The Flash: The Darkness and the Light

“I just want one week when I’m not surprised by somebody from our past.”

When a meta-human with the power to control light appears in Central City, Barry and his friends have to learn to depend on someone with the face of a man who betrayed them: another Harrison Wells.

Who is Harrison Wells? The question from season one returns to haunt us as Harry Wells from Earth-2 reveals more about his intentions to Barry, the reasons he’s here on Earth-1, and completely attacks poor Jay Garrick, who’s returned from a couple of weeks in the spa (or wherever they hid him!) Barry’s mother was killed by Wells-1, Cisco was killed, Caitlin’s boyfriend was killed, Iris’ fiancĂ© was killed, Joe’s partner was killed. Wells-1 has been responsible for so much death. Wells-2 protests that he’s his own man, and this may be true, but I felt somewhat sorry for him – it has to be weird suffering all those looks and that negative psychic pressure. He seems fairly genuine in his desire to help Barry and the crew, and he seems to have more to offer than Jay Garrick in terms of helpful advice. I still don’t trust Wells-2 that much, and the long lingering stare he lays on Barry and Co at the end seems to me evidence that Something is Being Planned. I'm not sure what to make of Wells' attacks on Jay. I certainly don’t think Jay is a coward or not a hero. What he isn’t, though, is ruthless, and Wells and Zoom certainly are. Is Wells-2 Zoom? That’d be way too much of a coincidence, wouldn’t it? Or… will he turn out to be good, and capable of redeeming the name of Harrison Wells?

The Flash isn't the only protector in town anymore.
What Wells shares is that Dr. Light has come to Earth-1, and plans to kill Barry. This is the first instance we’ve seen in which these breachers might be said to have a secondary goal. Light is actually another version of Linda Park-Wu, and from what she says throughout the episode she must kill Linda to stay in this world, or Barry, or she’ll be killed by Zoom. Iris comes off well in this scene, using the gun Joe gave her to defend Linda and the Picture crew, holding off Light long enough for Flash to arrive. I’m not sure of the logic behind Light attacking Linda, but am assuming it’ll be explained in the next few episodes. Jay, however, seems to be getting along in this world just fine, so I suspect the explanation's going to be more complicated than just "kill your copy." The final battle against Light shows Barry learning yet another new trick, this time from Wells-2: how to create speed mirages. So, illusions, lightning throwing, time travel... where are the Flash's powers going to end?

There were also huge developments for Cisco this episode. I actually am half-convinced Wells revealed Cisco’s metahuman nature as part of an attempt to get back into the team’s good graces. How could he know Cisco wasn’t some sort of metahuman spy? In any case, his revelation is almost anti-climactic; none of the team reject Cisco, and we are given a new superhero to admire: Vibe.

Yes. I get to name... me.
The Barry and Patty storyline heats up. Interesting parallel name structure, isn’t it? I loved that Patty wasn’t thrown by King Shark and actually seemed exhilarated by her encounters with metahumans! I also liked the idea of Barry actively breaking out of his Iris-holding-pattern and moving on to do something. I hated the whole Barry-being-blind idea, but it worked out okay and didn’t come across too offensively (I know several blind and Deaf-Blind people, and that was a concern). Their final kiss had heat, but I admit to “feeling” the crush side more from Barry than from Patty, who seems to have gone from vengeful survivor to, well, kind of plastickey. In the end, Light’s imprisoned, Wells is watching the team from the darkness, they now have a powered-up ally, and Barry's getting some play, but the team still knows no more about Zoom than they did in the beginning of the season, really.

Bits & Pieces

When Joe meets Wells-2, he immediately pulls out his gun to shoot… and Barry goes into action, moving fast enough to grab the bullets. He sort of waits half a second on the final bullet before pulling it: showing exactly how he feels about Wells, if not Wells-2. A great moment.

Then Joe goes to meet Iris, tells her everything, and gives her a gun. I felt it was another great moment–he’s finally treating her like an adult.

The show seems to be making an effort to consistently portray Iris as a successful reporter who’s quickly getting more and more respect from her peers.

I’m not sure Light’s powers make sense. Either she emits very hot energy, or she is manipulating light into a solid… can someone explain?

The Cisco dating sideplot – where do you think it’s going? I thought it was cute, but it seems like a red herring–but Ciara Renee is hella cute. I bet she's next week's metahuman.

Quotables

Cisco: You know our Dr. Wells may have been evil, but you’re just a dick.

Wells-2: I will be genetically indistinguishable from my Earth-1 counterpart. Your tests will reveal nothing.
Caitlin: Great! Still gonna run ‘em.
Wells-2: Be my guest.

Wells: Zoom’s the plague. One that’s infected my world, and now he’s coming for yours.

Overall

This episode was bewildering and wonderful at the same time. The logic behind Light’s powers was confusing, and Jay magically reappearing from The Superhero Spa definitely got a few blinks, but the sincere Cisco drama, Patty plot, and Wells forebodingness kept taking over. And what the heck is Linda going to do, now that she knows about her doppelganger? Four out of five kingly sharks.

6 comments:

Billie Doux said...

Good episode, enjoyed your review. I love the Earth-2 stuff. It's reminding me of the best part of Fringe. I was so relieved that they didn't go for the ridiculously stupid during that blind date; of course, she's a detective and is going to notice! And I think you're right that the newly arrived barista love interest for Cisco has to be a meta human.

I think Harrison 2 is just as evil as Harrison 1. Mostly because Jay doesn't like him.

jounouchi-sama said...



Harrison 2 is just as evil as Harrison 1. Billie by your logic that mean Harrison 2 not evil seeing that Eobard Thawne 1 who is evil not Harrison 1

Will said...

The barista's name is Kendra. I'm just going to leave it at that to avoid potential spoilers.

Josie Kafka said...

I really liked this one. I love the parallel universe (more, please!) and the team's intense reactions to Wells-2. JRS, I hope you're right about him being Zoom! Does that fit? Can it fit? Please?

Dr. Light's outfit was also really, really cool.

Hank said...

Don't get too attached to Kendra Saunders.

I also liked Doctor Light's costume, though that's mostly on the helmet.

I LOVED everything about the "blind date" between Barry and Patty, especially Crisco's inadvertent spying.

Deborah Gallegos said...

Possible spoiler....




Barista Chick Kendra is definitely not long for this show, but will be in the spinoff. Superhero time!