The Flash: The Trap

"We thought we set a trap for him, but he set a trap for us."

In this tense episode many plotlines come to a head as the team continues to break down the truth behind the enigma of Harrison Wells–while Iris begins to justify her value as an investigative reporter.

Whoa. Harrison Wells comes forward as Eobard Thawne, Eddie proposes marriage, Iris finally discovers the truth, Cisco sees sidewards in time, and Barry can put out fires with his arms. No, seriously. There's so much movement in this episode it even spills backward into the last.

Let's start with what's been my least favorite parts of this show: Iris and the love-triangle that has been hell. Eddie's pursuit of marriage with Iris has been equal parts cute and creepy for me: at times it's seemed as if he's vying for control of The Woman with Joe. And I don't like that. It's an extension of Barry's Identity Problem: at no point does anyone consider what Iris wants. Eddie does want to tell her - but I don't know completely if that's out of respect for Iris and her wishes or out of an attempt to cement that control of Iris. Meanwhile, the dormant feelings of romance for Barry seem to have been reawakened in Iris.

Iris by herself, outside of relationship dreck, is improving as a character. She pieced together a ton of stuff about STARLabs and Harrison Wells. She finally identified Barry - who's going to have to deal with the fallout from withholding his identity for so long. When she realizes who else knew, that's also going to blow–but I'm starting to like the idea of Iris taking a place on the team as an investigative reporter, even if I still shy away from the romance scenes.

The Wells identity plot finally comes to a head and we see that name, Eobard Thawne, brought over to this timeline. I think that Cisco's ability to see through timelines might be foreshadowing his character development; rumors are abounding that we're about to see a reveal of the superhero Vibe, and I believe I remember some physics and astronomy stuff about vibrational frequencies and dimensions and quantum gobbledygook. And of course Flash himself can vibrate through walls. We'll see.

More importantly than the pseudoscience: Cisco wins huge points in this episode for bravery, for his willingness to face death (yet again) and challenge the Reverse-Flash. And the previous episode wins huge points for putting one over on me; I was sure Everyman was going to be another cheesy one-off, but here it turns out that Wells was using him (and how did he get him to agree? His freedom?) as a stand-in... while getting the only thing that I can immediately think of to stop him: Eddie.

Yes, we have to remember: if Grandpa Eddie dies, then what happens to Eobard Thawne? Death doesn't even need to happen. He could get his tubes tied and adopt kids with Iris. There's lots of ways to change a future, it seems.

Now we have a team (almost) united, a supervillain more intelligent than the team itself, and a standalone investigative reporter who knows maybe more than she ought to... and apparently has no guidance from the Picture now that Mason Bridge is dead. The last three eps of the first season have been perfectly set up. I can't wait.

Bits and Pieces

The opening scene was so freaking tense I kept yelling at them to get out of Gideon's room! And then Barry zoomed them out. And Gideon's smirk when she tells Wells all is, well, well–it was just a great moment.

Can you see other superheroes on the newspaper? I need to go back and freeze frame.

Captain Singh and the wedding planning. Loved the moment.

I think Wells became sure they were on to him when Caitlin showed him the dream glasses she needed help with. And he went ahead and helped them because he really doesn't care anymore; he thinks he has the upper hand. Does that mean he managed to collect enough of whatever he was trying to collect from Barry?

The initial scene with Eddie asking Joe for Iris' hand in marriage - painful. I felt bad for Eddie. It was almost a harder side of Joe's hard side.

It seems Wells is sometimes nice because working with the team taught him humanity. I guess there's nothing left of the original Wells and we can be sure we are dealing only with Eobard Thawne. Which is sad, because I'd hoped the original Wells personality might resurface; will Tom Cavanagh stay on next season?

Overall

Four out of four dream glasses. Looking forward to next week!

9 comments:

Anonymous said...

"I think Wells became sure they were on to him when Caitlin showed him the dream glasses she needed help with."

I'm pretty sure he knew the whole time. He had cameras watching everyone (One of the early episodes closing scenes was Well's watching Barry getting struck by lightning in his lab (The same lab Barry revealed his investigation of Wells to the team) via camera).

And Tom Cavanagh's performance is just amazing.

Korlis said...

"Which is sad, because I'd hoped the original Wells personality might resurface; will Tom Cavanagh stay on next season?"

I don't know if they can figure out a way to make it work without impacting on both all the plot and character development this season, never mind on the interlinked Arrow, but I can see some time-travel shenanigans resulting in the real Dr Wells being made to survive or somehow being pulled into the present.

Bea said...

