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The Flash: Death Rises

“Believe me, you’re better prepared than you think.”

Despite what we believed as children, there is no point when we have all the answers. Bad things happen and we question whether we made the right decisions and worry about the path forward. That is where Team Flash finds themselves this week.

The repercussions of Caitlin’s decision to save Ronnie extend far beyond her and the rest of Team Flash. Deathstorm has the lofty goal of ending all life. One grief-stricken person at a time. And if there is any truism, it’s that eventually, grief marks everyone. A vulnerability Deathstorm happily feeds on.

And Deathstorm needs to feed in order to transform his new bride. Ronnie may be gone, but his love for Caitlin lives on. This may be a blessing and a curse. While it ups the body count, it may also be a weakness Team Flash can exploit. Or could it be something more? In the last episode, someone reached out to Cecile, begging to be set free. Could there be some part of Ronnie still alive and fighting to protect Caitlin?

What of Esperanza’s reappearance? Was she Deathstorm’s minion or his avatar? Can he bring back the dead? Or just create beings from his victim’s memories? More importantly, was Esperanza a distraction while Deathstorm builds up his strength, or does he have a larger agenda? What could be larger than ending all life?

Speaking of distractions, as if the threat posed by Deathstorm wasn’t bad enough, Barry is forced to watch his wife suffer through an illness that refuses to be defined, let alone cured. Iris’ time sickness is now affecting Deon and time itself. Am I alone in thinking this could be the bigger threat? Or could Eddie’s appearance signal that Iris and Barry’s storylines are converging? Using departed loved ones to mess with his enemies seems to be Deathstorm’s modus operandi. Not that Barry has an answer for either problem.

Enter Papa Joe. I’m often amazed (and grateful) that Joe is still offering Barry advice eight seasons later. That is atypical for superhero shows. Yet it is so necessary. Do we ever outgrow the occasional need for a parental pick-me-up? The knowledge that someone is unconditionally in our corner when we’re unsure of ourselves. Barry has faced fear and indecision many times and, as Joe says, he’s still standing. Sometimes it's still nice to hear someone say it.

Joe may have retired from the police force, but his position as father and mentor continues to expand. Not only does it include all of Team Flash but Kramer as well. Now that she’s an honorary member, she is privy to the uncertainty Team Flash lives with every day. She also needs Joe’s occasional reminder that this too shall pass.

Regardless of the cause of Iris’ illness, there are a few things we should probably file away for future reference. The first is Iris’ time sickness doesn’t affect Barry. The second was the many mentions of her “lack of a future.” Finally, there’s the fact that Iris regained control when Sue told her to write her own future. You just know one or all of them is going to come up again.

I’m impressed with this season’s consistency. After multiple seasons where it felt the characters were merely plot delivery devices and that plot was as seamless as a pair of fishnet stockings, we finally have a story arc that feels cohesive and driving towards a specific end. And while I may not have liked some choices our heroes made, they were all in character.

I’ve also welcomed the ghosts from seasons past that continue to make appearances. They highlight the trials and sacrifices Team Flash has overcome. Not to mention heightening the emotional stakes of the current storylines.

The gauntlet has been thrown. Team Flash may have come up with a potential way to defeat Deathstorm but with eight episodes to go, I’m leery about its chances of success. Yet, I’m convinced this episode holds the clues both to the cure for Iris’ time sickness and Deathstorm’s defeat. If only we can decipher their meaning.

4 out of 5 Pyro Pazuzus

Parting Thoughts:

We had a scientific twofer this week. The first was the somewhat dubious Paschal Beverly Randolph. The other was Benjamin Banneker. Finally, someone I knew. Albeit, I learned about him from Sleepy Hollow, another show I loved.

Is anyone else bothered by the fact that so many life-threatening events happen in Central City that the Chief of Police has the authority to lock down the city without consulting the mayor?

We get a glimpse into Sue’s reading habits. Uncaged Desire by Rebecca Seward. I make no judgments.

I’m willing to suspend my disbelief. However, if Deathstorm ends all life, what will he and his new bride feed on?

Given Chester’s general giddiness, I’m assuming Barry’s boots giving him the ability to walk on air is classic comic goodness.

Quotes:

Frost: “If matchhead thinks he’s getting anyway near my sister, he’s got to go through me first.”

Iris: “You’re a bad influence.”
Sue: “I’ll take that as a yes.”

Kramer: “I don’t know what’s more terrifying, that this Deathstorm can turn up anywhere, or that not even the Flash is powerful enough to stop him.”

Barry: “Pretty sure if given enough time, Chester can do anything.”
Chester: “Awww. Thanks, Barr.”

Barry: “You don’t scare us. And you can’t control us anymore. We’ve already faced our grief.”
Deathstorm: “And yet there’s always the smallest morsel left behind, long after a loved one has passed.”

Esperanza: “Be careful, Prima. The juvie in you is starting to show.”

Sue: “Spoiler alert: they don’t arrest you if you buy the castle.”

Frost: “I’m done waiting around for the Bachelor from hell to come give Caity a rose.”

Allegra: “Yeah, it’s official. I have heard everything now.”

Eddie: “Iris, thank God. It’s so good to see you.”

Shari loves sci-fi, fantasy, supernatural, and anything with a cape.

1 comment:

  1. I'm not sure if Chester's giddiness was from Flash walking on air, or if it was being able to make the Metallica reference(for those who don't know, the song that was playing when Flash walked on the lightning blasts was the Metallica classic "Ride The Lighting"). As a Metallica fan myself, I want to believe it was the second one :)

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