The Flash: Snow Pack review S5 E19

The Flash is faring a lot better in the back end of its season than Arrow even with the lack of a game changing villain like Supergirl.

That’s not due to Cicada the Sequel, whose motives are becoming murkier with each episode. Or the random return of Icicle in Snow Pack. If anything the show seems to be setting up a more meaningful and significant end villain with Nora.

Barry and Iris argue about his impulsive decision to send Nora back to her time. Grant Gustin and Candice Patton do an excellent job capturing the emotion of a fight right down to the gut punches and cheap shots. The Flash is the one Arrowverse show that consistently pulls these off well, which is a must for the relationship heavy focus of this universe.

While I’m on Iris’ side — that’s a big decision to make on his own without even discussing with Iris — the endgame for Nora’s visit is confusing. At what point would Nora go back in Iris’ mind: after she gives birth to baby Nora? It’s not like they can just keep Nora here in this time frame.

Speaking of Nora, she’s hanging with Uncle Thawne seeking guidance on how to get back to the past. Thawne says she can’t return the normal ways and needs to access to the negative speed force. Can she learn it? Not from a Jedi. Oops. Wrong universe.

the flash snow pack review - ralph and iris

Iris is still pissed at Barry and decides to take action in her own hands and borrows the time machine with Ralph’s help. This subplot felt really ill-timed because of the goofy, campy nature of it right down to Ralph copying the look of the prison guard. Iris finds Nora here as she’s trying to channel her rage to access the Negative Speed Force. Funny, how it really is like becoming a Sith though, right?

Seeing Iris without Barry is enough to send Nora over the edge and into the Negative Speed Force. Cool, now Iris’ time traveling is messing everything up. That’s a clean sweep for the West-Allen family. Thawne suggests Iris make up with Barry. Man, he’s gotten pretty reflective now that he’s stuck in a cell, hasn’t he? And I’ve already watched Malcolm Merlyn go from Season 1 bad a$$ to comedy relief anti-hero on Arrow so let’s keep Thawne an evil bad guy fellas.

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Meanwhile, Icicle is back and he’s after a cryo atomizer that could start a new Ice Age. Fortunately, his wife, Dr. Tannhauser (Susan Walters) has just such a device in her lab. Once again, Cisco is absent this episode so it’s up to Barry, Joe and Caitlin to investigate. Caitlin remains (ahem) frosty towards her mother. I’ve never managed to get that investigated in the Snow family drama. Maybe because the writers have Caitlin acting so cliche mad at her mother without learning all the details? The walls start breaking here as they actually (gasp) talk and surprise, surprise they start having some breakthroughs.

the flash snow pack review - the icicle

Since this was a Caitlin-focused subplot, I was under no illusion that Barry would factor in much at all. It’s weird how even with a main supporting character like Cisco down to sporadic appearances, the cast is still too crowded for The Flash on The Flash. Instead, we get a reasonably good for TV battle between Killer Frost and Icicle. Since he’s got more experience, Icicle wins, but seeing his baby girl bloody at his hand is enough for Thomas Snow to regain control. The split personality aspect of Icicle and Killer Frost sure is used conveniently, isn’t it?

Yay, the Snow family is all together and happy again! But here comes Cicada the Sequel to ruin the joyous family reunion. Killer Frost will deal with her though, but for the sake of this episode, Cicada II is now fully able to beat down KF. We’re one boomerang dagger away from being short a member of Team Flash when Thomas comes in out of nowhere to save Caitlin. Naturally his final words of family not leaving family hit home for Barry. Help me out, was Killer Frost’s dad just fridged?

I’m also confused as to what Cicada II wants with the cryo atomizer and why she thinks that could help her comatose younger self. This season is really complicating the rules of time travel.

the flash snow pack review - negative speed force nora

Barry and Iris get back on the same page. Everything wasn’t perfect this episode, but their scenes were great. Maybe the show could focus more on them instead of the supporting cast of 3,218? Iris thinks Thawne might actually care for Nora. It won’t matter though as Nora returns to their time frame full of purple rage. But is that rage directed toward Cicada or Barry?

Snow Pack was a decent episode made better by the Barry/Iris scenes and the potential for Negative Speed Force Nora. This should put an end to the Caitlin family drama as well, which gives it another plus for me.

Rating: 8 out of 10

Photo Credit: The CW

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