At this point on ‘The Flash’, Central City has an abundance of speedster superheroes. You’d think it couldn’t possibly be that hard for them to corral a bunch of monkeys into cages.
Episode ‘Attack on Central City’ was very clearly intended to air on Valentine’s Day, not two weeks later. Love is in the air all through the episode, especially between Jesse and Wally. Jesse even musters up the courage to tell her dad that she wants to move to Earth-1. Harry seems to be surprisingly OK with it, claiming that Jesse’s happiness is the only thing that matters to him. However, when he gets Wally alone, he lays a guilt trip on him and hints that he may be dying. Wally promptly tells Jesse that she has to return to Earth-2 with her father and spend all the time she can with him. Jesse doesn’t buy this ruse for a second. She knows her dad is just playing Wally.
Just as everyone finishes congratulating themselves for trapping Grodd on Earth-2, a portal opens in the lab and Gypsy jumps through. Cisco is happy to see her again… for a second. Then she immediately attacks him and Barry without provocation. Harry sneaks up behind and blasts her with a big rifle.
Gypsy wakes up later in a Pipeline cell. She’s confused and has no idea what happened. She says that the last thing she remembers is chasing a fugitive to Africa on Earth-2. How convenient for Grodd that a meta-human with portal-opening power just happened to come right to him exactly when he needed one. Obviously, he took control over her psychically and forced her to come here to attack The Flash. However, his powers shouldn’t still work all the way across dimensions, which means that Grodd must be on Earth-1 now as well. (It seems like a pretty stupid plan to tip Barry off by sending Gypsy after him. Now he’s totally lost the element of surprise.)
Cisco asks Gypsy to stay and help the team fight Grodd, but she has no interest in that. He lets her go so that she can return home to Earth-19.
Joe leads the police to set up a S.W.A.T. roadblock at the bridge where they expect Grodd and his army to enter the city, but the gorillas don’t show up. Instead, Grodd takes over Joe’s mind and almost forces him to shoot himself in the head. Barry obviously stops that from happening, and quickly realizes that this is all a distraction. While they’re wasting time on this, Grodd kidnaps a military general who has access to the country’s nuclear arsenal. Maybe this monkey is smarter than Barry after all.
Depressed that he wasn’t able to prevent the future from happening, Barry debates whether he should kill Grodd to stop him once and for all. This upsets Iris, who insists that Barry must adhere to his core principal of not killing anyone. Even Harry tells him not to kill Grodd.
Grodd controls the general and sends him to the base to launch a missile. (The military really has a nuclear launch site right in Central City?) Because the military computers aren’t networked and can’t be hacked, Barry has to disarm the missile by speeding through every possible a five-digit abort code.
As the gorilla army marches toward Central City, Cisco travels to Earth-19. He finds Gypsy talking to a speedster we’ve never seen before but will probably encounter again sometime later. Cisco begs her once more to help, and is more convincing this time.
Barry, Wally and Jesse try to stop the gorillas, but even working together make a poor start of it. Fortunately, Cisco and Gypsy arrive trough a portal with Solovar, Grodd’s gorilla nemesis, in tow. (Did Cisco really need Gypsy’s help with this? Why couldn’t he bring Solovar on his own? His powers are almost equal to Gypsy’s, and she was able to transport a whole army of gorillas to Earth-1 all on her own.)
Solovar challenges Grodd, and the two angry monkeys have a big fight, leaping all over the place and climbing to the top of a building. Finally, Solovar defeats Grodd by throwing him off the building. Barry begs Solovar not to kill Grodd, but rather to leave him on Earth-1 instead. After Solovar orders the gorilla army to return to Earth-2 with him, Barry deposits Grodd into custody with A.R.G.U.S., where he can spend some time trading notes with King Shark.
The episode wraps up with Gypsy kissing Cisco before returning to Earth-19. Harry says his goodbyes and leaves for Earth-2. Feeling confident about the future again, Barry proposes to Iris. (I told you this was supposed to be a Valentine’s Day episode.)
Unfortunately, that optimism may be misplaced. While out on a run to fetch some burgers for Jesse, Wally sees evil speedster Savitar on the street.
I’m having trouble figuring something out. If Solovar can defeat Grodd, and Barry already proved he can defeat Solovar, exactly why can’t Barry then defeat Grodd? He should be a pushover.
Frankly, a little bit of Gorilla Grodd goes a long way on this show, and the last couple weeks have had a whole lot of him. Super-smart or not, I guess I just don’t see how he and his gorilla army would really be a big threat to Barry, much less to the combined forces of three speedsters. Yes, the gorillas are all strong, but they’re also pretty slow, and speed has always trumped strength in previous confrontations.
Beyond that, this episode is reasonably entertaining, aside from the annoyance of the weeks-too-late Valentine’s theme.