Hi folks! Welcome back to our weekly recap of The Flash. This week’s episode is named “Pay the Piper” and BLABLABLA, Let’s dive right in!
1. How do I get a Dib-ploma?
Just like last week, I want to talk first about the Frost sublplot, mainly because it feels so detached from the rest of what’s happening and it resolved rather quickly. Ralph visits her after she sends him a text about an “emergency” only to discover her alive and well, she just wanted to say goodbye, as if she was expecting to die.
Ralph confronts Frost and convinces her that she does need to go see Caitlin’s mom, even if she is “the darkest” part of Caitlin, Dr. Carla will indeed try to help her, because she is not only Caitlin’s mother, she also is Frost’s mother, and we end this subplot with the expectation of an eventual reunion, which seems unlikely at this point in the season.
2. Neural Dissonance
Meanwhile in the Mirror World at “sbal R.A.T.S” (S.T.A.R. Labs, sorry), Iris finds Kamila, clearly frightened by her, I mean, if somebody shoots me and I wake up in another world I’d be freaked out by them too, the point is, Kamilla has been doing her own attempts at getting out of there, but when she attempts to show Iris she freaks out and runs away.
The problem is what Eva called a Neural Dissonance, and everyone that enters the Mirrorverse ends up changed, for the worse, which sets up a great thread for the next season, is the team going to suffer with the aftermath of two of their members coming out of that prison?
3. Repairing broken relations
This episode’s main villain is Goodspeed, at least another one, and now he wants Barry’s velocity, yeah, good luck with that, didn’t you hear? The Flash is losing his powers! Well, they discover that he is stealing speed from other speedsters (namely, past Goodspeeds) using sonic vibrations, and there’s only one guy that can help them: The Pied Piper
The problem is, he is not friendly, like in the pre-Crisis world, in this world, in their latest confrontation he had henchmen and when one attempted to attack the Flash, he defended himself and the shockwave mixed with the lighting ended up damaging the goon.
They make a deal, Team Flash is going to try to “de-phase” Roderick, revealed to be the Piper’s boyfriend (yay, representation!), and in exchange, the Piper is going to help them defeat Goodspeed. Just like in Flashpoint we enter an unknown world, with a lot of mistakes done by Barry that he doesn’t even know are there, and his mission is to repair that broken relationships. Thankfully, they do defeat Godspeed, and use his blood to awaken Roderick and the relationship between the Piper and Flash is restored.
4. Goodspeed is back
There is not much to say about the villain, even with the Flash being weaker, Goodspeed didn’t seem like a threat, they defeated him “crossing the streams”. What’s important about this is what he said: this “clones” or versions of Godspeed are working for a big villain who wants to get “infinite velocity”, so I guess where we have our main villain for season seven!
5. Forgiving yourself
I think someone could argue that this episode was a little weak for the one before the season finale, BUT, we have to remember that this was not how the season was planned and this episode, it was supposed to happen almost a whole month before the season would end. It actually is a very strong episode with one important goal: preparing for what’s coming.
This episode has a very meaningful theme, that has been explored before in the season, as the subtitle says, it is about Forgiving yourself before embarking on your paths, back in episode “The Exorcism of Nash Wells” we talked about Nash’s redemption, and this time, the whole team have things to confront, the most obvious being Barry dealing with the dead Speed Force AND the disappearance of his wife, Allegra questions herself because she spend a lot of time with the evil versions of her coworkers; Cisco is crushed with the realization that he lived with a mirror and Kamila is lost and he feels powerless to do something, both literally and figuratively. Lastly, the Pied Piper feels guilty for bringing his boyfriend to the world of crime, which, indirectly, caused him to be phased.
If I listened well, at the end of the episode, the Piper tells Barry that, not only he has to forgive himself for his errors (as Nash suggested), but he also must believe that the world can change, and that’s how, inspired by that, he regroups Team Flash and proposes them to fight back, find their lost members, and stop Eva before she kills her husband.
And that’s it for this episode, it definitely didn’t feel like the one before the season finale, but it does set up the paths for self-forgiveness that the team needs right now. What did you think of this episode? Leave your comments below and join us next week for our take on the season finale, “Success is Assured” I believe that it will feel a little incomplete thanks to the shutdown, but I am eager to see how the production team solved that predicament and, let’s be honest, next season will open with a bang!