I'm loving this show, except for how they keep treating Iris. She hasn't been the most enjoyable character, but this whole "protected by the men" thing they've got going is terrible. I mean, I don't know what's worse, that Eddie felt the need to ask for Joe's approval, or that Joe seems so adamant in controlling every aspect of her life. Let the girl make her own decisions and mistakes!

Joe is a great character, and his father/son relationship with Barry is everything it needs to be and more, but it only highlights how differently he treats his children. The freedom and advice he has for Barry only becomes close-mindedness and even intolerance when it comes to Iris. In a show that's so good treating females and female relationships, it seems so blatantly sexist to treat Iris like that.

Patrick said...

I was fine with Eddie asking for Joe's blessing, it may be old-fashioned but it's a pretty long-running tradition. And considering the high regard Eddie has for Joe, I'm not surprised he'd ask. Eddie's timing well and truly SUCKS, though. Seriously dude, isn't there enough going on right now? And I totally get why people are annoyed with Joe for his response, and I won't defend it. But I do at least understand it. Yes, he's being over-protective, Iris is an adult now and should be allowed to decide for herself, even if it means making her own mistakes. But a father is always going to want to protect his daughter's heart, and he's not wrong about her conflicting emotions. More than anything, Joe needs to get over his "keeping Iris in the dark will keep her safe" assumption. But after this episode, I guess we don't have to worry about that anymore.

sunbunny said...

Joe is one of my favorite characters, really, but the way he and Eddie treat Iris is just...troubling. I don't mind Joe wanting to keep her safe, obviously that's a normal parent thing. And I didn't even mind Eddie asking Joe for his permission to propose. At first. One of the reasons I don't mind that tradition is because it's ultimately meaningless. Fathers no longer have control over who their daughters marry. Joe was very much acting like he did. Like he had veto power and denying Eddie permission put the permanent kibosh on that relationship. And Eddie was sort of agreeing with him? Iris doesn't have much in the way of personality, it's true, but she's still an adult woman who can make her own life decisions.

But yeah other than the sexist grossness, a very satisfying episode. Lots of Cisco and I love Cisco. :)

Patrick said...

Cisco has definitely been one of the highlights of the show. He could have easily been the fanboy tech nerd and nothing more, but he's really grown and bought into the responsibility of their "mission", without losing the sense of wonder, or the potential for fun. I mean c'mon, SUPER POWERS, people! :)

Jess Lynde said...

I'm hoping for some sort of time-travel shenanigans to bring the real Dr. Wells into the fold after they dispatch Fake Dr. Wells. I really like Tom Cavanaugh and his dynamic with the rest of the cast, but I guess we'll see.

Re: Iris and Joe --- While I agree completely that there is definitely a troubling "men controlling The Woman" aspect to a lot of the stuff surrounding Iris, I find myself wondering if whatever happened with her mother has something to do with Joe's behavior in last night's episode. We don't know what happened to her, right? Just that she's gone or possibly dead? If she's just gone, and she left Joe for "reasons" when Iris was young, that could be affecting the way he's viewing the choices Iris might make if Eddie proposes.

I was genuinely surprised by the return of Everyman last night. When the body started changing, I thought maybe it was reverting to original flavor Eobard Thawne and was completely shocked to see the shape-shifter. I'm really glad Evil Wells is still in the mix though! He's too good a nemesis to lose just yet.

Billie Doux said...

I think Eddie asked for Joe's blessing to propose to Iris because Eddie and Joe are partners and the two of them have a life and death trust situation between them, not that Joe had anything to give in the way of permission.

As far as Wells goes, I just had a feeling all along that he was playing them, and voila. Count me in with the fans who want to find a way to keep Tom Cavanaugh, only not evil. :)

TJ said...

It wasn't long ago when American networks portrayed women like Sue Ellen (Dallas) or Krystle (Dynasty). Women who were martyrs and always caught in the crossfire when their men were making power-moves. If there was a strong woman in a show, they were always calculating bitches. We still have lots of these one-sided women characters. "Revenge" comes to mind, a show that has recently deteriorated into a lot of Sue Ellens...

So I find it interesting that the Iris character is so heavily questioned and, as it seems, very disliked. Fans irritation have been somewhat similar with the Laurel character from the mother show. It looks like people, both men and women, just don't buy these damsels-in-distress. They are simply out of date.
All the frustrations about Iris (and Laurel) is a sign of enough-is-enough. Which I find is a refreshing, healthy, and a very good thing! The problem is, the producers and writers of todays American networks haven't catched up yet.

All that said (from an American guy who has lived almost his entire life in "exile", so what do I know?:)), I thought this was a great episode! The Iris issues aside, I am very curious in how they will solve this Dr Wells situation. Story-wise it might be best to kill him off, but somehow Dr Wells is the backbone in this show...how can they possibly move on from that?