The Flash: Round One Goes To Zoom

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Episode recaps

Photo Courtesy Of Dean Buscher/The CW

Warning: Spoiler Alert

Turns out that Jay Garrick’s assessment was unfortunately spot on that Earth-Prime’s version of “The Flash,” had not prepared enough to take on the evil speedster from Earth-Two Zoom. Just how badly did the demon whose wreaked havoc on Earth-Two for the past two-years defeat Barry Allen? Try picturing a contest between a pile-drive and a stake with Flash in the role of the stake, as Allen was fortunate to escape with his life. Battered and broken the Scarlet Speedster held serious doubts whether he’d be able to resume his crime-fighting career. At the very least will have to go through some major physical-therapy and rehab to once again be fastest man on Earth-Prime.

Perhaps I watch too many action-adventure oriented series, but when a show begins with an action sequence in which it appears our hero’s in dire-straights, followed by a graphic that informs us we’re going to jump back to 72-hours-earlier, you’ve tipped your hand that the scene’s phony. This hackneyed device seems to be employed on an almost weekly basis by some series during the Prime-Time schedule and should be retired for the foreseeable future.

The action started out with Earth-Two villain Doctor Light zapping Flash with three bolts of energy and he hits the concrete apparently unconscious. She rips the lightning-bolt emblem off his chest and laughs haughtily saying Zoom never loses. Then we see the graphic telling us we’re heading back three-days before this battle took place. Considering Flash defeated Doctor Light in the previous episode and locked her in a cage for Meta-Human prisoners at STAR Labs, immediately got me questioning the legitimacy of the previous scene. However we’ll return to that point in a bit.

The Flash’s questioning the Linda Park of Earth-Two about Zoom and why she attempted to kill her Earth-Prime double in the previous chapter. She said she hoped that Zoom would find her Doppelganger’s corpse and conclude she died in a battle against Flash and she could live a carefree life here on Earth-Prime. The protector of Central City tells her that as long as Zoom’s on the loose she’ll never be free and tells her that he can defeat him with her help.

He asks her how she was supposed to contact him and she replies she’d been told to take his emblem and throw it through the breach. Zoom would show up on our side of the black-hole shortly after and take her back to her home. Flash asks her to team up with him and trick Zoom into thinking she was victorious, then they’d defeat him when he walked through the breach. After telling him that he can’t stop Zoom she reluctantly agrees to go along with the plan.

Barry meets with Team-Flash and Wells and tells them about his plan and Caitlin asks him how he expects to defeat Zoom if he encounters him. Wells says that he’s worked out a formula on his planet that can dampen Zoom’s powers and leave him vulnerable for attack. He suggests that Cisco creates a weapon that can project a dart containing the formula. Caitlin says that Zoom’s supposed to be faster and more powerful than Barry and Allen can catch bullets, how does Wells expect to strike Zoom with the dart. The scientist says they’ll use the element of surprise and shoot the projectiles at him when he emerges from the breach. Detective Joe West says they need a plan and it sounds as viable as anything he’s thought of.

Wells and Allen take off in separate directions and Joe gathers Caitlin and Cisco to talk privately. Snow asks West if he’s just discounted everything Jay Garrick told him and believes Wells is right? The detective smiles and says Hell no, he’s wary of him and just wants to give him enough rope to hang himself. He then looks at Ramon and tells him Barry told him that Cisco can do something with his mind and Snow says vibe. Joe asks Cisco if he can use it on Wells and he says he can try.

Wells starts making the compound in one of the labs and as he works he has a flashback to STAR Labs on Earth-Two as he berates one of his scientists on the phone. With sarcasm dripping from his voice he asks the person on the other end to do him a favor. Since that person’s incapable of doing the job they got hired for, find Wells someone who can do the job and slams down the phone.

Jesse Wells, the scientist’s daughter entered his office while he was still on the phone and she says she still has troubles reconciling the fact that he adopts a far stricter persona at STAR Labs than the laid-back Dad she knows from home. Harrison says her mother’s always  had the same reaction then asks her why she’s not  in school. Jesse smiles and says she graduated high-school at 15 and her first course at Central City University doesn’t start for another two-hours.

We soon realize that this conversation’s taking place shortly after Wells held his press-conference announcing STAR Labs new app, that got interrupted when Jay Garrick appeared and accused Wells of being responsible for all the Meta-Humans. Jesse asks her father if what Flash said was indeed fact and he responded that Garrick’s far faster at throwing groundless accusations than when he’s chasing criminals. Jesse takes Flash’s side saying Garrick’s a hero and only has Central City’s best interests at heart.

