The Flash has felt like it’s been treading water since Crisis with a very slow build to the second half of the season’s big bad. This wouldn’t feel that lackluster if Flash was tangling with some interesting threats, but the post-Crisis opponents haven’t been that challenging.
A Girl Named Sue didn’t break that trend with very methodical progression on a main arc. The first half of the season had the perfect storm of a good villain in Bloodwork and the drama of the pending Crisis. So far there feels like a lack of immediacy and the potential interesting subplots aren’t advancing enough to get fully invested.
In the Mirror Verse, Iris meets Eva McCollough (Efrat Dor), a scientist who’s been trapped here since the initial particle accelerator accident. She’s relieved to have some company after six years alone. Iris isn’t particularly sympathetic and wants to immediately get back before Refraction Iris causes too much trouble in the real world.
This episode had some issues, but fortunately one wasn’t Iris’ first escape plan idea worked. That would have been ridiculous for the non-scientist to immediately find a solution a genius couldn’t in six years. We’ve seen the brainiacs constantly getting a hand from regular folks (Alex with Lena during Crisis as a good example) in the Arrowverse so I’m glad that wasn’t the case here.
Iris might be getting out, but it won’t be tonight. The one advancement is the real that Eva has some powers of her own.
Refraction Iris wants Barry to get the mirror gun for her, but he’s actually leery of her messing around with it beyond the fact that she has no weapons training for something that dangerous. When she goes to retrieve it, Iris runs into Nash, who’s starting to go full on nuts with full conversations with Harry Wells.
I like how in true comic book fashion, everyone has a subplot, but we’re reaching the point this season where it’s time to start addressing some of them beyond the set-up phase. Nash has whatever with Allegra already and he’s now having some survivor’s guilt over being the last Wells standing. Meanwhile Barry is doing what exactly?
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The episode’s main plot revolves around Ralph finally meeting Sue Dearbon (Natalie Dreyfuss). Sue is worried her ex-fiancé, John Loring, is trying to kill her. This was a nice nod to Identity Crisis, which controversially featured the murder of Sue Dibney by another Loring.
Ralph and Sue’s dynamic was pretty decent and reminiscent of the comic version’s playful banter, but it’s silly that Ralph can’t take one goon just so Jean can save him. Did he forget he has powers? Eventually he used his powers to get them out of another jam making the earlier incident even weirder.
Sue encourages him to break into the bank and it felt weird that Ralph wasn’t even just a little suspicious of this request. It was a little disappointing that the writing team recycled the same shady love interest in the same episode. Naturally, Sue plays Ralph and reveals she’s a thief who’s actually robbing Loring.
Clearly the writers have plans for Sue and Ralph as he saves her from Loring’s goons and a random attack from Ultraviolet. This inclusion felt a bit much. Ralph is somehow exhausted and needs Flash to save him from Loring’s crew while both Sue and Ultraviolet escape.
With so much going on with everyone else there wasn’t much room for Barry this week. It’s always frustrating when The Flash is limited to cameo appearances on The Flash. Worse, it doesn’t seem like that’s going to be changing anytime soon.
At least Barry gave Refraction Iris the mirror gun, which should create some more trouble in the immediate future. It’s too bad the series already wasted Mirror Master. Despite the glacial pacing it would be worth it if he were the payoff.
It’s time for The Flash to start making quicker headway to the point of the back half of the season soon otherwise all of the well-earned momentum before Crisis will be wasted.