Friday, 16 October 2015

The Flash: S02E01: "Man who saved Central City"

The Flash
S02E01: "Man who saved Central City"
Rating: 6

In A Nutshell

It's not been ages between seasons, but it certainly doesn't feel like just last week that The Flash was last on. Either way, even with my poor memory I could remember what happened roughly last series, so the recap was thankfully brief. After that cliffhanger of a singularity opening above the city, everything this week starts off very quiet and peaceful ... yes, they've skipped along six months (don't recall any caption) but it's made very obvious. Barry is going it alone and doesn't want anyone's help to combat crime. Cisco in working in the police department like some sort of whizzkid janitor. Iris is looking incredibly cheery despite Eddie's demise. I know it's months later but still, we're really skipping over her grief which would have been quite interesting to have lived through on screen.

Through a couple flashbacks we see The Flash and Firestorm stop the singularity, although we end up without Ronnie, as just Professor Stein returns with The Flash. Oh Well. Ronnie will return I'm sure. That guy just keeps coming back and going, and coming back. Sadly though he's rather a dull character outside of the superhero stuff.

So, six months has passed and it's the day before Flash Day, when Flash is getting presented with the key to the city. Barry's not sure he wants to turn up for event, but some prep talk turns him round. Sure as sure, an attack occurs as he's about to get the key thanks to some super strength and semi fast guy. Coincidentally, he looks exactly the same as a person they found dead earlier in the day at a building site, but alas, the body is still in the morgue. Flash comes off second best and, despite a get-together team-up to support Barry after yet more prep talking, he comes off second best once again.

In the interim, Barry receives a USB stick of Dr Well's video msg to Barry. He's already inherited the lab it seems from Dr Wells. He's no intention of viewing the message but when he goes to chat to Caitlin, the USB stick is with him and she convinces him to watch it. In the video Wells admits to killing Barry's mum, and thus Barry's dad is freed. However, his dad is not going to hang around. Just when you thought he might be a series regular, he's off again, choosing to keep his distance in order to help Barry do his job. Sort of makes sense, but then there are other people close to Barry that would be equally as problematic in the heat of the action.

Back to the main story, and they track down the bad guy, named "Atom Smasher" and trick him into following The Flash to a nuclear power plant, where he gets severely radiated to near death. His final words reveal he was put up to it by someone called "Zoom". As everyone gets all chummy at the end and ready to keep up the good fight against crime, an intruder appears and tells them that "their" world is in danger.

What I liked

Things zipped along at just the right pace, although they did sort of move past some of the season one emotional fallout.

Everyone will be glad that Barry's dad is finally released!

The usual enjoyable mix of characters is very good. The Professor as a regular isn't anywhere near as good as Eddie but he's likeable.

What I Didn't Like

Six Months Later: Programmes that skip along time periods never go down very well with me. They sometimes work, and in this episode it was quite nicely played, although it did make things skip by rather non-spectacularly perhaps, but at least there wasn't much to fill in ... aside from that singularity ... which brings me on to ...

... that singularity. We got a flashback to them fixing the singularity, which was solved so quickly, although at a human cost, that it lacked any real gravity of peril. Sure, buildings and people were being ripped up, but we saw this singularity appear so briefly at end of last season, that with it's limited time this episode, it all feels like a "flash in the pan" when we know (if you've seen the trailer for season 2) that the singularity has big consequences for the show.

It's not until next episode that this becomes an issue I expect, but this show is about to go all "Fringe" on us, which is good and bad, but I'm thinking mostly good.

Gideon! Hello? Every has forgotten the super tech AI in the lab! It gets a mention but one would think that AI would be being used all the time to see what's about to happen!

Said it last series and I'll say it again; Odds are we haven't seen the last of Dr Wells or Eddie. Admittedly we saw Wells in the video but I meant in person. Eddie I'm sure as sure will return. Ronnie probably also, although he's VERY boring.


Flash Bang Wallop; the singularity was fixed rather quickly.

So, Barry drops the USB Stick beside Caitlin, but didn't he earlier ...
... yes, he dropped it on the desk, discarding it with no interest of ever using it. So why did he have it with him later?

Welcome back Mr Allen! The party soon changes from a welcome home, to a leaving party though.

I come in peace and you're in danger. The cliffhanger.

And Finally

A decent opener that skips over what's happened in the last six months rather quickly. Perhaps that's because there's nothing much of note, but I do think we've missed out on some compelling emotional time with the cast. Although, what's coming up looks like "fun" ...

Rating: 6 out of 10

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