It’s the mid-season finale, and that means Christmas has come to Central City! Savitar’s origins and motivations are finally revealed, Barry gets some help from Jay Garrick, and the cliffhanger we all expected is . . . coming to a screen near you at a later date. But hey, that Mark Hamill cameo was pretty sweet, eh? So let’s examine the details (and I’ll bring the microscope).
- Mark Hamill cameo! He’s looking good as the Trickster once again (and by good I mean super creepy and funny).
- Jay Garrick zips from Earth-3 to Earth-1 like it’s no big deal. This universe-hopping thing has gotta have some repercussions, right?
- Joe and HR are feeling the holiday spirit, but they’re pretty much the only ones.
- Let me get this straight. First, Malfoy Julian is revealed to be a rich boy from a family with high expectations of him, and now he’s talking about the Philosopher’s Stone. Just say it already! This is basically Harry Potter.
- Savitar = Voldemort. Illuminati confirmed!
- Julian gets his own flashback, lucky him. Not so lucky him: being possessed and used as a mouthpiece for Savitar.
- Cisco AND Julian are seeing dead people. I bet they don’t know they’re dead!
- Savitar: “One shall betray you, one shall fall, and one shall suffer a fate far worse than death!” Sheesh. Ominous, much?
- Savitar is going to kill Iris. Maybe. Probably. Who knows? Time is like a big ball of clay waiting to be molded.
- Focus on the present, Barry. That’s why it’s called a gift.
Character Study: Savitar
Savitar is a rather complicated topic, both as a character and as a piece of The Flash’s plotline. I have rather mixed feelings about him, to be honest. He is presented as a mighty and mysterious god, the first speedster in history, another dude Barry has managed to piss off without doing anything . . . yet. Time travel has a way of making you pay for future actions before you even know that you did it. Will do it. Whatever. It’s all wibbly-wobbly, timey-wimey!
The most troubling thing, plot-wise, at this point is Savitar’s prophecy. The betrayer, the fallen, and the sufferer. Who will they be? Savitar seems to want Barry to suffer, so maybe that’s one. The betrayer is probably Caitlin because of the whole Killer Frost thing, so that’s two. And the fallen . . . could be anyone, really. Iris, Wally, and Cisco are high on the list. We’ll go with Wally because of his Kid Flash plotline.
The most troubling thing, character-wise, with Savitar is that he’s an awful lot like the other Big Bads of The Flash. He wants to hurt Barry because Barry is threat to him; a future threat that somehow ruined his day, week, life, etc. Savitar brings with him some intrigue with how ancient and mythical he seems to be, but as a speedster, he could be from any time, anywhere, anyone. Hell, he could even be Barry! I certainly hope that the second half of the season brings in some big twist and/or excitement because right now he kind of seems like Reverse Flash and Zoom combined into one (Revenge on Barry + Being the fastest/best).
Is Iris Really Doomed?
We see Barry pop into the future again, this time to witness Savitar killing Iris. But as Jay told him, time is malleable and what he saw is just one possibility for the future. So don’t worry about it! That’s kind of what Jay implied by telling Barry to focus on the present. I’m not saying it’s awful advice, but it’s not great. And when Barry does what he thinks is the logical next step, I couldn’t help doing a mental facepalm. Come on, Barry! You don’t get a loft for you and your girlfriend without asking first! It’s like surprising your family with a new puppy on Christmas. It’s all magical at first, but then reality sinks in and you aren’t ready for it because you didn’t know it was coming in the first place.
Ahem. Tangent aside, let’s talk briefly about what may really happen to Iris. Barry being thrown into the future to see Savitar kill Iris was like a flash forward to the season finale. I’m sure Season 3 will end differently, but just how different? Iris could still be killed, but since this is The Flash she’ll probably just show up again in the next season (Earth-42 Iris? Sure, why not). This show continues to push the boundaries of “make Barry suffer” and still have him be the lighthearted protagonist we fell in love with in Season 1. How far can he be pushed? If Iris was killed, would he travel back in time again to change things (Flashpoint be damned)? I think so. That’s how much he loves Iris and how much his world revolves around her now.
Flash Used Double Team!
Once again, Barry and Jay teamed up to throw down against a villain. We’ve seen Barry and Jay work together before (and with different versions of Jay!), but this time was different. It was very interesting to see the dynamic between the two of them especially since this Jay looks just like Henry Allen. But he’s not Henry, and even though there’s a partnership between the two Flashes, there’s still a bit of awkwardness, too. Barry is trying to see Jay as a mentor, but he surely can’t shake the urge to also treat him as a father. Jay, to his credit, is very helpful in a fight, but not so great at actually being a mentor (let’s face it, he gave Barry mixed advice about Iris and the future).
I really hope they continue to bring Jay back on a regular basis. He and Barry were a lot of fun to see together, and it would be a treat to see Earth-3 and how it differs from both Earth-2 and Earth-2. Despite this show having a big surplus of speedsters, there is a certain satisfaction in seeing multiple Flashes together (including Kid Flash, who happily got his suit this episode). I really enjoyed seeing speedster team ups in this episodes and in those before it, so if they bring Jay back again, I won’t complain.
Final Thoughts and Quotes
This episode has given us a decent set up for the second half of Season 3 but the cliffhanger was mild at best. The reason for this was two-fold to me. One, Iris is often put in danger. It’s usually not seeing her literally murdered, but we’ve nonetheless seen her in peril many times. That lightens the threat. Two, the incident happens sometime in Barry’s future, and since we know the future isn’t set in stone, the threat is, again, lightened. However, there is still plenty of time for bad things to go down and Savitar is far from done with Team Flash (not just Iris). I’m much more excited to learn how Savitar’s prophecy will play out. Despite my doubts on Savitar’s ability to be a good villain, there is a lot of potential for the rest of this season and I hope it’ll be great. Do you feel the same way? Share your thoughts in the comments and enjoy some quotes from the episode.
Jay: “I’m the senior partner.”
Barry: “More like senior citizen!”
Cisco: “I don’t know guys, but being mind-punked by a speed god that we piss off in the future really kills your Christmas spirit.”Joe: “We’re gonna have alittle nog-off, Grandma Esther versus Grandma Millie. May the best grandma win.”
Joe: “Our grandmother were alchoholics.”
HR: “Run, Wallace, run!”
Savitar: “One shall betray you, one shall fall, and one shall suffer a fate far worse than death!”
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