TV SHOW REVIEW - The Flash: Season 2
By The Masked Medic
So yeah, I’ve been trying to make more of an effort to get through seasons of TV shows quickly so that I can up the ante on some of these reviews. Part of the problem is that there’s so much to watch and so much to catch up on! That’s probably why it takes a while to get some of the CW show reviews out because their seasons are so long, but fear not, for I have buckled down and rewatched the second season of ‘The Flash’. I remember it being pretty good when I first watched it, but doing so from a critical point of view was definitely a lot of fun!
The second season of this show starts with Barry realising that in sending Reverse Flash back, he’s essentially created a massive singularity in the sky. Together with Firestorm’s help they manage to close this singularity but at the price of Ronnie Raymond’s life. As Team Flash come together to try and figure out how to help Professor Stein find a new partner to be half of Firestorm, each of the team is finding their personal lives changing in ways they didn’t expect. Cisco finds that he’s gained metahuman powers which he doesn’t want. Caitlyn is once again trying to cope with the loss of her fiancé. And Barry finally finds time to get into a relationship with a cop named Patty Spivot. All of this comes tumbling down, however, when they apprehend a man that looks just like Harrison Wells. It turns out that he is Harrison Wells, only he’s from a parallel Earth. Enter Jay Garrick, the Flash of Earth-2. He comes to warn the team about an evil speedster on his world named Zoom who has stolen his speed and is now after Barry’s. Though tentative at first, Team Flash are able to work with Harrison ‘Harry’ Wells in order to help Barry get faster, with occasional input from Jay. It’s evident that Jay doesn’t approve of Wells, but soon his romantic connection to Caitlyn means that he’s around a lot more. And it turns out that Team Flash will need all the help they can get since Zoom is sending evil metahumans from Earth-2 to kill the Flash. As Barry continues to grow with the help of his new friends, he soon discovers that sometimes history repeats itself and someone on the team hasn’t been entirely truthful. Can Barry and the rest of Team Flash stop Zoom before it’s too late? And just what price will they have to pay to secure a victory?
I think one of the reasons that ‘The Flash’ has been so successful as a show is that it treads a middle line between many of the CW shows. It’s certainly nowhere as dark as ‘Arrow’ and at the same time, doesn’t have the naive optimism that ‘Supergirl’ does. That would explain why it’s lasted this long and has only recently been renewed for another season. Anyways, coming back to my thoughts on this season. I’ve said this to almost anyone else that’s asked. I think this was the best season of ‘The Flash’. I may well be proved wrong when I watch future seasons but to me, this had everything that I loved. It had parallel Earths, it had some epic crossovers with characters like Green Arrow, Hawkman, etc and most of all it had an extremely good twist that even on a second watching still gets me. The writers obviously didn’t hold back and there were so many good nods to the wider DC universe. I already mentioned the team-ups, but even during an episode where Barry goes to Earth-2 and sees his doppelgängers phone, we get to see he has Bruce, Diana and Hal on speed dial. I don’t know if the CW will ever give us these characters, but for a fan, it was a pretty epic moment.
I remember Grant Gustin getting cast as the Flash and there being uproar, which isn’t particularly unique because they didn’t think he looked the part. I think he did a good job in the first season, but in this season he really steps up his game and you get to appreciate his acting skill in certain episodes, especially the one where he’s in the Speedforce. The supporting cast also gets to explore more of their characters’ backstories, especially Carlos Valdes, who plays Cisco Ramon. We see Cisco step up into a more prominent role as he begins to develop his own powers and continues to become one of the more well-rounded characters in the series. Iris and Joe’s story continues with the West Family introducing Joe’s son and Iris’s brother, Wally West to the show. This undoubtedly caused a stir amongst the hardcore comic book fans who know that Wally West is also someone who takes up the mantle of the Flash at some point! Teddy Sears stars as Jay Garrick, the Flash of Earth 2. I have to say I was impressed with the duality of his character and Sears acted both roles excellently. However, once again, the highlight of the show was none other than Tom Cavanagh who plays the Earth-2 version of Harrison Wells. I thought his performance in the first season was impressive, but he just blew me away this season with a new version of a character we already know. To have that much acting ability and depth is genuinely impressive!
The CW isn’t known to have the most expansive budgets and I can imagine that a show like ‘The Flash’ requires a lot more money in terms of the CGI and all the special effects needed. This season was a lot better than the first in that respect, however, there were still lots of shots that were completely computer-generated, and obviously so, where the effects didn’t mask much that it was CGI. They essentially looked like a video game. There’s nothing wrong with that, of course, and given that when the season premiered, I’d say they probably didn’t have access to better software. I do have to mention that the cinematography especially when it came to the episodes on Earth-2 was pretty good. On the music side, I’d say ’The Flash’ has more iconic theme music than some of the other CW shows, but completely honestly I can’t say that I pay much attention to it.
In conclusion, Season 2 of The Flash has been a phenomenal watch and I just can’t imagine anything topping it. The Meticulous Marauder tells me that she thought Season 3 was the best one, so I guess we’ll have to wait and see. The CW definitely proved that adapting ‘The Flash’ after ‘Arrow’ was the way to go, and if they continue this way, then I guess I can see how it’s made it to season 9! Haha!
Integral vs Filler Episodes: ★★★★