After three weeks away, our favorite lightning speed superhero, Barry Allen, was back on our TV screens last night. The gang returned in what was pumped up to be the most impressive episode yet. It was indeed full of twists, turns and revelations we might not have expected…
Date Night and Love Advice
Barry continues his pursuit of sports reporter Linda, and is again taking her out on a date. Barry’s plan for a night out is kept casual as it involves one of his favorite pastimes, bowling. Her reaction is one of surprise, but that isn’t the biggest surprise of their night – unexpectedly, the couple runs into Iris and Eddie. Given Barry’s flabbergasted expression, Eddie and Iris are the last people he expected to encounter. As it would happen, bowling is something Iris and Barry share a love of, which makes things more than a little awkward for Linda and Eddie.
This serendipitous evening stirs up insecure feelings in both couple’s relationships. The following day, Eddie is distant with Iris, telling her, “I didn’t like the way I felt watching you and Barry last night.” Something changed between them, he continues, which makes Iris defensive. Later on, the two women also run into each other at work keeping things tense between everyone. Iris tries to apologize, only Linda isn’t hearing any of it. Kudos to her, she lets Iris have it. Earlier in the season, when Linda discovered Barry’s secret, Linda was assured Iris did not return Barry’s feelings. Their unintentional double date tells Linda a different story – Iris does love Barry. It would seem everyone but Iris believes her to be in love with Barry.
While on their way to lunch, Barry takes the opportunity to ask Joe for his advice about his feelings for Iris. Things have changed between them since Barry confessed his feelings for her. But the rain that is pouring down proves a distraction and the answers Barry is looking for never come…
One Year Earlier and Mardon’s Plan
Before all of the romantic tension, the episode actually opens one year earlier. In a shootout with an armed suspect, we flash back to the night Joe watches his partner take a bullet and die. Present day shows a frightened coroner being confronted by a man who has meta-human powers, a man who is looking for the identity of the person who murdered his brother: Clyde Mardon. This event brings The Flash to the morgue, only he’s too late. On his way to the morgue, Barry is faced with his own mirror self – or the appearance of that, running alongside himself. As the forensic scientist, Barry Allen deduces that the substance surrounding the coroner’s body is ice, specifically something like hail.
The state of the art recording system installed in the offices betrays the killer’s identity: it’s Mark Mardon, brother of Clyde and he’s got it in for Detective West. Because he was the man piloting the plane the night his brother shot Joe’s partner, the particle accelerator gave Mark a set of powers, though as Barry observes, they appear more “precise.”
Back at the lab, the gang again uses their minds to piece together scenarios in which they can take down Mardon and run background searches on him. Later on, when Barry and Joe are returning from lunch (and Barry’s conversation with Joe is interrupted), Mardon finds them and makes his first pass at Joe’s life. His plans are thwarted though in his attempt when a lightning storm hits their car. Fortunately, Barry’s quick reflexes anticipate the risk and he gets Joe out of the car before it blows to pieces.
Back at the station, Captain Singh confines Joe to the station until the man gunning for him is caught. Naturally, Joe is argumentative about this and the situation reverses. This time Barry has to talk some sense into his foster father. Joe agrees for the time being to play by the rules and accepts a device Cisco worked up that is intended to be used as a weapon against Mardon.
During the last episode “Fallout,” Iris was approached with a proposition that would mean spying on her friends. This week, that storyline continues. At the newspaper office, Iris is back to writing about The Flash in her role as a reporter. Mason Bridge – the man who by default was chosen to “mentor” Iris – hands her a file containing information about Wells. There is still a missing recluse by the name of Simon Stagg and here’s where Mason’s hunch comes into play. In the file there is photographic evidence Wells was at Stagg’s office the night of the disappearance. Iris doesn’t know what to think (this is Barry’s mentor, after all), but she is again expected to use her influence and contacts to get the story.
This inspires Iris to do the next logical thing: she meets with Barry in an attempt to try and get his story on Wells. She asks him specifics about Wells, but Barry instead defends his mentor’s qualities.
Immediately after Cisco leaves Joe with his weapon and a warning to keep it close, Mardon breaks into the police station. A kind of standoff takes shape as the two of them exchange words, right before Mardon begins to unleash his fury by drawing upon his meter-human powers. Luckily, Barry shows up in time to temporarily strip Mardon of his powers, using Cisco’s device and ensuring Joe’s safety, but not before Mardon injuries Singh.
