Air Date: 11th October 2016
The Flash resets with the new alterations from Flashpoint. It’s a pretty miserable life and further proof that Barry ruins everything.
The consequences of Flashpoint reverberate throughout the episode with some huge changes. Barry seeks out Felicity Smoak (“Arrow”) for help on his new reality. It turns out Flashpoint has affected Star City – Sarah Diggle is no more, in this reality John Diggle (David Ramsey) has a son – Connor Diggle – which is a nice nod to the continuity of the Connor Diggle we saw taking over for the Green Arrow in “Legends of Tomorrow“.
Seems like Barry screwed up everyone in his life as well: Cisco’s (Carlos Valdes) brother Dante is dead and is no longer the bubbly effervescent personality we’ve come to know. This Cisco is depressed and sombre; attends grief counselling and isn’t naming our metahumans of the week. He’s resentful towards Barry as he refuses to change back the timeline to prevent Dante from being hit by a drunk driver. The relationship between Iris (Candice Patton) and Joe (Jesse L. Martin) remains fractured due to him lying about her mother Francine. It’s unclear if she’s alive in this timeline.
OG Daddy Flash Jay Garrick (John Wesley Shipp) returns when Barry once again tries to reset the timeline by saving Dante. I love that Dawson’s Creek is playing in the diner where they have their heart to heart. This is amazing for several reasons: JWS played Dawson’s dad, Dawson’s Creek originally aired on the network that spawned the CW – the WB; and I really wish they had shown the iconic scene of Dawson Leery’s ugly crying face. The BARRY ALLEN PEP TALK counter goes to 2 for season 3 as OGDF explains to Barry that he can’t use time travel as an out for every problem he faces because he keeps fucking things up. He has to be the hero that owns up to his decisions. “Are you gonna take a do-over every time you make a mistake, or are you going to move forward?“ The parodox of time and the paradox of life. I love seeing John Wesley Shipp on the show, he brings such a different gravity to the show and in his interactions with Barry. They are much better than the ones with Tom Cavanaugh. (Stray observation: why hasn’t a time wraith come for Barry yet? He has reset time at least three times for personal gain in a space of months)
Barry is forced to come clean about Flashpoint but I like that it’s Iris that figures out something is wrong. Iris West’s involvement in season three continues to be prominent. It’s also Iris who brings everyone together and confronts the ethics of Barry’s decision and to forgive him. A huge highlight of this episode is Cisco’s realization that Barry’s selfishness has caused the death of his brother. Carlos Valdes sells the hell out of the scene where you see the full capacity of Cisco’s grief. It’s
The addition of Julian (Tom Felton) is actually quite excellent. It brings the show out of Star Labs and reminds us that Barry Allen has an actual job. Barry and Draco have really good chemistry. Julian is acidic toward Barry and makes a good comedic foil with Cisco being so subdued. We’re so used to seeing people challenge Barry as a superhero but this is the first time we’re seeing him being challenged as a CSI. Barry uses Draco’s intelligence to locate The Rival (this week’s villain, repowered by Dr. Alchemy) because Barry only gets to use his science background once per season other than that he is strictly phone-a-friend. It’s always good to have someone not kiss Barry’s ass, Wally (Keiyan Lionsdale) was like that originally but then drank the Barry kool-aid. The episodes where Wally was just unimpressed with Barry were hilarious. Julian is smart, smarter than Barry, like literally everyone else is.
The Rival makes for a boring villain. He is nawt like Zaddy Zoom. Claris (The Rival) acknowledges that the only speedsters in the Flashpoint timeline were himself and Wally and for a second I thought it was gonna have a plot point where a powerless Wally was in danger in this reality but it’s not even addressed. The Rival and Dr. Alchemy give Barry his biannual ass-kicking throughout Central City. Barry goes full on customer service rep to Dr. Alchemy, “Well, what do you want?”. Alchemy is apparently preparing this world for something ominous. Right as The Rival is about the finish Barry for good, VIBE SHOWS UP and OMG YASSSS Cisco BAE OMG YASSS uses his powers to save Barry. In this reality, Cisco has full control of his abilities and it’s AMAZING. They team-up and it’s very fun. I really hope eventually Cisco is integrated more in this way.
And as the episode closes, we see that Cait has her killer frosty powers in this timeline but no one knows. Julian, still smarter than Barry, gets him to falter and admit that something is up with him. Westallen have another lovely scene on the West’s front porch. “We will always find each other”. They share yet another first kiss as the Westallen theme music swells, it’s in slow motion and it lingers on their faces. It’s perfect (#internalscreamz, I hope this one sticks, stop fucking up the timeline Barry!) and we cut to the epilogue where we see The Rival being murdered by Dr. Alchemy in Iron Heights. I guess he won’t be in Rush Hour 4 either.
Stray Observations: I love the girl’s wardrobe this season. Iris and Cait look great. In a way, the entire episode felt like a pilot because so many small details have changed and it’s a good way to improve upon the same premise after seeing what has and has not worked. I enjoyed this episode a lot, more so for the character development. The villains of the week were not impressive.
Up next: The return of Harrison Wells and newly minted speedster: Jesse Quick
Also apologies these entries are so belated! Work and life have had me busy. Thank you to everyone who has liked the Facebook page,. followed on Twitter and read any of my posts. It’s a real thrill to read the stats everyday and see all the parts of the world where my words reach. It’s surreal and a dream come true. Thank you.