Perhaps Wells’ ego gets the best of him but he admits to his daughter that he’s responsible for the Meta-Humans and starts sounding like he’s bragging. Her father’s admission doesn’t sit well with Jessie and she says she’s leaving, Wells says she should probably head for school and she replies she’d already received quite an education that morning.

Doctor Light derives her powers from the stars, which gives her the ability to emit energy beams but also enables to control the light spectrum which she utilizes to escape from STAR-Labs. Cisco walks by her cell to find Doctor Light’s vanished with only her visor costume and boots remaining. Reacting to the panic that suddenly grips him he opens the cell and soon realizes that Park made herself invisible, she’s hacked the security system and Doctor Light has left the building.

Team-Flash momentarily believes there plan’s gone with Doctor Light until Caitlin suggests that Barry ask Linda Park if she’d like to help. Allen says that she’s staying with Iris at Joe’s house and he’ll talk to Iris and have her broach the subject with Linda. Joe asks Barry if they can talk privately for a moment and he tells his surrogate son that perhaps it was a blessing in disguise that Doctor Light escaped  and it was a message to them that the time’s not right for him to take on Zoom.

Joe asks him how much of Allen’s motivation comes from defeating Zoom rather than him still trying to defeat the Reverse-Flash. Barry says he already defeated him and West says that Allen’s the first one to say that Eddie took out the Reverse-Flash by shooting himself to death and preventing his descendent from being born. He says that Barry’s dealing with a guy that’s got the same face as the man that murdered his mother. He tells Allen he’s got to figure out his true motivation before he challenges Zoom.

Cisco approaches Wells while he’s working on the compound and tells Harrison he’s really impressed with the equation Wells worked out and slaps him on the shoulder and says congratulations. He then closes his eyes and attempts to see inside the scientist, but Wells rises from his stool and asks Ramon what he’s doing? Cisco says it’s called congratulations and Harrison’s face and voice become as cold as ice. He asks Cisco what he vibed from him and when Ramon responds nothing he asks him once again. He tells Ramon that if he’s got a question ask him and not to touch him again. As he walks away Caitlin tells Cisco he’s got to attempt it again.

Harrison has another flashback as he’s sitting in his office at STAR Labs on Earth-Two watching the news on TV as he works on a projectile gun. In a wink to their sister-series Arrow, the newscaster reports that Robert Queen’s been identified as the man known as the Arrow. Queen was believed dead in a boating accident in the South Seas. The newscaster then says that reports are coming in that there’s a Meta-Human attack taking place in the science building of Central  City University. Wells calls Jessie gets her voice-mail and starts to leave a message when he glances back at the screen and sees a live shot from the school that’s focused on Jessie’s cellphone. It’s lying on the grass with the lens cracked and Wells picture appearing as the caller-ID reads Dad.

Iris brings Linda to STAR Labs and Park says that Joe told her to stay in their house and not to leave. Iris smiles and replies then something came up and Linda’s shocked to see the Flash standing in front of her and even more taken aback when he asks for her help.

Cisco’s rigged up a pair of gloves that will mimic the energy bolts that Doctor Light projects and Ramon stresses that these gloves pack a jolt but that Barry’s suit will easily absorb it. Then Linda undergoes her training regimen and quickly shows she’s far from a natural. She improves by the end of the training session to not totally awful, but Flash tells her she can do it. Wells tells her to stop yelling every time she fires a blast and says he’ll work out some minor flaws in the gloves.

Joe and Barry have another private conversation and West asks Allen if he’s sure about going ahead with this and Barry says Linda will work out great. He says that he’s been  thinking about their earlier conversation and Joe’s right, Barry’s still fighting old battles but not for the reason he believes.

He talks about the message Wells left for Barry on the flash-drive when Wells said he’s about to make Allen’s greatest wish a reality, but he believes that Barry still will never be truly happy. He tells Joe that Wells’ words resonated within him as he never has felt truly happy. Joe tells Barry to forget what Wells said and that Allen’s responsible for his own happiness so go out and grab what makes you happy. Allen smiles and we can see Joe’s words got to him.

Back at the station Patty Spivot’s showing some other women officers a video on her phone with babies making funny faces when Barry comes over. She starts to tell him about the video but he backs the two of them into  a relatively secluded corner and kisses her. She smiles and thanks him and asks what that’s for and Barry says he’s decided to seek out happiness and kissing her makes him happy. They kiss again before she says she’s got to get back to work.

Linda’s overcome by the reality of what she’s volunteered to do and backs out heading back to the West home when Flash arrives and tries to get her to change her mind. Flash tells her that he knows she’s strong and a fighter and that she’s up to the task. She smiles and says that’s nice to hear, but with all due respect what are you basing it on. Flash says Linda you’re trusting me, so I’m going to trust you and removes his head-piece. She barely mouths the word Barry and then says Holy Crap I used to make-out with the Flash.