At the hospital, they learn Captain Singh might never walk again. Feeling responsible, Joe acts on instinct – Singh did take the hit for Joe. Against Barry’s advice, he leaves to search for Mardon. Barry tries to find Iris at her work place and runs into her co-worker, Mason. He takes the opportunity to tell Barry he believes Wells killed Stagg. His opinion of Wells is that he’s a liar and psychopath. He has evidence to back up his claims – evidence that will run in Sunday’s paper.
Meanwhile, Joe is searching all of the usual places Mardon used to hang out. It’s at one of those old apartments that Eddie meets up with Joe, insisting on helping his partner. But their searching of the place doesn’t last long when Joe is sucked out the window by Mardon’s power. It would seem Mardon has big plans for Joe: he isolates Joe on a fishing boat where he is handcuffed with a badly broken leg.
Back at their house, Barry finds Iris who is worried about her dad not being able to get him on his cell. Not knowing the danger her father is in (Barry and Joe kept everything from her), Iris quizzes Barry on his relationship with Linda. She doesn’t think Linda is the right one for him. Rightfully so, Barry shakes his head and quizzically asks her, “then who is?”
The Climax: a Death and Back to the Beginning
Throughout the episode, Caitlin seems an afterthought. Perhaps because she just had a heavy-centric story, but Cisco gets a lot of important screen time. He begins to suspect Wells is guilty of something. He uses what he knows best, science to back up those suspicions and finds out that something doesn’t add up about the night the Man in the Yellow Suit escaped. He asks Caitlin to keep Wells occupied the following morning so he can run a series of tests to discover what it is Wells is hiding. This results in him being able to retrieve a recording of the night they had the yellow-suited man in custody.
Returning to the fishing boat and Joe’s captor, Joe asks Mardon why he doesn’t just get his “eye for an eye” revenge. Mardon replies he wants more than that. At the station, Eddie gives a rousing speech inspiring everyone to scour the city until Joe is found. But Mardon makes his move first: he places a call to Iris, giving her a time and place with a sinister threat not to call the police.
At the coffee shop, Caitlin is nervously delaying Wells from the lab. After as much stalling as she can manage, while she gets their tea to go, Wells disappears and his wheelchair is left behind. He returns to the lab where he finds Cisco is re-watching the video of the Man in the Yellow Suit confronting everyone. With tears in his eyes, Cisco asks Wells why he has done this. He reveals himself to be who Joe expected and shows Cisco that he can be more than one person at a time because of a “speed mirage.” He is the Reverse Flash. Wells admits to killing Nora Allen, but it was actually Barry who was his intended victim all those years ago.
“The Flash and The Flash’s speed, is the key to returning to my world and to my time and no one is going to prevent that from happening,” says Wells. Cisco wants to help Wells, but he won’t hear of anything standing in his way. He tells Cisco he’s grown quite fond of him because he’s shown him what it’s been like to have a son. This is right before he plunges his hand into Cisco’s heart, killing him and asking him to “forgive him.”
A Romantic Moment
For anyone who is an Iris and Barry fan, there was a sweet romantic moment between them. Or was there?
Rushing to the place Joe is being held (as directed by Mardon), Barry and Iris eventually make it, but not before Linda sees Barry putting Iris ahead of her. Again. Then Iris makes a confession.
“Listen to me. Ever since the night that you told me how you felt, I have not been able to stop thinking about you. At first I was really mad, and then I realized that the reason I couldn’t stop thinking about you was because I didn’t want to.”
In return, Barry smiles and says, “I’ve never stopped thinking about you.”
They then kiss. As the episode draws to a dramatic close, Barry asks Caitlin what he needs to do to stop the tsunami Mardon is creating. Turns out, Barry would need to run very – very, fast to have any chance of stopping it. Caitlin doesn’t know that he can run that fast. Before he steps into the role of his alter ego, he apologies to Iris, “I didn’t want you to find out this way.” Then he starts running. He gives it his all and begins to run up and down the shoreline. During his speed racing, Barry again seems his mirror self running side-by-side with him. He returns to the night of the morgue break-up. It would seem Barry has seen the future.
- Wells has the same last name as Detective Eddie Thawne and he tells Cisco Eddie is a distant relative. Could this be a bigger story that comes into play later on in the season? Or perhaps this might play into future seasons?
- Barry has seen the future and given next week’s promotional video, it would seem he feels like by taking that journey, he has affected the future. What do you think this means for The Flash? Is this going to change what the future looks like or will The Flash be able to stop some of these events from happening?
- What did you think about Iris and Barry’s kiss and illusion of the future? Do you think they have a relationship in the near future?
What did you think of this episode? I thought it was fantastic! A great way to return after being gone for three weeks. The show is certainly upping it’s jaw-dropping elements. Join me again next week for a new recap of The Flash.
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