Episode Title: Running to Stand Still
Original Airdate: 12-8-15
It’s already come time for the midseason finale before the show takes a relatively short break before coming back alongside Legends of Tomorrow in about a month and a half. This episode is all about secrets coming out into the open as well as a few secrets that remain buried. Or another way to put it is secrets from the past coming back to haunt you. After several episodes kind of sitting it out, Zoom makes a reappearance and so does the Trickster, just in time for Christmas.
Apparently everyone on this show has quite a bit of excess baggage. We finally get a bit more of Patty’s backstory as she had a bit of a major life event that led her into the crime fighting path. The Weather Wizard was plenty busy before his turn to become a metahuman and one of those people he killed was Patty’s father. But it’s not just as simple as that, he killed her father because he was covering for her at his store. So besides that bit of healthy revenge, she also has some serious guilt about her father’s death. I will say that I was a little bit surprised during her moment of weakness when Barry is talking her out of killing Martin. I was almost expecting him to come clean with her right then and there, though I do suppose it would have been unlikely since he has two criminals sitting right there that could have made the connection as well. And not only does Patty come clean with her past to the Flash, but she also opens up to Barry at the end of the episode.
But the real heart of the story is about the real introduction of Wally West, aka a future speedster. Prediction time here, along with the preview for the next episode, Zoom’s plan is to steal Barry’s speed. What I imagine will happen is that Zoom will succeed, but at some point Wally and/or Jay Garrick will be able to harness the speed force somehow and they will be the ones who defeat Zoom. But back to this episode, Iris finally knows how Barry felt keeping his secret from her for all that time in season 1. Joe still gets all the best dramatic moments in this show and it was a little funny to me seeing Joe and Iris with their totally wide eyes during the entire time they are talking to Wally at the door.
I will say that the villains were a little disappointing this time around. We get to see a little hint of Snart’s reform that will come into play as soon as these shows return. But I wasn’t quite as fond of Hamill’s performance as the Trickster this time around. He just felt a little bit off to me this time, like he was overly focused on killing people and making jokes rather than creating all these overblown tricks. The dreidels and gift bombs were decent schemes, but the set up felt a little lacking. Especially when there wasn’t any comment made about how Barry basically learned how to fly, but a huge deal was made just twenty minutes later when Martin used his own powers to fly. But the moments with Zoom and Harry were sufficiently chilling. Not only that, but Barry’s moment talking to himself towards Harry, but really the memory of Harrison Wells was really fantastic. Overall, the epsiode wasn’t a huge favorite, but there were some great moments throughout. Especially Cisco’s comments about Jay and Caitlin’s relationship.