Aftermath | The Flash “The Man Who Saved Central City” Review
The Flash is finally back with, “The Man Who Saved The City.” After the ridiculously awesome finale, was episode one able to even almost keep up with the torrid pace the former season created? A solid yes, and no.
There’s a lot to love about this episode of The Flash. A large portion of the episode deals with Barry coming to terms with the fallout of containing the singularity in which he caused. Yes, he did save Central City from a much worse fate, but the act did come at a cost. Not only did it separate the team and leave Barry to believe he should fight alone, Ronnie never made it out of the singularity. The only way they were able to stop the singularity was by having Firestorm separate within the Singularity. Barry was able to save Martin Stein, but Ronnie never came out. Surely he will show up between one of the DC properties, but his death has caused quite the ripple effect across Central City.
The team has split up, and STAR Labs is no more. Caitlin has gone to Mercury Labs, and Barry has taken it upon himself to save Central City. As he is meant to do, he is just going to keep running and running. The city wants to commemorate him with “Flash Day,” but he feels that he doesn’t deserve (nor does he want) any of the credit.
I love the dynamic because even after all that has happened, Barry is still deeply in-tune with his humanity. He genuinely feels terrible that any of his friends have gotten hurt and would rather fail alone than to put his friends or family in danger. It is a noble effort but one that is ultimately ineffective and reverses course toward the end of the episode.
Barry does end up making an appearance at the “Flash Day” celebration where he’s about to be given the key to the city, but of course our first villain of Season 2 rains on his parade. Aptly named Atom Smasher, by Dr. Stein this time which provide quite a hilarious moment between him and Cisco, this villain grows in size when he absorbs radioactive material. His metamorphosis looked quite strange and a little awkward for The Flash’s usual top-of-the-line visuals. Alas, his special effects can be forgiven, but his story in this episode was underwhelming.
The villain, as they usually do, brought the team together, and they found that they could essentially overcharge Atom Smasher with radioactive material. The trap could be seen from a mile away, yet he literally walked right into it. We then learn that he is simply doing this because Zoom said he would take the Atom Smasher home. I was hoping there would be a bit more to him than appearing to be a lap dog of sorts for Zoom, and with Cisco’s premonition of sorts in their first encounter, I’m convinced there will be more of Atom-Smasher in the future.
The next big moment dealt with Wells’ attorney giving Barry a flash drive that contained his last request, a video file. Barry had Caitlin watch it with him because he was too terrified to see what Wells had to say. But, to their surprise, it was a confession that he did kill Nora Allen. This confession set Barry’s father, Henry, free. After a long 14 years, the two have finally reunited. But, something is up with Henry.
The coming home party for Henry was bittersweet. Barry is esctatic for them to look for a place together, but Henry explains that Barry can’t become what he needs to be with his father around…. What?! While I see how this sort of makes sense, it feels like him getting out of prison lost its importance. He was coughing and holding his chest, so I feel there’s something else up with the scenario.
Ending out the episode is the group back together and talking about how they’ve upgraded Barry’s suit and that the security around STAR Labs is top of the line so no one can just waltz in. Seconds later, someone does. Lo and behold, Jay Garrick walks in and explains that they are in danger and that he must teach them all he knows.