Which brings us back full circle to our opening scene as we see that the whole thing’s a setup to lure Zoom through the  breach and trap him. Both Wells and West are in sniper position with weapons equipped with the darts aimed at the breach. Flash’s unharmed by the bolts but plays the part and acts like he’s dead. Linda shouts into the breach she killed the Flash and throws his emblem into the breach and yells for Zoom to take her home. They wait an hour before they realize he didn’t fall for it.

Later Linda and Iris are back at their newspaper and talking about the disappointment they share that the plan didn’t work. Park says she’ll see Iris tomorrow and leaves the office but doesn’t get far before confronting a hideous mask that frightens herb to her core.

Cisco concocts a way to vibe Wells as he comes over with a can of lubrication oil and accidentally on-purpose spills the can on Wells work-station. As he cleans up the mess he and Wells make contact and Ramon gets a vision of Jessie in a cage being held by Zoom. The Speedster tells Jessie that her father’s on the other Earth and she says Wells will defeat Zoom and the vision fades. Suddenly the phone rings with Iris calling Barry telling him that Zoom’s captured Linda and Cisco says they’re on the roof.

Flash arrives and sees Zoom holding Linda in the air, he says that Flash uses people as bait and he does as well then throws Linda from the roof. Barry races to the pavement and then rapidly vibrates his arms creating a wind that slows her down enough that he catches her easily and deposits her safely on  the sidewalk.  He turns around to see Zoom in front of him and the man’s huge.

Flash asks Zoom what he wants from him and Zoom growls back everything. Flash smiles and says you want to  be  me, you want to be a hero? Zoom responds heroes die and Flash says you got to catch us first. He then races around the city faster and faster and Cisco excitedly says he’s going to thunderbolt him and the Flash grabs a lightning bolt he created with his speed and fires it at Zoom. The villain slips out-of-the-way at the last instant grabs it and fires it back at the Flash hitting him in the chest and throwing him into a building. Flash then leads Zoom on a supersonic chase and the pair plummet to the street in a free-fall trading blows the entire way down. Zoom however gains the advantage and senses Wells behind him attempting to surprise him with the dart but Zoom grabs it in his hand.

He smashes Flash to the ground and we hear a crunching sound coming from Allen’s body as if the demon crushed his back. He then picks up the Flash’s broken body and speeds to the newspaper that Iris and Linda write for. He holds Flash up in front of them as videographers grab the cameras and says behold your hero, he’s not a God. He’s nothing.

He then runs to Joe’s station and stands in front of all the officers holding Flash by the scruff of the neck. He yells out that the days of Flash protecting their city have ended. What will they do without their precious hero. Joe’s captain orders all his officers to open fire on Zoom but the behemoth stands there and catches all the bullets then opens his hand lets them fall to the floor.

He then races back to STAR Labs where Cisco, Caitlin and Wells are trying to track down Zoom and Barry. Zoom looks at Wells and says you expected to beat me with this as he pulls Barry’s headpiece off his face. Harrison says he made a terrible mistake and Zoom says and a costly one and he’s about to kill Barry but Cisco catches him by surprise hitting him with the dart. The compound weakens him causing him to let Allen loose and he falls to the ground briefly before he gets back up and goes back through the breach as Wells screams no.

Barry’s lying comatose on a bed at STAR Labs as Cisco, Caitlin, West and Wells are gathered around him. Joe grabs Wells by the lapels and tells the scientist this is on him and if Barry dies he dies. Caitlin says that Barry’s vital signs have stabilized and West says Harrison best hope that continues. Cisco tells Joe to chill for a bit and asks Wells who’s Jessie. Wells puts his hands on Cisco’s shoulders and asks did you vibe me did you see her? Ramon says yes to both questions and says that Zoom’s holding her as prisoner. Wells asks but she’s alive and West asks did he send you over here to kill Barry also? He asks is that the only way you’ll get her back? Harrison says the only way he gets her back is by defeating Zoom and he prayed that Barry could help him do that.

With Caitlin and Cisco at his side Barry finally comes to in the final scene. Barry’s vision’s fuzzy at first but he soon sees his friends as well as ever. Ramon says he scared them nearly to death as he was out a long time and he taps Allen on the thigh as a welcome back gesture. Caitlin smiles and says she’s thankful he heals as quickly as he does.

They see the agitation suddenly on Barry’s face and Cisco says oh no fighting’s a long way off. Allen says that’s not it, he  can’t feel his legs.

The Story Continues Next Tuesday Night at 8:00 pm on The CW.

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