The Flash "All Star Team Up" (REVIEW)
written by Justin Prince (@prince_justin)
For the second week in a row, I found myself rooting for the bad guy, Mark Hamill appeared last week on "Tricksters" and this week we have Walking Dead alum Emily Kinney making a guest appearance as the Bug-Eyed Bandit, traditionally an enemy to the Atom. Arrow stars Brandon Routh and Emily Bett Rickards also guest star as Ray Palmer/The Atom and Felicity Smoak respectively.
With Barry's suspicions of Harrison Wells growing into full on "he-is-Keyser-Söze" levels, a new threat starts dropping bodies all over Central City. The show runner's give the Bug-Eyed Bandit some new life, instead of looking like a ridiculous bug man subscribing to Sinestro Facial Hair Weekly... instead we got Emily Kinney sending arrows right through my nerdy little heart, rocking her hipster frames while murdering people with tiny robo-bees. I'll admit, I never was much of an Atom fan, so my knowledge of the Bug-Eyed Bandit is more or less limited. In the comics, he is Betram Larvan, a genius inventor with a penchant for bug themed micro-bots, Emily Kinney's Bug-Eyed Bandit is Brie Larvan, former employee of Mercury Labs looking to enact her own brand of righteous revenge against her former co-workers.
Felicty Smoak comes back to Central City; bringing her new beau Ray Palmer along, decked out in full Atom regalia. The last time we had a cross-over between The Flash and Arrow was several weeks back, and while seeing Oliver in Central City while Barry and company make their way back to Starling... this crossover didn't mesh as well as I hoped. I'm beginning to really like Ray Palmer... despite him not doing much shrinking... and the awkward back-and-forth banter between Ray and Felicity is nerdy gold... this dynamic duo is just too cute together.
Several threads convene throughout the episode; Eddie struggles with constantly lying to iris, Barry is of course wearing his emotions too visibly on his sleeve, and surprisingly... Cisco begins experiencing "visions" from the events previously cancelled when Barry initially jumped back in time, primarily the moment Harrison Wells kills hims. The theme of "don't trust anyone" permeates through most of the episode; wondering if Cisco and Caitlin are on his side and Iris questioning her relationship with Eddie play out in dramatic fashion.
While the underlying and eventual betrayal sat in the back of our heads, hunting down the Bug-Eyed Bandit sat front and center. She wasn't the most visceral of baddie Barry has had to face, but scenes with the Atom going toe-to-toe with Larvan's robo-bees fit together well when it comes to crafting good action. Here's hoping when CW launches the next series in their DC-CW Universe (one where the Atom gets top billing) Emily Kinney comes with.
The ongoing drama surrounding Eobard Thawne is peppered in lightly throughout the entire episode. Though we all know Harrison Wells is really Eobard Thawne wearing a Harrison mask, no one else knows... and somehow the eventual revelation feels like a slow crawl to an arguably depressing end.
Quote of the week has to go to Brie Larvan: "you think you understand the sing of betrayal? I'll show you what it means to be stung." Corny? Yes, but i really loved Beth on The Walking Dead and seeing her on TV again, albeit it brief, was de... wait for it... lightful, delightful.