Barry meets the first member of his Rogue’s Gallery and gets a visit from an old friend.
It’s Barry’s day off, and he’s working at STAR on finding the limits of his super speed. The day off is interrupted when they get a notification about an armed truck robbery. Barry suits up and races over to stop the robbery but the criminals get away when he stops to save a guard that they shot. Later, he and Joe ID one of the robbers as Leonard Snart. Snart’s a bit of a career criminal but nothing superhuman. As Joe looks into the robbery, Barry is joined by Iris who’s still on her dad’s bad side after revealing that she’s dating Eddie (his partner). Joe’s not too happy with Eddie either. As they walk into his lab, they’re surprised to find a visitor: Felicity Smoak.
Felicity is in town because she found out he was out of the coma when she heard Barry and Oliver talking on that rooftop in Starling. She came back to check up on him (and she apparently brought a lot of outfits to do it). After a quick demonstration of his powers, Barry takes her to STAR where she meets Dr. Wells. Of course, Wells knows all about her and she knows a good bit about him as well. She observes Barry with the other scientists and starts to pose questions about how much they really know about the changes Barry is going through. In his usual way, Wells assures her that they have Barry’s best interests at heart. Iris is also thinking about Barry when she points out to him that Felicity is obviously in to him and sets up a double date for them. The date is a trivia night and Felicity shows up in outfit #3 for the episode (I don’t care what they say, that’s way overdressed for trivia night). The whole thing is just an example in how perfect Felicity and Barry are for each other (something that a large portion of the fandom has already pointed out).
While Barry’s living the dream, the rest of the characters are in a darker place (literally). In the storage lockers at STAR, Wells and Cisco are talking about a device that was stolen from the lab. Wells is upset that Cisco even built the thing in the first place. The “thing” in question, is a cold gun. Cisco built the thing before he got to know Barry. He was afraid that Barry could’ve turned out to be evil so he built a cold gun with the aim to be able to freeze something to absolute zero because he figured that cold would be the opposing force of speed. That gun has fallen into the hands of Snart, who plans to use it to steal a diamond. In the process of casing the heist he also ends up killing a man with the cold gun in an attempt to distract Barry so that he can get away. Barry also takes a shot from the cold gun.
Back at STAR, Caitlin explains that Barry would’ve been in trouble if he didn’t have his healing factor. He also finds out what Cisco did and gets angry at him, losing some trust in his friend. As much as anything he’s upset that a man was killed because of the weapon and that he wasn’t able to stop it. He runs away (to his treadmill) where Felicity finds him (wearing what, I believe, is outfit #4 in about 26 minutes of show). She warns Barry that the life he’s chosen is lonely (she knows form experience) and that he shouldn’t push the few people who are close to him away. Meanwhile, Joe is also dealing with his own close relationship issues. When he gets home from Snart’s attack, he explains to Iris that her dating Eddie affects the way that he looks at Eddie has changed because he feels like he has to protect him for her. In contrast, Snart has pushed the rest of his team away. They’re afraid of “the streak” and they’re afraid of him but Snart is convinced that he’s found the Streak’s weakness.
Even though Barry’s trying not to talk to Cisco, they have to cooperate a little when he figures out how to track the new villain that Cisco has dubbed, “Captain Cold”. Flash cuts off his headset and pursues Snart. By the time he gets there, he’s already stolen the diamond and started his getaway. In order to exploit Flash’s “weakness” he boards a train filled with people. When Flash catches him, he explains that his weakness is that he tries to save everyone. To that end, he causes the train to crash and jumps off leaving Flash to try to rescue all the passengers. He manages to do it, but as soon as he does, Snart shoots him in the back with the ice gun. Fortunately for him, his team, after getting a pep-talk from Felicity about being supportive, shows up on the scene with the cold gun prototype pointed at Snart. Ok, actually it’s a vacuum cleaner, but Cisco manages to bluff the bad guy away and save his friend, although he does manage to take the diamond.
