The Flash 2×05 – The Darkness and the Light

Kendra and Cisco

Kendra and Cisco

It’s hard to believe we’re already quarter of the way into the season, and this episode demonstrates an element of urgency in continuing to set out the stall ready for the mid-season crossover and subsequent launch of Legends of Tomorrow. At the same time, it also has its own plot arcs to unfold.

Last week we saw the Earth 2 Harrison Wells defeat King Shark with a device put together from tech he stole from Tina McGee, before meeting Barry. The Harrison Wells we meet is a different animal to the one we knew for most of season 1. Where ‘our’ Wells was outwardly the distinguished mentor, but with a darkness inside; the Earth 2 Wells is a bit of an arse – he shows little patience and doesn’t deal well with others. However, he does have a lot of knowledge of the meta-humans from over there, particularly those being sent by Zoom to kill Barry. Oh, and he doesn’t like being called Harry, so it’s fairly likely that what Team Flash are going to call him at every opportunity!

Returning after a week away, Jay isn’t a particular fan of this Wells whom he knows from Earth 2, but they do have a mutual enemy in Zoom who apparently holds Wells’ daughter prisoner.

Meanwhile, this week’s E2 villain is Dr Light. In the comics, there have been two main versions of this character – one male villain who was fairly comprehensively destroyed as a character in Brad Meltzer’s Identity Crisis story; and a Japanese female hero created during Crisis on Infinite Earths. It seems that the show is using Earth 2 as a shorthand location to co-opt named characters and make them villains. This Dr Light turns out to be the Earth 2 Linda Park, giving us another nod at what might have been, had S1 taken a different turn.

People moments continue to be the lifeblood of the show, with Barry having a dinner date with Patty Spivot. However, following his encounter with Dr Light, Barry is temporarily blinded and the date is guided by Cisco. Surprisingly, this works really well, with strong chemistry between the two, in a similar vein to that between Barry and Felicity last year.

This episode also does its bit for Legends of Tomorrow by introducing Kendra Saunders (the future Hawkgirl) who makes quite an impression on ladies’ man Cisco whilst she’s serving at Jitters. Perhaps it’s a good thing that Harry Wells’ smartwatch app has outed Cisco’s Vibe powers now before they turned into this year’s version of Barry’s identity secret fiasco where for a time every one of the main cast know he was the Flash except for his BFF Iris. Interestingly though, the app doesn’t identify any latent meta-human genes in Caitlin – is the Killer Frost we know is coming going to be another arrival from Earth 2?

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