The Flash: 3×05 – Monster

Supporting players get a chance to shine this week as Caitlin explores her nascent powers and Julian Arnold gets a backstory.

One of the problems of The Flash has been finding a compelling villain. This week’s “Monster” is a filler villain of the week and also coincidentally Barry battles a monster on the week of Halloween.

NO SCRUBS | Barry is still a scrub, mooching off of Cisco because he “doesn’t have time” to find a new apartment. Sure Jan. Can we appreciate that Cisco has ten bottles of hot sauce above his stove though?

MY FATHER CAPTAIN WILL HEAR ABOUT THIS| We get some insight into Julian Arnold this week. Tom Felton is such a great addition to this cast. A lot of the show is spent in the STAR Labs set and I like that Julian brings a bit of reality to the show, like finally someone challenges that Barry is absent from work for long periods of time and reports him to Captain Singh. Julian brings out the scientist side of Barry, which is too often overshadowed by all the brainiacs of Star Labs which makes Barry stupider to make them smarter. Remember when Barry was Beautiful Mind-ing it in the pilot?

Julian has military training and is taking over for Patty Spivot in just shooting at everyone and anyone. Turns out Julian comes from lots of money which he turned his back on to help people. He doesn’t hate metas, just that they squander their extraordinary abilities. Barry and Julian make up by the end of the episode and go on their first date. #Barrian

VILLAIN OF THE WEEK | It was actually a hologram made by a bullied kid. Lol. Points to Barry who made the connection with the transformers to realize this. Three times as many points to Julian, who without the fancy tech of Star Labs actually figured out where the position of the hologram came from. Is he smarter than Cisco?

TOM CAVANAGH GETS HIS PAYCHECK | Harrison Wells of Earth-19, or H.R., is added to the show because, Tom C. gotta get paid. He is actually a novelist, does trust games, is useless, walks around with drumsticks (?), has no comedic resonance with Cisco and is apparently a “muse” on his earth or the lamest version of Steve Jobs. They decide to let him stay because again, Tom C. gotta get paid. This subplot is useless and brings no value to anything but is best summarized as:

KILLER FROST | Cait is actually super powerful, despite her powers being nascent to her. I don’t understand why Cait is keeping it a secret when so many people in her life are metas. She goes to her mother Dr. Tanhauser , an expert in cryogenics to help understand her new powers. Some familial backstory on Caitlin: her father died despite her mother’s great efforts to save him, Ronnie is dead in this timeline also and Cait and her mother have a very strained relationship. With the Flashpoint reset, I’m a bit disappointed they didn’t maximize the death of Ronnie dying, I have always felt like that should have been part of the trigger for her to spiral into Killer Frost.

Turns out the more Cait uses her powers, the more irreversible they become. When an assistant at her mother’s lab tries to violate her as a lab rat, Cait fucks his shit up which is pretty bad ass.

The show is gradually developing the emotional arc of Cait becoming a meta which is interesting because it seems as though she can’t control hers at all and there are real stakes when her abilities go haywire in a different way to Cisco or Barry.

I am super into Cait’s bobby pin look btw, I think I’m gonna recreate it tbh!

Stray Observations:

  • There was a lot of random pop music in the score this week, I did appreciate them using Blake Neely’s “The Scientist” cue when Barry asks Julian to mentor him. Comedic and very season 1.
  • Who is The Flash on Earth 19?
  • Predictions: Julian comes from money, I bet he dies and leaves Barry and Star Labs all his wealth to continue the fight in season 4 because how are they running these operations? with what money? it’s not like they’re Oliver Queen and are actual billionaires. Either that or he becomes a vigilante because money plus military training equals vigilante

GRADE: C

Next: It appears Dr. Alchemy has set his sights on ressurecting Kid Flash and Iris is nawt havin’ it.

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When Wally starts having dreams about being Kid Flash, Barry realizes he has to tell Wally, Iris and Joe about what happened to Wally in Flashpoint in order to keep him safe: check out the promo for Shade, the next episode of The Flash set to return on November 15th

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