This was my second episode of Arrow. There are spoilers behind the cut.
Well, it was definitely interesting. For Flash watchers, most of the episode is light on Barry — he does play an integral role in saving Oliver’s life, but otherwise doesn’t do much until the end. However, the ending is pretty exciting. There’s a cameo by Linda Park as a TV news reporter, and Barry returns to his lab in Central City in time for the S.T.A.R. Labs test. We see his bulletin board with news clippings and a timeline about the death of his mother (I was psyched to see they actually named her as Nora). And then there’s the lab accident, caused by the storm and explosion of the S.TA.R. Labs particle accelerator. Barry is last seen unconscious on the floor, a spark of power traveling through his body.
I was pretty excited to see that, because I wasn’t sure if the accident was going to happen in the episode or not. My spouse (not really a Flash fan) watched the episodes with me, and had been complaining earlier about Barry not having the accident; I admitted I didn’t know if it was going to happen here and he grumbled that he wouldn’t have watched if he’d known it wouldn’t happen. So we were both rather thrilled to see that it did. Thematically it makes sense to save it until the very end, because it first introduces Barry to people unfamiliar with him, and keeps longtime fans waiting on edge for it! It really does feel more exciting to be forced to wait, so I suppose the scriptwriters knew what they were doing.
As for the ongoing plot in the rest of the episode, it was interesting but not deeply engaging to a new viewer like myself. I’m still a bit lost in places, although at least I can mostly follow it. For example, my spouse and I had a debate about whether the cop’s daughter was a cop herself, but that doesn’t seem to be essential knowledge. We wondered if the masked guy administering the drug to Roy was supposed to be Scarecrow because of his mask, but eventually decided he was Brother Blood. I don’t know if I’ll keep watching the show after Barry’s no longer in it, but I suppose I’ll give it a try (it would be nice if he made the occasional guest appearance, which perhaps he will. Giving Arrow a super-powered ally would be interesting, since Barry now knows his identity). I’ll definitely watch the Flash series if it goes ahead.
So, overall I enjoyed these two episodes and really like Grant Gustin. His gentle awkward nerdiness was perfect. But I have to admit that Barry was the big draw for me, and don’t know if the show will keep my interest after he’s gone. We’ll see.
What did other people think of these episodes? Are you keen to watch the Flash series?