The search for the remaining bus metas continues!

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THE FLASH
Credit: Shane Harvey/The CW
S4 E17

After a month away, The Flash returned tonight with a perfectly pleasant episode. There was nothing glaringly or frustratingly wrong with the hour, but it wasn’t the most exciting one either. “Null and Annoyed” was a very soft return.

Since we last checked in with Team Flash, Cisco has built S.T.A.R. Labs’ version of the Danger Room, which Barry and Ralph have been using to train for their inevitable battle against the Thinker. Their plan is for Ralph to shapeshift into Barry, because the presence of two Flashes should confuse the Thinker, right? Right? But let’s ignore the weak plan because that isn’t their biggest problem. No, that honor goes to Barry and Ralph’s working relationship. Barry’s growing increasingly annoyed with Ralph’s need to joke about everything.

Apart from training, Team Flash is also busy looking for the two remaining bus metas. One of them simply disappeared off the face of the Earth the day Barry exited the Speed Force, and the other one, Janet, a.k.a. Null, has been a bit hard to pin down since her last location was Iron Heights. As luck would have it, Janet emerges from the woodwork to steal a priceless crown from a museum (cue a Jay and Silent Bob cameo from Jason Mewes anddirector Kevin Smith, who played museum workers). It turns out Null has the power to send people and things floating into the air with the simple touch of her hand.

To be honest, Janet’s powers aren’t terribly interesting on paper, but we have to give the writers credit for coming up with some clever uses for her powers. When the Flash confronts her for the first time — which he does solo since Barry, in an act of frustration, benched Ralph for not taking the job seriously enough — he manages to slap the cuffs on her, but he has to let her go because she gives him an option: cart her away in cuffs, or take care of her getaway car, a.k.a. save the man hurtling down to the ground in a car that Null sent into atmosphere. It’s a clever variation on the classic (and somewhat overused) “distract the hero by endangering civilian lives” villain trope. However, cleverness can only go so far. For the most part, Null is a pretty forgettable villain of the week because the script doesn’t even bother trying to develop her.

Iris turns this recent failure in the field into a teachable moment and talks to Barry about why he benched Ralph. Iris points out that Ralph did a good job of filling in for Barry while he was in prison. With that in mind, Barry decides to apologize to Ralph, who explains the obvious: Humor is a coping mechanism, one that he’s been using since his rough childhood. This little heart to heart that Barry and Ralph has moves Barry to take Elongated Man back into the field when Null strikes again. (Next: Cisco receives an enticing offer)

This time around, Janet sets her sights on a fancy gala. When the Flash and Elongated Man arrive on the scene, Null threatens to send everyone at the party into the atmosphere, but Flash saves them before she gets a chance to. So, Null resorts to Plan B and gives Barry the magical touch. Now, it’s up to Elongated Man to save Barry from falling to his death while also apprehending Null. After cuffing Null, Elongated Man transforms into an oversized whoopee cushion in order to catch Barry. I’ll give it to Flash, the ensuing fart joke shouldn’t have been funny but it was mostly because the show setup this whoopee cushion gag at the beginning of the episode when Ralph pranked a member of Team Flash with one.

And thus the day was saved…However, that’s not all that happened this week.

Elsewhere, Cisco and Caitlin are tasked with (read: coerced into) helping Breacher (Danny Trejo) figure out why his powers are malfunctioning. It doesn’t take long for them to realize it’s because Breacher is too old to use his powers anymore; however, Cisco, who hoped that helping his girlfriend’s father would allow him to see her more, avoids telling Breacher the truth, which almost gets Breacher killed.

After saving Breacher from a vampire named Crucifer (LOL!), Cisco finally comes clean. Breacher storms off like a child because he can’t take the news and is pissed that Cisco lied to him in the first place. However, after spending some time with his reflection, Breacher realizes it is time to retire. So, he quits his job as an inter-dimensional bounty hunter and offers it to Cisco, who is probably going to consider it because it would mean he’d get to see Gypsy more often.

Even though everything turned out well for Cisco after he lied, the same can’t be said of the DeVoe family. Marlize discovers that her husband has been drugging her with weeper tears in order to make her more compliant. But, it turns out this situation is even more troubling. This isn’t the first time she has figured it out, and each time she does, she records a video for herself in case her memories get wiped again. Unfortunately, DeVoe catches onto her plan every time and just doses her with more Weeper tears and uses Dominic’s powers to erase her memory. Moreover, it turns out he created the Weeper for this exact purpose because he knew Marlize’s humanity would get in the way his grand plan. What once seemed liked a solid marriage between two evil people now looks like a bloody nightmare. Hopefully, Marlize will find a way to escape.

Wall of Weird:

  • Harry is up to something. The episode ended with him taking his intelligence booster into the Wells’ time vault and activating Gideon. There was a shot in the promo that makes me worried he’s going to do something stupid.
  • Jesse L. Martin had the pleasure of playing Ralph pretending to be Joe in the episode. He seemed like he was having a lot of fun imitating Hartley Sawyer’s mannerisms.
  • Is it just me or haven’t we seen that party location elsewhere in the Arrowverse before?

Episode Recaps

We Are The Flash
The Flash

After the success of Arrow, Barry Allen (a.k.a. the Flash) gets his own CW treatment in this comic-themed spin-off.

type
  • TV Show
seasons
  • 8
rating
genre
network
  • The CW
stream service

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