The Flash sped its way into its freshman season finale. Tonight was full circle from the pilot episode. Barry Allen is the fastest man alive, one day he would get justice for his mother’s murderer. Tonight’s episode centers around his personal mission, and the impact that would make on his family, Team Flash.
***** SPOILER ALERT *****
“Fast Enough” felt like an epilogue of a good book. While there was clear story progression within this episode, the focus was about both closure, and then new beginnings.
The episode begins with what happens now that Eobard Thawne has been captured. So much of this season was not only finding out who the Reverse Flash was, but then also trying to get ahead of his schemes and if possible capture Eobard within his Dr. Wells persona. For Barry it was also about finding the real murderer of his mother and free his father from prison.
Even within the meta-cells of S.T.A.R. Labs, I felt that Eobard was continuing to play chess with Barry Allen. Thawne had one play left, and he used it. He told Barry that they could work together for both of their benefits. Barry would be able to save his mother and for Eobard to return to his present timeline.
I could see early on in this episode that there would be some excellent father and son moments between Joe and Barry. It was really cool that they spent some time looking at the ramifications if Barry went to the past to change history by saving his mother. The biggest being that Joe wouldn’t have the paternal relationship he does with Barry. He continues to be a wise sage for Barry. While everyone piped in their thoughts, Joe encouraged Barry to save his Mom… to be able to remove all of those wounding, painful memories of grieving a mother. Joe stayed strong being the father he has been since her death.
Cisco and Eobard had a few moments this evening. One of the best gems of the night was the conversation about the Flash Ring. I knew that Cisco wouldn’t be able to let that drop, after all he is the fan boy for all of us. It was good also to see closure for Cisco, as he took baby steps of confronting Thawne about the memories he had of the alternate reality. Interesting enough, Thawne tempted Cisco into the possibility that he himself was a meta. It will be interesting to see what happens in this next season with Cisco.
Caitlin also had a new beginning, a new life with and Ronnie Raymond, as they were married. It may not have been a pinnacle part of tonight’s episode, but it was good to see Caitlin’s tragedy finally transformed into a happy ending… for now.
It was good to see that Dr. Stein and Ronnie melded very well into Team Arrow. With Harrison Wells no longer part of the team, I see Dr. Stein replacing that area of scientific theoretical expertise (until Legends of Tomorrow begins). It was cool seeing Stein’s addition to Caitlin and Cisco as they were talking quantum physics, time travel and alternate realities.
Eddie and Iris were also around the Lab for a good part of the episode for, what seemed, support with all of the emotional decisions having to be made. I am sure Eddie was also there to make sure Eobard remained locked up. I thought Eddie and Stein had a great conversation. Stein set in motion that Eobard couldn’t kill Eddie because they were connected.
Eobard continues to ever be the chess master. He continued to manipulate and move Team Flash to grant him what he wanted even as they refused to trust him. The team agreed to construct a time machine to help Thawne, as he showed what Barry needed to return to his past to save his mother. Eobard called their power, the Speed Force. I could be wrong, but I believe this is the first time their powers were given that name within The Flash.
Of course, there would have to be a risk to creating a temporal wormhole. Nothing could be simple. This made a difficult decision even more complicated. We all know that Barry was going to attempt to save his mother. Of course, Thawne’s brilliance supported by the Team Flash brainiacs built the time machine and created the circumstance for Barry to return to the past.
I can’t imagine what it would be like to be able to change reality. What all was going on in Barry’s mind. We know that Barry is a good man and a amazing hero so when Barry did arrive,and his future self signaled him to not get involved. Barry watched his mother get stabbed by the Reverse Flash, he watched his Mom die. After both future speedsters left he went to his Mom. This I believe was the closure that Barry needed. Being able to say goodbye to his Mom doesn’t stop the pain, but I believe it allows him to move beyond where he has been for years with the grief.
Barry returns to the present to stop the Reverse Flash from returning to the future. When Barry destroyed the time machine and prevented Thawne’s return to his present, Reverse Flash intensioned to kill The Flash, Team Flash, then everyone Barry had ever cared about. At that point, Eddie sacrificed himself to prevent Eobard from existing (in this reality). I didn’t see the sacrifice coming, but I wasn’t sure if Eddie was ever going to make it through the whole season. I guessed that he would have either gone down a dark path next season or he would die this season like Tommy Merlyn did in Arrow’s first season.
This season ends with an unstable temporal worm whole that Barry is trying to dissipate by using his speed force. You see the Flash entering the worm whole as it ends the scene. I believe this opens the door wide open for the rouge time traveler Rip Hunter to be introduced in season two paving the way for 2016’s Legends of Tomorrow. We also got to see the first images of the civilian who will be LoT’s Hawkgirl.
This season has been an incredible ride for The Flash. I personally think it has been much better than I could have ever imagined. I also see that the future for DC on the silver screen next fall will be legendary, till then “May the Speed Force be with you.”
The Flash will return this Fall on The CW.