The Flash The Once and Future Flash review S3 Ep. 19 

We’ve had some pretty good episodes this season, but few have really connected. The Once and Future Flash finally felt like a Flash episode with a purpose. Not surprisingly, it was one of the better episodes of Season 3.

Initially it seemed rocky as once again, Barry put on his Selfish Suit instead of his speed suit. Barry has gradually been more and more infuriating. That started back in the Season 2 finale when Barry put his interests ahead of everyone else. Despite screwing everything up in Flashpoint, he’s consistently failed to learn the valuable lesson. Fortunately by the end of the episode, Barry finally learned there’s no ‘I’ in Team Flash.


Killer Frost was on the loose, attacking Julian, HR and Cisco. Barry zoomed in to rescue them, but in the process, Caitlin got away. The Flash has seen a lot of willful ally/friend betrayals, but Caitlin is the first somewhat reluctant villain. I’m glad she’s poised to play a major role in the final run of episodes this season. Caitlin’s deserved a significant story arc beyond who she’s dating.

But rather than track Killer Frost down, Barry took that as the sign to Exit: Stage Future to 2024. That’s where he’d deduced Savitar wasn’t still a menace. But psst, that’s not eight years in the future.

The Once and Future Flash - Joe West

Once and Future Flash definitely had more of a Days of Future Past feel. Barry got a welcome to the future gift basket courtesy of Mirror Master and The Top. Sadly in all that time they haven’t managed to whip up costumes. And what is the deal exactly with The Rogues, who have a legit tailor in the comics, that they can’t get cool costumes in the show.

After escaping them, Barry runs into future Cisco, who shows him how crappy life has turned for the remaining members of Team Flash. Joe and Barry aren’t on speaking terms thanks to Barry breaking his promise to Iris to take care of him; Cisco lost his hands to Killer Frost and Wally is in a catatonic state. And Future Flash? He’s either still in deep mourning or auditioning for a role in the next CW show. And Season 3 Oliver is going to be so pissed to find his hairpiece missing!

The imprisoned Killer Frost knows who Savitar is, but she is all like

Thanks Caitlin.

I loved how shocked Barry was that he wasn’t there for his friends in the future despite doing a piss poor job in the present. Selfish Barry is the absolute worst. More so than Judging Kara or Happy in Romantic Bliss with Felicity Oliver.

Just when it seemed like Barry was going to continue in his I’m not hearing youuuuu stage, he finally wakes up. If he ditches his friends in the future, he’s a crappy friend across the time stream. Worst than before I mean. It was great seeing Flash finally act like a hero again. It’d been way too long and felt like a major turning point in his overall growth.

Once and Future Flash would have won me over anyway with HR’s line about almost checking off one of the most important boxes a man can check off in his life. That was money.

Flash’s rallying of Team Flash even got Future Barry off the bench. Just in time to show off that sweet new suit. Seriously, that updated outfit put the dark maroon version to shame. Time for an upgrade Cisco! While their lack of costumes is endlessly frustrating, Top and Mirror Master’s powers on display made for one of the coolest in the series’ run. Those effects were terrific and looked straight out of a comic book. If this is what happens every time Tom Cavanagh directs, let him get the movie gig.

The Once and Future Flash - The Flash 2024

With their mojo back, the all-new, all boys club version of Team Future Flash is back in action! Yay boy power?

Our Barry returns seconds after leaving, but not empty-handed. Future Flash gave him the flash(?) drive with all the helpful hints on how to trap Savitar in the Speed Force. Provided Barry can find the scientist who created it four years before she does it in the future.

I’ve abandoned hope that the Savitar reveal is going to be worthwhile. At least Killer Frost knows someone is hiding in Megatron’s armor. But who would make it interesting? Zoom? Eddie Thawne? Jesse Quick? It’s going to be underwhelming. Time to just bask in the glory of evil Caitlin until Savitar spoils all the fun.

The Once and Future Flash did serious work to get this season back on track. It’s too late for Savitar, but I’m looking forward to seeing what happens next week.

Rating: 9.5 out of 10

Photo Credit: The CW