With Barry’s speed gone, I expected this week’s episode to be a bit -for lack of a better word – slow. Realistically, it would be extremely difficult to match the intensity of last week’s episode. Well, that expectation held true, but at least we have a little anxiety brewing to see how Barry and Iris’ potential relationship develops.
The episode starts by contrasting a regular day in Central City against when Barry had his speed. Today, nothing seems out of the ordinary, [except Barry not having his speed] so he approaches life like an everyday, hardworking citizen. Barry wakes, gets dressed, catches a noisy bus, and waits in line to grab coffee before heading to the police department to tackle his caseload.
Whose fault is it?
Shortly after work, the crew convenes back at the lab trying to determine a way to bring Caitlin back, without Barry’s speed. Harry blames Barry for their recent misfortune, and he departs to find Jesse before Zoom captures her yet again. Harry plans to track dead zones that Jesse’s Earth 2 frequency creates. So, he departs with a gun in case he runs into any trouble, and in this chaotic city we know his caution is warranted.
Joe and Iris remain at the lab, and Joe tells Barry he isn’t responsible for Caitlin’s nor Jesse’s disappearance. Barry opts to stick around the lab and remain dedicated to whatever ways he has left to fight crime. His dedication is inspiring, heroes don’t always come equipped with powers.
Caitlin and Killer Frost
Cisco vibes off of Jay’s helmet and sees that Zoom holds Caitlin captive in his lair. Caitlin is shackled to a bed and refuses to eat or speak to Zoom/Hunter unless he takes off his mask. She [understandably] thinks he’s a monster and her words prompt Hunter to see visions from his past. After snapping back to reality, Hunter promises to change her opinion, says he loves her, and phases her shackles off.
Once free, Caitlin explores the lair, and finds Killer Frost and the masked man held prisoner in containment boxes. Killer Frost badgers Caitlin about her modest appeal and offers to help Caitlin return to Earth 1 in exchange for helping her escape from the box. She jokingly offers to throw in some additional wardrobe tips as well. Please listen to her Caitlin.
As Caitlin helps Killer Frost escape by warming the glass, Killer Frost reveals that she has a brother. Once free, Killer Frost literally turns cold and attempts to kill Caitlin. Zoom rushes in and saves Caitlin from an ice shard – after all he claims to love her – but he also chastises Caitlin and tells her if she tries to free the masked prisoner, then he too will die.
Harry finds Jesse hidden away at a distant apartment with a roommate. He explains that he tracked her by cellular dead zones and tries to persuade her to return to Star Labs for safety. She refuses to go anywhere with him and blames him for the danger that surrounds her life. She desires a new life and tells Harry that she is equally afraid of him and Zoom. Ouch, that’s insulting.
Harry leaves, and a strengthened metahuman wrecks/attacks his can by standing as a personal roadblock. Crash assistance installments on the Star Labs van alerts Cisco that Wells was in an accident and shows grainy footage of another person’s presence. Barry departs for the scene – like he re really has the speed or ability to to do something- and calls Iris for assistance.
Barry and Iris investigate the scene of the wreckage and determine that someone, likely to be an Earth 2 metahuman, was there. Barry says they will need Jesse’s help to find Harry.
An Arranged Meeting
Wally approaches Joe about the Flash, saying that he’s noticed the Flash at a couple of places where metahuman attacks happened and Zoom told him that “someone the Flash knew cared about him,” which he knows is none other than Joe. Wally wants Joe to set up a meeting between he and the Flash. At first Joe declines, but says he might pull an arrangement someday.
Wally continues to pressure Joe about the Flash. He feels indebted to the Flash and wants to show appreciation for trading his speed in exchange for Wally’s life. Joe says he needs a little while to work on it but believes he can make it happen with a little more time.
Griffin Grey’s Revenge
Griffin Grey kidnaps Harry because he is one of the “mistakes” or “sins” caused by the particle accelerator explosion. Griffin mistakes Harry for Earth 1 Harrison Wells and threatens to hold him accountable for the adverse effects it caused. Griffin possess super strength and can bend metal plates, but he also rapidly ages. If Harry can’t figure out how to stop the aging, Griffin will kill him.
Meanwhile, Jesse returns to the lab to help the crew analyze a fingerprint that Barry and Iris found at the van wreck. Jesse reveals that she’s a biochem scholar who had FIVE majors. Five majors, are you freaking kidding me?!
Aging Griffin Grey
Barry and Joe leave the lab to try and stop Griffin from breaking into a warehouse. Griffin launches explosive vials in the direction that Joe, Barry and Cisco are hiding. Barry outflanks Griffin, but misses the shot – I knew we couldn’t count on Barry without superhuman aid. Griffin launches yet another container that knocks Barry down, and Barry sees Griffin age before scurrying away.
Jesse returns with the blood sample and discloses that the more Griffin exerts himself, the faster he ages. It’s an interesting concept, and the crew thinks they can stop Griffin by tiring him out.
The Beginning of Iris West-Allen?
Apparently, Iris was the first person Barry saved after he got his speed. Barry saved her well before he knew what he could do, but recently his confidence and identity are lost without his speed. Iris comforts Barry by telling him that he is a hero with or without superpowers, even though we saw him fail without them.
Cellular Vibrations (continued)
Harry fakes like he’s developing a formula that will stop Griffin’s aging, but he believes there is no helping him. Griffin says he was supposed to marry his girlfriend and progress to having kids and a future, but his girlfriend doesn’t recognize him because of the rapid aging.
Griffin begins to rage out and his surveillance detects the crew’s presence, who found him by locating a constant signal emitted by Harry’s metahuman detecting watch. The Flash is ill-equipped for battle. His suit has been customized to absorb only ONE punch. I haven’t seen many fights end with once punch thrown, but I guess having ONE layer of defense is better than nothing at all.
Griffin moves to face the Flash, and blindly walks into a flurry of punches. Griffin responds by flinging a car and ages noticeably. He then lands a power punch to the reinforced region of Barry’s suit but follows with a few misses. As a result, Griffin begins to get old and feeble before landing a weakened punch on Barry.
Apologies and Promises
Once reunited Jesse and Harry apologize and forgive one another for their past mistakes. They understand their desperate actions were responses to dire situations. Harry says he broke when he couldn’t protect Jesse’s mother from dying and something snapped inside of him. Harry promises to become a father that Jesse can be proud of, if Jesse promises to never run away again. Yea right *side eye*.
The Flash meets Wally, under the same circumstances in which he met Iris when his identity was still hidden. Wally thanks him and vows not to waste the second chance that being saved generated.
Earth 2 Isn’t Enough
Hunter tells Caitlin she should be thankful that he saved her from Killer Frost. She expresses that she just wants to go home, which prompts Zoom to switch his focus from taking lives to conquering Earths. Yes that’s plural, Earths. He plans to start with Earth 1.
Meanwhile, Back at Star Labs, Barry longingly stares at the Flash suit and is downtrodden because his speed is gone. Harry enters and promises to help Barry get his speed back by creating a another particle accelerator explosion. Wait, another particle accelerator explosion? This should be good (OR bad, however you want to look at it).
All in all, this episode was just enough to tie the Flash fans over for another week. There wasn’t a whole lot of action, but the seeds have been planted for an eventful future. What will come of another particle accelerator explosion, if it happens? When will we see Barry and Iris’s relationship really begin to take form? Be sure to tune in next Tuesday night at 8 on Atlanta’s CW for answers!