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 [BLOG] TV Review: The Flash! Season 2 Episode 1 
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This is a blog post. To read the original post, please click here »

Director: Ralph Hemecker
Starring: Grant Gustin, Candice Patton, Danielle Panabaker, Carlos Valdes, Tom Cavanagh, Jesse L. Martin, Rick Cosnett, Robbie Amell, Victor Garber

Major Spoilers Ahead


The Flash: Season 2, Episode 1 - "The Man Who Saved Central City"
It's back. Finally. You know that phrase "waiting with bated breath"? Well I have been waiting with bated EVERYTHING!! I love this show, I really do. Ever since minute one I've found it to be so much more enjoyable then Arrow, which of course deserves major kudos for starting this DCTU (That's the DC Televised Universe, trademarked I'll have you know, maybe). But Season 2 has finally started and Episode 1 is off to a...well not stellar start exactly but about the same level that Season 1 started off with.

So after the Cliffhanger ending of Season 1 where Central City was being ripped apart by a black hole, we learn that Barry Allen aka The Flash has, for the last few months, been defending Central City all on his lonesome for fear of his friends getting hurt. The reason you ask? It turns out that Firestorm (a superhero formed from the merged personas and bodies of supporting characters Ronnie Raymond and Professor Martin Stein, don't ask because science) flew up into the vortex and separated their bodies in order for the resulting bullshit techobabble to destabilise the wormhole and close it permanently. Thus Barry, who has been receiving a huge amount of media attention due to the endeavour has secluded himself from his friends and family because this is what every superhero does when their close friends step on anything bigger then a drawing pin.

Let's all be honest here, does anyone actually enjoy this trope in superhero fiction anymore? Did we ever? To my knowledge Spiderman tries to pull this shit on a regular basis and look where that's got him, retcons up the wazoo, tons of dead family and friends and an instance where he made a deal with Satan. Yes that actually happened! Now the Blue Beetle, there was someone who could protect his loved ones. Speaking of which when are we getting Ted Kord in the DCTU?....ANSWER ME DAMMIT!!!

But back on the topic, Barry throughout pretty much all of this episode is being your a-typical grump who keeps rejecting his friends offer for help even though its left him completely alone in Star Labs and most likely unable to operate any of its equipment which has usually been instrumental in defeating....every bad guy if I remember correctly. Even when it hasn't been some do-hickey of the day it was probably some science babble given to him via radio from Cisco or Caitlyn, at the end of the day what we're left with is that Barry clearly needs his teams support. The problem is that in order to convey that sentiment, the script states it through the filter of the aforementioned really tired superhero trope of "I must protect my loved ones by not letting them help me". If they really wanted to put a new spin on this trope, throughout the episode we should have seen Barry gradually make the decision by himself to go solo and then right before the finale his friends grab him by the shoulders and convince him to go the other way, it would have been a very gradual progression that felt natural...and then would have subverted the trope entirely by having Barry see things from their point of view.

Having said that however, the rest of this episode is SOLID. The best kind of enjoyable in my opinion. You can really tell the effort that went into it from an acting standpoint. Despite the tired old trope that was utilised all throughout the episode (other tired tropes include starting with a dream sequence that includes everyone whose "died", because lets face they ARE coming back) everyone was on top form for the start of Season 2. ESPECIALLY John Wesley Shipp, Jesse L. Martin and Danielle Panabaker. We also get some great cameos from Rick Cosnett, Tom Cavanagh and Robbie Amell, tons of great chemistry between Carlos Valdes and Victor Garber, who is fast becoming one of my favourite characters and to everyone's surprise I'm sure, a really great turn by Adam Copeland as Atom Smasher who brings a tremendous physical talent to the role as well as being intimidating and able to make the word "Zoom" sound really foreboding. I really hope we see him in other things or just straight bring him back as Atom Smasher, he'd be a great recurring villain.

We also get some lovely starting points for the Season Requisite story threads that will develop over the coming few episodes. Zoom is name dropped, a very prominent Flash villain in the comics, we also see that the Particle Accelerator may not be the sole reason for all the meta-human activity, Atom Smasher reveals that it was Zoom who turned him into a meta-human. How you ask? Well you'll have to keep watching won't you. BUT the best reveal comes in the form of JAY FUCKING GARRICK!!! The Flash of Earth 2 made his debut in this episode and as cool as that is...it was actually really underwhelming. Ok that's actually mean, I'm really freaking happy that this show is introducing the alternate universe angle this Season because that's always been one of the most enjoyable facets of Superhero Fiction, what rustled my jimmies about his introduction was that it's just him walking onto the scene and stating who he is. I was really hoping he would have blitzed onto the show in a spinning cylinder of lightning and speed, in fact the show really looked like it was going that way.


The final scene is after Atom Smasher gets defeated and the band is back together all congratulating Barry on getting over himself and welcoming his friends back into the fold, as well as getting his Dad out of prison. But the point is that Cisco and Caitlin start stating that Star Labs now includes upgraded security systems that should keep anyone out who shouldn't be there, that's when the lights should have started flickering and we hear this really ominous noise, a noise that almost sounds like Barry when he's running, that's when a swirling pillar of lightning appears in the room that seems to be draining Star labs of its power, we all stare in confusion until BOOM a man clad in red leather, a tin hat with wings and boots is standing there, he looks up at the cast and announces,

"My name is Jay Garrick and your world is in danger"

God...DAMN that would've been awesome. But alas we can't have everything, if that were possible I'd be living on the moon in a bunker made of solid platinum being served an endless supply of milkshake by my staff of monkey butlers. Was there a point to that? Maybe, I don't know, it's very late. But the point I'm making is that even though it wasn't as great an entrance as I wanted, it's still great to have Jay introduced here. I seriously can't wait for more Speedsters to start being introduced (Bring on Jesse Quick!) I'd also be stupid to not mention that we get two genuinely touching scenes in this episode, both towards the end that left me with a very big smile on my face, I won't spoil those ones for you though, but trust me when I say that both are very well written and bring a good balance of light-hardheartedness and relief to that particular plot thread.

So in summation, whilst this episode gets dragged down by a tired and very overly played out trope, what really holds it together is the performance by the cast, a great villain to start off with and some killer reveals for the series to move forward to.

So anyway… FORWARD!!!!

Tue Oct 13, 2015 10:23 pm
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Joined: Mon Jun 17, 2019 6:47 am
Posts: 1
Nice review..!!

Mon Jun 17, 2019 10:58 am
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