The Flash Season 7 Episode 4 Review: Central City Strong

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If there's one thing we know for certain going into the official start of The Flash Season 7, it's that Iris is more resilient and stronger than we ever knew.

The Flash Season 7 Episode 4 was all about healing from past trauma. Not only was Central City itself recovering from Eva's reign of terror, but Barry and Iris were too.

The hour was full of strong character moments with only a tiny bit of plot setup for the rest of the season. Unfortunately, we do not know much more about Team Flash's future woes than we did after The Flash Season 7 Episode 3.

Iris - The Flash Season 7 Episode 4

After spending three months in an alternate universe that was designed to make her lose her mind, it's no surprise that Iris is struggling with her mental health.

There's no other way to put it -- Iris has post-traumatic stress disorder. While we haven't seen it take an extreme effect on her abilities, it's still there.

Something terrible happened to you, not because of you.


She went through an awful experience. She was separated from her loved ones with the knowledge that a duplicate of herself replaced her. That's hard for anyone to wrap their mind around.

While we often complained about Iris' prolonged state in the Mirrorverse, it's admirable that The Flash is taking the time to delve deep into her mental health and how she is recovering.

It's not often that we see these types of storylines played out on network television.

Joe - The Flash Season 7 Episode 4

There's no better character to represent these struggles that most people go through than Iris. Of course, her PTSD is rooted in her entrapment in another dimension, but that's beside the point.

Iris has been painfully underused on past seasons, and it's great that she's finally getting her moment to shine.

Her character has always been quite interesting because of her complexity and relatability. Iris is just an ordinary human surrounded by metahumans, yet, she is one of the best members of Team Flash.

Heck, she single-handedly brought back the Speed Force and convinced Eva to stop terrorizing the city. Iris is definitely someone to look up to.

But to see her run away from her trauma and then turn around and realize that the only way to heal is to face the awful things she experienced is very inspiring.

Barry Allen - The Flash Season 7 Episode 4

Iris gave many influential speeches throughout the hour, full of hope and recognization of her own realities. But she didn't get to a place where she was ready to talk about her trauma on her own.

Barry and Iris are an unstoppable team who can work through almost anything together. But if they are both avoiding their feelings, they will keep running around in circles. Or jetting off to some foreign land.

Thankfully, Abra Kadabra made Barry snap about how he feels like he is easily tricked. In turn, this led to a much-needed conversation between husband and wife.

Crisis destroyed countless lives. And, yes, some of us survived, and that's not fair. Now we have to carry on for those who didn't. I lost someone too. He was like a brother to me. And ever since, I've tried to honor his sacrifice.


The best thing about Barry is his heart, and his enemies often use that to their advantage. Unfortunately, this has given Barry his fair share of traumatic experiences. So, at least Barry and Iris know that they are not alone in their suffering.

But this cannot be a one-and-done story about them healing from their trauma. That takes time, and I hope we get to see Iris and Barry continue to address their wounds.

Abra Kadabra - The Flash Season 7 Episode 4

The Flash's main couple weren't the only ones working through something, though.

In a surprise turn of events, Abra Kadabra -- AKA Phillippe -- has a heart. Crisis continued to have a lasting effect on the Arrowverse heroes as Kadabra just wanted his family back after Crisis took them from him.

Caitlin: That kind of power, it could take out another Earth.
Chester: Or another universe.
Allegra: Wait, what? Are we about to have Crisis part two?
Cisco: No, no. There's not enough anti-matter for that, thank the sequel gods.

This is the second villain in a row who Team Flash has convinced not to destroy the city by appealing to their emotions.

While it's great to see the villains have a change of heart, and we're glad that The Flash isn't letting Eva get off easy with her torment of Iris, it would be nice to see a ruthless bad guy.

The gigantic, beast-like woman at the end of the episode killed Kadabra and just about crushed Barry to death. But she wasn't the villain of the hour.

Flash - The Flash Season 7 Episode 4

Her appearance seems to be part of the setup for the rest of the season.

After doing some research, I discovered that the lightning we saw at the end of "Mother" signifies the appearance of different forces other than the Speed Force.

Could the beast who killed Kadabra be a product of one of these new forces? AKA the Strength Force?

Abra: I see you're finally Mecha-Vibe.
Cisco: Mecha-Vibe? I know he did not just name me.

This new threat has the potential for some interesting, rich storylines. But there's just so little that we know about it now. The only reason we can place a name to it is because of the comics.

I would have liked to see the show set aside more time to establish what appears to be a major component to the arc of the first part of The Flash Season 7. But we are going to have to wait a bit more for that.

Caitlin - The Flash Season 7 Episode 4

There was one development on "Central City Strong" that shook us to our core.

Caitlin and Frost are now in two different bodies!

How could that happen? And will they stay that way forever? It's hard for any actor to pull double duty full time on a television show, so it doesn't seem likely that Caitlin and Frost will stay separated.

Chester: Wait, hold on, hold on. Is this thing, like, a time capsule? Ooo, maybe like a TARDIS.
Cisco: P-Runk, you picked a hell of a day to start your CCPD Consultant Internship. Yeah, this is definitely a time traveler.

But it would appease the people who want to see more of Frost and the people who want to see more of Caitlin. It's really a win-win situation.

It will be interesting to see the effects this has on Team Flash going forward because the writers wouldn't do this and not cause conflict.

Chester and Cisco - The Flash Season 7 Episode 4

What did you think, The Flash Fanatics?

Are you happy that they are addressing Iris' trauma? How do you feel about the new Caitlin and Frost situation? Did you cry when Barry mentioned Oliver?

What do you think of that Laurel Lance and Mia Queen shoutout? And how much do you already love Cisco and Chester's friendship?

Let me know in the comments, and do not forget that you can watch The Flash online right here via TV Fanatic!

The Flash airs Tuesdays at 8/7c on The CW.

Central City Strong Review

Editor Rating: 4.3 / 5.0
  • 4.3 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 3.9 / 5.0 (122 Votes)

Sarah Little was a staff writer for TV Fanatic.She retired in September 2021.

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The Flash Season 7 Episode 4 Quotes

Look, there are people out there just like you who wish they hadn't been a part of this story. But they were. You're their voice. So try again, for them.


Usually we have to kiss first to make the ground shake.