This week’s Flash had a ton of stuff going on. Some worked, Some didn’t. (Damn it Francine!) So let the Gladiators are here to break it down for y’all.
This episode centered on the search for a suitable host for the other half of the Firestorm Matrix. With Professor Stein getting progressively weaker and unstable because he no longer has anyone to “bond” with, its up to Team Flash to find him a suitable “partner”
to touch hands and become one with.
The search yields 2 possible candidates, brilliant scientist Professor Henry Hewitt and headstrong, former athlete Jefferson “Jax” Jackson. Despite initially being the more logical and compatible choice on paper, Hewitt fails to complete the Bond with Stein and becomes dejected and scorn. He becomes the big bad later on in the episode when he develops powers to go along with his grudge because we all know that’s How you make a Supervillain 101.
Meanwhile, despite initially not wanting to have anything to do with the whole thing, Jax turns out to be the perfect match to Prof. Stein and Firestorm is born once again.
I think the whole thing with Henry Hewitt is undercooked. He goes from logical mild-mannered gentleman scientist to flame-slinging psychopath faster than you can say “commercial break”. Frankly, I don’t understand what the big deal is. His “grudge” doesn’t stand up to logic. He still got the powers he wanted. What the hell is he still so angry about?
Jax on the other hand is handled way better. Credit Franz Drameh for turning in a solid performance, infusing his innate physicality with subtle quirks making for a compelling character. A great addition to the team.
Now lets talk about the things that didn’t quite work. For the 2nd week in a row the Francine storyline crashes through the station and goes off to nowhere. I’ve likened the storyline to a soap-opera before and this week it cements its status as such. It turns out Francine is sick (dum dummm duuuuuum) and she just wants to meet her daughter before she buys the proverbial farm.
Its a played out trope and sets up nothing in the story. It muddles the narrative and doesn’t seem to be going anywhere. We do get to see good girl Iris bare her fangs a little to chew out her Mom, so I guess we got a little good out of it. All in all though, I think the sooner they abandon this storyline the better.
The final fight with all three metas was very clunky and underwhelming. The villain was wrapped up as quickly as he was introduced. Which leads us back into the problematic “monster of the week” formula. The show really should take more time with their villains. Dwell on a guy for an episode or two. Make him really matter. It worked so well for the Captain Cold character. Instead of this route that the show continues to go on which is to introduce a villain and defeat him/her all in the same episode.
I guess ultimately that’s the hurdle that this show needs to get over to become really really great. It has to slow down. It tries to fit too much all in one sitting. This week alone there’s The 2 Firestorm Candidates, Francine, King Shark and Earth 2 Wells!
Maybe with the temporary departure of Prof. Stein we might get a little breathing room here and there so here’s hoping. Its unfortunate that the screen time had to come off him as his relationship with Cisco is definitely one of the more entertaining interactions in the show.
Finally though, despite all that, the cliffhanger at the end still managed to hype me up for the next episode. They’ve been on the money with this and here’s hoping it continues to be this way.
Some other things:
-I’m interested to see where they go with Earth 2 Wells. I hope they don’t retread the same old plotlines from before. (Can he be trusted, Is he Zoom etc. etc.)
-Also.. uh.. you’re Earth 1 counterpart sorta confessed to a murder. So.. uh.. goodluck with that.
-Where the hell was Jay? The Scarlet Speedster was conspicuously missing this episode. Busy NOT putting safety measure on inter-dimensional wormholes probably.
-More Spivot! Yayyyyy
-Also, Did Joe really just give Barry permission to sort of cheat on Iris? I don’t know, that whole lesson about “exploring” seems weird to me.
-New Firestorm looks pretty cool. The flying and the fighting needs a little bit of work though.
-“Jax, use your natural athleticism to stabilize yourself” Really, writers? Really?
-Caitlyn looking for love in all the wrong places. Just. stop. woman.
-Cisco with the Tinder references and the “Ultimate Swipe Left”. I’ve been doing a total 180 on this character, he’s easily one of the most entertaining parts of the show.
I give this episode 3.5 out of 5 lightning bolts.
and as always keep it locked on Geekend Gladiators for more awesome content!
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Raffy Leynes is a geek of all trades (master of fun).He loves videogames, comicbooks, movies, cartoons, wrestling, science and art. Lately, he’s been liking his geekery with a dash of “Indie”. He doesn’t know what the f*ck musings are but he is told he does them on his Instagram, Facebook and Twitter.