Holy Flashy midseason finale Batman!
Although The Flash Season 1 Episode 9 was titled "The Man in the Yellow Suit," I never expected his identity to be revealed so soon. It was, and despite the many theories surrounding the reveal, it was still shocking to behold.
So who is the man in the yellow suit? We'll get there, we'll get there.
Not only were we treated to the exciting man in the yellow suit reveal, but Barry expressed his love for Iris, Eddie was let in on the metahuman secret, Caitlin found Ronnie and we witnessed some of the most touching father/son moments between Barry and his two fathers that have aired thus far.
There is so much to cover!! We'll take it bit by bit.
As a result of seeing the man in the yellow suit, Barry visited his dad in prison. Good fathers know everything, and Henry was pained seeing his son so conflicted. Taking on the weight of the entire family's problems wasn't Henry wanted for his boy.
Well let it go now, Barry. Hear me now. The man in the yellow suit, he's taken enough from us already. Don't let him take anymore.Henry
Their talk was so moving and what Henry wanted so beautiful – a full life for his son without holding himself responsible for everything that every happened to them. The chat inspired Barry to free himself from his feelings for Iris.
Barry: I love you, Iris.
Iris: Oh. I love you, too.
Barry: When we were kids I loved you before I even know what the word love meant and then my mom died and I had to go live with the girl I had a crush on. Look. There were so many times I wanted to tell you; Jr. Prom, when I went away to college, when I came back from college, nights that we stayed up talking, all the birthdays, all the Christmases, but I, I never did. I kept it in. After I lost my mom and my dad, I was afraid that if you didn't feel the same way, I would lose you, too. That's the irony. I was so scared of losing you that I did. I know I've had our whole lives to tell you this and you're with Eddie now and I know that and I know my timing couldn't be any worse, but I just... I couldn't lie to you anymore. I'm sorry.
Iris didn't exactly know how to answer, so she didn't. Did Barry notice how she struggled with the moment, the tears in her eyes? Like Barry, I'm not certain what Iris was feeling, but she made a choice to remain with Eddie even after Barry's declaration.
It's hard to imagine how awful Barry felt after a day having his mother's killer so close, but not (permanently) catching him. He arrived home that night to Iris planted firmly in Eddie's lap; not a word was uttered by Iris acknowledging what Barry shared, but it's not difficult to read that message. Thankfully, Cisco and Caitlin were there, as well, to take the edge off (as well as Aunt Esther's eggnog).
I doubt any of us believe Iris won't look back on this moment and regret her decision, but as we've discussed before, it is not yet time or Barry and Iris to be a couple. They'll get there.
Caitlin's discovery of Ronnie was also pretty cut and dry. It was admirable how Cisco chose not to argue the point with her about whether the fiery man was really her ex and accompanied her to find him. Hearing Cait (loved Cisco calling her Cait) admit she regretted the one minute with Ronnie she once so desperately craved was heartbreaking.
Did it mean anything that Caitlin could touch Ronnie without suffering any injury? We're not yet sure of Ronnie's capabilities, but he appeared to want to steer clear of everyone for the time being – until The Flash was in trouble. Ronnie's a good metahuman! It was expected, but also confirmed.
Eddie had a hell of a day. Aside from all of his happiness with Iris, he was downright freaked out at the idea of metahumans. Hey! He's not the Reverse Flash!
If Harrison hadn't spoken in front of the suit, I would still have doubts about his being the Reverse Flash. I could have talked myself into him altering history in some way to help it come into being. He needed the technology from Dr. McGee, he's been prepping Barry, sure, but the voice leaves little room for doubt. The only thing we don't know is how many of what and whom are flitting in and out of Barry's space time continuum. Oh how I love that phrase!
There was an attempt to send us off the mark having the Reverse Flash in the same room as Harrison and Eddie and I still have the same question Eddie has – why didn't the Reverse Flash kill him? Other than that, WOW. How remarkable is Harrison Wells? He is one hell of an actor. He plainly acts as though he is mentoring all of the young people at STAR Labs, but he's the epitome of evil.
Since Cisco realized there were two beings in the living room (and the red lighting obviously saved Barry by whisking him away from his mother's murder scene), he and Joe might start wondering about the viability of time travel. They're definitely going to question only two flashy types running about, and when they don't find one, hopefully they'll look into the space time continuum stuff.
Finally, I'd be remiss if I didn't mention the second father/son moment. Grant Gustin just knocks these gut-punching scenes out of the park. His eyes well with tears and hugging him suddenly seems incredibly important.
Barry: I mean the truth is, I'm stuck her in Central City. Fear has kept me in that living room for 14 years. Joe, I, I was mad at you for being scared. But, the truth is I was the one who was scared. I've been afraid of the man in yellow for my whole life. That's why I lost.
Joe: When you first moved in with us, I thought it was going to be too much. I was already a single dad, finances were tough and you were a little boy who just lost his mother. But, man, I was wrong. Within two weeks you changed the whole dynamic of the house. Suddenly the house was filled with this light, this energy. I mean, you brightened up everything. You've seen more darkness than any man will in a lifetime and you never let it dim your soul. So there I was thinking that I'm changing your life by taking you in, but the truth is, you changed mine. So don't lose that light, now, Bar. The world may need The Flash, but I need my Barry Allen. Let's go home.
Joe mentioned everything that makes The Flash so compelling. He is a bright light of hope in a world of darkness. Barry tried to get Oliver Queen to see himself with less self-pity during Arrow Season 3 Episode 8. He's been shouldering so much for so long. Hopefully with the knowledge his mother's killer is out there and his admission of love to Iris, he can start to enjoy life a little. He certainly deserves it.
Let's agree with Joe, we all need our Barry Allen!
Joe and Barry will be living together without Iris going forward, so it will be interesting to see how that (among all of these other things) shapes their lives.
Things to ponder:
- Eddie is in on the secret. He knows about metahumans. Will he share what he knows with Iris?
- Which character from the comics is Harrison? I'm not going to guess. I'm always wrong.
- Doesn't anybody wonder why Harrison wasn't more seriously hurt after being thumped like a rag doll in the dome? His injuries didn't fit the crime. Can he choose how fast he heals?
- How will Eddie play into the history of the Thawne name; or won't he?
- Do you think the non-damaging touch between Caitlin and Ronnie had any significance?
- Will Barry be able to move on from loving Iris until she makes a move?
Did it bug anybody else the Reverse Flash was stuck inside a dome Joe was so easily able to crack with a baseball bat?[Thanks for the assist Ronald! Joe smashed what was running the dome with a wrench. Got it!]
- Joe is giving us the obligatory laugh weekly, per request.
There was a lot to chew on while we wait for the return of The Flash on January 20. That's over a month away people!! Start pondering in the comments now what it all means.
And here is your first look at The Flash Season 1 Episode 10, "Revenge of the Rogues."
Carissa Pavlica is the managing editor and a staff writer for TV Fanatic. She's a member of the Broadcast Television Journalists Association (BTJA), enjoys mentoring writers, wine, and passionately discussing the nuances of television. Follow her on Twitter and email her here at TV Fanatic.