The showrunners and writers for The Flash continue to use the same formula that made season 1 such a success. Introduce a mystery villain in the first arc of the season, have the team try to figure out/defeat mystery villain in the second arc, reveal who the mystery villain is at the beginning of the third arc and defeat him at the end of the season. With the beginning of the third arc of the season the conflict between Flash and Zoom has now hit full stride. The team now knows that Earth-2 Hunter Zolomon is Zoom and we got the full background story of how Zoom is dying and needs Barry’s speed force to live. One thing I do like about this show that production team doesn’t try to overcomplicate things on this show.
The theme of how heroes and villains are born out of traumatic events is an ongoing occurrence in the comic universe. We get a glimpse of how both Barry and Hunter both witnessed the death of their mothers and the difference between the two going different paths was the support system of Joe and Iris that Barry had. Hunter was left abandoned by his family and sent to an orphanage which leads to a path him becoming a murderer. Barry is adopted by Joe and given a family life which leads to a path of serving law enforcement. Then both are transformed into speedsters by the particle accelerator which leads to their paths going hero/villain.
Cisco’s internal conflict of harnessing his full power and potential is slowing leading to his full inception of vibe. The lasting effects of time/earth travel continues to influence the relationships of the team. Cisco’s conscience continues each week to get the better of him ever since his encounters with his dopple-ganger. Cisco realizes that if he reaches his full potential of his powers he could easily be persuaded to become evil. I continue to enjoy the different movie references inside the show. Cisco comparing himself to Anakin Skywalker with the potential of becoming evil was a nice touch.
Something that has bothered me about this season is the fact Barry has not learned his lesson from Oliver or Reverse Flash that he can’t just solve everything with his speed. As a hero Barry hasn’t evolved like what we have seen from Oliver in Arrow or what Harrison Wells/Reverse Flash has taught him. Barry’s greatest weapon is him intelligence and it seems almost every week we continue to see a character resort to using his super speed to solve everything. On nice thing about Zoom taking Barry’s speed force is Barry will have to rely on his brain to defeat next weeks villain and Zoom.
This episode was a great way to bring us closer to the climatic end of the season. While season 2 hasn’t been as strong as the first, this episode did a great job bringing the audience back into the main conflict of the season. With all the time spent away from Zoom and the multi-week breaks from the show, this episode steered the show in the right direction.
Who else was waiting for Barry to mutter “Martha” when Hunter was choking him up against the wall? This would’ve have been a great opportunity for WB/DC to make a self-joke to acknowledge one of the biggest complaints about “Batman v Superman”.