NOC Recaps The Flash: From Whole Speed Force to 2%

ConStar here standing in for Christelle, but neither of us are running fast enough…! WHO STOLE OUR SPEED?

I realize I’m getting my milk/speed force analogies mixed up for the 2% pun, but let me live. I only just learned that whole milk is only 3.5% milk anyway.

Episode 2×12 of The Flash, “Fast Lane,” features two characters slowing down: Barry and Wally. Both of their speed problems converge upon Iris, is this a sign of things to come for poor Iris West? There’s a monster of the week, but it’s not all that interesting, so we’ll be zipping by mentions of it.

In Which the Speed Force is Drugs

Zoom is really feening for some speed force, y’all. He takes a shot and needs more. Barry gets some taken from him and needs it back. Wally is going his gateway drug (racing), but he’s soon gonna come into contact with the hard stuff. Jay is going through withdrawal and it’s killing him. The speed force is drugs, guys!

What I found really well done about this episode was the sense of dread anytime Harry was on screen. It was partially due to the music, but also due to Tom Cavanagh just being brilliant. Harry steals 2% of Barry’s speed to give to Zoom, in exchange for his daughter. Obviously Zoom is a jerk, so he doesn’t honor the deal Harry kinda made up himself, but Barry has still lost just enough speed to cause a problem in the episode. But more on that later.

I also loved Harry’s emotional turmoil this week. After last week’s fiasco with Cisco nearly disappearing, I think Harry realized he’s growing fond of these crazy kids and he needs to distance himself if he wants to get stuff done. However, Barry is single again and has a looottt of free time to try to endear himself to ParaWells now, so Harry gets a bit gruff with him. We know he’s feeling the feels whenever he throws something at Team Flash.

The thing about ParaWells is that he is honest. “I’m always going to be a father. First. And one day, Zoom is gonna make me choose between you and my daughter. And every time, unblinkingly, unflinchingly I will choose my daughter. I will betray you.”

“That’s binary thinking. It doesn’t have to be either or.”

Harry’s binary thinking exchange doesn’t work, but Barry gets him to solve the formula to close the portals. They succeed and Barry’s joy (he finally smiles! After like two really sad puppy episodes) weighs on Harry’s conscience. After the Iris Incident, he finally tells Team Flash that he stole that crucial 2% and they lock him up in the meta prison.

Uhm. Guys. Isn’t that a bit harsh? It was Super!Dad Joe who makes the first move, but Barry wisely points out that Wells was just working in the interest of his daughter, wouldn’t Joe or any of them make the same decision? Hasn’t Cisco already? So they let Harry out and make a decision: They’re going to Earth Two! Time to get move from binary thinking!

Wheels Up

Wally, now just super messed up after his mother finally passes away, continues to wreck roads with his drag racing. Iris and Joe have both tried to talk him out of it, but Joe gives up and gets too buddy-buddy, so Iris feels like she has to be the tough love adult in the family.

She tries to scare Wally with press investigations, but it doesn’t work, his need for speed is too strong. (It’s okay bud, you’ll be fast in another way soon enough, I am sure.) Wally can’t take his eyes off the road until Iris gets hurt because of his recklessness.

He crashes his car and the spray of glass (AN AFRICA SHAPED GLASS DURING BLACK HISTORY MONTH OF ALL THINGS) hits Iris in the chest and she’s hospitalized because Barry was 2% too slow to stop it.

(If that hospital room looks familiar, it’s because along with Iron Heights, Star City and Central City must share hospital facilities despite being several hundred miles away from each other. That was definitely Felicity’s hospital room only a few weeks ago.)

[Ed. note: For what it’s worth, pretty sure that hospital can also be found in Smallville and Metropolis, too.]

Wally admits that going fast reminds him of his mom (it’s always the mother, isn’t it?), but he stays with Iris as she recuperates because he’s opening up to this new family of his. Awwwww.

Sweeps Week Means A Visit to Earth Two!

Wells’ reveal that he’s been working with Zoom to get his daughter back fires the team up to just get Jessie back from Zoom. That means going to Earth Two! It’s TV Sweeps Week, so all of our shows will be putting out all the stops to impress and shock us. Looks like we’re getting nerdy 1940s!Barry, Killer Frost and Death Storm (welcome back Robbie Amell!), SINGING JOE WEST, and assuredly some other twists and surprises. As long as Cisco or Iris or Joe aren’t on death’s door…

Super Quick Things
  • This week’s meta was really inconsequential. This episode really could have happened with either no meta or any other meta.
  • I’m over Barry being sad. He needs to get some of his pep back.
  • Wally wanted to be an astronaut. Wonder if Team Flash will eventually get to space…
  • “You understand, for me, my earth is Earth-1.” I don’t think I will ever get over Harry’s insistence on stating this to Team Flash.
  • ::Barry speed reads:: Harry: “That’s annoying.”

  • Cisco invented MetaHuman Tinder. Let there be an episode about that please.
  • Also, those quick moments where Cisco and Barry are chatting (while Wells is being super shady) was really great. It was a bro-moment but we don’t get enough of those where it’s not life or death. Just them ribbing each other and being pals. MORE OF THAT PLEASE.

  • “I have a headache.” In your shoulder, Harry?
  • “Somebody betta send his ass back to where he came from or I’m gonna shoot him.” “No.” “What do you mean, no?”