The Flash S3E6, Review – Shade

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I’m an impatient person, so waiting for The Flash to kick up the superhero powers has been an event I’ve been hoping for since the first episode of this season. We are finally getting underway with the development of two awesome people. With that comes a lot more questions that’ll make this even more enjoyable.

We open with Kid Flash giving a monologue instead of our usual narrator, Flash. He’s excited, happy, and most of all, sounds like the confident Wally we caught a glimpse of in Flash Point. Unfortunately, it’s all a dream kickstarted by Doctor Alchemy. We’ve been anticipating this since the connection between new metahumans and Doctor Alchemy was discovered. Now it’s in full throttle, and Wally WANTS this. No amount of warning from Joe is going to make him see reason– Wally wants to be FAST and Doctor Alchemy is his ticket.

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If you had hoped Julian would open up more towards Barry after their last adventure, you were wrong. At least on the outside, as he seems quite put out when it’s announced Barry has been assigned to Metahuman Crime Scene permanently. When the newest metahuman, Shade, comes into play, both Julian and Barry have no choice but to work together on the crime scene. They work well together, and Julian is noticeably less snarky over the whole team business. Now we can finally see some progress between these two.

The more we learn of H.R., the more I’m enjoying his presence with the team. He’s the most light-hearted   Harrison Wells they’ve had, and one of the only to openly admit his faults. H.R. is determined to justify his presence on Earth-1, wanting to work with the team to show he is worth their time. Unfortunately, it seems no one broke the news to H.R. that in Earth-1, his face is linked to the murderer Harrison Wells. It puts a damper on his “fresh start”, and evens out the fact he lied on his resume.

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It’s not too much of a road block for H.R., though, who wants to be the face of Star Labs. He uses an ingenious pen to disguise his face into that of one of his business partner’s, Randolph Morgan. Like this, H.R. is free to roam Central City, much to Cisco and Team Flash’s dismay. Hey! Least he didn’t go off on his own and thought it through.

Then there is Caitlin– the poor girl has a lot on her mind and does not want to embrace her powers at all. When the power dampening cuffs are brought in, she practically jumps on them to stop her powers. She only comes clean when Cisco and H.R. are bickering about the cuffs. She breaks the news, only to beg him not to tell anyone else. He agrees, but perhaps only because he vibed a fight between them when she kills him.

While most of the episode handles Wally’s immense need to be Kid Flash, we see a stark difference between him and Caitlin. He wants these powers, and Doctor Alchemy’s voice only drives his urge harder until he loses his mind. It seems everyone on the team has spoken with him, shared their concerns, but it does little to dissuade him with Doctor Alchemy feeding off his one desire. Meanwhile, Caitlin has her powers but she wishes she didn’t; even with Cisco’s support she wants to keep it hidden until the last minute.

It’s not until the final fight between Shade and the team does the story take a turn. Used as a distraction to get to Wally, who is locked away from Doctor Alchemy’s physical hold, Shade is quickly brought down by the team. Doctor Alchemy’s hold is too strong though, and they must go after him to save Wally and hopefully bring the bad doctor down. Emotions are running high as Cisco forces Caitlin to come out to the team; she has ice powers and is slowly turning into Killer Frost. Barry steps forward in support of Caitlin, offering himself as a scapegoat of sorts. It seems Caitlin is blaming herself for her developing powers, while Barry admits before he created Flash Point, she had none. I see it as a way to focus her anger and fear onto him rather than herself.

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The talk doesn’t last long as Wally’s condition worsens. It pushes Joe into gathering a SWAT team to take Doctor Doctor Alchemy head on. Attacking a being who can reach across timelines seems ill thought out, which shows as the entire SWAT team is taken down in no time. However, it isn’t by Doctor Alchemy, as The Flash chases the speedster through the area we soon find out it’s Savitar! He’s outmatched once again. The reveal is enough to distract us from what Wally got himself up to: grabbing Doctor Alchemy’s gem so he could become Kid Flash.

FINALLY, Wally will regain his powers, and while Joe will mourn the loss of another son to the speed force, Wally will at least stop sulking. I’m so happy Caitlin is embracing her powers as well.  Admitting she’s scared is a huge step for her and exciting for us– it means she’ll soon be more active on in the team! Julian was a noticeable absence in the second half of this episode. I feel he’s just a red herring when it comes to Doctor Alchemy or Savitar’s identity, but we will just have to wait and see.

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