Review: The Flash 3×23 – Finish Line

The Flash season three races to the finish line in an imperfect but still exciting finale…

 

Ah, The Flash season three. I imagine it will go down as the most divisive season of the show due to certain developments and its controversial levels of darkness. Likewise, I imagine some will really love this finale while others will hate it. Myself, I had a good time watching it but there were some niggles to be had.

Things kicked off with the shocking twist that Savitar didn’t really kill Iris – but H.R. instead. Even if you had already deduced this turn of events last week (ahem, as I did), it was still an emotional reveal. H.R. has been a constant delight this year and, though we have clearly not seen the last of Tom Cavanaugh on The Flash, Wells Mark. 3 will be much missed. Though apparently not by Team Flash. Geesh, Barry and Iris, why the heck are you laughing after going to a funeral? What’s wrong with you?

The effect of this is that Savitar is now a dead speedster walking and will soon be erased from history. Apart from the plot convenience of this not happening right away, the decision to effectively defeat the villain at the beginning of the episode is an interesting one as it does dial down the threat level somewhat. Still, this allows for an interesting arc where Barry attempts to reconnect with his scarred, future self. For a moment there, I thought we might be having an anti-hero Barry clone running around Central City in the future (ala Spider-Man’s clone Scarlet Spider in the comics). Sadly, ol’ Savvy soon reverted to form.

Much like Supergirl‘s finale, ‘Finish Line’ tries to squeeze in as many characters as possible. While it’s nice to see the familiar faces, most are underused. Gypsy admitted that she and Cisco have a connection and that was about it and dear old Jay Garrick was sadly hugely wasted. At least there was some interesting Killer Frost material. After helping defeat Savitar, it seems the former Dr Snow is now somewhere between Caitlin and Killer. How will she feature in the show next year? I’m excited to find out.

But, of course, the big talking point of the episode is the whopper of a cliffhanger – as Barry effectively dies, as he is guided into Speed Force Heaven by the ‘ghost’ of his mother. If I was being churlish I would say that this scene was a bit of a rip-off of Buffy’s ‘The Gift’, but it was a shocking and tearful ending all the same so I won’t. Except, I guess, I just did.

All in all, even if it had a strange structure, a couple of weird character moments and was overstuffed, there really was much to enjoy in ‘Finish Line’. The best thing about it is that it suggests a reinvigorated show when The Flash returns. Here’s hoping that Barry comes back from the Speed Force with a newly-found sense of fun and confidence.

 

Speed Thoughts:

  • Cisco asks Wally to “reverse the polarity of the neutron flow.” Doctor Who fans will recognise this as the catchphrase of Jon Pertwee’s incarnation of the Time Lord.
  • Savitar mentions creating a cerebral inhibitor against DeVoe in his personal past and Barry’s future. That’s the second mention of DeVoe now, after ‘Abra Kadabra’. I think we have our season four big bad.
  • I’m still not quite sure why neither Wally or Jay offered to take Barry’s place in the Speed Force. Yes, they had already had their turn so to speak and Barry wouldn’t have let them, but they could have offered. It’s the thought that counts, boys.

 

Rating:

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