The Flash – Rogues of War review S9 E3

With this idiotic hipster Caitlin variant it’s going to be impossible for any episode this season to not have some fast forward material. Still, Rogues of War had some welcome surprises even if there’s just 12 people left in Central City that don’t know Barry Allen is The Flash.

Murmur returned as the latest hardly used Rogue to join Captain Boomerang and The Fiddler. They’re gathering parts necessary to create a Cosmic Treadmill.

Naturally this worries Barry as he’s the only one who’s supposed to categorically destroy the timelines.

In the old days, Cisco and Caitlin would come up with the solution to track down the Rogues. Now Team Flash has to outsource that to bring in yet another character to the bloated squad. At least Pied Piper has an excuse for getting called up since he was reunited with the team last week. 

For some reason, Hartley was checking out the same gadget the New Rogues are searching for and he’s got a full dossier and everything about where the government is holding it. How does a club owner have all this government access?

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He suggests Barry get a squad of Rogues to steal it first. This feels somewhat contradictory. Barry has 142 superpowered allies on speed dial (no pun intended). This felt like a hokey way to redeem more on the fence characters when that was the real legacy from Season 1. Let’s make Captain Cold and Heat Wave good guys. Bad call, Ripley.

Was Ray Palmer busy? He could have wrapped this problem up in no time. Or maybe Diggle could just call in a favor and have Lyla reroute the device to STAR Labs for some bogus reason. It shouldn’t be that easy to come up with alternatives than what the writers chose. 

Barry and Hartley go on a recruiting spree making successful pitches to Goldface, Jaco and Chillbaine??? Oh, come on, there’s exactly no reason why Mark should play along with these guys after the robbed him of any chance of getting Frost back. 

These Khione scenes are painful. Why introduce a new version of Caitlin this late in the series??? Her drunk bootleg Yoda character is already annoying. Also why did she hand Chester the plant like he’s her butler? Ugh. Allegra blowing off Chester feels like something that could have been a thing three seasons ago. Now I’m just not that invested in their will they(?)/of course they will deal. 

Chester figures out the tech being used to soup up the New Rogues’ weapons comes from Wayne Tech. And we even get a callout to Gotham. Iris is feeling like she needs to accomplish something before Nora is born. And as TV and movies have taught me, women can’t be successful at anything once they have a family. Sigh. Of course, Iris just created her own media conglomeration that can probably sustain itself while she’s on maternity leave…


Barry’s Rogues argue over who gets possession of the device, which seems like something he should have anticipated. This is why you call Ray first, Barry. 

Eventually, Barry gets back out of his feelings and realizes he needs to trust the plan of Hartley. You know the same guy who suggested they steal this device in the first place? It’s also wild that Barry is perfectly fine getting (mostly) reformed/paroled criminals to commit a crime. With no disguises. Unless you want to count Hartley’s hood? Some hero. Jacko figures out Barry is The Flash because of his Jitters order. His superhero ID is a vault that’s been cracked open and the code is livestreaming all over Central City. 

Thanks to plot conveniences, Barry can’t just speed in himself and grab the device. He needs help knocking out the meta dampeners in the facility. And just when it looks like it’s gonna be easy breezy, the New Rogues arrive, and the traitor of Barry’s Rogues reveals themselves. I didn’t really care about anything else this episode, but that fact that Mark “turned” on the guy who turned on him first was poetic justice and I was 100% here for it. 

the flash - rogues of war review -iris, barry and chester

The New Rogues vs. Barry’s Rogues looks like a standstill until Red Death zooms in and grabs the device and their allies. 

Mark is upset now that Red Death wants him to chill (that pun was intended) before he can use the device to bring Frost back. After getting burned before, Mark questions how he can trust Red Death, who removes their helmet to reveal Ryan Wilder? Wow, an actual twist I didn’t see coming. Not bad guys.  In the comics, Red Death was a Dark Multiverse version of Bruce Wayne. It makes sense to replace him in the Arrowverse with a Batwoman. 

This was a wild episode with some nice sensible character development and an intriguing twist that actually works for a change.  As always the real question will be how they follow it up.

Rating: 7.5 out of 10

Photo Credit: The CW