The Flash: The Flash Reborn
October 10, 2017 6:44 PM - Season 4, Episode 1 - Subscribe

Season 4 begins with a powerful armored villain threatening to level Central City if the Flash doesn't appear, so Cisco makes a risky decision to break Barry out of the speed force. But the Barry that comes out isn't the same Barry that went in.
posted by oh yeah! (10 comments total)
 
Hm. That was a weird outing. I'm reserving judgment about the season until we've seen a little more. In the meantime:

* Pacing was weird.

Barry's switch from 'bearded madman' to 'totally normal' felt really, really fast. Like... I don't think there was enough plot there to sustain a two parter, (not even close), but it might have been good to spend another couple minutes on him snapping out of it and getting up to speed, as it were, and a couple minutes less on something else.

I also have no response to "this house is bitchin'." I'm wondering if they're going to follow up on the bizarro language or what.

* Already concerned about the new season arc.

Every single season of The Flash has relied on the same basic formula: the villain won't try to kill Barry Fast because they need him alive for their own nefarious scheme. We're off to that pretty early here - I'm not sure how I feel about Barry's return being engineered by his new nemesis, instead of having the villain react to Cisco pulling it off independently.

* Nice to have Caitlin back.

I hope they do more with her, this season. I'm disappointed that she's still covering up Killer Frost instead of more integrated, but I'll settle for anything that gets her more screen time in either incarnation.

* Nice to have Cisco in the field.

I was hoping he'd end up a full fledged superhero, and here he is. That's a good move.

* Not sure about giving Barry a power up.

I'll admit I would've been more interested in having part of the season without Barry, even though I like Grant Gustin fine. Bringing him back and immediately making him overshadow everyone else even more than before was a mild disappointment.

So... yeah. Not sure what else to say yet, past I'm waiting and seeing.
posted by mordax at 8:09 PM on October 10


Flash sure loves pressing the big Reboot button, that's for sure. But if they really are going to ditch some grimdark and lighten it up this season, I'm fine with Barry's instantaneous sanity.
posted by oh yeah! at 5:02 AM on October 11 [1 favorite]


I also have no response to "this house is bitchin'." I'm wondering if they're going to follow up on the bizarro language or what.

Barry's bizarro dialogue was all ripped from past episodes or alluded to future storylines (there's a tease in there to "The Trial of the Flash" that has been teased since Season 1, too). I'm guessing that eventually Barry will visit a house that he proclaims to be bitchin'.
posted by Servo5678 at 5:46 AM on October 11 [3 favorites]


I....was okay with this episode. It's just become the silly nature of these shows to have some dramatic event for the season finale before handwaving a return to normalcy (for the most part) by next season. Even Cisco's plan was supported by, "I didn't just think this up, I've been working on it for six months!"

Definitely agree, though, I would have liked Berry with his marbles still a bit shaken up a little longer, though I got, uh, emotional, when he snapped out of it to save Iris at super speed. Ironically, though, it kind of highlights Iris' place on the show - a character who exists to be saved or to provide Barry with emotions. When Barry left at the end, Iris' expression didn't seem all together pleased. Am I wrong on that?

I think part of the reason Barry got the super charge was to make him the dominant speedster again, a title Wally basically stole last season. Good idea? Eh, but now you don't have to suppress a cough of disbelief in the opening title when Barry says he's the fastest man alive.

I'm definitely waiting for our next Harry to spring forth. Anytime now.
posted by Atreides at 7:27 AM on October 11 [1 favorite]


But if they really are going to ditch some grimdark and lighten it up this season, I'm fine with Barry's instantaneous sanity.

I just hope they stick with it. (And really, I just wanted like two minutes more, definitely not dragging it out across multiple episodes. It was definitely better to end this in the premiere.)

Barry's bizarro dialogue was all ripped from past episodes or alluded to future storylines (there's a tease in there to "The Trial of the Flash" that has been teased since Season 1, too).

