What was he thinking?
Last night’s THE FLASH season 2 finale shocked me on so many levels, that I was seriously just staring at the TV for a good ten minutes, trying to make sense of what I had just watched. Up until that final scene, however, I admit I felt that the episode had been kind of anticlimactic, considering the season-long Zoom arc.
Barry was understandably in an awful place emotionally, after watching Zoom murder his father, so he was basically just reacting through the entire episode. When Zoom shows up after Henry’s funeral and challenges him to a race, Barry is all for it, wanting nothing more than to just end this godforsaken feud between them and get his revenge. Also, Zoom? That dude is a bully. It honestly felt like they were in fourth grade and Zoom was the big kid in the playground who wanted to be better than everyone else by beating and humiliating all the other kids.
Only the guy took the bully route to a whole new level, because his master plan was to destroy all Earths in the multiverse and just leave our Earth intact as his trophy. With Barry not in his right mind at the time, the team locks him up to stop him from doing something stupid – like erasing an entire timeline - and tries to take Zoom by themselves. Obviously, that idea blows up in their faces and Zoom ends up taking Joe as a hostage to Earth-2.
Wally freaks out when Iris tells him Joe is gone, and that they can’t open a breach to the other Earth without risking Zoom coming back; so he decides to take matters into his own hands and frees Barry from his cell in the pipeline, so he can do something about it. Barry is super pissed off that they tried to take on Zoom without him and asks Cisco to vibe him to Earth-2, so he can tell Zoom he will race him if he brings Joe back.
In the end, Barry creates a time remnant of himself, so he can save Joe and stop Zoom, only to hand him to the time wraiths. So it all ended well, Zoom is gone and it seemed like they were going to in the direction of happily ever after. They rescued the man in the mask and it turns out it was the real Jay Garrick – who happened to be Henry’s doppelganger; Harry and Jesse decide to go back to Earth-2, now that there is no more Zoom threat, and that was a very bittersweet moment, because these are two characters that have really grown on me this season and I seriously hope we get to see them again, somehow, in season 3.
But Barry is not doing too well. Just when he was finally ready to accept everything that had happened in his life, losing his mom and all, he also loses his father. Not even Iris declaring her love for him helps. Also, as a side note, I am still not sure what was the point of trying to shove a Barry/Iris romance down our throats, because as much as both Candice Patton and Grant Gustin are fantastic actors, they have no chemistry when it comes to being each other’s love interest. They work much, much better as best friends/siblings and watching them kiss honestly felt like watching siblings kiss and it was just awkward.
So to say that Barry is in a bad place is the understatement of the year. I understand why he did what he did. I do. But he acted irrationally, without thinking of the consequences of his actions. By going back in time to save his mother, he erased an entire timeline and that doesn’t affect just his life or those immediately close to him. In the grand scheme of things, we have three shows here that are interconnected – LEGENDS OF TOMORROW, ARROW and THE FLASH – so by changing history, he has basically erased everything we watched these past couple of seasons.
Of course the most affected show would be THE FLASH. If he saved his mother, his father never went to prison, he never lived with Joe and didn’t grow up to be a forensic scientist and then, eventually, the Flash. Team Flash would never get together, Barry wouldn’t go to Starling City and meet Team Arrow, which in turn would affect a whole lot of lives. And if Barry never became the Flash, then this year’s crossover never happened, which means Oliver never went to Central City and found out he had a kid, which invalidates basically 60% of season 4 on ARROW.
So see, Barry? Consequences.
I understand that they are setting up Flashpoint, but I am not versed in comic book canon, so I have no idea how they are getting out of this one. It looks like we have an entire summer to speculate how different Barry’s life is going to be now.
THE FLASH returns on Tuesdays this fall on The CW.