This post contains spoilers for The Flash.
Check out our previous review here.
This week on The Flash we take a break from the DeVoe storyline, and the writers try to play catch up after last week’s unfortunate showing. There were moments of “Enter Flashtime” that were reminiscent of Firefly’s “Out of Gas”. It didn’t have the episodic flashbacks, but it did give us small one-offs with each character, some of which brought surprises, and had similar show-stopping stakes. In the end, it all came down to the exhausted and broken-down hero trying to save his world, and pulling the inspiration from his loved ones to do so.
Veronica Dale (whattup, Hyrax?) and the members of Eden Corp stop an Argus shipment that CCPD is helping transport. Because it involves Argus, it’s obviously a weapon of mass destruction - in this case, a nuke. In Barry’s grandstanding, he gives Veronica time to detonate the bomb, putting Central City in very real peril. Throughout “Enter Flashtime” Barry goes to each member of his team to use either their powers or their ideas. Cisco can’t breach it, Killer Frost can’t ice it, Harry’s out of his depth, and the ever-reliable Jay Garrick can’t keep up. By the end of the episode, Barry’s exhausted and has realized that he can’t hold on much longer. He’ll have to tap out and let his city die, so he goes to his wife.
Thankfully, Iris West-Allen has been given something functional to do in season four.
In the midst of Barry and Iris’ heartfelt goodbyes, she remembers the sphere that they used to trick the Speedforce into letting Barry out. Barry and Jesse may not have been able to throw enough lightning at the nuke (thus negating its destruction), but the Speedforce sure as hell can. With new hope, Barry runs into the Speedforce and directs the lightning at the bomb, saving his team and the rest of the city with it. He also saves The Flash from falling into an unfortunate bad episode streak.
“Enter Flashtime” focuses on relationships in a meaningful manner, and even manages to explain why all parties are involved in the story, including those from other Earths. Harry called Jesse to Earth 1 after being nudged by “D.A Cecile Horton” to talk about the rift that’s grown between them. Turns out that rift isn’t just because Harry’s a complete jerk to everyone around him, but because he can’t talk about his wife’s death (which is what makes him a complete jerk to everyone around him). Jay is brought in because Jesse goes to get him to help with the pesky nuke situation. It’s unfortunate that The Flash doesn’t use John Wesley Shipp more, and even more unfortunate that this episode acted as a bit of a retirement for the weathered Jay Garrick. All the same, it’s always nice to see him jump into the fray. When it came time for him to return to his earth, Jay teases the existence of another lady Speedster on Earth 3, so don’t count him and the rest of the forces on his Earth out for good!
One of the most surprising moments of the episode goes to Caitlin Snow and Killer Frost. The Flash has rarely known what to do with any of its female characters. Hopefully that will change now that certain scumbags have been trimmed from the staff, but there’s not a lot that can be done for a season that’s already mapped out. That said, Killer Frost has a surprise line that not only caught me off guard, but the show took time to acknowledge it after the fact as well. After they realize that Frost can’t freeze the nuke, she looks to Barry and asks him not to let “Caity” die. Rude? You can’t just be a jerk all of the time and then throw in a one-off line when you’re sure you’re about to be dust. That said, this looks to be a good step to finding harmony between Caitlin’s proverbial Mr. Hyde and her softer side.
Even better news than all that: Bartholomew Henry Allen finally looks another person in the eye and says no time travel under any circumstance. He can be taught, ladies and gentlemen! He can be taught!
Next week Barry manages to lose his powers. Like any other good wife, Iris finds them for him, but she can’t seem to give them back. Things promise to be odd, to say the least. But at least we’ll get to see Iris finally suit up and play with the rest of the team. In the meantime, you know what to do if you had thoughts on “Enter Flashtime”