With the bad guy defeated, Barry and Cisco make-up and are bros again. Felicity leaves STAR and heads back to her work with the Arrow, leaving with a very platonic hug between her and Barry. Even though Barry has gotten over it, Wells makes sure to warn Cisco to never do anything like this again. At the precinct, Joe finally accepts that Eddie can be his partner and his daughter’s boyfriend. They promise to not keep secrets from each other, but we all know that’s a lie because of Barry. Barry takes advantage of his speed to visit Felicity on the train as she’s headed back to Starling City. The two basically have the conversation that’s speaking to the fandom as they acknowledge that they’re “perfectly perfect for each other” even though they’re both in love with people they can’t be with. They both say goodbye but, before he leaves, they do share a single kiss. At that moment all the “Smoaken” shippers hearts skipped a beat as one.
While Felicity and Barry’s relationship ended before it really began, another relationship is forming somewhere else. Snart is meeting with an old colleague of his named Mick. Presumably, Mick is Mick Rory, the man who becomes known as Heat Wave. Snart presents him with a special gun and asks him if he wants to join him. Mick agrees and the foundation of the Flash’s rogue’s gallery looks like it’s being formed.
- The Internet is full of weirdos and nerd rage
It’s hard not to love Felicity. She brings her same quirkiness and humor to this episode as she does to her own show. It fit so perfectly into this episode that you could’ve mistaken her for a regular. The episode did also show how much more mature Felicity is as a crime fighter than anyone on Team Flash as she also got to be the voice of wisdom in a few instances. Of course, she was the voice of awkward banter even more, and that’s what we love her for.
- Awkward Radio is awkward
Don’t you just hate it when sexy-time songs come on the radio when you’re talking to your girlfriend’s dad. I know I do.
- Captain Cold
Even though he was overshadowed by the appearance of a Felicity in this episode, I really liked Wentworth Miller’s portrayal of Captain Cold. It’s the first villain that Barry’s faced that’s got away and it looks like he’s definitely coming back for more. One thing none of the new DC TV shows have really done is provide their heroes with a plethora of returning villains. It looks like Flash is establishing a rogue’s gallery, which will give him plenty of bad guys to fight for a while.
The big pull of this episode was clearly watching Felicity and Barry being adorable together. I kind of like how the writers had them pretty much speak to their own fanbase as they explained why the two wouldn’t be together despite their obvious compatibility and attraction towards each other. It’s almost a shame to separate two characters with chemistry that good, but we all know there’s plenty of romance ahead for both of them. Still, they did give their “shippers” a little bit by throwing that kiss in their after abandoning hope of a relationship. I also enjoyed Felicity’s parade of outfits. I’ve always thought that she seems exceptional well dressed for a “nerdy IT-girl”, but there’s nothing wrong with that. The fact that the show made a point to keep changing her outfits into more “glamorous” looks than the women around her kind of confirmed to me that it’s something her character is definitely doing on purpose. I mean, when was the last time she just showed up in the Arrow cave in sweats.
I also liked the way this episode handled the awkwardness between Joe, Eddie and Iris. It was a really minor part of the episode, and I felt like that’s really all the time that issue deserved. Joe should’ve been able to get over that whole protection thing and realize that Eddie is a grown man who is dating his grown daughter. I was afraid that the issue was gonna drag out over a bunch of episodes, but now it’s squashed and we can all move on. Unless they go back to it later, at which point I will sigh heavily and roll my eyes back into the deepest depths of my head.
The real story here is that Captain Cold is going to be the first of the Flash’s rogue’s gallery, or the villains that he regularly fights. It was interesting how he thanked the Flash for forcing him to up his game. The idea of superheroes escalating villainy isn’t new. It’s all over the comics and was famously stated outright in Christopher Nolan’s Batman trilogy. The thing that’s interesting is that it’s happening already in just the 4th episode of this series. Superheroes create supervillains, that’s just how it goes. Barry and Cisco are now responsible for the creation of Captain Cold and it looks like Mick is going to be using another piece of STAR tech. Although, if that fire gun is from STAR, I hope it’s not going to turn out that Cisco made that too, that would just be too easy.