Warning: Spoiler Alert
Right out of the gate we are reminded that while we enjoy shows like The Flash and Arrow, it’s still a CW production. The opening scene is a voice-over of Iris blogging. The writing is juvenile. I’m not claiming to be anything spectacular, but sometimes the writing reverts back to something intended for the Twilight crowd. The immaturity of the concept is really starting to irritate. Iris’ sole motivation is the idea that everyone needs to know that The Streak (Flash) exists. Really? So blind journalistic idealism combined with a naivety about the vastness of the internet and just how inconsequential a little blog about a superhuman man really is. Talk about not even a drop in the bucket. “Everyone needs to know you exist”. (In my worst Jerry Seinfeld voice) What’s the deal with reporters and thinking everybody needs to know everything? No we don’t. Ignorance is bliss. Get the memo.
This week’s big bad looks very similar to Colossus of the X-Men, but that’s a different product altogether. Either I’m missing a major detail in the DC Comic book lore, or they are trying their hardest to create Colossus in the DC universe. A fight ensues and Barry loses, but he is able to escape to Star Labs before passing out. When he explained what happened to the team, Harrison said something that can’t possibly be what it sounded like he meant. There is no earthly way, or Kryptonian for that matter, that he means what it sounds like he means.
Harrison Wells: Interesting…A man of ‘steel’
Our big bad, is at the very least a former bully to Barry, which should make this very interesting if not gratifying. Side note, and I’m sure it’s the desired effect, I am like three or four episodes on this current track of wishing the show runners would just kill off Iris. Which would be catastrophic to the long-term story line.
Joe West shows up with a folder at Star Labs. He’s not there to see Barry. He’s there to ask Wells for some help on an old case. Based on Wells’ reaction, he knows exactly which case. The murder of Barry’s mother. Joe outlines his theory that boils down to, could there have been a person with Barry’s powers that predates the particle accelerator accident? Wells has a terrible poker face. He gives a retort about dealing in probabilities and that Joe’s theory is ‘highly unlikely’.
They find the stolen vehicle ‘colossus’ boosted when Thawne comes in on Barry about how he has been acting around Iris (again). He claims there was a fight and that Thawne is not exactly the person he’d like to share that with. To which Thawne replies a cheesy bit about good friends being hard to find.
Thawne and Barry go to question the guys that work at a local micro brewery. One guy notices the picture of Tony (Colossus). He runs. Barry let’s Thawne pursue, then races ahead to cut the perp off. The perp slugs Barry in the face but is enough of a stall to allow Thawne to take him down. As it turns out this Tony fell into a vat of molten metal scraps. So at least he isn’t some lazy attempt to make Colossus. I’ll refer to him as Tony going forward. And just before the break, Tony walks into the coffee shop and greets Iris. Bum-bum-bum… This is about the juncture in the story where our hero is about to learn the hard way that loved ones are targets for his enemies.
Iris posted a message on her blog intended specifically for The Streak. Which of course Caitlin discovered and had sort of motherly disapproving reaction to. I know this is a commonly used device, the woman left in the dark becomes almost an informant or source of leads for the hero. I hope this doesn’t last too long. Regardless, Barry does exactly what Barry should not do. He runs to the other side of town where he believes Tony is. And of course Tony gets the drop on him.
Barry gets a large shelf dropped on him, but all things considered not a big deal. Then Wells and Cisco come up with an idea that involves Barry running from 5.3 miles away in order reach Mach 1.1 at just the right angle, and it could potentially do “some serious damage”.
Joe and Harrison are out having a drink, that alone should trip your sensors. Now clearly Joe is making some headway at least conceptually. He’s just barking up the wrong tree. The moment he asked when Harrison moved to town coming off the ‘another particle accelerator’ theory, Harrison knew this was not a friendly collaboration, but a friendly interrogation. Before leaving, Harrison did drop the name Tess Morgan.
Iris is at home blogging again, seriously this woman needs to stopped, when her police detail outside the house is ‘dismantled’. Barry and Thawne are sparring upstairs in Barry’s lab. Thawne has taken to being more social with Barry once he concluded that Barry is not a threat. A police officer interrupts them to inform them that the detail has been attacked and Iris is missing. Barry runs downstairs (at a normal human pace). Joe walks meets him at the base of the stairs. Based on his disposition, Joe has no idea what has happened.
Well that’s original, Tony took Iris back to the school they attended. Why? to relive the bully high. He thinks the killed “the Streak”. And his motivation for abducting Iris and causing all of this trouble is to force her to write about him instead. So short-sighted. Why are all the bad guys either way too short-sighted or way too big picture?
At the precinct there is a response to a fire alarm at the elementary school. With Joe concerned that Tony will kill her if he comes to it, he tells Barry to “go”. Once there, Tony decides this is a great opportunity to wage the ‘battle of a lifetime’. In the beginning Barry is using his speed and strategy to gain the upper hand. And it works. Until he grabs a flag pole. Which is made of metal. Then he flashes back to when Joe told him as a kid that if you’re up against someone you can’t beat it’s OK to turn and run the other way. Which he does. To Caitlin and Cisco’s relief.
He didn’t run away. He ran a certain distance away. How far you ask? Predictably 5.3 miles away. I have no access into their writers room. I don’t know what’s going to happen. However, with everything that’s happened from episode one until now, there was always one thing that needed to happen. Right now, he is Barry Allen, a guy with the power to run faster than any other living thing. At some point, for lack of better options, he became The Streak. And even if this sounds like a given, something we just assumed already happened, Barry needs to become The Flash. Which he has not done yet.
Barry runs and runs hard. So hard in fact that the little electric surges that happen around his arms and legs are now seen in his eyes. He runs fast enough that all the windows in all of the buildings and cars he runs past, explode with is passing. When he busts through the doors to the school, he is no longer vertical. He’s actually moving horizontal, something new.
Cisco: SUPER-SONIC PUNCH BABY!
Tony wakes up in Meta-Human lock up. With Barry lurking in the shadows. Then Barry delivers a lovely, cheesy speech about using his powers for good while Tony chose to use them to hurt people. On the other side of the building, Joe addresses Wells again. He brings a gift to make up for his accusations. Tess Morgan was Wells’ wife who died in a car accident in Maryland (so we’re using real cities that actually exist in reality now?) around the time Barry’s mother was murdered. I feel a dark Harrison Wells close coming. And are we not going to get a ‘Joe guilt trips Iris into giving up the blog’ moment?
We do get a Joe West moment, but not the one mentioned above. Joe is at home working on the case of Barry’s mother’s murder when the lights go out. Wind everywhere, as if Barry himself was running around the room. In the dark blur, Joe can see a man vaguely standing across from him. This man looks creepily like Barry Allen in costume, but only if the colors were reversed. A Flash like suit, predominantly yellow with red trim. When the event ends, all of Joe’s paperwork is gone. And Joe stares at a picture of Iris that has been pinned to the wall with a large kitchen knife just above it is carved, “stop or else”. The point of the knife is in Iris’ throat. And that’s where I’ll leave it.