This The Flash review contains spoilers. Your regular Flash reviewer, Mike Cecchini, is off on a super secret comic-related mission. He’ll return after hiatus for the regular recaps.
The Flash Season 4 Episode 9
Oh, DeVoe is good. I’m not sure why he would let Barry know about his new, Dominic-shaped form when he didn’t have to, but framing Barry for his own murder is a new villain move for this show—and one that is welcome after seasons of speedsters who rely on their physical prowess to try to take Team Flash down.
Barry’s arrest for the murder of DeVoe is also a nice call back to the crime that set his life down a path of crime-solving and helping others: the murder of his mother, and his arrest of his father for the crime. Like Barry, Henry Allen was also falsely accused. Like Henry, Barry is not someone who runs away from his problems. When given the chance to speedster away, Barry decides to stay. “Don’t run,” he says aloud, looking at a picture of Iris. He not only promised Iris his love, but a life together in the light. If Barry has to stay in the shadows, running from the law, then so will Iris. (Though, I have to admit, Harry makes life as a wanted man look pretty easy. All you have to do is wear a hat when you go to Jitters.)
It’s moments like these that I wish Julian were still around—not only because I continue to find Dibny insufferably annoying, but because it would be handy for Team Flash to have someone with forensic skills. This is not the kind of problem Team Flash is going to be able to get out of with a new scientific contraption or any of their superpowers. This is a very human problem, and the kind of distraction that is going to keep Team Flash occupied while DeVoe and his wife go about enacting their “enlightment,” whatever that means.
Much of “Don’t Run” was a set up for this final reveal and, as far as water-treading goes, this was some pretty entertaining diversion. Katee Sackhoff continues to be delightful as the evil Amunet, bringing energy to the screen whenever she saunters into frame with her over-the-top nefarious nanny accent. Seeing her and Caitlin play off each other again worked well, especially as a vehicle for Caitlin to explore her insecurities about her value compared to the value of Killer Frost.
Having your friends potentially like your evil alter ego more than you may not be a particularly high-stakes problem, but it has some relatable qualities to it. I feel kind of bad for Killer Frost, however, that everyone felt the need to say how terrible she was in order to play up Caitlin’s ego. Can’t we have room for both of them? Killer Frost needs some love too.
This was a big episode for Iris, as well, who was asked to make a tough decision between saving Caitlin and saving Barry. I can see how this storyline seemed like a good idea, but it wasn’t particularly well-executed. Team Flash didn’t know that Caitlin wasn’t able to turn into Killer Frost. Furthermore, as much as Iris loves Caitlin, it seems unlikely that Iris would choose someone other than her new husband to save. I would have liked to see Iris’ big moment as the leader play out in a less contrived way, even if the results were pretty enjoyable.
Heading into the midseason hiatus, things are looking complicated for Team Flash, but not as grim as they have in the past. (Hey, no one’s properly died, right? … Unless you count poor, sweet Dominic. Is he still in there?) Barry may be behind bars, but this is a problem that exists within a system that has established rules, unlike some of the chaos Team Flash has had to deal with in the past.
It’s also a villainous obstacle that we haven’t seen before from The Flash (though, notably, is similar to Oliver’s current legal troubles on Arrow). It keeps the very sci-fi drama of DeVoe grounded in something real, at least for now.
Iris throwing shade about Oliver and Felicity semi-stealing Barry and Iris’ wedding was potentially the best part of this episode, and the best post-crossover wrap-up we could have asked for.
“Floatation mode, activated.” The Flash really went for the slow burn on this joke, and I appreciate that.
Did anyone else notice the Caitlin’s coat continuity error in that Christmas party scene?
Wally’s in Cambodia. Good for him. He should probably stay there for awhile. Enjoy the non-superhero life.
“This house is…” “Bitchin?” Another reference to one of the lines Barry muttered when he was in his beautiful mind state in the season premiere!