Previously on The Flash, “Luck Be a Lady”
This episode, directed by Tom Cavanagh, felt very much like The Flash, but also unlike anything it’s done before. I can’t remember the last time an episode so perfectly walked the line between fun, campy superhero show and meaningful drama.
Joe West hasn’t told a soul about Cecile’s pregnancy. Even though he spends most of his time being grumpy, Barry detects a new glow about him. It’s not until he has — yet another — near-death experience does he blurt out the happy news to Barry. The rest of the team finds out in a montage free of dialogue, but filled with hugs and dancing.
Also bringing the comedy (dark, though it may be) is the arrival of Gypsy’s father, Breacher (Danny Trejo). He’s her boss, he has her powers, and he doesn’t like Cisco for no other reason than he’s dating his daughter. He begins a 24-hour hunt for Cisco throughout Central City. If he catches him, Cisco will die. Trejo managed to be terrifying yet still deliver in comedic exchanges like this one:
Cisco: “Do you do this with all her boyfriends?”
Breacher: “I hunted her last one, yes.”
Cisco: “Where is he now?”
Breacher: “I don’t know.”
Cisco: “He got away.”
Breacher: “I don’t know where you go when you die.”
The episode’s main storyline also injected a bit of humor in a dark situation. Another bus meta-human is identified as Ralph Dibny (Hartley Sawyer), an ex-cop turned private investigator with an axe to grind with Barry. When Ralph is attacked by two goons, his stretchy-body powers kick in. Caitlin works to find a way to stabilize it while Barry and Joe dig into Dibny’s shady dealings with the mayor.
Sawyer taps into early Jim Carrey as Dibny, except he’s not chewing up all the scenery. And even though he was responsible for a handful of funny zingers, his past with Barry is actually quite dark. Barry turned Dibny in for planting evidence, and ever since he lost his job his life has been rough: he’s gained weight, takes questionable cases, and lives paycheck to paycheck. Barry is all too willing to label him, and every other meta from the bus, as a villain because he believes people don’t change. Caitlin, who can relate to Dibny’s situation, pushes back and reminds Barry that they also help people and none of them are innocent of doing bad things for the right reasons. The dilemma with Dibny allowed the show to once again acknowledge the questionable decisions Team Flash has made in the past, but Barry bringing Dibny aboard by episode’s end doesn’t make much sense.
Up To Speed
Some really great laugh-out-loud moments this week, including Breacher finding out that Barry (previously thought to be Cisco’s personal assistant) is The Flash: “Your assistant’s a speedster?” And the team’s reaction to seeing Dibny literally sneeze his face off was hilarious.
I’m glad the show finally addressed something I’ve known since season one: that mayor was so shady.
Caitlin’s dealings with Amunet are a step closer to being revealed after she finds a threatening message on her front door.
When Dibny informs Barry that someone named Devoe hired him to look into the mayor, Barry remembers the name. This means we shouldn’t get a handful of episodes where Barry fails to connect the very obvious and close dots. Also, it’s interesting that this may or may not mean Devoe has a connection to The Thinker.
The Flash decided to finally confront the problematic nature of Cynthia’s codename, and it appears we should accept it because the character likes it. I mean, I guess.
What did you think of the episode? Leave your brief thoughts below or on our Facebook post for this review, and we’ll read them on tonight’s podcast.
The Flash S4E4 Review Score
"Elongated Journey Into Night"
Starring: Grant Gustin, Candice Patton, Jesse L. Martin, Tom Cavanagh, Carlos Valdes, Danielle Panabaker, Keinynan Lonsdale