With a great guest star given little to do and Barry Allen/The Flash mostly in the background, this was one of the stranger episodes of The Flash I have ever seen. Relationships were at the forefront on many different scales, plots were set up for this series and another coming soon and an old friend made an appearance right at the end. A useful episode but still, very strange.
Lisa Snart returns looking for help finding her brother who she says has been kidnapped. Even though in a weird way this turns out to be true, it is just an excuse to further some story arcs, the main one being about the relationships between kids and their parents. As we saw at the end of last week, Iris’s mother Francine returns wanting to see her daughter and Lisa and Leonard Snart have to deal with the return of their father Lenny, played by veteran character actor Michael Ironside.
It was interesting to see the different dynamic between the two families, showing just how much influence parents have in regards to shaping the lives of their children. Even though Joe has to tell Iris the truth about her mother, his love for her has built a strong bond that will help them tackle big issues like this. The Snart family on the other hand….well, let’s just say that Papa Snart took two kids, who deep down are still good, and through his twisty and evil ways managed to turn them into the criminals they are today. Nice job, Lenny.
I have two complaints about the way the writers handled this. First of all, the Joe and Iris sit down had could have been a really big deal, and it was for a few minutes, until it seemed like someone just decided enough was enough and quickly moved to another part of the story. It was a very weird sequence that I believe robbed Iris of something really special. Also, if you are going to bring in Michael Ironside as a guest star, don’t you think he but his lack of dialogue and screen time left me frustrated. I would have loved to see more of him as Lenny but I guess he was just simply another plot device.
The rest of the episode dealt with the gang at S.T.A.R. Labs trying to figure out how to create a stable wormhole to help Jay Garrick return to his home on Earth 2. Professor Stein felt better enough to help out but that quickly went to hell and left Caitlin and Sisco confused at what to do next. Of course, with Legends of Tomorrow coming sooner than later, would could tell them it really doesn’t matter and that he’ll be safe and sound on another show but hey, that would spoil some of the fun.
On that point, this episode also seemed like a blatantly obvious setup to get Captain Cold on to the Legends of Tomorrow as well. While I appreciate that both The Flash and Arrow have work to do in this regard, I don’t want to see this become a re-occurring theme every week. Let’s just get them there and move on, shall we?
Also, the other thing that left me puzzled was the final clip of the episode. No, not who came through the wormhole but the fact that no security measures were taken at this end here in S.T.A.R. Labs. Didn’t anyone stop to think that maybe someone could come through from Earth 2 if they so pleased?
The episode did provide some good story lines but it felt a little weak and flat in some spots. However, with a lot of foundation now laid down perhaps the next few episodes will pick up the pace and get The Flash moving again. (See what I did there? Ok, no more bad jokes)
Three and a half stars out of five
- Great to see Captain Cold back, if only to help set up another show
- Good story lines concerning the dynamic in family relationships
- Michael Ironside. Always a bad ass.
- Story lines felt a little incomplete
- Yes, we all know about Legends of Tomorrow so let's get the show going already