Catching Up: The Flash Episode 323, "Finish Line"

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Flash 323 Finish Line

This is the moment we've been holding our breath for all week long. With Iris (CANDICE PATTON) having been slain by Savitar, right in front of our eyes last episode, how is Team Flash going to move forward?

This review delves into spoiler territory from the starting gun, so you are advised to turn away now if you do not wish to know the secrets revealed in this Season Three finale.

Ready? Set?

Let's go.

Iris isn't dead.

Remember that all season long H.R. (TOM CAVANAGH) has been playing with Earth-19 technology so that he could wander about without being recognized as the dead-and-thought-villainous Harrison Wells of Earth-1. The technology changed his appearance. Granted, we've seen him in the future abandoning the technology to become a famous superhero romance author -- but things we've seen in the future aren't what they used to be.

H.R. used a piece of Savitar's armor to track Savitar and rescue Iris. But they got caught. At the last moment, he used his technology to change his face to hers -- and hers to his. And the person dying in Flash's arms is not Iris West: it's H.R. Wells.

With Iris not dying, Barry (GRANT GUSTIN) will never create the time remnants to fight Savitar -- and Savitar will never exist. But the paradox hasn't caught up with him yet, and he has a Plan B. He threatens Cisco (CARLOS VALDES) into transforming the Speed Force Bazooka into an Interdimensional Quantum Splicer (pat pending, only $19.99, Calvin & Hobbes Industries). His plan is to open a portal to the speed force and then get shot with the modified weapon, which will splinter him before the paradox can catch up and remove him from existence. (Time is a lot slower now. It caught up with Eobard Thawne at the end of Season One in just a few moments; Savitar's getting a good couple of hours out of the deal.) These splinters of Savitar will exist in every moment of time--he will be omnipresent, truly a god.

But Barry has another plan, one that nobody would expect. He offers Savitar a chance at redemption.

Of course, they don't have any scientists, because Savitar has both Cisco and Caitlin/Killer Frost (DANIELLE PANABAKER), but they do still have Tracy (ANNE DUDEK). Unfortunately, she's not cooperative, seeing as how Savitar just took H.R. Wells away from her just as their romance was blossoming. This is as good a time as any for Harrison Wells (version Earth 2) to appear and tell her what H.R. would have wanted. But Savitar has had enough. He knows there's no help for him here, and runs back to his secret lair.

Cisco confirms his work on the Speed Force Bazooka is finished. This is all Savitar needs to order Caitlin to "do it" -- by which he means to kill Cisco. But before she can strike, Gypsy (JESSICA CAMACHO) appears and vibes him out of there. She vibed that he was in danger all the way across the multiverse, because they are connected. So there's one of the two rescued. (Cisco gets in a "Two-Face" reference regarding Savitar's half-scarred face, which should give the Easter Egg hunters a chuckle.)

In the park, Savitar and Killer Frost prepare to enact his plan. They open a breach to the Speed Force, and then we learn why Savitar needed Killer Frost all this time. Because the Speed Force doesn't like it when speedsters mess around with time, and they have an enforcer: Zoombie, I mean, Black Flash. But this version of Hunter Zolomon has a weakness: cold. So with Zoombie quickly defeated, Savitar prepares for Operation: Everytime. But he gets more than he bargained for when the gun is fired -- and instead of splintering, the Speed Force spits out Jay Garrick (JOHN WESLEY SHIPP). Team Flash arrives, and we learn Cisco tricked Savitar, turning the Speed Force Bazooka into a Speed Force Skeleton Key to release Jay from his Speed Force Prison. (The Speed Force is really turning into a meddling pain in the butt lately. Makes me kind of miss the days when Barry had speed solely because of chemicals and lightning.)

The fight scene is beyond awesome, with Jay, Barry and Wally (KEIYNAN LONSDALE) giving chase to Savitar, until Barry pulls off a spectacular move, vibrating himself into Savitar's armor and ejejecting Savitar out the front. That scene alone is worth the price of admission.

Savitar is ultimately defeated, but not by The Flash. And that's all I'm saying about that. Caitlin is given the chance to take a cure that's been developed, but rejects it. She's no longer Caitlin, but she also says she's no longer Killer Frost. She goes on a journey to find herself, so I'm presuming she'll come back with a new nickname. Maybe she will be the new Ice, or the new Captain Cold.

Barry delivers the wedding invitations, and it looks like it's happily ever after from this point forward. The future is bright, Iris's byline is back on the future newspaper as Iris West Allen. What could possibly go wrong?

How about earthquakes and a massive lightning storm tearing apart Central City? See, the Speed Force has a prison, and without someone in it, it becomes unstable. Wally and Jay were both in it at different times, as was Savitar. Now it's empty. And it's one of those privatized prisons--it demands to be populated.

And there's only one person for the job.

As Nora Allen steps from the speed force, she says that, like all runners, Barry has reached his finish line. He says his goodbyes, takes her hand...

And he's gone.

I guess Season 4 will be all about Wally West taking over the role of The Flash.

Grade: 
5.0 / 5.0