing himself to the masses in a daring elemental shoot-out in the middle of a cordoned-off Central City street. Contrary to the trials that open the episode, Barry and Wells realize that super speed isn’t the solution and, with some cameo support from Eddie (Rick Cosnett), Barry manages to get their beams to cross Ghostbusters-style and save the day. The episode ends on a high: Eddie is no longer a Flash-hater, the cops at the precinct are singing the speedster’s praises and even belligerent Captain Singh (Patrick Sabongui) warms to Cisco (Carlos Valdes), who was given the cold shoulder earlier thanks to some lingering resentment for the destruction caused by Wells Industries (please note the use of both hot and cold descriptors – zing!). It would be an all around win if only the dastardly pair didn’t make a jailbreak before the credits even roll, but we would expect nothing less of these rogues, would we?
- I don’t know how to feel about Barry moving in with Joe. He makes a joking reference to millennials moving back home, but it still feels a little bit strange, doesn’t it? Like, should we just accept that Barry will never get laid now?
- Prior to becoming the cliche in every single superhero tale, Caitlin stumbles onto a conspiracy. She discovers that the university was doing some work breaking down matter into new elements and that people involved in the project have mysteriously disappeared. File this information away under “important for later” and leave it at that.
- Caitlin also gives Barry some advice in the vein of “It Gets Better” <rainbow>. She suggests that things can only improve with Iris (Candice Patton) now that Barry has come clean about his feelings. Which is good, because I wouldn’t be able to bear it if they continued to act like 12 year olds like they did tonight. It’s getting to the point that I just don’t want to see more of Iris. Patton is fine, but her story is a complete joke (consider this: her role tonight included moving in with Eddie and worrying about him at the police blockade. That’s it). Honestly, why is she on the show?!
- I wonder how many keyboards Barry goes? All I could think about when I was watching him read the 800 page F.I.R.E.S.T.O.R.M. document was that is a lot of furious tapping.
- Finally, in a development that should shock absolutely no one, Captain Cold and Heat Wave spend a hot moment in the slammer before a cold-as-ice rescue by the Capt’s sister…who is presumably familiar to comic fans of The Flash. To the comments to identify her!
- Wells (after Cisco names the man in the yellow suit the Reverse Flash): “Actually I kinda like it”
- Caitlin & Wells (when Cisco reveals the remaining drones have lazors): “No”
- Joe (after Barry confesses he told Iris how he feels): “Oh god.”
- Wells (when Cisco tries to name the new villain): “Stop doing that”
- Joe (clarifying that Barry’s old room is still available): “We both know I’m not going to turn it into a gym”
Your turn: will Wells eventually try to take out Joe and reign as Barry’s sole middle age adult friend? Were you excited to see the Prison Break reunion between Miller and Purcell? Happy that The Flash has been officially outed to Central City? Wondering what Iris’ role on the show is? Intrigued by the F.I.R.E.S.T.O.R.M. conspiracy (which is even more of a nuisance to type than Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. btw)? And who, comic lovers, is the mysterious sister and what is her power? Sound off below!
The Flash airs Tuesdays at 8pm EST on The CW