Warning: Spoiler Alert
Starting out tonight, we get a closer look at what happened that night 15 years ago. This time in relative slow motion as the details revealed what we already knew. Adult Barry Allen was in fact the one fighting the Reverse Flash. Back from the flashback, Joe and Barry look over what they know about Wells. Which, is not a lot. One thing is clear. If Wells does have a plan, he’s been patient. Barry will have to be just a freakishly patient.
Above a city park, onlookers see packages carried by individual parachutes slowly fall to the ground. Once they do, they explode. Then we see a cam video of complete winner who calls himself the Trickster. Only problem is the real Trickster is currently serving multiple life sentences in Iron Heights.
Flashback. After the fight in Barry’s house seems to end with young Barry safely outside, the camera follows the Reverse Flash. Many blocks away, he begins to lose speed and crashes to the ground. The fight with The Flash completely depleted his speed ability. Wells was then stuck there 15 years ago, forced to get back to present day the old-fashioned way. One day at a time. The Reverse Flash yells out from his knelt position, then removes his mask to reveal a face that looks nothing like Harrison Wells.
Barry and Joe travel to Iron Heights to visit the original Trickster. He’s given the Hannibal Lecter treatment. Isolated, nowhere near genpop. They explain the situation and show him photographs. When asked if he knew the identity of this Trickster copycat, he looks up and says:
Trickster: If I did, I would tell you. So you could find him, cut off his head and throw it right in his face!
The Trickster believes this copycat must have found his ‘lair’, so that’s where Barry and Joe go. Inside they find what looks like a costume shop that has been closed for 20 years. Barry finds a large set of metal double doors. He jars them loose. They’ve been boobie trapped. After Barry removes himself and Joe from the blast radius of the explosion behind the doors, they realize the copycat has taken everything. The room is completely cleaned out.
The primary stolen item is a bomb big enough to completely wipe out Central City. They take this news back to Star Labs. For the second time now, Barry sends a vague cheap shot meant for Wells. Considering Barry’s new suspicion that Wells is up to something. Wells asks for a word in private. Wells tries to suggest that Barry’s new-found attitude must be from seeing his Father in prison, again. Barry plays along until he gets a message to meet Iris, and graciously leaves.
Flashback. An only slightly younger Harrison Wells sits on the beach with Tess Morgan, outlining what he wants to do with his lab designs. She ultimately names is Star Labs. In the far off distance a man watches them. The same man who pulled off the Reverse Flash’ mask after the fight in the Allen residence 15 years ago.
While Iris bothers Barry about the Mason Bridge disappearance, he gets a call from Cisco. The Trickster is broadcasting again. The bomb is between two streets somewhere in Central City. Barry scours that area and finds nothing. Wells believes the threat of the bomb is a decoy to keep he and the authorities busy. Barry ignores Wells and eventually finds the box. Inside, there is nothing.
Your first instinct is usually the correct one. I had a feeling in the first few minutes that the original Trickster may have been in league with this new copycat. Barry calls Joe to give him the head’s up, but it’s too late. They’re watching surveillance footage. The two Tricksters escaped. And it gets worse. They took a hostage. Henry Allen.
At their new lair, we find Henry Allen tied to a chair and the young Trickster just smitten with the presence of the original Trickster. Questions about what happens next leads to the big question of “why choose me” comes up. I’m telegraphing this one on purpose. The old Trickster tells the young one that he had the strength to carry out his legacy. It was in his blood. Then the older Trickster leans in and says exactly what you are praying he won’t.
Mark Hamill’s Trickster: The real reason I tracked you down and groomed you to be the best you could possibly be Axle, I-AM-YOUR-FATHER.
Flashback. Wells and Tess drive home. The strange man lurks behind the trees. Wells drives over a nail strip intended to cause an accident. The vehicle flips repeatedly. Tess is unresponsive. The man walks up slowly. Despite Wells’ cries for help, the man does nothing, except to say, “The woman has been dead for centuries”.
Joe ventures down to the prison portion of Star Labs where Barry sits alone with nothing but his thoughts. Barry can’t fathom leaving the fate of his father in the hands of a man who potentially had something to do with the death of his mother. Joe tries to talk him off the ledge, so to speak.
Iris attends a political event and takes a glass of champagne from one of the waiters. That particular waiter and his colleague are in fact the original Trickster and son Trickster respectively. The ‘trick’ here is that they’ve all ingested a specific poison. Transfer of funds from their bank accounts into the account printed on the underside of the champagne glass and they get the antidote. If they don’t, they will die within the hour. Iris is able to call Joe so that he can hear the Trickster. Cisco triangulates her phone and Barry takes off.
Barry removes the elder Trickster from City Hall and demands to know where Henry Allen is. Not so coincidentally, Iris is within earshot. That might come back later. They attach a bomb like device to Barry’s left wrist. He must maintain 600 mph or like in the movie Speed, the bomb will go off. While running, Wells tells Barry of theory. If we operate under the premise that Wells is the Reverse Flash, this would be speaking from first hand knowledge. If Barry runs fast enough into a wall, he will move through the wall leaving the bomb behind. Which works like a charm. His cells became one with the air, allowing him to not only run through the wall but through an entire gas truck.
Barry races back to City Hall and administers the antidote. Then again, demands to know where Henry Allen is. He runs there, pulls his Dad out bypassing all the little boobie traps. The Flash stands before Henry Allen. A smile creeps in over Henry’s face as Barry removes his mask. Eventually, Henry stands in the control center of Star Labs and is blown away by the science of today.
As Henry leaves with Joe (sans handcuffs), Wells tells Barry that he’s lucky to have such a wonderful man as his father. Barry does a good job selling his response. “I’m lucky to have you too”. Barry turns to walk away and the fury is visible in his face.
Flashback. Wells pulls himself out of the wrecked car. The strange man identifies himself as Eobard Thawne (which makes a little more sense as this guy looks a lot more like Eddie Thawne than Harrison Wells ever could). As it turns out, Harrison Wells was a good guy. Thawne stuck a device in Wells’ chest and the other end into his own. Then transferred Wells’ likeness and dare I say essence into his own body as it destroyed Wells. Wells is Thawne, but not in the way we may have thought. In a much more direct and permanent way.
Joe calls Eddie in late that night. He sits Eddie down and tells him Iris cannot look into the Mason Bridge disappearance. Then The Flash arrives. Then takes off his mask. I know this sounds like a nice moment. The comic book story moment went the hero reveals himself to the right people in order to create his network of good. One major problem. Back before Barry screwed with the space/time continuum, Wells revealed his name (Eobart Thawne) to Cisco. Then suggested that Eddie is a ‘distant relative’. This may have short-term benefits, but long-term chaos.
Eddie informs Iris that Mason ‘moved to Brazil’. When she left for the kitchen, the three men (Joe, Eddie and Barry) speak about what’s next. Then Barry recalls the manner in which Wells spoke about how to run, not fast but the actual nuances of what it would feel like when he becomes one with the air molecules was as if he was speaking from experience.
Barry: I don’t know how, but I think he’s the man in yellow. Harrison Wells is the Reverse Flash.