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The Flash - Who Is Harrison Wells? - Review: "The Truth Is Out There, and It's Thawne"


1.19 - "Who Is Harrison Wells?"
Directed by Wendy Stanzler
Written by Ray Utarnachitt and Cortney Norris
Reviewed by Gavin Hetherington

Hey, Gavin here again filling in for Christopher DeBono this week.


'Who Is Harrison Wells?' Review

LAUREL LOVE?

Okay, this was a much better episode than last week but it still wasn't quite as perfect as I would have liked. Starting off with the crossover aspect of this episode. I am so sorry to those who will disagree with this, but I love Laurel. I seem to get a lot of hate for liking people others hate so if you don't like Laurel, that's totally fine, I'm not going to force you to like her. But I do really like Laurel, so I was excited to see her show up in The Flash. Having said that, after what happened in Arrow last week, why was she so totally happy? I do love to see her so cool and fun even though she wasn't really necessary in this episode, but Thea just died. Roy was forced to flee the city. Things just seemed a bit too light in The Flash despite what's happened. I'm just going to rationalise it by saying this probably happened the morning after Thea's death and Laurel probably doesn't even know about it yet - I mean, Oliver does keep her in the dark a lot of the time, right? A great thing that came from Laurel and Cisco meeting is that she got the Canary Cry device.

I loved Cisco's interactions with her and that he was totally fanboy-ing all over her. Come on, we would all do that in real life if superheroes were real and we were able to get photos with them. A friend of mine said they thought it was a nude photograph or something that Laurel handed him in an envelope but I never thought that, not even for a second. It's Cisco for crying out loud! He also had the best moment of the night with the whole digging up the real Wells and mentioning that he thought the body part they could see was the foot but turned out to be the hand, which is so much worse of course. It was cool that Cisco was removed from the action in Central City because he probably would have figured out it wasn't Barry in STAR Labs and that whole shapeshifter fiasco would have unravelled pretty quickly. I feel like I should mention Quentin Lance being present in this episode too and his scenes with Joe. I saw a lot of people commenting about how Arrow characters always seem out-of-character in The Flash and I have to agree - Quentin, Laurel, Felicity, Ray. Quentin isn't exactly the character I want to see right now after his little takedown of Team Arrow's hub but I hope we have some progression with him towards forgiving Laurel and stopping his crusade against Oliver.

EVERYMAN AND THAT CAITLIN KISS

The villain was much better than last week's (sorry Emily Kinney) and I'm one of those people who enjoys the metahuman-of-the-week aspect because I love seeing the different kinds of powers that have been attributed to humans after the particle accelerator explosion. The shapeshifter villain, Hannibal Bates (seriously on the nose for horror movie villains - Hannibal Lector and Norman Bates), opened many possibilities for fun in this episode and it posed a huge problem for Barry. He might be able to run at super speed but how can he catch someone who can change appearance by a single touch? It was quite the challenge and seeing the shapeshifter turn into the characters we know and love was both fun and exciting. I am so sorry to anybody who ships Barry and Caitlin but I definitely see them as just great buddies in Team Flash, along with Cisco. I love their trifecta and now things are a little awkward with Caitlin which I hope passes. I find Barry and Iris so awkward at times too because she knows Barry is crushing hard on her and because they're trying to be friends, there's a strain. I don't want that with Caitlin and Barry. I want them to be able to work together on their metahuman cases and just be the great team they've always been.

The shapeshifter also gave great moments for characters that usually get sidelined, like Eddie and Iris. Their relationship drama does not interest me because I disagree with keeping her in the dark, but they both got to, literally, kick some butt in this episode. I really loved the fight Barry had with Everyman towards the end. I've always wanted to know what it's like to see Iris and Caitlin fight and I don't think I really want them to have that sort of Laurel-Lance-turnaround but some basic skills could come in handy. One thing's for sure, they do look good kicking ass. Barry fighting Barry was good too and pretty well done. The effects there were cool, which reminds me, the transformation of the shapeshifter into different people left much to be desired. I wasn't a big fan of the way he transformed, it just didn't really look right. The end, when they have him locked away, and he transforms into that freaky-looking man (quite possibly his original body), I got chills. Huge chills, it actually scared me.

