Previously on The Flash, “Infantino Street”
So much of this season has been a mess that I’m seriously considering not podcasting it next season. Where to even begin?
Okay. Here’s what happened. H.R. died in Iris’ place as I predicted a few weeks ago. He used the shard from Savitar’s suit to find him, freed Iris, and then switched places with her right before Killer Frost caught up to them and knocked H.R. (really Iris) out. By the time H.R. (really Iris) arrives, Barry is devastated and holding a dying Iris (really H.R.), Tracy feels like crap, and Joe is shook. After the reveal, everyone heads back to S.T.A.R. Labs to confirm that Iris West lives to write that story; she does.
Savitar made off with the speed bazooka (for fuck’s sake) AND Cisco. He wants Cisco to do some science-y shit to make it so that he (Savitar) will exist in all points in time at the same time. I actually just stopped typing for a moment, closed my eyes, and tilted my head back. I’m so over this convoluted storyline.
Julian comes back with a cure for Caitlin — when he was suspiciously absent last week he wasn’t stealing Caitlin’s VCR; he was with her mother working on the drug. Now that Barry knows Caitlin can be saved, so does Savitar and he uses that to force Cisco to help him.
Alone with Iris, Barry realizes that going dark isn’t going to defeat Savitar. He takes Captain Cold’s advice, but really Michelle Obama’s, and goes high when Savitar goes low. That’s right. He’s going to offer Savitar a Pepsi. He meets with him and convinces him to come back to S.T.A.R. Labs so they can figure out a way to stop him from disappearing when the time paradox (Iris not dying, Barry not creating time remnants, etc.) catches up with him. Savitar reluctantly agrees after Iris sprinkles some Black Girl Magic in the air.
They need Tracy’s help, but she’s not feeling so charitable and doesn’t want to help the guy who just killed her boyfriend. Harry’s gruff whisper changes her mind.
But, oops, just kidding. Savitar’s still evil AF and sets off the Philosopher’s Stone and a breach (or something) to blow up S.T.A.R. Labs. We spent the entire season trying to save Iris, and for some reason she’s the last one rushed to safety before the explosion. Savitar basically accepted the Pepsi, shook the can, and opened it in Barry’s face.
Gypsy rescues Cisco, but it doesn’t matter to Savitar because he already has his Cisco-enhanced bazooka. He uses it to open a breach and finally reveals why he needed Killer Frost. She deals with Black Flash (Hunter Zoloman), who shows up as Savitar knew he would since Black Flash doesn’t like when speedsters mess with the timeline. Why he hasn’t shown up before now is anyone’s guess. Eobard Thawne couldn’t stop him, but Killer Frost did it in five seconds. Okay. Sure. Whatever.
Barry stops Savitar, but doesn’t kill him because that would make him just as bad and lead him to the darkness. But when Savitar tries to sucker rush Barry, Iris shoots him dead because who gives a fuck about her soul. Killer Frost decides not to be an asshole anymore because it’s that damn simple, apparently.
Jay is out of the Speed Force prison, H.R. has a nice-ass funeral, and Iris and Barry mail out save the date announcements for their wedding. But wait; there’s more: Jay’s absence from the Speed Force (without replacing him with another speedster) causes the Speed Force to go the fuck off. There’s earthquakes and lightning strikes and it’s just a mess. It was considerate of it to wait until enough time had passed for H.R. to have a funeral with a fancy headstone. Did it only just realize Jay was gone?
Anyway, Barry decides to go into the Speed Force, escorted by the Speed Force in the form of his mom, to save the world and atone for his shitty life choices. No one really likes this, but they don’t try all that hard to stop him either.
Did Anything Mean Anything?
