Slowing things to a halt by speeding things up, The Flash this Tuesday delivered its most suspenseful and interesting episode of the season — and then capped it with a curious tease about The Waitress’ agenda.
Starting with an in media res, in which an exhausted Barry laments to Iris that he can’t save them this time, we rewind just nine minutes or so to business as usual at S.T.A.R. Labs, where Wells reveals that DeVoe has been flitting around town, lining up his dominoes, for a full three years. Then, shortly after Jesse Wells arrives to glean from her dad the meaning of an Apology Cube he sent, Joe sends the Flash signal, upon being caught in an airport hangar shootout between an A.R.G.U.S. escort and a team of eco-terrorists. Though Team Flash is quick enough to disarm the terrorists, Barry is too late to keep their leader, Veronica Dale, from triggering a nuclear bomb.
Barry then spends almost all of the episode in “Flashtime,” in which speedsters move so fast that time appears to “freeze” for everyone else. First order of business, he sends Jesse to fetch Jay Garrick. He then brings Cisco into Flashtime to analyze the experimental fission engine that has exploded. Cisco is able to detail the color changes it will cycle through, but is unable to breach it anywhere, before he passes out. Next, Barry consults Harry, who suggests lobbing the bomb into the Speed Force, but an arriving Jay Garrick strongly advises against that. For one, it would cut off all speedsters from access to their powers. But also, the Speed Force is critical to the multiverse at large, so its elimination could have untold ramifications.
Jay suggests that cooling down the bomb could restore the splitting atoms’ stability, so they bring Killer Frost into Flashtime — except her powers aren’t enough to have any effect. Jesse gets the idea that the speedsters could generate enough energy to offset the blast, by simultaneously hurling lightning bolts into it. But when they attempt that, Jay conks out, exhausted by Flashtime. And Jesse doesn’t last much longer. Barry then turns to Iris, who in their brief, atypical bit of needed “quality time” is sparked to remember the Quark Sphere that they used to trick the Speed Force into thinking Barry was still in it. Given its propensity to attract lightning bolts, it could do the job the three speedsters couldn’t. So Barry dashes into the Speed Force, grabs the sphere, emerges at the airplane hangar and hurls it at the bomb — along with the dozens of lightning bolts that follow it. Success!
Afterward at S.T.A.R. Labs, Jay announces that he’s ready to hang up his speedster suit, but not before he trains another, female Flash on his Earth. Elsewhere, Harry tells Jesse know how hard it has been for him to accept her mother’s death, using the reversed mental dampener to let her hear his thoughts — her late mother’s doting voice included.
Later, Harry goes for coffee with Caitlin, who shares that for the first time, she knew was Killer Frost was saying and doing during their time “apart” — and during the bomb crisis, as we saw, Frost was worried… about Caitlin. The chat is cut short, though, by — who else — the unnamed waitress, first seen at the WestAllen wedding. She explains that she is a bit nervous, seeing as she’s meeting some people there for the first time. Caitlin wishes the young woman luck, saying, “I hope it goes well” — after which, the suddenly serious waitress mutters to herself, “It did.”
What did you think of “Enter Flashtime”? Which speedster do you think Jay will train? Why was The Waitress been meeting(/touching?) Team Flash members one by one? (And are those last two questions related?)