SPILLING SECRETS

The main problem I had with 'All Star Team Up' was that the progression of the Harrison Wells dilemma was sacrificed to accommodate the pretty much unnecessary crossover. Fortunately here, the small crossover didn't hinder the story at all, instead it moved swiftly along. Laurel and Quentin didn't dominate the episode like Felicity did in the last episode so the question on everybody's tongues - who is Harrison Wells? - was almost answered here. They still don't know it's Eobard Thawne who is the new Harrison, but they have uncovered the body of the real Harrison Wells and the doubt in anybody's mind saying otherwise is now diminished. The uncovering of the body (which I already mentioned as a great Cisco moment) was a great scene and made the whole Starling City aspect fruitful. It wasn't a wasted journey, and it wasn't a waste of our time too. This wasn't just a ratings stunt but an actual necessity in uncovering the truth.

I really liked how Caitlin struggled with the fact and had a conflict of interest with Barry. Caitlin wants to trust Harrison or her time at STAR Labs will have been a lie. I totally understand that and it makes sense. It shows the complex level that Caitlin is on because she wants to believe in the good, to believe in a man who has stood by her in the past, but every shred of evidence points otherwise. You do have to feel some sympathy for her because of this, but of course she can't stay behind rose-tinted glasses. The truth needs to come out, especially since it's going to help Barry with uncovering his mother's killer and freeing his father from prison. As a meme once said, you can't put a flower in an asshole and call it a vase. Staying oblivious - like Iris - is more dangerous than knowing the truth. If Caitlin wanted to stay trustful of Harrison a.k.a. Eobard, then she will end up getting herself killed. Also, I am so glad Eddie told Iris that he's working with the Flash. It's one step further toward her learning the truth about Barry, and hopefully Wells. Excluding her, as I said in my last review, shows a low level of trust for her yet Barry and Eddie, and even Joe, should have for her.

THE ENDING AND VERDICT

No matter what though, the ending was just amazing. To have Barry, Cisco and Caitlin (that perfect trifecta) discovering Wells' secret room was a long-awaited moment. I've been waiting for them to discover it since the beginning of the show and now it's happened, I'm ecstatic. I loved the urgency of the scene and the slow reveal of the monitor with the Flash missing article from 2024. They, without a shadow of a doubt, know Harrison is the Reverse-Flash so where do they go from there? Also, the scene Harrison had with Joe at the precinct was very ominous and freaky - is he on to them? Only great things are expected from now. 4 episodes to go and it's safe to say, after last week's all-star slip-up, The Flash is back on track and it's full steam ahead to a mind-blowing finale.

Overall, it was a good episode and there were tons of developments that will now change the course of the show. So many questions and possibilities moving forward now and there's fortunately no more crossing over with Arrow in the midst of this hectic story so it's going to be 100% The Flash. Consider my faith restored.

What did you guys think of 'Who Is Harrison Wells'? Let me know in the comments and be sure to watch the next new episode of The Flash on April 28th on The CW!



CHECK OUT MY OTHER 'THE FLASH' REVIEWS

1.12 - CRAZY FOR YOU
Caitlin decides that she and Barry need to move on from Ronnie and Iris and find new loves so she takes him for a night out at the local karaoke bar. Barry meets Linda Park, a sports reporter. Meanwhile, Cisco considers Hartley’s dangerous offer and the team searches for Shawna, a meta-human with teleportation powers, who just busted her boyfriend Clay out of Iron Heights. Henry snoops around in an attempt to help Joe.

1.17 - TRICKSTERS
A copycat killer who goes by the name “The Trickster” starts setting off bombs in Central City. In order to stop the villain, Barry and Joe meet with the original Trickster, a criminal mastermind named James Jesse, who has been imprisoned for 20 years. Things quickly go from bad to worse when the Tricksters unite and take Henry prisoner. Flashbacks to the past show how Harrison Wells came up with the idea of the particle accelerator.

1.18 - ALL STAR TEAM UP
Barry is surprised when Felicity Smoak arrives from Starling City along with her boyfriend, Ray Palmer, who flies in as the Atom. They’ve come to visit S.T.A.R. Labs as Ray needs help with his suit. Their timing turns out to be fortuitous because it’s all hands on deck after a meta human named Brie Larvin unleashes hundreds of robotic bees to attack and kill her former co-workers, including Dr. Tina McGee. A group dinner with Barry, Felicity, Ray, Iris and Eddie turns into a disaster.

About the Author - Gavin Hetherington
Award-winning author of 'Abyssal Sanctuary: Remnants of the Damned'. Gavin joined SpoilerTV on August 9, 2014 and will be reviewing 2 Broke Girls, Mistresses, Orange is the New Black, Pretty Little Liars, Salem and Sleepy Hollow in the 2014-15 season. Gavin's favourite shows include Charmed, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Desperate Housewives, The Walking Dead, Once Upon a Time, Revenge, Scandal and much more. You can contact him at gavin@spoilertv.com.
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