Forget speedsters. The characters on ‘The Flash’ really ought to be called mopesters this season. Also, this week Wally truly proves himself to be the worst superhero in Central City, if not the whole DC television universe.
Remember how the last episode ended with Wally seeing evil supervillain Savitar on the street? He thinks that was just a hallucination. He’s seen a lot more visions of Savitar since then, but apparently doesn’t think this is important enough to tell anyone about. Instead, he continues his speed training as if everything is hunky-dory. Barry is impressed with his improvement and thinks that he’s finally fast enough to save Iris when the day of her death comes.
Barry and Iris announce their engagement to the rest of the team. Joe is stunned, and a little hurt that Barry didn’t ask his permission first, as is custom.
Wally eventually has to reveal his problem when one of his visions turns physical and Savitar tosses him around. Barry is perplexed when this happens. Because Savitar is invisible to anyone else, all Barry sees is Wally leaping around like an idiot. When he then learns what’s been going on, Barry is furious. He thinks Savitar is using Wally to unwittingly spy on the team, and benches him from further participation in the plan to save Iris. Everyone else thinks he’s being kind of a dick about this, but Barry doesn’t want to play around when Iris’ life is on the line.
Barry wants to talk to Savitar directly for some reason, and the only way to do that is to plug Julian into a fancy helmet that will let Savitar take over his body and speak through him. Julian gets really pissy about this and refuses, but Caitlin talks him into it. Perhaps if they told him about how Cisco got mind-controlled by psychic monkeys last week, he wouldn’t feel like this is such a big deal. Julian concedes on the condition that Caitlin allow him to press his lips onto her lips in a very awkward manner.
Savitar not only takes over Julian, he’s in an awfully chatty mood and tells the gang all about how, at some point in the future, Barry will ruin his life and take everything from him, hence his hatred for the Flash. “From my perspective, you’re the Big Bad,” the murderous villain declares. Because he doesn’t understand the value of keeping his plans a secret, he also hints that he may have the Philosopher’s Stone that Barry tossed into the Speed Force, which could be his way out of the prison he’s currently trapped in.
Trying to find out more about this, Barry tracks down Craig, the acolyte running the cult of Savitar. Craig somehow knows about Barry’s engagement to Iris and taunts him that he better move the wedding up before Savitar kills her. In his possession is the box that held the Philosopher’s Stone, but it’s currently empty.
Wally decides that he really needs to see Barry’s vision of the future for himself, so he urges Cisco to vibe him into it. While watching Savitar kill his sister, he picks up on an important clue: She’s not wearing an engagement ring. Petulant about the way Barry sidelined him, Wally storms into the lab and forces Barry to admit that the real reason he proposed to Iris was that it would be another small change to the timeline. Iris is very hurt to hear this, no matter how much Barry insists that he actually does want to marry her.
Julian feels pretty down about the mind control thing and worries that Savitar will make him betray the team. Caitlin tells him not to fret about it, because she already betrayed them. She then reveals that she’s been secretly holding onto a fragment of the Philosopher’s Stone, which she hoped would get rid of her Killer Frost powers. Having gotten this terrible burden off her chest, she then comes clean about it to everyone else. Cisco theorizes that Savitar must need the whole stone to break out of his prison, which means that he’ll have to find a way to get the last piece.
Barry wants to talk to Savitar again. (Fortunately, Savitar has nothing better to do.) This time, the plan is to keep him talking long enough for Cisco to track his current location. Julian once again objects to being used this way, and once again agrees to it.
In another room, Wally has a vision of his dead mother talking to him. She tells him to stop fighting Savitar and that he’ll never be fast enough to save Iris. Jesse is unable to talk any sense into Wally, or to stop him when he runs off to defeat Savitar on his own.
Wally’s cockamamie plan is to steal the last fragment of the Philosopher’s Stone and chuck it into the Speed Force with the rest of it, to keep it out of Savitar’s clutches. Unfortunately, at this same moment, Cisco determines that Savitar’s prison is actually in the Speed Force. He already has the rest of the stone. The fact that Caitlin withheld a shard is the only thing keeping him there.
As Wally struggles to build up enough speed to open a portal to the Speed Force, a vision of Savitar taunts him that he’ll never be able to do it. Moron Wally falls for this obvious reverse-psychology and gets the portal open, then tosses the stone fragment into it, giving Savitar exactly what he needs. As soon as the shard goes in, the portal starts to suck Wally in along with it, tearing his uniform to pieces in the process. Barry races to the scene, but can’t save Wally from being pulled into the Speed Force.
A moment later, Savitar crawls out of the portal, feeling triumphant at finally having escaped his prison. Barry demands to know where Wally went, and Savitar explains that the Speed Force required someone to take his place before he could leave. Enraged, Barry charges at Savitar. They fight for a bit until Savitar stabs Barry in the shoulder with a big blade. Barry breaks the tip of the blade off and Savitar runs away.
Barry returns to S.T.A.R. Labs and Caitlin removes the blade from his shoulder. Cisco believes he can use it to vibe Savitar again. Jesse is distraught about Wally’s disappearance. Iris isn’t exactly happy about it either, and Barry notices that she’s removed her engagement ring.
I called it quite a while ago that something bad would happen to Wally before the end of the season. What I didn’t realize is just how stupidly he would cause his own misfortune. Seriously, this kid’s a bonehead.
The show’s mopiness this season has been a drag, and that’s especially a big problem with this episode. The explanations behind why Savitar was trapped in the Speed Force, how he knows everything Barry’s been doing, and why Wally had to take his place also make no sense at all, but that’s par for the course with this series. Compared to some of the nonsense that went on during the first two seasons, I’m willing to look past that issue here.