Hm. Good to know. :)

Ironically, though, it kind of highlights Iris' place on the show - a character who exists to be saved or to provide Barry with emotions. When Barry left at the end, Iris' expression didn't seem all together pleased. Am I wrong on that?

I definitely felt that too, yes.

I'm definitely waiting for our next Harry to spring forth. Anytime now.

Likewise. I figure that'll take an episode or two, but he's their MVP - they can't have a season of The Flash without him.
posted by mordax at 10:48 AM on October 11 [1 favorite]


I feel like that the season setup is that Barry is not really back/fine? Like all his "shucks I don't remember anything" is shrugged off too easily. Joe kind of hints at this problem when Barry says he only remembers going into the Speedforce and then next saving Iris. Joe asks then how he knew he had to save Iris, which is an in-character detective-y thing to ask. But it's just kind of shrugged off even though it would have made more sense for him remembering Joe talking to him or at least breaking out of the containment unit (another indicator of his increased power, health, etc. which is kind of just not worried about too much).

The Speedforce has been portrayed as "smarter" or more aware than something that can be fooled by putting a decoy in Barry's place. Even if the switch allowed Barry to get out, the Speedforce would then notice, "Hmm, new speedster running around on Earth-1. Hey wait a minute..."

Anytime they deal with the Speedforce it always seems to be some sort of Monkey's Paw deal. So maybe the quark sphere locked onto a replicant, Bizarro Flash, other dimension Barry, or something else. In any case, I don't think "This house is bitchin'" is meant to be a throwaway gag and we'll see how this Barry is an alternate or altered Barry. For example, he is playing as very non-emotional - no big group hugs or tears of joy at seeing everyone and being back home. Even once he gets home with Iris he is not showing much joy or passion. And he runs off at the first sound of a siren. Fine, if it had been some big explosion but you know the odds are it is just a shoplifter or fender bender out on the highway.

Or maybe they just wanted a quick reboot to get the team back together and everything is fine!

Random observations:

When Peek-a-Boo pulls the guns out, there is ample time for Kid Flash to disarm her with super-speed in the pause it takes for Joe to blast her. Also they left her time to start teleporting again. I thought when they crashed to the ground Joe's job was going to be to block her vision somehow.

Another persisting theme is Characters Not Mentioning Useful Information. In this case, Barry not mentioning that the robot said "welcome back" and Caitlin neglecting to mention she is caught up in some sort of shady organization (and I'm sure next episode she won't mention her Frost relapse).

If it is impossible to get Barry drunk, how can they sedate him with a shot?

Are we not going to analyze those swords? Seems like they might be useful. Give Iris some fencing lessons and she is ready to join in the hero-ing. Relatedly, yes let's just leave this robot head out on a table and not contained in any way.

Caitlin is a hell of a shot to nail Barry in one try while he is zipping around the lab.
posted by mikepop at 11:55 AM on October 11 [4 favorites]


If it is impossible to get Barry drunk, how can they sedate him with a shot?

They have sedated Barry before with a super high dose of [I wanna say] elephant tranquilizer. Deadly to normal folks but even his speedster metabolism has to take some time to burn it off.
posted by Servo5678 at 12:21 PM on October 11 [1 favorite]


yeah there's a lot more suspension of disbelief i have to do with this show than most, even Legends of Tomorrow.

but whatever, I'll keep watching. (anything's better than the news!)
posted by numaner at 5:22 PM on October 11


"Two doctorates and a Ph.D." !!!
posted by plastic_animals at 7:36 PM on October 11 [3 favorites]


I just want to know what the costumer was thinking with the visible black bras/camisoles on Caitlin and Iris. It's not that I'm against underwear worn as outwear but it just seems odd that suddenly this is what both leading ladies are sporting.

Other than that, I'm also reserving judgment on this episode. It really felt like a housekeeping one: got to get the band back together. That's done and now (maybe) we can move forward, although positive momentum hasn't been this show's strength lately.
posted by sardonyx at 6:45 PM on October 12


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