The Flash, Episode 5, “Plastique” Broadcast on November 11, 2014
Written by Aaron Helbing & Todd Helbing & Brooke Eikmeier
Directed by Dermott Downs
With the recap over, Barry, Iris, Caitlin, Cisco and Eddie are in a bar as his narration says he’ll have to settle with Iris as just a friend, though he wishes their relationship were more. Barry shows Caitlin and Cisco that he can do five shots and feel nothing. It’s due to his hyper-metabolism. Meanwhile, in a high rise office a guard catches a female thief going through some files. She throws a backpack at him and a massive explosion is seen from below. A window cleaner dangles on high because of the blast. Eddie gets a call that he has to report downtown and leaves. Barry follows, but in costume. As the Flash he arrives on the scene and runs up the side of a building to save the now-falling cleaner. After dropping the man, the Flash is confronted by Iris, who can’t see his face clearly because he’s purposely vibrating it to conceal his identity. He runs off. Cue title card.
The next morning in the building, Barry and Joe are on the case, but Barry can’t identify what explosive was used. Using super speed, Barry goes through all the files in the room that the thief was scene in, finding the one that has been trifled with. At police headquarters, soldiers are in the building standing guard. General Eiling is their leader, and he’s there to take over the investigation into the bombing because the person responsible is “one of our own.” Barry speedily swipes one piece of evidence before all is lost and takes it to S.T.A.R. Labs. As he’s leaving work, an officer tells Joe that Iris was on the bomb scene last night. Joe confronts Iris at home and learns of her blog. He tries to tell her that this “Streak” isn’t real, but she’s seen him. At S.T.A.R. Labs, Barry reveals that Eiling is involved and Wells reveals that the general once had a contract with S.T.A.R. Using their computer skills, they learn the bomber’s name, Bette Sans Souci, and her last known address. Barry suits up and goes there, catching her in a back alley. She tells him not to touch her, but still grabs her by the arm as she tries to run off. She pushes him in the chest, leaving a glowing purple residue on him. “Get whatever you’re wearing off of you!” she tells him. He runs down the alley, but is soon engulfed in an explosion. As the flame dissipates, Barry is seen kneeling in the street, only in his underwear–safe, but confused. Cue first commercial break.
A whole lot to like in this episode. Joe reveals he knows a secret of Barry’s. Running up the side of the building, as well as running on a surface at the end of the episode was amazing! The person who twists Souci was really interesting, making my hate of this individual increase, and the flashback at the end had me going bananas! Kelly Frye was really good as Plastique and I hope she returns. I also hope to see more of Clancy Brown, who got taken out in Sleepy Hollow’s pilot, but has the opportunity to return many times in the future on this series. I didn’t like that every time Barry had an emotional crisis he would put his hands over his face and drag them down in pain. It was melodramatic and I hope this was a directorial decision, and not one made by Grant Gustin.
The good: General Eiling, Plastique, running up buildings, Barry trying to get buzzed, excellent purple effects on Kelly Frye, the Flock of Seagulls cover played in the final bar scene (the song is extra funny), and the flashback reveal of a major Flash villain (probably #2, right after the Reverse Flash)
The bad: Barry’s hand wrenching/face covering, which was two times too many.
The final line: His power is increasing and so is the fun. Overall grade: A-
Patrick Hayes was a contributor to the Comic Buyer’s Guide for several years with “It’s Bound to Happen!”, he reviewed comics for TrekWeb, and he currently reviews Trek comics at TrekCore. He’s taught 8th graders English for 20 years and has taught high school English for two years and counting. He reads everything as often as he can, when not grading papers or looking up Star Trek, Star Wars, or Indiana Jones items online.