After a fantastic premiere to the season, what can THE FLASH throw at us in Episode 2? We are already seeing the early signs of the upcoming CRISIS ON INFINITE EARTHS. And, we just saw the origin story of the Big Bad of Season 6. What’s next? If you want to know more, follow us after the jump!
SPOILERS AHEAD! You have been warned!
NOTE: This review of THE FLASH is posting prior to the episode’s airing in the Pacific Time Zone USA. If you haven’t seen the show yet, STOP HERE and come back after you see the episode. You’ll be glad you did!
There are a lot of potential purposes for an episode of any series. That’s particularly true of THE FLASH. Last week was a lights-out huge premiere to kick off the season. This episode continues to set the stage for the season ahead, with changes in status for some characters and a direct address of the upcoming CRISIS as well. That’s not all, of course, as we also get a visit with Jay Garrick, the Flash of Earth 3!
There are two main threads here, and it’s important to get to the one involving the Crisis first. Barry wants to find out more about this Crisis, so he tries to time travel to the day after he supposedly disappears. Problem is, he can’t…thanks to an antimatter wall that stops him in the middle of the Speed Force!
To figure that out, he goes to the one true expert on all of this, Jay Garrick. He also meets Jay’s new love interest, Joan Williams – who is the doppelganger of Barry’s mother, Nora! (NOTE: Joan Williams is also the name of Jay Garrick’s girlfriend and later wife in the comics). They have a device that can send Barry’s mind forward in time, since he can’t physically get there.
Barry sees…everything! He sees every possible timeline ahead. In every one of them, the Earth is swallowed up by antimatter. He sees Team Flash…and especially Iris…dying in each one of those timelines. That is, every timeline except one.
In that one timeline, Barry sacrifices himself, dissolving much as he did in the comics in CRISIS ON INFINITE EARTHS #8 back in 1985. Barry believes now that the Monitor was right. For billions to live…for his friends and loved ones to live…the Flash must die!
Barry and Iris spend much of this episode coming to terms with that thought. Is understanding his likely fate the same as giving up? One of the keys to Barry’s character is that he does not ever give up. It’s Joe West’s advice that gets him through this eventually. Joe knows that his badge (which now says “Captain”) and Barry’s chest symbol are both signs the strength to overcome their understandable fears, to be willing to sacrifice if need be. That isn’t giving up. Continuing in the face of that is resilience. Joe says that Barry has, more than anything, resilience. That carries Barry through the battle with the villain of the week, and it sets the tone for what comes next.
Barry and Iris need to tell Team Flash what’s coming. We’ll see that next week. For now, let’s go to that other main thread.
We start with Allegra Garcia, known as Wavelength in the comics (though I don’t think she had that code name in tonight’s episode, please double check me on that one). In the comics, she had the same powers as her father. In this show, Allegra gained mastery over the electromagnetic spectrum on the night of the particle accelerator. She was just 15 at the time, and spent much of her early life in juvenile detention.
Allegra is charged with murder, and it looks like an open and shut case. Cecile arrives at the pre-trial meeting with the judge to throw the book at her. But, her powers kick in, and she believes Allegra to be innocent. After Allegra is freed, another witness is killed…and she takes the blame from everyone except Cecile. Much of tonight’s episode shows Cecile torn between her duties as District Attorney and her powers as a meta. She is, of course, right. Allegra IS innocent. Here’s why:
Allegra wasn’t the only one in Juvi with her that night…so was her cousin Esperanza. This cousin supposedly died at the time, or so everyone thought. Instead, this cousin was taken into a heavily redacted clandestine organization and trained as an assassin. She doesn’t want the world to know she is still alive, and attacks the CCPD to kill Allegra and leave her to take the blame for the killings. Barry was injured in his mind-trip into hypertime, but musters the strength to enter the fight. He does subdue Esperanza, but not without a serious fight. In the end, Allegra is freed and pursues her dream of becoming a journalist…as an intern with Iris’ online news service! Do we possibly have an upcoming new member of Team Flash? Only time will tell. As for Cecile, she is ready now to leave the DA’s office and to become a full-time defense attorney for metas. Fantastic, as in the comics Cecile was Barry’s defense attorney in the Silver Age trial for killing Eobard Thawne.
Besides the two main threads, there are also two important sub-threads tonight. One is more for entertainment purposes. That was Killer Frost trying to start living her own life. Ralph and Cisco take her to an art gallery showing, where she acts like a jerk. Turns out, it’s in part because she wants to express herself through art and cannot do so very well. By episode’s end, she is trying to get into art…and trying to not be so quick to act uncaring.
The second subthread is about our Dr. Rosso. His powers kick in when he is threatened by a thug named Mitch Romero. It appears at first that Romero has died. But, on the autopsy table he “wakes up” and attacks Rosso with superhuman strength! We’ll see more of that next episode, according to the trailer we saw after the show.
So, we have:
- Barry realizing that he may have to actually sacrifice himself in the upcoming Crisis
- Cecile leaving the DA’s office to become a defense attorney for metahumans
- Allegra Garcia (Wavelength) joining Iris’ news team
- Jay Garrick going back to Earth 3 to monitor this potential antimatter crisis
- Killer Frost becoming an artist…of sorts. She is at least trying to become a more complete person
- The special effects for the Crisis were spot on, from the red skies to the effects of antimatter to the Flash’s dissolving as he vanishes in Crisis. Great job!
- Just a thought…could Allegra be one of the most powerful metas in the Arrowverse? Controlling the entire electromagnetic spectrum has some interesting possibilities. I’m hoping they will include her in Team Flash as Wavelength before long.
- Having Joan Williams on the show adds to the canon for Jay Garrick. Having her look just like Joan Allen was even more outstanding
- There are several Easter Eggs in this show, including things hanging around Jay Garrick’s place – add what you found in the comments please
It would be hard, if not impossible, to follow that amazing premiere episode. Still, this was a solid chapter for Season 6, and it sets the table well for what is coming up soon. This episode did exactly what it was meant to do, and I enjoyed it from start to finish. I’ll give this one an 8/10 – but of course, that’s just my opinion. What do YOU think? Leave your comments below!