A Closer Look: The Flash – “Shade”

This Season of The Flash has wasted no time in furthering the plot with each episode, but this week’s episode holds particular status for pushing every existing storyline to the point of no return. Much like how the metahuman Shade was to distract the Team from Alchemy’s attack on Wally, the episode title of “Shade” was also to distract us viewers from everything that this episode dealt with.

The Killer Frost, Kid Flash & Alchemy storylines all took major steps forward; but that wasn’t all as a Savitar – Speedster unlike anything we’ve ever seen before – made his first appearance.

So let’s take a Closer Look at The Flash “Shade”.

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A Killer Future – Caitlin’s Destiny & Cisco’s Vibe Vision:

We’ve gone back and forth with Caitlin’s transformation into Killer Frost for a while now. I’m still hoping on my theory that she becomes Icea DC heroine – in the end, but this week gave us evidence for both sides. As of the moment, all we can be sure about is that she will use her powers in a big way – most likely to save someone – and that’ll be the breaking point. With Barry’s confession that he changed things and this is his fault, we could have the initial point of anger that could turn her bad.

Though on the other hand, we do have Cisco’s kind words of being there for her and finding a way. Is this all empty talk – failed promises that will make Caitlin even more cold – or is it true/ foreshadowing? In the end, even the most substantial proof – Cisco’s Vibe Vision – is suspect. His revelation of it is certainly a self-fulfilling prophecy, but we have no context. What if Cisco for a moment goes bad and she has to stall him? What if this is them simply training? There’s nothing said, just that vision of them fighting. All hope is not lost, but regardless the writing team is doing a great job of balancing both sides of this with evidence until the very last second. And again, even after her initial – most likely dark turn – there’s nothing against her finding her center and becoming a hero again.

Alchemy & Savitar – Identity, Partnership & Other New Details:

The other mystery this week was all about Alchemy and the newly revealed Savitar. As for Alchemy, the evidence presented is certainly meant to make the audience feel Julian is Alchemy. From his comment about “there’s a lot [Barry] doesn’t know about him” to his absence from the SDPD Swat Mission, we’re being led to believe that he is Alchemy – whether knowingly or not. We’ve seen split personalities before this season and Julian could have an alter ego of Alchemy – or maybe even a twin.

Though another curious thing called into question this episode is Alchemy’s aim. We know he wants to help people achieve their full potential, but as we saw with Wally, he asked him if he wanted the powers. Is this just for show – a question with a set answer already manipulated – or is he genuinely concerned about their consent? These motives are all called into question more as it seems Alchemy is working with another Speedster known as Savitar.

As for what we know about Savitar thus far, it seems he’s exponentially faster than the Flash as even Barry had trouble seeing him. Recall earlier this season we learned how Barry sees time in slow motion. So for him to see Savitar at first as just a ball of light, that means he’s going fast even for Barry. Additionally, this ball of light could explain how The Rival was killed in lock up from a distance. If Savitar really is that much faster than a normal speedster, he could have phased through, killed him and left. Though who is really calling the shots: Alchemy or Savitar? This episode certainly gave us more questions than answers.

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In A Flash – Easter Eggs, Quotes & Other Notables:

  • Favorite Quotes:
    • “As much as I’d like to gossip with you like a teenager right now….” – Joe to Barry
    • “You see the evil Wells, not to be confused with the dickish but not evil Wells” – Cisco
    • “You think everyone on Earth-19 is missing crayons in the box or just him?” – Cisco
    • “GOD I swear I fixed the security system, who the hell are you!” – Cisco
    • “Its gonna take a while to get to the cuffs stage” – WOAH HR….
    • “What’d he do, throw side eye at his enemies?” – Cisco about the metahuman named Shade
    • “Did you just neurolize us?” – Cisco
    • “Imma smack somebody” – Joe to HR hitting on Cecile
    • “She took the cuffs okay just drop it” – Cisco
  • Note that in Flashpoint Wally hated Kid Flash name, now he likes it
  • DAMN IT IRIS…. GOOD JOB IRIS!!!!!
  • Looks like Earth 19 has Gorilla Grodd and sentient gorillas as well…. Many
  • Major props to Keiynan Lonsdale who nailed it as Wally this week. His acting was so good you could actually feel his internal struggle – this is the change to get the powers he’s always wanted, but will he be able to be a hero if the powers come from evil.
  • The final scene with Wally coming to Alchemy had a very Return of the Jedi feel to it

Next week will deal primarily with Caitlin’s transformation in Killer Frost – or rather her struggle to NOT be that. Next week should give us a clear glimpse at how Caitlin handles this as well as how Team Flash views this change. Will they try to help her? Will they just stop her? Will they ask Alchemy to do the reverse and turn Caitlin into her non-powered Flaspoint self? The answers to all this questions will come in time. So for now, see you all next time for another Closer Look.

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