Ryan McGee Biography
In some ways, tonight’s episode of The Flash functions as a true season finale. If my instincts about next week are right, next week is really meant to set up next season rather than put a capper on this one. I’m not sure “Rogue Air” was actually a particularly great episode of The Flash in total, even if the last five minutes featured some pretty spectacular superhero action. The rush those minutes provided, capped by the seeming victory over Barry’s arch-nemesis, might lead one to feel more positive about the episode as a whole. But whether or not you enjoyed this episode or not, one thing seems certain: Eobard Thawne had to be stopped tonight so things can truly go to hell next week.
If The Flash titled its episodes like Friends, this one would have been called “The One Where Iris Finds Out”. But it’s not, so it’s called “Grodd Lives” instead. What many of us watching this show all season have been waiting for finally happened, this time without any time travel shenanigans undoing the reveal. I’m of two minds here: Of COURSE I’m happy Iris is finally on the inside, but in no way did the show justify waiting this long to do so.
The Flash is often resistant to the type of analysis that helps populate episodic recaps. That’s not to say it’s not good, which it often is. That’s not to say it’s not entertaining, because Lordy was “The Trap” entertaining. It’s just that everything that’s good about “The Trap” is right there on the surface. There are no metaphors, similes, or subtext to the episode. It’s pure plot, deployed in expert fashion. You saw the same things I did. There’s not much for me to explain. I’d simply be regurgitating the episode right back at you. And that’s neither good nor entertaining.
The Flash can do many things well. “Moody” is not one of those things. So when “Who Is Harrison Wells?” slips into a melodrama about Caitlin’s disbelief over her mentor, which is a lot of tonight’s hour, the show gets bogged down in all the weight that burdened the show during its brief Firestorm arc. This week’s episode wasn’t bad, but it was certainly a letdown after the highs of the past two weeks. It was an installment running in place and only offering the illusion of actual progress.
OK, let’s state up front that the Iris material is a complete anchor on the show and that Eddie Thawne is probably the only reasonable person on The Flash when it comes to her being in the dark about Barry Allen’s identity. The show is building towards a place where Eddie is disillusioned by The Flash and ultimately starts the path that Eobard Thawne picks up a few centuries from now. The show can’t undo the mess it’s done here, so it just has to plow through the muck until that glorious, glorious day in which Iris knows Barry Allen’s secret.
OK, well now that’s a lot more like it. The 2015 run of The Flash hasn’t been that strong, with an inability to plot over the long term and a semi-disastrous redo of the timeline last week hurting the overall quality of the program. But “Tricksters” does what the show does best: Dole out a fun villain of the week and incrementally move the overall season along without really giving away the farm. That seems like an odd thing to say given the flashbacks in tonight’s episode, but in reality, this episode told us far less than it initially appears.
On Community, there’s the concept of the darkest timeline. Well, I think we just saw the lamest timeline on The Flash.
Welcome back to another installment of the Monday Morning Critic. In this space each week, I’ll be looking at the week that was in addition to the week ahead in television. The format will shift each week, as the world of TV will dictate the form and content of each piece. In this week’s installment: shows that are in danger of falling into my DVR abyss.
Through the first fifty minutes of tonight’s installment of The Flash, I was thinking it was a middling-to-OK episode of television. Way too much love quadrangle baloney, way too much Joe trying to go alone even though he should know better, way too much of the show starting the slow burn of Cisco figuring out Wells’ true end game. And then the last ten minutes happened and everything changed.
Welcome back to another installment of the Monday Morning Critic. In this space each week, I’ll be looking at the week that was in addition to the week ahead in television. The format will shift each week, as the world of TV will dictate the form and content of each piece. In this week’s installment: reviews of iZombie and Undateable.