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The Flash “Back to Normal” Review

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Hey everyone! Logan here. Thanks for stopping by and following the reviews! As you may have noticed, we missed last week’s review of The Flash due to my being off vacationing in The Bahamas! It was wonderful (and yes, I came back with a sunburn as a souvenir), but I’m back in business now and you can look forward to reviews of The Flash coming to BagoGames on Wednesdays through the rest of the season!

On last week’s Flash, Barry gave up his speed in order to save Wally, but lost Caitlin in the process, along with curing Zoom and making him even more powerful. Good move, Barry. It wasn’t the strongest or most convincing action that’s ever taken place on the show, but having a powerless Flash this week made for a nice change, and the title resonated on more levels than one, as the show once again proved its ability to be relatable and endearing.

So…do you come here often? (The Flash, CW)

Let me get the Zoom/Caitlin storyline out of the way first. I’ve grown up watching Danielle Panabaker for years (Sky High was a thing), and it pains me to watch her struggle with the performance here. She, as an actress, is naturally sweet and enjoyable, which carries her quite far, but sometimes her moments don’t quite land or get lost amidst the other excellent performances on the show. “Back to Normal” was not one of her highest points, and her dual performance as Killer Frost rang a bit too much like Captain Cold (which was an intelligent choice to make, but his performance was never outstanding either).

That being said, Teddy Sears continues to redeem the character of Jay/Zoom. A couple of months ago, I was pretty harsh on the lackluster Jay Garrick and, before that, the absence of motivation for the villain Zoom. Neither of those are issues any longer. Sears has evolved Jay (or should I say Hunter) into an aggressive and engaging character fueled by a deep-seated pain, and his psychotic descent is absolutely fascinating to watch. His final declaration of conquering Earths was a satisfyingly villainous line, and the upcoming final battle is one that has endless potential.

The boys. Bringin’ the thunder. (The Flash, CW)

Moving on, we had Griffin Grey this week as an incredibly strong metahuman who ages as he uses his power. The villain-of-the-week recipe was never where The Flash excelled before, but it fit in nicely this week in a sort of “calm before the storm” fashion. Barry, sans super speed, is still hellbent on being a hero, and does so by consistently throwing himself into physical danger. It wasn’t the most original of approaches, but the concept was effective in showing us (and Harrison Wells) the hero that Barry truly can be.

And this was important, as Wells needed to reconnect with Barry and the team prior to the final confrontation with Zoom. The first part of the episode found Wells angry with Barry for putting his daughter in danger, so he goes after her. But this week proved to be a week of learning and growth for Tom Cavanagh‘s character, as he learned to let go (just a bit) of his incessant protection of Jesse and trust Barry and the team just a bit more. Cavanagh has always been a highlight on The Flash, and his approach to navigating the arc of his character this week was no exception.

You may lose your super powers, but science will never abandon you! (The Flash, CW)

However, highlight of the week definitely goes to Keiynan Lonsdale as Wally West. Wally’s character hasn’t had a lot of direction or definition this season, but after being saved by The Flash last week, he is extremely grateful and wants to thank The Flash in person. It was a brief moment, and a brief thank you, but Lonsdale’s performance was moving and truthful. It really set the character up for something greater (or super, perhaps?).

We were left with a moment of connection between Wells and Barry in the lab, where Wells describes his plan to create another particle accelerator explosion to help Barry get his speed back. It’s a plan that definitely makes for some exciting television and I, for one, can’t wait to see how the season is going to end up. Four more episodes!

Plus, the Kevin Smith episode is only two weeks away!

Have thoughts? Theories? Tweet at me: @LoganASchultz or email me: [email protected].


The Flash airs Tuesdays at 8/7c on The CW.

The Flash - "Back to Normal"

The Flash -
8.5

Score

9/10

    Pros

    • Jay/Hunter/Zoom continues to develop
    • Wells grows and connects with the team
    • Wally West begins to move forward

    Cons

    • Panabaker's performance doesn't quite land

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