The Flash "Tricksters" (REVIEW)
written by Justin Prince (@prince_justin)
In one of the most anticipated episodes this season, a very special guest joins... bringing a blast from the past that'll make ya grin ear to ear. While Barry and Joe are investigating Harrison Wells, a new player makes himself known in Central City. Axel Walker, the Trickster, makes his Central City debut with multiple incendiary explosives at a very busy playground. As if Barry's hands weren't full already, now he has to deal with a nut in a mask. Turns out Axel Walker wasn't the first man to call himself the Trickster... and here's where Mark Hamill comes in. Utilizing some archive images from when Hamill played the Trickster in the 90's adaptation of The Flash, this Trickster is James Jesse... a costumed crook and psychopath who left a string of bodies and broken dreams years ago when Joe was a young cop.
Initially Barry and Joe go to James Jesse, informing him that this copycat is using all his old tricks... thanks to robbing Jesse's original lair. But of course the theme of tricks persists through the entire episode... it really isn't always what you expect. Taking cues from Arrow, this episode is littered with flashbacks... primarily a time when Harrison Wells wasn't a psychopathic speedster with a grudge... actually these flashbacks show a different man claiming to be Eobard Thawne... so who is Harrison Wells? All questions get answered as the episode closes.
As amazing as this series has been, this one hands down has to be the best episode yet! Mark Hamill is electric reprising his role, and seeing this mini reunion between Hamill and John Wesley Shipp (he plays Henry Allen but also played the Flash in the 90's series) was an incredible treat for the fans.
For the comic book initiated, seeing two Tricksters on the same screen bridge two generations of the comic book super-villain work extremely well. While in the comics, Axel Walker becomes the Trickster after stealing the original's stash after a reformed James Jesse works with the FBI. The dynamic between the two is a bit different this time around, instead James Jesse is Axel's father... best quote ever? Mark Hamill maniacally saying "I am your father," yes... that happened.
Mark Hamill was perfect as the Trickster and pretty much stole the show, there was a tinge of Joker in his delivery and while his portrayal of the Trickster was quite different from his turn in the 90's, this wasn't a problem to me... I may be a bit bias but Mark Hamill can do no wrong.
The countdown to the end is coming, more answers with even more questions. The series has been running at breakneck speeds this entire season. I can't wait to see how everything resolves itself.