The Flash returned last night with “Potential Energy” after a lengthy hiatus that had us fearing the fate of Harrison Wells once more.
Loving Tom Cavanagh’s presence in the series, the midseason finale concluded with his collaboration with Zoom. Often forgetful that Tom’s first role as Wells was actually the villainous Eobard Thawne in disguise, the Winter Premiere reassured us that goodness prevails, well, struggles onwards, through Tom’s revival as the real Harrison Wells of Earth 2.
Though he’d agreed to help Zoom steal Barry’s speed; in order to spare the life of his Daughter; Jess, Wells hasn’t surrendered to the dark side just yet.
With Meta-human; ‘the Turtle’ – a Reverse Flash, but not THE Reverse-Flash; of sorts, at the centre of the episode, the team begin to process the idea of stealing Zoom’s speed entirely, and ultimately defeating him. Able to slow the world around him, and prevent Barry’s speed, Patty and Barry’s relationship is pushed to the edge as he struggles with telling her his secret. As the Turtle takes Patty hostage to hurt the Flash, we’re left all but screaming, at the screen for her to figure things out.
Whilst Wells’ secrecy from the group is still reason to worry for his fate, it’s refreshing to see that Wells isn’t following a direct path to destruction; despite apparently killing the Turtle in order to stop Zoom, without sacrificing Barry to the cause.
With the return of Eobard Thawne from Earth 2; who is still the Reverse-Flash, are we being given a red herring or a double bluff as to Wells’ fate. Whilst Barry did gain speed in order to stop the Turtle, Wells warns him to protect Patty from Zoom, and thereby his secret. Will Wells be able to concoct a formula to stop Zoom; before Eobard Thawne has the opportunity to replace him.
Remaining optimistic, that Eobard Thawne is unlikely to give up his identity in order to serve Zoom, perhaps the return of the Reverse-Flash is the least of Star Labs’ worries. Whilst Wells is quoted to say that Barry and the team are Eobard of Earth 2’s. origin story; in the promo, are we to believe that his Earth 1 motives are to be reignited next week?
Disappointing are the exits of Wally West and, Patty Spivot. Whilst Wally is certain to make a return at some point to become Kid Flash; as true to canon, and evidenced by his love of speed this week, Patty leaves Central City; to train as a CSI, unaware of Barry’s secret. With the teasing of her coming so close to the truth, over and over again – especially this week – I can only hope that she is to return.
Whilst Wally took the defensive against Joe this week, his run-in with being discovered in front of his Father, at the police station, shows us that Wally is nothing but guarded and, redeemable in our eyes.
Racing cars with an obvious need for speed; Wally’s criminal side is validated, in his need to pay his Mother’s hospital bills. Through an arc that has him finding his place in Central City; whilst remaining loyal to his ailing Mother, Wally is shaping up to develop enough as a character to become a recurring and much-loved presence in the series.
For the love of Jay Garrick, the race to defeat Zoom is on. With Barry having a funeral to just miss in Arrow, and the revelation that Jay is dying without his speed – and the healing power that comes with it – a tumultuous few weeks are ahead, to conclude the 6 months of the Flarrowverse; that ends in tragedy for at least one character. Whilst the speedster making serum is still lying in wait to possibly subdue Eobard Thawne should he be evil, it seems too arbitrary to save Jay.
Whilst a trip to Earth 2 seems imminent, as the Midseason promo implies, it can be argued that Robert Queen of Earth 2 may make an appearance in time to unite the Flarrowverse once more for a funeral. With Oliver’s personal, and vigilante life, up in the air; perhaps the series will take note of The Flash’s multiple speedsters, and bring another Archer into the mix – Thea, Roy and Malcolm, notwithstanding. With motives identical to his own, perhaps another ‘Arrow’ would be a more apt way of putting it.
Also making an appearance is Killer Frost and Deathstorm. Whilst I was convinced that Ronnie from Earth 1 was alive in Earth 2; at Killer Frost aka Caitlin’s mercy, it appears that sadly only an evil incarnation of Ronnie exists.
With Jay’s fate in peril, and Ronnie’s return – kind of – will Snowjay last? after all, with the arrival of Kid Flash, how many speedsters can this series have?
Next week’s episode is set to deal with the return of Eobard Thawne. Will his origins be as dark as his Earth 1 self? Does Nora Allen still live in Earth 2?
The Flash airs Tuesday at 8|7c on the CW!
[Featured Image Courtesy of The CW; Source Content for Gifs: The Flash, The CW, 2016]