Flash- Season V- Ep. 7 “O Come All Ye Thankful”: A Review

Posted: 11/29/2018 in Uncategorized

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Yet again, another mixed bag ep…but one pushing more toward good. Overall, Flash gets its groove back with heart, humor and a strong reveal with due gravitas regarding Cicada. More good than bad but still a trifle uneven, Flash still struggles to return to the glory of its earlier seasons. My review follows below.

Holiday episodes tend to favor this series with this latest run being no exception. All but Sherloque (Tom Cavanaugh) are ready for Thanksgiving. The banter, featuring Cisco (Carlos Valdes) and the latest Wells incarnation, is actually funny:

Sherloque Wells: I don’t understand. Explain again to me what the difference between this day and every other day in America?

Cisco Ramon: It’s a holiday when we all get together and celebrate and eat a ton of food. Like, a gross amount.

Sherloque Wells: Again, what the difference between this day and every other day in America?

The standoff leads to Caitlin (Danielle Panabaker) being drawn in to explain with standard, “love and family” reasoning. Much funnier is a later sequence in which the trio drink amongst themselves celebrating “thankless” day. We know however that “Flash” is more about optimism and levity than embracing inherent cynicism. As such, we know “thankless” won’t last long but it is nonetheless funny and maintains that the dynamic of Wells, Cisco and Caitlin works unquestionably regardless of character incarnation.

Hearkening back to superior villains, namely Mark Mardon/Weather Wizard (Liam McIntyre) reminds the viewer how good the show was. The next generation of villain bolstered by dark matter tech is a shadow of the meta gen that precedes it. The villainess du jour, “Joss/Weather Witch” (Reina Hardesty) is a spoiled idiot with a murderous streak. Paralleling her, unfortunately, in this ep is Nora Allen/XS (Jessica Parker-Kennedy) whose behavior is so selfishly puerile as to again motivate me to empathize and sympathize with Iris (Candice Patton). Honestly, with the disruptive behavior and time line tampering ad-nauseum, I often wonder why the “Fastest Man Alive” doesn’t just keep running away…This episode did not favor Nora…though it might inform the “Elseworlds” arc to come.

The addressing of the anger within Nora covered by the bubbly pep gets addressed, but honestly…it has little ground to stand on. Her father is the Flash and will therefore behave heroically. This in turn will feature boundless risk and near death experiences. Her being a hero in her own time line and not getting it was just…well…silly. Her asking him to renounce the one thing that truly makes him whole is the epitome of selfish.

This latest arc again falters via ridiculous obliviousness to the fact that Barry Allen/Flash (Grant Gustin) can move as fast as the speed of light on occasion and yet, he cannot catch an enemy hiding behind a door, nor can he outrun elements that can kill or do him damage with routine frequency. The denouement of this arc featuring Team Flash using their collective intelligence to undermine Weather Witch was more vintage Flash, but again…the opponent was so sub par and lightweight compared to what Barry has faced before that such clever planning was unnecessary.

Where the show soared however is the reveal of the back story of Orlin Dwyer/Cicada (Chris Klein). With this arc, the show demonstrated incredible emotional punch. The moments between Dwyer and his niece Grace (Islie Hirvonen) were earnestly performed and had powerful delivery. The connection between the two including Dwyer becoming a better person was superior. Grace’s maturity beyond her years as she both course corrects and challenges Dwyer to be a better person and parent was great to behold. The new home sequence was among the best moments ever featured on this show. By the time Orlin Dwyer’s doom occurs, you are already pulling for him and Grace. He is by far the most empathetic villain in this series’ history. Doctor Ambres (Lossen Chambers) giving him the push to start his mission is the match which ignites a path from which he won’t easily be deterred.

With equal parts heart, levity and action, Flash again endeavors to return to form. This ep was a step in the right direction. Flash is not yet outstanding but is assuredly well worth your time.

 

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