The finale of The Flash season 2 answers all our questions but leaves us with a bit of a Paradox!
Season 2 Barry and the crew battle off hoards of Meta-Humans that slipped through the 52 breaches from Earth-2, caused by the final battle between The Flash and Reverse-Flash in season 1. Not only do breacher’s come through but we follow The Flash to Earth-2 where we met everyone’s doppelgänger. However these breacher’s on Earth-1 all want one thing, Barry. With the Reverse-Flash gone Barry faces a new nemesis in the dark speedster named Zoom! Season two had plenty of fun. With new and old villains, intriguing mysteries, Zoom’s captive in the iron-mask, and even had some time-travelling canon-changing events take place you were kept on your toes most the time. But most importantly we also got to meet the classic Flash, Jay Garrick.
In season 2 we learn more about Zoom but little about Jay, and come to realise they are one and the same, or are they? You are shocked to learn Zoom used the persona of ‘Jay’ in order to be the hero and the villain of Earth-2. However when his E-2 self (A time remnant) came to Earth-1 he was de-powered. He manipulated Caitlin Snow into creating a super serum called Velocity that would give him his powers. This gave Zoom the boost he needed to continue his plan: to steal the speedforce from Barry, which he achieves. In order to get his speed back, Barry travels into the Speed-Force to essentially capture his speed but also to understand himself better. The optimism of defeating Zoom quickly tarnishes when Zoom kills Barry’s dad which brings us to the finale. Barry, outraged by what’s happened accepts Zoom’s proposal: a race to prove who is the fastest man alive. However, the cause and affect of the race will activate a machine that will destroy all other earths leaving Zoom to rule Earth-1. In a heroic act Barry uses a time remnant of himself to simultaneously fight Zoom and free Joe who had been taken hostage. Zoom is defeated and the time-wraiths come to capture and take him away.Then we all breath a sigh of relief.
Finally we learn who the iron-masked man is. It was the real Jay Garrick from Earth-3 (would this be Supergirl’s Earth?). Shockingly (or maybe not?) Jay is the doppelgänger of Henry Allen, Barry’s dad. Speculation was ripe as to who this masked man was. Was it Barry’s twin brother, was it another version of Zoom/Jay, was it Barry, or was it even Henry Allen. The reveal was fun but not unexpected. Earth-2 Doctor Wells agrees to return to E2 with Jesse, his daughter, taking Jay with them in order to find a way to send Jay home. With everything at peace and all gangers returned to their Earth’s, Barry decides he can’t live without his family. Despite Iris confessing her love for him, it’s just not enough. He speeds back in time to the point the Reverse-Flash kills his mother and stops him. We see the version of Barry, who had just rescued his younger self, return to see his future self for a brief moment before he disappears. A result in the change of history.
With the Reverse-Flash alive now and the future complete changed, season three will be something of a Paradox. It looks like we could see a version of Flashpoint Paradox on the small screen. The future Barry returns to will not be the one he expects and his friends will unlikely be there to greet him…if they know him at all. But how far will the paradox go? This could be a story-arc that lasts half a season and could see Barry face off against the Reverse-Flash again. It could also see Eddie Return. I loved the time-travel element in season 1 and it’s been done well in season 2, but all this messing about will eventually have greater consequences. What I don’t want is for The Flash to get so caught up in it’s time-travels that they make the continuity so tangled they can’t untangle it.Some complained that Barry’s time remnant wasn’t really utilised or handled well. Yes, the remnant was in fact Barry and he did die. Or did he die? Maybe he’s in the Speedforce and will be key to restoring the timeline. But again, if the future is erased how will Jesse and Wally become Speedsters? But to make it even more complicated, by Barry going back and changing the past, means Zoom is also still out there on E2.A Flashpoint Paradox has been created. And it’ll take some serious work to restore what Barry has done.
One of the many highlights of season 2 2as the return of Tom Cavanagh as E2 Harrison Wells. Tom is brilliant in this role and has acted his sock off playing two very different version of the same character. If he’s not back for season 3 I’ll cry. Of course he must be as we were introduced to his daughter Jesse aka Jesse Quick – a future speedster! Jesse didn’t bring much to the season other than plant seeds for the future and I look forward to watching them sprout.
Wally West was another interesting addition. It created a strange family dynamic as Wally tried to fit into the West family and accept Joe as his father, but also head-butt with Barry for the role of ‘son’. Overall I liked Wally, but wish he had more purpose to the season. Both he and Jesse are struck by ‘lightening’ and you expect them to become Speedster but that’s been postponed for a later date. I feel evening having one of them develop their powers would have been great and could have avoided the drastic end we had.
I would like to see some series development with Cisco and his vibes. It did seemed rushed that suddenly he could vibe people into other universes and create that force from his hands when previously he was so nervous about it. I love Cisco, he’s a great character and brings some fun dynamic to the team, but I hope next season his powers and abilities are better explained and ironed out. I also hope we’re done seeing the Killer Frost version of Caitlin. I struggle to see her as anything other than who she is. But I also don’t think Danielle is really meant for villain roles. I would also like to see her less desperate and not fall in love with a man who dies or becomes the villain. Speaking of the villain!
Zoom. What a terror. I liked Zoom more than I thought I would. At first I wasn’t sold on another Speedster villain, but seeing how he differed from Reverse-Flash and the mystery between Jay and Zoom, it helped tell a somewhat familiar story in a different way. Much of what happens in season 2 is what we see in season 1 i.e. Barry trusting another false Speedster. What was interesting about Zoom was understanding his background. He and Barry are both from broken homes and suffered great loss. In some ways he was more the Reverse of Barry than Wells aka Thawne. He is unhinged, scary, and ruthless.
I love the earth-hoping element. Barry’s first trip to E2 was a great couple of episodes and the possibility of visiting more Earth is an exciting prospect for the show. I would like to see more jumps happen in season 3. I would also love to see Jay Garrick return to help Barry restore things. It would be a sweet way to allow him to say goodbye to his father while also knowing there is this version out there. But hell, I’d like to see Jay as a recurring character if possible.
But look, there are concerns – with the time-jumping the waters are looking murky now. We can only see Barry screwup the timeline and restore it so many times. And so far there have been two big episodes that involved Barry screwing things up which did cause some differences. When Barry goes back in time to learn information from Wells aka Reverse-Flash you scratch your head thinking “wait, so Wells knew he’d lose?” There can only be so many paradoxes before everything implode and needs to cool off after this next one. And you have to wonder what the effect is on shows like Arrow and Legends of Tomorrow if Barry’s warping time again. There would be series consequences for Hawkgirl! My other thought is the next villain. Hopefully we get a non-speedster villain next. As much as I loved the Reverse Flash (and believe he will be back) I don’t want him to return really.
What do did you think of season 2 of The Flash and what do you hope to see next season? Comment and share your thoughts below.