Wednesday, 4 May 2016

The Flash 'Rupture' Review

This review WILL CONTAIN SPOILERS for the episode to be discussed, if you do not want certain plot points or story spoilt, please do not read further.

After a week without powers the show is ready to give Barry his speed back, but Barry isn't exactly sure that he wants to go through the process a second time.  Whilst some people would turn around and say that Barry should immediately jump at the chance to get his beloved super speed back, you have to remember that the first time Barry was almost killed, spent nine months in a coma, and that the last particle accelerator explosion created dozens of meta-human villains.  It actually makes a lot of sense that Barry wouldn't just jump straight into being the Flash again.

Some shows would have immediately had their hero stepping straight into Harry's machine and trying to get their powers again, but here Barry seeks advice from those around him as he tries to weigh up the pros and cons, we even get Barry's three dads on screen together again.  

Henry Allen makes his return after months away to give an opposing stance to Harry, who desperately wants Barry to become the Flash again so that he has the power to fight Zoom.  Harry, as can be expected from a father, is afraid that his son might get hurt, or killed, from both the experiment and Zoom.  Joe is the man stuck in the middle of this one, as he wants what's best for Barry, but understands the threat that Zoom poses a lot more than Henry does.

The interaction between the three of them is good, and we get to see just how differently the three of them care for Barry in their own ways, even Harry has come to care about Barry as something like a son, and Barry is definitely viewing him as a father figure.  Whilst I doubt that Henry is going to stick around for long (he hasn't so far this season) it would be nice to have more of these three together, each of them giving Barry different fatherly advice and support.

During the course of the episode Zoom makes his dramatic return to Earth-1, taking over the CCPD and driving the police out.  It's a tense moment, and one that I'm sure would have ended in a lot more death and destruction if it weren't for Caitlin.  

It's good to see that despite the reveal of Jay being Zoom and Caitlin being his prisoner we've not lost the Zoom we had before.  So many times in television shows a character's secret identity is revealed and they start acting differently.  Here, though, Zoom continues to use his Tony Todd voice and wears his mask in most of his scenes.  Even though we now know who's under the costume the mask and the voice still work to make Zoom an incredibly creepy and scary villain, something that would have been lost if all we saw now was Jay Garrick.

Just like on Earth-2, Zoom begins to use other meta-humans to help him to start taking over the city, and this episode he brings across a familiar face from Earth-2 to help him, Rupture.  Fans that are familiar with the comics knew straight away the identity of Rupture, and thankfully the show doesn't spend a great deal of time or energy trying to make it into a mystery and promptly reveals the villain to be the brother of Reverb, Cisco's double, and therefore the double of Cisco's own double.

Because Cisco vibes Rupture's arrival he mistakenly believes that his brother is in jeopardy and goes to meet up with him.  As he discovers he wasn't seeing visions of his brother, but his murderous double.  The two of them come under attack from Rupture and Dante finds himself in Cisco's world once again.

The episode uses the conflict and the revelations for Dante that Cisco is a meta-human, and that he travelled to another Earth, to bring the two of them together and to put to bed some of the animosity between the two of them, especially when Zoom ends up killing Dante's double.

Zoom sends Rupture to kill the members of the CCPD that have gathered at CC Jitters, but he's defeated with some quick work from the police and a very handy hologram of the Flash.  It's a good plan and it goes well, but when Zoom realises that Caitlin was able to warn them of the attack and gave them the chance to beat Rupture he decides to take matters into his own hands.

Heading to Jitters Zoom proceeds to kill half a dozen people live on television, including Rupture, and even reveals to everyone that the Flash that had been seen around the city was a hologram and that the real Flash was gone.

Spurred on by the deaths of the police officers and the belief that he could have saved them if he was still the Flash, Barry chooses to take Harry up on his plan and agrees to try and recreate the particle accelerator explosion.

Barry straps himself into the machine, gets pumped full of chemicals, gets hit by lightning and exposed to the accelerator explosion and instead of getting his powers back gets blown apart.  The moment comes as a surprise, as even I was expecting the episode to end with Barry having his powers back.  I don't think that he's dead in any way, this is his own show after-all, but it still came as a surprise.

The energies from the explosion also escape from the chamber that Barry was in and sweep through Star Labs to where Wally and Jesse are, washing over the two of them and throwing them to the ground.  I guess that this is the moment that Jesse Quick and Kid Flash get their powers.  I'm not surprised that Wally is getting super speed, but Jesse is definitely a pleasant surprise.  I'm glad that after pulling a switcheroo with Jay Garrick the show is respecting the legacy of the old Earth-2 characters.

I've no doubt that Barry will be pack very soon, probably the next episode, but maybe he'll be getting the help of two more speedsters to take down Zoom in the season finale, which would be awesome to see.


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