It seems as if the plot has come to a standstill as the team processes their grief after losing Ralph. With the pause, Clifford opens himself up to a possible weakness.
Barry has faced a lot of loss in his life and feels losing Ralph is nothing new. He’s received encouragement from everyone around him to take a break and grieve, but he refuses. Instead, he throws the team into the search for the last bus-Meta, Fallout. Clifford is already powerful– add a nuclear power and it certainly can’t be good for Central City.
With Caitlin missing her colder half, Barry and Cisco travel to Earth-X to recruit Leo Snart for help. They arrive just in time to help him, as he is on the losing side of a confrontation with Siren-X. They bring him back to Star Labs, unknowingly taking Siren-X with them.
The ever-cheery Snart is happy to be the backup plan if Fallout gets too heated. He’s a positive figure after the numerous failures the team has faced. Everyone has experienced a personal loss, especially Harry who is suffering the deterioration of his mind. While he reveals his current state to Cisco, they’re both too preoccupied with other things to focus on finding a cure.
The initial attempt to retrieve Fallout is thwarted– not by Clifford showing up, or by Siren-X– but by Barry’s grief hitting him. Barry is left frozen, leaving him and Clifford to be defeated by Siren-X. As a result, she takes Fallout, Joe, and Caitlin as hostages.
It’s a pivotal scene, as revealed by Clifford. In his calculations, which has never been wrong, Barry was to defeat Siren-X. That didn’t happen, and Clifford is panicking. Marlize finds his panic amusing, pointing out grief is unpredictable, and it was a useful tool in freezing Barry. Clifford didn’t take too kindly to Marlize’s observation and calls her nothing but his assistant.
I think Marlize being berated and Barry’s grief throwing off Clifford’s calculations have sealed his demise. I always knew she’d be his downfall, but if Barry can trust his heart and not over think things, they have a chance at winning.
After a heartfelt talk with Snart, Barry is ready to face Siren-X at CCPD and save his friends. He manages to do it without anyone getting hurt, and quickly takes time for himself to cry it out. This time, it’s Joe who lends him a shoulder to cry on, and Barry finally accepts the help. In the end, they take Fallout to a place Clifford was expecting, but he’s successfully lost his only ally in this fight.
Snart departs on a happy note, off to marry his longtime boyfriend, Ray. There is hope for Caitlin too, as it may be that Killer Frost isn’t all gone from her cells. It’s only Harry whose future seems bleak; maybe Cisco will think of a miracle, but until then Harry will have to find a new role on the team.