Why did Savitar make all of those Flashpoint metas? He just needed Wally. Did we ever find out who belonged to each of the husks? There were 5 or 6 and we only know about Clariss, Magenta, and Shade. Did Julian only exist to retrieve the Philosopher’s Stone and be his henchman as Alchemy? I mean, he had acolytes, too. Speaking of, did we ever go back and arrest those fools? Why wasn’t Wally healing in Flashpoint? Jesse coming home or nah? Why are we acting like Barry hasn’t killed before?
Listen. This had to be the stupidest plot line all season. We never got any reason as to why she’s the only meta-human who turns evil with their powers. None. Not.a.single.fucking.one. Just because. The cuffs worked just fine, but she didn’t want to charge them because she was told by Apple Care that Cisco would have to figure that shit out. She was so afraid to use her powers that she hesitated to use them to save both Barry and Iris, but was totally cool with making it snow because that’s important.
I am 100% sure Caitlin Snow voted for Trump.
After spending 15 episodes telling us that once she goes Frost she’s lost, they walked that shit all the way back by having her have moments of sympathy…. except for most of this hour when she was totally about to kill Cisco before Savitar said he needed him; which is something you’d think he’d have told her ass BEFORE she left to fucking kill him. Ugh.
After all of that, she just flips her humanity switch back on and she’s good again. THEN, because this wasn’t ridiculous enough, she didn’t even take the fucking cure. She’s walking around looking like Killer Frost in shitty lipstick, keeping her powers, but she’s not ready to be Caitlin Snow again.
Thanks a-fucking-lot, Caitlin. For nothing.
She Don’t Even Go Here
H.R. told Tracy he loved her with his dying breaths. They just met the other day. This character was introduced late and fast, and I did not care one bit about her confidence levels or her feelings for H.R. But since it appears Caitlin will be off on an Eat, Pray, Love soul-search next season, I suspect she will be our resident doctor until Caitlin returns.
What Did You Expect?
What would have been better? Well, if networks insist on these 23-episodes seasons, the stories need to be tighter and we they should do away with the season-long villain. Here, Savitar stopped being menacing and became tedious. When they finally revealed his identity, Grant Gustin’s #AllRemnantsLivesMatter Barry was far more compelling than Savitar ever was. The reveal should have happened sooner so we could have had more great scenes with him interacting with the rest of the cast.
We should have spent more time in Flashpoint.
A real commitment to Killer Frost would have been nice. She’s infinitely more interesting than Caitlin, and Danielle Panabaker injects Killer Frost with actual enthusiasm versus bland-ass Caitlin. If you tell us she’s going to be evil with her powers, and she ends up with her powers and no cure, let her be evil, damn it! She never felt like a real threat because we saw that, sometimes, appealing to her inner Caitlin works. She was Killer Frost for, like, six whole-ass episodes and didn’t kill a damn thing, and because of that, we knew she wouldn’t do shit in the finale either.
You know what would have way more interesting to explore? What the hell did Barry think was going to happen with time remnants if it worked in defeating Savitar? Why did Barry’s family and friends reject Savitar? You mean to tell me none of them had compassion for him and just kicked him to the curb? Really? Well, you know what, I say we let Savitar cook ’cause that’s pretty shitty. Also, why was his face like that?
Fuck your time loops, yo.
Can we end a season without leaving everyone feeling like shit?
Whenever DeVoe arrives, if it takes them 22 episodes to figure out the cerebral inhibitor I’m going to flip a fucking table.
Up To Speed
I spent a lot of time ragging on the episode. Here’s what’s good:
The acting from damn near everyone, especially Grant Gustin and Candice Patton.
Barry phasing Savitar out of his suit was cool, as was Savitar slicing down trees to slow down Barry and Wally, who are chasing him.
Iris and Barry at home, happy… for a hot minute.
Leave your thoughts on the episode below or on the Facebook post for this review, and we’ll read them on tonight’s podcast.
The Flash S3E23
Starring: Grant Gustin, Candice Patton, Jesse L. Martin, Tom Cavanagh, Carlos Valdes, Danielle Panabaker, Keinynan Lonsdale, Tom Felton