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The Flash - Harry and The Harrisons - Review



Amunet Black said it best when she said "Sometimes bigger isn't always better.." In the case of "Harry and The Harrisons" the subtly of the episode is what made it a winner. We got the things we love, but we weren't hit over the head with them. We got West-Allen and the natural humor that the actors bring when given good writing to bring to life. I have to say even Caitlin's story wasn't a complete flop- and that's saying something nowadays.


West-Allen

Let's face it; we got West-Allened in season three, and we just didn't know it. Just about every episode of last season began and/or was book ended with Barry and Iris. Season four hasn't been so focused on showing intimate moments between the two on screen, and I think I know why.

They were dating in the previous season, so we were being shown the evolution of their relationship- friends navigating the water to becoming lovers. Now that Barry and Iris are married, the intimacy that was so front and center is now implicit. We know Barry hangs on Iris' every word, that Barry is Iris' hero, that they love to sit on the couch and drink coffee in their comfy socks, that they can mortify one another with an awkwardly timed remark- I could go on and on, right? We know all of that about West-Allen, but that doesn't mean that week after week should be a drought, especially when the right scenes help the plot along in addition to making us fall in love with their love over and over again.

"Harry and Harrisons" was a breath of fresh air for West-Allen deprived fans. Barry and Iris at home gave us so much. Barry being awakened from his sleep with fear when he finds that Iris isn't beside him (the way he called out her name broke my heart and reminded me just how much he needs her), the way he couldn't fall back asleep because he needed to see what she was up to, her spunky investigative nature, the mindless sharing of one coffee mug- all of their cuteness was something we've been missing on screen even though we know it happens in the fictional Flash world beyond our gaze. And guess what? It also helped one of most important strands of the episode and of the season move along- the idea that two is better than one.

"We're always stronger, better together"- Barry Allen
This sentiment has been at the center of this season whether it's in the form of "We are the Flash", "I am nothing without you", or the hand drawn emoji formula that Harry produced on the board. Iris and Barry's mutual decision to inform the citizens of Central City about DeVoe's plan is grounded in that line. Though it took Barry a little longer to get on board, he realized that Iris' instincts about the situation were correct. She is a person without meta human powers, but the power that she does have is information and the platform to share it with the masses.

The back and forth between Barry and Iris about what to do with her article helped give their relationship more depth and a dose of the reality that comes with marriage. Because Barry loves Iris so much, it would not have been out of character for him to agree with her plan of action. Instead, he disagreed by voicing his ambivalence. And because they are better together, she made a choice to explain her position but let Barry make the final choice. She realized that the team has never been that public and that doing so might be hard for Barry to accept.

It also means that people will hunger for more and more information as new threats and unknowns come to the city, putting Iris front and center when that happens. Barry was fearful when she began her blog about him, so imagine the fear he'll feel as she reemerges as a voice against criminals and powerful villains. All that aside, he trusted Iris and doing so proved to be the right move. This is a powerful set-up for Iris as the lead investigative reporter and maybe eventually editor-in-chief for a Central City news outlet; the next season's story planning is sure to have already begun so don't let us down Flash writers- Gideon already let the toothpaste out of the tube so no need to hold back.



Caitlin Snow/Killer Frost

Unusual for me, but I wasn't exasperated with Caitlin in this episode. Sure she irritated me a bit, but I was more irritated with the reaction of those around her. I've just accepted that she wants Killer Frost to return because what else can I do? I'm not gonna stop watching the show because I disagree with her story arc, but I do have to say that Caitlin has shown herself to be incredibly selfish for the trillionth time, no one calls her out on it, and it's unreal that they don't.

