The Flash “Borrowing Problems From the Future” Review

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Posted January 30, 2017 by John Patterson in Nerdy Bits

The Flash is Back! And with a strong Midseason Premiere! We start dealing with the Savitar and Iris plotline right off the bat, we get some Kid Flash action and the Grand opening of the STAR labs museum.

The show wastes no time when it comes to the Savitar plotline, which makes sense considering what Barry saw. We get really deep into the beginning of this storyline. Barry’s witnessing Iris’ potential death in the future causes him to have nightmares and affects his interactions with the team, especially when Plunder emerges. Barry eventually decides to tell Iris and they make the decision to tell the team.

This decision shows development for both Barry as a character and Barry and Iris as a couple. Barry has learned a lot about keeping secrets this past season and how it affects everyone on the team. It also shows that Barry and Iris are making decisions as a couple now. They’re communicating and on equal playing fields, even though one is a superhero.

Interestingly, they decide not to tell Joe, on account of his destructive behavior when it comes to loved ones. This will likely end with Joe finding out somehow, and some sort of fallout. Wally didn’t seem too keen on keeping this information from him, so perhaps he’ll tell Joe.

The team obviously agrees to help Barry and we get a cool scene of Cisco vibing Barry back to the future. The duo spends time looking at news headlines to determine if change is possible, something that HR says is very difficult and has to be done with extreme care. We get a bit of a glimpse at things to come, including a reference to Music Meister, the main antagonist of the Supergirl/Flash musical crossover episode coming later in the season.. We also see that Joe is to be honored, HR’s Star Labs Museum is going to close, that the City is going to need to recover after a Gorilla attack, and, the big one, that Killer Frost will be at large. These headlines give Team Flash a bit of a heads up on the future and how to change it and prevent, not just one, but now two events: Iris’ death and Caitlin becoming Killer Frost.

This episode also introduces this timeline’s Kid Flash and shows him teaming up with Barry. It’s a bit weird to be calling this version of Wally, since he’s about 20 years old. Calling a grown man Kid Flash is odd, but I’m sure it’s something I’ll get over. Other than that, this storyline was handled fairly well. Wally is told to shadow Barry for the time being to learn the ropes. This is good for both Barry and Wally, character wise. We get to see just how far Barry has come from Season 1, when he needed Wells, Cisco, and Caitlin to tell him how to solve problems.

We also get to see more of the Wally/Barry dynamic, which hasn’t been featured a lot. Barry and Wally will be in the same room often, but we rarely see the two have one on one talks. It’ll be cool to see the two of them interact and see Barry’s teaching side.

There is a bit of tension between them this episode. Wally overhears one of the cops at CCPD (who I will forever refer to as Office Parkman because of the actor) undermine him and gets self conscious about his heroic antics. This results in Wally catching Plunder to prove himself when Barry had planned to let him go to change the future. Since this is before Barry told the team, he gets angry with Wally and lectures him about following orders.

This is sort of reminiscent of the storyline that recently happened in the comics with the second Wally West where Barry found out he was being Kid Flash without him and ended the partnership. Even though Barry and Wally are closer in age in the show then they are in the comics, their partnership still has the same student-mentor feel as it does in the comics and shows like Young Justice. Barry does apologize after he tells the team and we get our first big Flash and Kid Flash action sequence. Wally ends up taking out Plunder and as a result changes one of the future headlines, proving that they can, in fact change the future. I’m really excited to see more of these action sequences and hopefully we can get one with all the speedsters soon.

This episode also features a side story with Caitlin and Julian. Caitlin wants him to help her get rid of her powers, but he’s reluctant. She notices that he’s not been sleeping well and deduces that it’s because of the things he did as Alchemy. Julian denies it, but eventually admits that he feels guilt. Caitlin invites him to join team Flash and the team accepts him. Hopefully, This new development results in some comedic moments where Julian is straight forward and blunt with the team. We’ll also finally be able to see the type of person Julian really is, instead of him just being Barry’s jerk of a coworker.

The weakest part of the episode was by far the STAR labs museum plotline. HR has been trying to prove his worth for a while now, and this was the way he was gonna do it. He had also stated that it was the way they were going to make money so that they could continue their heroic antics. The story fell a bit flat. Cisco gave HR a lot of flack throughout the episode and then seemed to do a complete 180 and help HR. The switch seemed to come out of nowhere. Cisco has never really liked HR, so it didn’t really make sense. I’m also not sure how the Star Labs museum is going to play into the rest of the season. Guess we’ll just have to wait and see.

Overall, the midseason premiere was pretty strong and has me excited for the back half of the season.


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John Patterson