When the man you thought was one of your surrogate father figures who wanted to protect you and nurture your skills turns out to be the man who killed your mother in disguise, you’re understandably going to have some trust issues. Even months after the Reverse-Flash’s demise, Barry is still finding trust, and it’s the cause of much of the tension in “Flash of Two Worlds.”
Granted, a man claiming to be the Flash of another reality but who has also lost his powers is plenty suspicious, but even as everyone around him warms up to Jay Garrick, Barry keeps the man locked up on the off-chance he’s another double-sided villain. Lightning rarely strikes the same spot twice, and the only lightning Barry really needs to look out for is the kind he can use as a weapon. Not the metaphorical, life-altering kind.
“Two Worlds” picks up right where the season premiere left off, with Jay entering S.T.A.R. Labs and trying to explain why he’s there. On the brink of death at the hands of Zoom in his world, he was sucked into Barry’s world when the Singularity opened, though he lost his speed force (and his helmet) in the process.
He’s been hiding out in Central City for six months, stalking Barry and the gang to learn about them before approaching. Although he speaks with authority, Barry isn’t quite ready to take him at his word and wants to run some tests to prove he has the genetic signs of a speedster. Cue the shirtless-Jay Garrick hour, as Caitlin gives him the full gamut of Flash-qualifying exams, as well as a subtle lie detector test to gauge how authentic his whole spiel is.
She comes away impressed, taking Jay at his word, but Barry wants to be doubly safe rather than let another snake into their garden. In the meantime, Cisco and Stein have been giving some credence to Jay’s multiple-reality story, explaining how their world is Earth 1, Jay’s is Earth 2, and there could be an infinite number of earths for there to be crises on. It’s all too much technical mumbo jumbo for Joe, who decides to focus on his job while he’s still trying to wrap his head around time travel.
The seeds of mistrust have been sown, however, and so Barry has Jay locked in a metahuman tank while he speeds off to put a fire out. Using his arm turbine move (which is quickly becoming a bit rote; good thing he learns a new move this episode), the fire dissipates in seconds, but another problem hits Barry hard. Literally.
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A giant fist-shaped pile of sand sails straight at Barry, knocking him off his feet and clueing him in to the only other guy standing in the just-burning building. Barry can’t quite keep up, the man’s entire body’s apparently made of sand. So for the second week in a row, Barry flees the fight before being clobbered.
It turns out this Sand Demon, as Jay names him (which Cisco thankfully approves of), is from Garrick’s Earth. They guess correctly that Zoom sent him to this world through an interdimensional breach to kill the Flash. (What is it with Big Bads sending minions to do the dirty work when they’re obviously not up to the task?) Jay wants to help Barry prepare, take out this Sand Demon, and ensure everyone’s safety, but Barry’s content to do so with Jay locked up. He still can’t verify his story and is disappointed that all of the scientists and journalists around him seem willing to trust someone on faith, not facts.
But Barry’s mind begins to sway when lives are at stake. There’s a cop on the force, Patty Spivot, who wants to join Joe’s metahuman task force. He declines her request, but Patty is not the type who understands the meaning of “no.” Her luck seems to turn when she captures Slick, a.k.a. the Sand Demon, just as Barry and Joe are on his tail.
He’s brought in for questioning, and Barry and Spivot have a moment to connect. She’s a fan of his — she mentions earlier that she’s read all of his forensic reports, which means she’s more invested in Barry’s work than Barry — and the two have a clear connection as they bond behind the one-sided window at the police station. On the other side, Joe is interrogating Slick, who claims innocence, and unfortunately Joe finds little to hold him on.
NEXT: You’ve been…lightningstruck