Cisco has put Barry in the "no friend zone" for being selfish, Caitlin has twisted the verbal knife in Barry's gut and ratted him out to Cisco for being selfish, and all the while she has done some jacked up things to her team in the pursuit of what she wants. And this is Caitlin Snow I'm talking about, not Killer Frost. Her obsession with Killer Frost trumps the goals of the team quite often, whether she's trying to get rid of her or conjure her up again. She literally told the team that if Amunet Black helped her get Killer Frost back she would commit a crime as repayment. She said this to a crime-fighting team with a detective who has arresting power. Let that sink in. She did it because she doesn't care what it takes to get Killer Frost back; she seems willing to do anything to re-connect with her bad side.

Now, the silver lining that I find in this mess of a character story is that maybe it can be salvaged. Caitlin's life has been rife with disappointments: a dead father, emotionally distant mother, dead husband, and murderous speedster boyfriend mixed with the unwanted acquisition of cold powers. That smells like a villain to me. Take Caitlin's pain-filled past and add it to her wave of selfish acts and her mind-numbing talk about the key to finding Killer Frost being inside of her. (It was mind-numbing because she won't let it go, and Joe had a look I can't quite place, but it could be called concerning.) The writers seem to be setting us up for Caitlin's full turn into Killer Frost, and I would be so happy. I really like Caitlin Snow M.D., but the writers have gone so far with her Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde routine that I don't think they can credibly go back to just Dr. Snow; after everything that she's done, I don't think she should. Was this their plan all along? Maybe, but it has been executed poorly on screen.

Amunet Black's presence as a "mother-like" figure to Caitlin is interesting villain material as well. On a few occasions now, Amunet has been the voice of reason for Caitlin. When she gave Caitlin the projectile and whirled away in a funnel of metal, she looked like a dark fairy god-mother. Amunet Black's humanity with Caitlin and her willingness to help Team Flash foreshadow the kind of villain Killer Frost would be. Bad, but not all that bad. Someone who can give Team Flash or Iris the heads up about the crime world if they need it, but someone who can't be trusted completely because of their two-faced nature. I can imagine juicy scenes with Snart returning to work with Killer Frost or the frosty duo helping the team. There are just so many more possibilities for Danielle Panabaker as Killer Frost, as I think the Caitlin Snow story line has met its end. How many more secrets or slip ups can the team excuse from their resident physician before they call it quits?


Harrison Wells

I can't lie, I found the council of Harrisons pretty funny. The blonde haired version of Wells that insults his intelligence and mercilessly mocks Cisco had me laughing more than I thought I would. The irony of a wise guy/ mobster version of Wells helping him tap into his empathy gene isn't lost on anyone. Helping Harry realize that he isn't only on the team because of his scientific contributions, but because he's family was very sweet. The team's willingness to support Harry when he isn't at his best is a testament to the kindness of the team. (which makes Caitlin's actions all the more inexcusable)
With the support of the team, especially Cecile and Cisco, Harry will continue to find ways to contribute and have a shoulder to lean on until he is cured. It's not such a bad thing.


Other Things I Was Thinking As I Watched:

* Why was this episode called "Harry and the Harrisons"? They weren't heavily featured. I guess they helped Harry figure out that Marlize was the key to stopping DeVoe so maybe that won the day.

* Cisco- "Can you not read my mind?"- LOL

* Was Iris wearing mom jeans??

*Amunet was kinda thirsting for Barry. A patrician jaw-line.....

* More Barry and Iris fawning: Iris tearing up because her man believes in her reminded me of the time she told Barry that having him believe in her was a little, but big thing. He looked like he was going to cry too- Barry, Iris, and their heart eyes could have their own web series.

* Didn't Barry waking up and looking for Iris remind you of him waking up from his dream about Savitar killing her? He was in pure panic mode.

*In both of the loft scenes, Barry is sleeping or trying to sleep while Iris is working. Iris has to lay off of the caffeine.

*Mystery Girl probably knows Caitlin will be Killer Frost.


Did you enjoy "Harry and the Harrisons"? Only two episodes left until this season comes to an end! Catch The Flash on Tuesday nights on the CW and as always, thanks for reading.





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