Flash "The Reverse Flash Returns" (REVIEW)
Written By Jacob Chimilar (@sweetlows)
This week, as the title of the episode suggests, brings us the return of The Reverse Flash. Staying true to the comics, Eobard Thawne became obssessed with The Flash and wanted to not only become him but become a better version of him. He recreated the events that gave him the Speedforce but instead of being good he decided to be the reverse in every way. I personally find this to be strange. If I can't be better than him I'll be as good physically but morally worse just out of jealousy. None the less the episode revolves around the capture of Reverse Flash. The way they manage to accomplish this comes in the form of Cisco, who with the help of Wells, creates a device that can activate Cisco's Vibe powers using adrenaline boosts to help trigger the power. Cisco officially donning his "Vibe" goggles felt reminiscent of Professor Xavier in Cerebro, immersing him in a a world where he can see and sense all manner of events.
It is here that we see The Reverse Flash killing Dr.Mcgee who helped get a machine capable of returning Thawne to his original timeline. What the team further learns is that what Cisco sees is three hours into the future. After a hard fought battle Barry manages to take down Thawne and disable the machine so he can not get back to his timeline. They lock up Thawne in their cell to interrogate him. Cisco out right gloats at his powers that Thawne himself helped give to Cisco and then Barry gets the back story on how Thawne became the Reverse Flash and will go after him and his family once he knows his true identity. The reason he does not know this yet is because in his personal timeline he is meeting Barry for the first time as The Flash and has not gotten that knowledge yet.
Later we see Cisco having some nose bleeds. These incidents become more and more frequent until he begins to seize and seemingly fade away. I personally found the effect to be a bit cheesy even for plot purposes I think they simple, hand starts to fade style fading would have worked instead of the shaking full body ghosting. This is brought on by having Thawne being in the the current timeline and having a "speedforce invulnerablility" to Eddie Thawne being killed not allowing for Eobard to be born has causes there to be a paradox that can only be rectified if Thawne goes back to his timeline to continue his story as planned, including the death of Barry's mother. Something that is a fixed point in the future in the context of the overlapping timelines of Barry and Thawne. The universe is playing out a sort of alternate version having the reverse flash in the time he is in and that side effect is causing Cisco's slow disappearing.
Since Barry destroyed the machine to get him home they do it the old fashioned way. Run super fast until you create a hole to the future to throw someone through. All in a days work for Barry. They let Thawne go and the two of them race around the same track space that Barry and Wells ran in the first season and launch him into the future.
Elsewhere Barry is having troubles with Spivot as she desperately tries to find reasons to stay and Barry does nothing to allow for that to happen. He feels she should go live her dreams and accepts everyone he loves leaves him eventually. Kind of a bummer attitude if you ask me. Patty at this point has gotten all the clues she can possibly get from Barry and even a few now from Joe including that he works at STAR Labs on occasion. Being a clever detective she digs deeper and sees that all the cases he works on are related to the flash. She pieces together that Barry is The Flash and Joe all but confirms it with his reaction. She confronts Barry about it and says that she will stay if he just admits that he is the flash. Barry remains tight lipped and denys that its him. Upset and surely frustrated Patty says her last goodbyes and heads to midway city. But just before she does she makes a call to Barry that someone on her train is threatening passengers. He says he will "send help", Barry looks at his suit and shoots off to save Patty. It turns out to all be a trick to get Barry over there as The Flash as final confirmation. He accepts it finally that she caught him and they seems to share a knowing "goodbye, I'm glad it ended this way" look.
Lastly comes Jay's illness. Catlin had the idea that if she could get a hold of his doppelganger they may be able to work together to help cure Jay. She so desperately wants to help him because her father had MS and she had to watch as he slowly faded away and she doesnt want the same thing to happen to someone else she cares about. Unfortunately she finds no record of an Earth-1 Jay Garrick anywhere. When she talks to Jay about it he says that he was on to the same thing. He however has found his Earth-1 equivalent, just under a different name. Hunter Zolomon. He was adopted, hence the name change. He is however not a viable candidate because Jay's DNA was mutated when he became a speedster so he is not compatible with Zolomon unless he too was a speedster. So once again they hit a dead end and the only way to save Jay is to stop Zoom and get his powers back. Something that was supposed to be made easier by harnessing The Turtle's powers. However after Dr.Wells took a sample through his nose he caused a brain aneurysm to kill The Turtle rendering his help also useless. It's a tough day for Jay.
Another dandy episode of the Flash. I'm always impressed with how well the show is able to handle personal drama and superheroics in the same episode and have it all work so well together and feel honest and true and not forced melodrama. Unlike Arrow, Flash has not hit a mid season slump and lets hope the trains keeps moving.