The Flash – Things You Can’t Outrun

by Alan Rapp on October 23, 2014

in Television Reviews 

  • Title: The Flash – Things You Can’t Outrun
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The Flash - Things You Can't Outrun

In an episode that builds on the backstory of both Caitlin Snow (Danielle Panabaker) and Cisco Ramon (Carlos Valdes) by offering flashbacks to the night of the accelerator accident which appeared to kill Caitlin’s fiance (Robbie Amell), “Things You Can’t Outrun” features the Flash (Grant Gustin) attempting to stop the Mist (Anthony Carrigan) from completing a killing spree whose intended victims include Joe West (Jesse L. Martin).

For the second straight episode The Flash chooses a super-villain from the larger DCU rather than tap into the Flash’s own Rogues Gallery. Despite being a Starman baddie, the Mist fits well into the format of the show and his abilities to vaporize himself into poison gas present unique problems for the Scarlet Speedster. The effects work well, although our hero forcing the villain to literally run out of gas (pun intended) is a bit anti-climactic. Although I enjoy the support system involving Caitlin, Cisco, and the secretly-nefarious Harrison Wells (Tom Cavanagh), and thought the scenes between Caitlin and Barry were some of the episode’s best this week, I would like to see Barry use a little more of his own ingenuity and science knowledge to out-think the colorful (if at times likely ridiculous) villains he will come across over the show’s run.

While offering a new threat for our hero, the season’s third episode continues several threads laid down in the “Pilot” teasing us about Wells’ real agenda, putting Joe back on the case of Barry’s wrongly-convicted father (John Wesley Shipp), and forcing Iris (Candice Patton) to come clean to her father about her romantic relationship with Eddie Thawne (Rick Cosnett). Despite his heroic death, the episode also lays the foundation for the return of Ronnie as another hero who, given Firestorm‘s near limitless abilities, will be interesting to see how he’s woven into the season’s arc. Having already sold me on Barry and the solid foundation of the show, I’m curious to see how Firestorm is integrated without allowing the nature of the character’s god-like power to overtake the show.

We may not get a classic Flash villain here, but next week promises the guest-appearance of Felicity Smoak (Emily Bett Rickards) and the premiere of one of my favorites who (at least according to the short teaser) will thankfully be wielding his trademark freeze gun rather than show up as the far-less-interesting mutated version currently in the comics. Should the show choose to go this route with all of the Flash’s core villains it would make me immensely happy and offer a change of pace to the various mutated villains it looks like will continue popping up over the course of the show’s inaugural season.

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