A Television Review by Akash Singh
NOTE: SPOILERS OCCUR!!!!!!!
All Star Team Up is a pretty solid episode of The Flash, even though it suffers from one of the most annoying story threads in narrative existence. Barry’s “secret” identity is about as much of a secret as my obsession with Game of Thrones and Luigi’s shaved ice to the people who know me (neither of them are sponsors). On a larger scale, think of when J. J. Abrams and Co. tried to keep Khan’s identity in Star Trek Into Darkness a secret, insisting that he is only John Harrison and no one bought it. At this point in The Flash, basically Iris West is the lone individual who has no idea that Barry Allen is the Flash and it is extremely irritating to see nearly everyone treat her in such a pathetic, patronizing fashion. “Iris needs to be protected.” From what, exactly? Are the random criminals on the street who saw Barry’s face in the Flash costume in imminent danger? What about Felicity and her new, random billionaire boyfriend? What about Iris knowing Barry’s identity puts her in danger? Ugh, I don’t know?!
All of this puts Eddie is into an awfully unfair position where he has to balance this secret that really isn’t a secret and his relationship with Iris. It has the additional effect of making me despise Joe West for the very first time in this entire series. Eddie confronts him and rightfully so, angry that this stupid situation is ruining his earnest relationship that he and Iris have put a decent amount of effort into. Joe basically continues with his moronic “we must protect her” nonsense because she’s not a grown woman or anything. In his statement, the only way Eddie would have the “authority” to tell Iris the truth is when he becomes her husband. Eddie has a vote when they’re married and Joe has a vote now as Iris’s father, but what about Iris’s vote? She has her own authority, her own reasoning, her own intellect. The idea that she needs a male authority figure to tell her something that is so close to her existence is stupid, plain and simple. Barry tries to feed her the “oh, he has a tough job” speech but Iris, only making my points beforehand stronger, doesn’t fall for it. She wants the truth from Eddie or they’re done.
Now to get to the okay/good stuff. The main villain of the week was a scorned scientist whose experiments began to get far too militaristic and evil, so she was removed from her position at Mercury Labs. This is about as original as someone holding two chocolate chip cookies in triumph right before they throw in a scoop of ice cream, announcing that they had gone where no man or woman had ever gone before. Yeah, it’s an ice cream sandwich. Yeah, that crazy bee scientist exists in about a billion other universes. The scene of the bees coming out of their mouth was effective enough, but the idea that the Flash can’t outrun the bees is one of the stupidest things they’ve ever done. But they at least tie it back effectively to Dr. Wells, so there’s something. As it is, the doctor who had fired Dr. Crazy Bee used to work with Dr. Wells and she notes with some sense of somberness that the man she used to work with had been kind and generous, but he became a completely different person after the accident that took the life of his fiancé.
Felicity and her boyfriend Ray are in town, leading to further speculation of how strong the chemistry between Barry and Felicity is. But anyhow, Felicity is as charming and brilliant as ever, giving Barry the key talk he needed before moving on with his life. With his doubts on Dr. Wells now framed into certainity, the allegiances of everyone that he is working with are falling further into doubt. Dr. Wells had lief to him after protecting him his whole life – what if Cisco and Caitlyn were in on the plot? Sure, that sounds ridiculous but from Barry’s point of view, that being a truth wouldn’t be all that surprising and he can’t afford to lower his guard for any reason anymore. Felicity understands that frustration, but at the same time she imbues within Barry an understanding that he can’t simply mistrust everyone in his life. Such isolation would hardly be beneficial to anyone. After Cisco’s heroics, Barry tells him and Caitlyn the truth. Caitlyn seems inherently skeptical, but Cisco believes it. After all, he has been having dreams – nightmares where Dr. Wells becomes the Reverse Flash and he stabs him through the chest.
Great/Not So Great Moments Not Mentioned Above:
+“Oh, that’s what he meant.”
+“Ain’t nobody got time for bees.”
+“Turns out…. there’s a lot to discover.”
+“I can’t quite seem to keep it up.”
+“I haven’t had sex in two weeks.”
+“So everyone but Iris.”
+“Barry Allen… fifth wheel.”
+“You’re incredibly clever, Cisco.”
+“I was very specific that you not die.”
+“That was weird.”; “Yeah, why didn’t we get invited to dinner?”
+“Harrison Wells is a personal hero of mine.”
+“He isn’t who he says he is.” followed by Felicity’s shrug
+Slip of the foot
+“It can be ugly work.”
+“I’m dating Barry in Oliver’s body.”
+“I’ve never had a nemesis before. I kind of like it.”
+“Boom. Drop the mic. It’s metaphorical, of course, because I don’t have a mic.”
+The awkwardness of that dinner scene
+/-“The sting of betrayal.”
-“Have you guys not heard of me, or what?”
-Yes, let’s have another camera zooming in on Dr. Wells’s mysterious face
-The sequence of Cisco being attacked by the bees was exasperating. Weren’t they deactivated?
Title: All Star Team Up
Written By: Ray Utarnachitt & Cortney Norris
Directed By: Wendey Stanzler
Image Courtesy: We Geek Girls