FLASH SPOILER Review: Episode 3x16 - "Into the Speed Force"

The Flash (3x16) - "Into the Speed Force"
Written by:         Brooke Roberts & Judalina Neira
Directed by:       Gregory Smith

So things have gotten pretty bad, Wally’s trapped in a Speed Force and it seems like the gang is left with three options.  There’s the pragmatic option; Move on, accept that Wally’s basically dead and learn to accept that while avenging his death by defeating Savitar.  This is a really bad plan and not even remotely heroic so we’ll save it for the last resort.  Option two: The intelligent plan.  Figure out a way to reverse what you’ve done, research figure out exactly what future Barry did to trap Savitar and use that to form a plan to trade Wally and Savitar again.

Or Barry can just rush off full of self-recrimination and guilt into the Speed Force on what amounts to a suicide mission but that would be stupid. No way are they going to do that one…

So Barry, full of guilt and self-recrimination, plans to rush off into the Speed Force on what amounts to a suicide mission to save Wally.  Sigh, some episodes there just aren’t enough facepalm gifs.  

While Cisco, Julian and Caitlin tech-tech up some bring him back tech Jesse offers to help but Barry needs her to stay behind and of course no one sees this for the red flag it actually is.  So stupid plan go!

Barry tries to talk to Iris about Wally but he realizes that he may have just nuked his relationship with Iris and she leaves, meanwhile Joe may not realize exactly what is going on but he knows something is wrong with Barry and tries to talk to him but Barry’s pretty far down the rabbit hole.

Speaking of pretty far down the rabbit hole.  The Speed Force looks a lot gloomier than it did last time.  A lot more like the CCPD too, but hey time for his loved ones to help him along the way, right?  Wrong!  Speed Force Eddie is here and he’s pretty pissed.  Turns out God the Speed Force doesn’t appreciate being lied to.  They helped Barry come to terms with his mother’s death and he said he had then he almost immediately raced off and changed the past. 

They understand but that doesn’t mean they forgive him and it sure doesn’t mean they’re going to let him save Wally.

Back in the real world, Jesse has a suicidal plan of her own.  She wants Cisco to vibe the piece of Savitar’s armor so she can go after him.  Cisco says no dice because he can see a suicidal plan for what it is and he’s not going to help all of his friends kill themselves.  Just Barry this week, try again next week.

Joe finds Iris in the Time Vault look at the 2024 Newspaper and asks her if she’s having second thoughts.  Iris is worried she drove Barry to running off to save Wally but Joe knows better and he also knows Iris.  He convinces her to do some soul searching he knows she’ll do the right thing.

Back in Speed Force Hell, Eddie talks to Barry about the impact he had on Eddie’s life before asking Barry if he’s sure that he is only there to save Wally.  When Barry agrees, Eddie points him to where he needs to go but also sics the Time Wraiths on him.  Barry gets away and finds himself in a spooky STAR Labs.  He finds Caitlin taking care of a baby and now it’s time to talk to Ronnie.

Now just because Cisco’s not going to help Jesse kill herself it doesn’t mean that figuring out what Savitar’s suit is mad of isn’t a good idea and they hit on something.  The metal is in a state of flux which means that it’s linked to Savitar even broken off as it is.  Jesse tries to rush off with it but the gang is presenting a united front. 

Jesse asks them when they’ll actually go off after Savitar but HR says “When the real Flash gets back” and Jesse takes it badly.  HR tries to apologize but she isn’t interested.

In the Speed Force, Ronnie’s figured out Barry’s real plan.  That Barry doesn’t intend to rescue Wally, he intends to take his place and the Speed Force isn’t keen on that at all.  So Ronnie sics what’s left of Zoom Barry.  That goes as well as the majority of Barry’s fights with Zoom so when he has Barry down and is ready to kill him Ronnie explains that if he wants to save Wally he has to stop trying to let other people carry his burdens.  Barry uses the tether Cisco make to destroy Zoom. 

He wakes up in the hospital in the Speed Force and finally finds Wally.  Wally is trapped in a loop watching his mother’s death over and over again.  Barry tries to get to Wally but now it’s time for another visit from a dead friend.  This time it’s Leonard Snart.

Back on Earth, Jesse is all set to steal the Savitar piece but HR has drawn the line in the sand.  

But you can’t draw a line in the sand when you have a glass jaw and Jesse leaves HR in a heap.

So Barry gets to have a heart to heart with the Speed Force as played by Captain Cold which is for the best because we’re in Act III so it’s time to lay things out in the open.  Barry isn’t being noble, he’s being a coward because he doesn’t think he’s fast enough to save Iris from Savitar.  Meanwhile, Snart explains that this whole trip down spooky memory lane has been about showing Barry that his actions have far reaching consequences, even the action of taking himself off the board. 

Enter Earth-3 Jay Garrick.

But before we can finish this confrontation it’s time for Jesse to fight Savitar.  She chases after the shard and it leads her directly to an ass kicking.  Fortunately, HR has regained consciousness and doesn’t hold a grudge.  He points out that it’s a bit suspicious that an invulnerable god needs a suit of armor and is so intent on getting pieces of it back so she should give Savitar his piece back the hard way.  What do you know! It worked and Savitar runs away.

Back to the Speed Force one more time.  As soon as they lost contact with Barry, Cisco went to Earth-3 and gave Jay the scoop so he’s here to bring Barry home.  After a brief fight with Speed Force!Captain Cold, Jay and Barry get to Wally.  But there’s a problem, someone has to stay behind, Jay feels it should be him.  He’s had a good run and more importantly it’s up to Barry to defeat Savitar.

Barry brings Wally back to the real world and the gang vows to defeat Savitar and save Jay from an endless hell of his own design.  But they’re going to have to do it without Wally in the meantime, as he is in no shape to fight anyone after watching his mother die over and over.

They’re also going to have to do it without Jesse, with Jay gone Earth-3 needs a Flash (This wasn’t a problem for Earth-2, Jess?)  Also, Savitar seems to have plans for her so it might be best for her to put some distance between herself and Savitar.

Worst of all, they’re gonna have to do it without Barry and Iris as a couple.  Iris was right, Barry proposed for all the wrong reasons and that would’ve have tainted their marriage sooner or later so they need to take a break.  He’s going to move back in with Cisco (Did you ask, Cisco?) until he’s got his head on right.

So…  Let me get this out of the way first.  Simply from the point of view of a fan, they’re all idiots.  There, that’s out of the way.

As far as episodes go, this was pretty good.  Everyone being big stupid, suicidal idiots is to be expected when they’re rocked by what happened to Wally so that was a good point to build the episode from and a good place to build the drama from.  People are stupid when they’re hurt and everyone here was hurt.

Now, going forward I hope that Barry and company can learn from this lesson.  Barry has to start growing beyond the need to run away from his problems, the episode came right out and said it so the writers need to commit to that going forward.

It was fun to revisit Eddie, Ronnie, Snart and Jay even if that isn’t quite what happened so no complaints from me on that part.  I also like that they’ve introduced something they can actually fight Savitar with.

Not much else to say, as a fallout episode prior to a stunt episode next week this was a good point to solidify where things stand before the final five episodes.  But it wasn’t much more than that.

Things We Learned This Week:

1)      Iris and Barry have called off the engagement.
2)      Jay is trapped in the Speed Force and someone (Savitar) will have to take his place to get out.
3)      Jesse has gone to Earth-3 to fill in for Jay.

Unanswered Questions:

1)      Savitar’s a man.  Kind of expected that all along but who is he?
2)      Will it even be possible to save Jay or is this really his end?
3)      What were/are Savitar’s plans for Jesse?

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