With the finale of The Flash‘s inaugural season closely approaching, I’ve decided to do a comprehensive review of the most recent events leading up to the final episode.
The last couple of episodes have given us reveals that had eluded the fans the entire season up until this point, a focus on classic characters from the Flash mythos, and anxiousness for the finale to just get here already! A lot of information and a plethora of plot developments have happened over the last couple of weeks, so I will do my best to break down the most important, the most insane, and the most annoying (…………………Iris…………………)
Harrison Wells is the Reverse Flash: Barry and Co. are now privy to the season’s worst kept secret: Harrison Wells is in fact Eobard Thawne, aka the Reverse Flash. After weeks of trying to find proof that this man they’ve grown to love is Barry’s arch nemesis, Barry, Caitlin, and Cisco find his “secret lair.” The lair is full of interesting items: the yellow suit; a newspaper from 10 years in the future; the surprise that Iris West becomes Iris West-Allen; and Gideon, the AI that we find out was not created by Wells, but was in fact the brain child of Barry Allen. That’s a lot of futuristic information to digest, especially for Barry Allen. So what do a freshman superhero and his band of brainy friends decide to do in this case? Set a trap of course! Beautifully executed…if the man you’re trying to catch doesn’t have hundreds of years of knowledge on you. Wells knows the trap is coming and reveals that he’s been on to their shenanigans for weeks, disclosing that he’s been spying on the group and essentially knew this was coming. This was the way to go for this show. It showed that Wells isn’t an idiot. He’s a genius, a super villain, and if this caught him by surprise, we’d be wondering just how genius-y and super-villain-y he really was. This divulges that he’s REALLY that smart, and REALLY that dangerous. Eobard Thawne is clearly not anybody to mess with. Oh, and he kidnapped Eddie Thawne, but more on that in a minute.
GRODD LIVES!: Viewers were finally treated to an episode where the main antagonist was the telepathic, verbal gorilla known as Grodd. His appearance has been teased throughout the series, and the show has given glimpses of the behemoth, but he was finally given center stage, and I don’t think many were disappointed. He had General Eiling under the control of his telekinetic powers, and had Joe West prisoner at one point (who found out that Grodd, in fact, HATES bananas. Naturally.) The STAR labs team notes that it’s significant, and probably not a coincidence, that Grodd comes out of “hiding” shortly after Wells is revealed as Thawne. Grodd is in fact a pawn of Wells, and even calls him “father.” In order to rescue his adoptive father, Grodd fights. Barry squares off against the brilliant primate and has his super punch thwarted with a flick of the wrist. Grodd seems to be getting the best of Barry, especially after the headset Cisco made him (which kept Grodd from telekinetically controlling Barry) is taken off. The only thing that snaps Barry out of it is the sound of Iris’ voice (LAME!), which leads to Grodd being hit by a subway train (pretty awesome). Now, are we to believe that a subway train is enough to eliminate the great and powerful Grodd!? Doubt it. I’ll be looking forward to his return in Season 2.
Iris finds out Barry’s Secret: And this somehow makes her even more unlikable. When Barry, as the Flash, insists to Iris he’ll do anything to find Eddie, she feels “a spark,” literally, between the two of them. The only other time she’s ever felt this is when Barry was still in a coma after the Particle Accelerator accident. Clearly, this could only mean one thing, which is that Barry is the Flash. How does she react to this? Not very well. She puts a heavy guilt trip on Barry instead of realizing, “Hey, maybe he WAS keeping this from me to keep me safe, considering the people who know are constantly being kidnapped and put in life threatening situations.” Ugh, I hate her. Anyways, after Barry rescues her father, she seems to cut him a little slack, but she won’t reveal her feelings about Barry until AFTER he rescues her current boyfriend Eddie. Also, brilliant move on Barry’s part to flip the script on her, insisting she’s lying too…about her feelings for him. Not exactly something you can prove there bro, but nice work making sure she didn’t get out of that argument void of any blame. Relationships 101: if someone is yelling at you about something, bring up something they did wrong as well. This NEVER backfires. Good luck Barry, and godspeed.
Eddie, history’s forgotten Thawne?: As Eddie is proposing to Iris, the Reverse Flash kidnaps him. This might be for the better, considering Iris was going to say no…BUT, I digress. Wells reveals to Thawne that he is a very distant relative, and that, in the annals of time, Eddie is the ONE family member who is ultimately forgotten about. This doesn’t seem to sit well with Eddie, for good reason. Which leads to a few thoughts on where Eddie’s storyline might head into Season 2. This could turn him into a future villain, a present time version of the Reverse Flash, always hell bent on taking down his former friend Barry (Oh yeah, that’s right, Wells also showed Eddie a newspaper in which Iris’ married name is West-Allen, revealing to Eddie that Iris might not be his for much longer). On the other hand, the crack about him being forgotten by future generations leads me to wonder if Eddie could become the DCTU version of Booster Gold, a crime-fighting, time-traveling hero who became a superhero because he essentially was the one member in his family that didn’t matter. He was an idiot, essentially. While not exactly likely, it might be an interesting twist for a character everyone thought they had pegged.
It’ll be extremely interesting to see how this season ends. We know we’re in for a hell of a showdown in the penultimate episode and then the finale. Previews have already confirmed the appearance and help of the Arrow (in full Al- Sahim garb) and the Atom in stopping the Reverse Flash, and it has been confirmed as well that we will be seeing our first look at Hawk Girl, a DC favorite and member of the Arrow/Flash spinoff series Legends of Tomorrow. The season itself has been a rousing success, and I expect nothing less than a high octane thrill ride through these last couple of episodes.
8.0 & 7.5, respectively/10
+ Barry’s crack, when Eddie mentions the future name “Iris Thawne”: I have a feeling she’ll want to hyphenate…”
+ Grodd lived up to expectations, and considering the lower budget for CG characters on television, he looked pretty cool
+ the futures of these characters. Here’s hoping we see the future of Cisco (Vibe) and Caitlin (Killer Frost) before the end of the season
– Iris. She makes Laurel from Arrow seem like the greatest female character to ever be on television