The Flash 3×11 – Dead or Alive

neetz talks tv, the flash

New intro! Barry is all about saving Iris as we kick off Season 3B.

VIBE | The A Story: Cisco gets a taste of what his powers can evolve too when Gypsy, a collector from Earth 19, turns up to take HR back. In a strange twist of timing, considering the last 11 days, HR is being sentenced to death for defying a travel ban between Earths. The only way to save him is “trial by combat”. Cisco shows some traditional sass in his flirtations with Gypsy, I guess he got over Golden Glider.He just wants to negotiate over HR’s impending death with some coffee and food by that Thai place across the street.

The Vibe training montage is long overdue because Cisco’s powers are a formidable asset to the team. Barry and HR are not impressed and their plan to take on Gypsy themselves backfires when Gypsy takes HR as collateral until the duel with Cisco.

 

THE DUEL | Cisco turns it out in the eventual duel. It’s a great scene that takes them to Earth-2 and Kara’s Earth-39 for a dust up in Kat Grant’s office. It’s the apt observation from Julian that eventually leads to Cisco besting Gypsy with his abilities. Cisco spares her life and the caveat being that HR can never return to Earth 19.

 

YASS IRIS | Iris is shown doing actual journalism. Actual contribution to the team. And getting an entire season arc around her character. And not relegated to damsel in distress status either, Iris wants to make the most out of the possibly four months of her life left. Everyone tries to dissuade her from looking for trouble but Iris isn’t having it and recruits Wally to help her. Iris distracts Joe while Wally speedily takes pictures of the investigative files on his desk. Candice Patton gets a chance to show off comedic timing in the conversation distracting Joe. I’d like to see this element developed in the future because Wally/Iris make a compelling team.

Iris’ eventual breakdown to Barry is that her biggest fear is that she won’t leave her mark in the world like her mother. Iris wants to leave a legacy in the short time she may have left. It’s a short scene but it’s touching and effective. The payoff for Iris and Wally’s team-up is also shown where we see Iris showing Barry the completed article lauding her brother. His love and pride for her is on full display. It’s great. It’s how a normal couple acts.

It’s development of their relationship and it heightens the stakes and gets the audience invested in Iris as the team tries to save her life. One flaw of the past episodes where Barry was trapped in the Speedforce fell a bit flat because we never really saw them interact as a couple doing normal couple things. As the season progresses, the evolution of their relationship and Iris West as a whole is on a good track for rounding out her character to make for an exciting season finale showdown with Savitar.

JULIAN YAS | Tom Felton also shows off excellent comedic timing, bringing the lighter flair that they’re taken from Cisco this season. He’s also another genius character made to dilute Barry being smart himself. I like Julian being a part of Team Flash but it’s a catch 22 because now the show has reverted to having way too many scenes in Star Labs again and there is less focus on CCPD.

KID FLASH | Barry adorably lets Wally shine as Kid Flash with a group of cheerleaders.

 

Adding to his subplot with Iris and FINALLY THEY LET THIS KID LIVE.Throughout the episode, the task of increasing Barry’s speed in four months doesn’t track with his growth thus far, as Julian points out graphically. Barry finally connects the dots as he realizes Wally’s meteoric rise in increasing his abilities could be the answer. The episode closes with Barry telling Wally he won’t save Iris from Savitar – Wally will have the task of saving his sister.

Grade: A
Despite being a mostly filler episode, all players get fair screen time and meaningful development: Cisco develops his powers, Iris uses her journalism and ain’t no damsel, Wally gets numerous times to shine, Barry didn’t need any pep talks, Julian brought a needed element of levity to the team. The episode was FUN. No brooding and mooding. MVP performances all around.

 

Next:

 

 

The Flash 3×12 “Untouchable” – THE TOUCH OF DEATH – Barry (Grant Gustin) and the team at S.T.A.R. Labs work together to bring down Clive Yorkin (guest star Matthew Kevin Anderson), a criminal meta-human who is methodically killing people by causing them to decompose at an accelerated rate. Joe (Jesse L. Martin) becomes his next target but it’s Iris (Candice Patton) who is caught in the crossfire. The Flash mentors Kid Flash (Keiynan Lonsdale) and begins to elevate the newer speedster’s training to another level. Rob Hardy directed the episode written by Brooke Roberts & Judalina Neira (312). Original airdate 2/7/2017

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