“Phantoms” Review of S8 E9 of THE FLASH

Team Flash is looking for a serial killer meta, and they find more than bargained for in this episode. We also get another kind of “phantom”, one that will make longtime DC fans more than happy. All that and a trip to Coast City with Iris and Sue Dearbon. Wanna know more? Follow us after the jump!

SPOILERS AHEAD! YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED

The meta-powered killer has struck again, using cryo-kinetic powers to claim the life of their victims. After arriving too late to save the day as The Flash, Barry and Chester do their CSI thing and find one last vestige of the black flame that Flash saw earlier. They grab a sample of that in a special container and take it back to S.T.A.R. Labs.

Chester has been acting strangely when seeing the victims, and that mood seems to multiply when he’s dealing with that flame sample. What we will eventually learn is that this black flame is alive. It feeds on grief and despair, and it’s pushing Chester closer and closer to the edge.

That flame eventually takes the shape of Chester’s late father, but Cecile and Allegra are telling Chester that this is most definitely not his dad. It takes a huge emotional effort and the support of his friends, but Chester overcomes the emotions that the flame was trying to feed on. At that, the flame departs, looking for another victim.

Team Flash is nowhere near figuring this villain out. They don’t know where it is, much less how to defeat it. This bad guy will be hanging around for a little while longer.

In another story thread, Iris is still dealing with the effects of her time sickness. Deon (Still Force) is trying to help her, but something really strange is going on. Deon departs to consult with the other forces. By show’s end, Deon reappears with the scoop. We don’t learn what’s going on, just that it’s “bad news”. More on that in future episodes.

Iris’ storyline takes her and the returned Sue Dearbon to Coast City, home of Ferris Airlines (Ferris Aircraft in the comics, where we first find Hal Jordan). They are looking for the “Coast City Phantom”, who turns out to be a runaway named Tinya (long time LOSH fans will recognize her as Tinya Wazzo, aka Phantom Girl/Apparition). In this continuity, she ran away from foster care to live on the streets. After gaining her powers, she was looking for her birth mother, to try to reunite. Iris and Sue eventually gain her trust, and they will now look for Tinya’s mother together. Hopefully we’ll see Tinya join Team Flash sooner than later.

There are a lot of things unresolved in this episode, but it still works. This is a great episode to point the way for at least some of the rest of the season.

NOTES:

  • With THE FLASH renewed for Season 9, we should get a whole new set of story threads to work out. The showrunners were worried that Season 8 would be the end, so they plan to wrap up all story threads by the end of this season (at least that’s the reports). That gives us hope for things like what’s next (below) to be resolved soon.
  • We keep getting closer and closer to Chester and Allegra admitting their true feelings for each other…but nothing big happens yet. Hopefully by season’s end.
  • Looks like CC Jitters has a Coast City location that looks exactly like Central City’s place (except for the additional “Coast City” sign. And why not? Both cities are “CC” and Jitters may just be the Arrowverse version of Starbucks.
  • This episode was a chance for Chester’s character to shine, and Brandon McKnight came through with flying colors. THE FLASH has regularly given cast members other than Grant Gustin a chance in the spotlight, and that’s been one of the cool things for this reviewer about the series. Grant is a great Flash – but the rest of this ensemble cast are also fantastic.

SUMMARY:

Another good episode in one of the best seasons of THE FLASH. I’ll give this episode a 9/10. Of course, that’s just my opinion – what do YOU think? Leave your comments below!

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