Like many shows in 2020, The Flash had their season ended before they expected it to. Their season finale didn’t end up being what they expected, and they had to make do the best they could. Season seven’s premier seemed, to me at least, more like the season finale we didn’t get last time. As the season kicks off, Caitlin is away, trying to get help from her mother for her medical condition; Cisco is, last we knew, in Atlantis conducting his scavenger hunt for components for the Artificial Speed Force; Ralph is gone now that the actor’s social media history caught up with him; and Iris is still trapped in the Mirror Dimension, leaving a reduced Team Flash to protect Central City. There are a few surprising developments as we see that “All’s Wells that Ends Wells.”
The season begins with Chester Runk, a very different character than his comic book form, hanging out in the Cortex reading. He gets interrupted by alarms and summons the Flash, who we see has taken to some extreme measures to deal with his speed issues. Flash shows his cool new helmet/cowl (that makes no sense at all) and takes off to combat Eva the Mirror Master, the current big bad. It’s a high-speed chase through Central City that doesn’t go well. Eva seems more amused than annoyed at Flash’s attempts to stop her, and does what she set out to do in spite of the hero’s best efforts. Eva has targeted two minor (on this show) members of Flash’s Rogues Gallery, and things end badly. Eva also makes a surprising revelation about one of the Rogues.
Iris’ date night turns to nightmare as she realizes what’s going on, but they do work in a Superman reference (nice touch, both with the worlds melding after Crisis and Superman and Lois now following the Flash in the new lineup). Barry and Joe scheme out what to do next, while Cecile has once again managed to land the villain as a client. I think she’s the only lawyer in town sometimes, just like Joe is the only cop. We get an excuse for Ralph’s absence, as well as Sue’s (I’m hoping she comes back, I was enjoying that actress). Chester and Wells work late into the night at STAR, trying to make the Artificial Speed Force work, and Barry arrives just in time to prevent Chester from doing something stupid and explaining one of the hazards of the week. After the others leave, Nash gets a visit from the various Wells about what needs to happen to power up the ASF. Nash is not happy at the news.
Iris tries to message one of her fellow prisoners, and gets a surprise interruption. At her desk at McCullouch Technologies, Eva looks bored, and roots through some files on her computer. She finds something surprising, starts to look at it, then changes her mind and goes full drama, yelling at a dead man and breaking yet more glass. That woman must be a glazier’s dream come true. Cecile visits her client and gets a lot of surprises. There’s a great deal more to this Rogue than it has seemed in the past, and Cecile does not have a good interview. Allegra brings Nash some coffee as the worried man studies, then they, Barry, and Chester meet up to try the newest scheme to power up the ASF. This goes badly, has a surprising side effect on Barry, and leads to a lot of jokes about a name. This gets us a scene where Grant Gustin gets to stretch his acting chops, while Allegra wallows in self-doubt and Nash tries to reassure her, as Chester gets a big geek moment.
Iris continues her surprising run-in, and gets another example of why life in the Mirror-Verse is no fun. Barry’s condition takes a turn, and we see a new gadget in the STAR toolchest as everyone gets worrying news. There’s some brainstorming, yet another chance for Allegra to be mad at Nash (she never gets tired of that), and a new idea of how to save the day with yet another gadget. This show really likes its gizmos. Nash has a conversation with someone who knows what he’s going through, and gets some good insights.
Iris keeps getting the runaround in Mirror World (yes, I keep calling it different things), and Cecile goes back for another round with her client. On the one hand, Cecile does some personal growth in this scene, but on the other, now that we’re trying to get away from cops abusing their suspects, we seem to have switched to lawyers abusing their clients. Seriously, this should get her disbarred. Cecile goes running to Joe with a dire new development, and they both worry that Flash isn’t fast enough to stop what’s coming. Shame they don’t know someone who is almost as fast and can fly, too.
What’s left of Team Flash tries their newest plan to help Barry, and that part seems to work. Then they get the warning about the threat Cecile
beat out of her client uncovered, and Nash realizes there’s no more time. He does something heroic in order to get the ASF up and running, and give Flash what he needs to save the day. It’s a tragic scene that makes me wonder what’s going to happen to next, as a key slot in Team Flash seems to be vacant now. Repowered, Flash races off to save the day with some cool tricks. Later, Barry, Allegra, and Chester deal with their newest loss, and Barry seems a lot more resolved to start trying to put Team Flash back together.
There are the usual few wrap up scenes to make us wonder about the next episode. Iris gets something done she’s been trying to accomplish, and there’s a strange effect that makes it look like she succeeded. Much more surprising, Eva reviews some security footage and gets a big shock. I have to admit, I didn’t see this one coming. It’s going to be really interesting to see how that pans out.
What I liked: It’s nice to see the heroes of Central City back in action after the long COVID break. I’m glad they didn’t drag out the ASF/speed loss issue. I’m sure more problems are coming, but it was nice to see that dealt with, even at the price they paid. Grant Gustin handled his extra duties well in the episode. The big surprise at the end caught me off guard and I’m intrigued.
What I didn’t: Cisco has been one of my favorite characters from day one, and he seems to be getting a smaller and smaller part (I’m still annoyed he gave up his Vibe powers, which seemed so utterly out of character). I miss Caitlin/Frost, too. Joe, who I also enjoy, keeps getting less screen time, although I don’t know if that’s due to Jesse Martin’s health issues. Cecile’s conduct was unacceptable.
It was a decent, not great, start to the season. I’m trying to give them some slack with the COVID complications. I’ll give this a 3 out of 5.