In which Eddie is rescued–sort of; and in which we realize that 'love' is only one letter away from 'evil'. A well-written, complex episode that kept the comic-book flavor with whiz-bang fights while bringing in that necessary touch of psychology and depth.
When we left off last episode, we knew Wells was about to release some whacked-up technology, he was related to a particle accelerator, and he was messing with Eddie's mind. We pick up right where we left off: Wells' plan is revealed, and he's going to be using the Particle Accelerator for... something. He needs another delay while the system boots, and in order to get it, he starts releasing the prisoners Barry's accumulated over the season. Peekaboo first... but the others are close behind. They keep the villains contained, but when the Particle Accelerator's done charging up, the baddies are going to be fried.
It was great to see the Weather Wizard and others again, and having the villains interact with each other got us a little more in the way of character development than we've seen so far. Barry's pace outclassed anyone else in this episode. His attempt to "be the Arrow" and work with the bad guys to save the day, his refusal to let the bad guys die, his developing ability to lead the Arrow team... I really liked what I saw from Grant Gustin during this ep.
The deal with Captain Cold is simple: help get the baddies out of the Accelerator and transport them to Lian Yu, with the help of A.R.G.U.S. equipment and Cisco-genius. Cold's sister comes along, and manages some great flirting scenes with Cisco. I think we were all predicting Cold's betrayal–except for the Flash, of course. He winds up with an even larger team of rogues. Will they respect his no-kill truce with the Flash? I'm thinking not.
Meanwhile, the lesser of two plotlines had its own murky developments. Eddie, moved more by his own recognition of the clues he's been seeing all along, wants his relationship with Iris over. She's resisting, but as usual, it's more about Iris than about Eddie, I think: she simply doesn't want to be responsible for the relationship ending. Sometimes relationships last a lot longer than they should for that reason. I was glad the scene was more quick and painless than we've seen thus far. I don't think the repercussions of all this will disappear, however. Stay tuned...
The Particle Accelerator's ready to go, and Wells appears, but Barry still can't beat him; he shares his discouragement with Joe in a beautiful scene in the episode where Joe encourages Barry to be his own kind of hero. Joe is right: the Flash gets his heroism from a slightly more innocent place than the Arrow, from wanting to help and save instead of work out guilt. The Flash also learns you can take your passion too far: it led him to run on dark trails tonight.
When Barry, helped by Joe, somehow manages to bring the good guys together (this was the weakest part of the episode: how did he manage to convince the Arrow and Firestorm, the former in Nanda Parbat and the second unreachable earlier in the episode, to magically appear with special Wells-defeating tools?) and manipulate Wells into a trap, however, we get some amazing scenes, and I was going WOOT! when Firestorm blew in and the three teammates knock Wells off the roof. The ending feels extremely cliffhangerish to me: yes, Barry got Wells, but isn't the Accelerator still powered up, and won't it be doing something very soon?
Moments and Reactions
"Rogue Air" is a great title for an episode about getting rogues on a plane. (Snakes on a plane? I felt puns here.)
I liked the opening song and scene, with Iris mourning her relationship already, looking at return labels.
I love Cisco when he finds the energy source for the particle accelerator–he pulls off sassy!
Lisa getting Cisco to name her Golden Glider. I really do think she has a thing for him.
Ray Palmer can invent speed-reducing nanites. This felt a little doux-ex-machinaish.
The Arrow will be 86ed at the age of 86, according to the newspapers that presumably also predict the marriage of Barry and Iris.
I still worry Eddie's going to betray the team soon.
Joe: Cisco, what did you bring in that orange soda for?
Cisco: Whenever something happens with the Reverse-Flash, liquid floats in the air. You know, Barry's fish tank, Wells's champagne, Lance's coffee, remember that? If this does the same thing, we'll know that Wells is in there. (JRS: And it did. Point for Cisco.)
Joe: These people with powers, the meta-humans–
Cecily: Is that what they're calling them? People love their labels.
A great episode marred only by one nagging logical inconsistency, but hey, maybe the Arrow and Firestorm have hero beepers somewhere. We're ready for the finale. 3.75/4 futuristic energy sources!