Run, Barry, Run – Paradox Takes Hold in ‘The Flash’ Finale

  So, that Flash season finale, eh? 

(Needless to say, here thar be spoilers)

I’ve loved this show all season. It wasn’t without its issues (looking at you, Iris, the world’s most clueless investigative reporter); but, on the whole, I thought that everything from the characterization to the world-building was expertly done. Most of all it was FUN. Flash is fun in a way that just about every other DC show isn’t. Barry revels in his newfound power, he sees that he can be an agency of positive change in a world that has taken his birth parents from him. What’s even better is that his compatriots at S.T.A.R. Labs can’t help but be caught up in it, to the point where his greatest villain is conflicted about having to reveal himself to Barry. 

And what a villain the Reverse Flash was. I’m genuinely going to miss Cavanaugh in this role. I can only hope when he returns as the real Dr. Wells he is as engaging as he was as Eobard Thawne in disguise. It was the nuance and duplicity of his character that made those “one more thing” scenes at the end of each episode the treats that they were. 

But speaking of the Thawne clan…what about Eddie? His sacrifice was noble and unexpected. And I love that he thought to take care of the problem at the root, rather than try to shoot a speedster. His death, however, brings with it a thorny mess of continuity issues. 

Without Reverse Flash, Barry’s mother didn’t die. The entire timeline that this season was based on is rendered invalid. Without Thawne posing as Wells, the collider event never happened, Flash was never created! What should have happened about ten seconds after Reverse Flash blinked out of existence is that the rest of the cast went with him. As much as he was the Big Bad, Eobard was also the impetus. Even if it turns out he was the cause of his own problem all along (if he had never gone back, he never would have gotten stuck, thus never needing to create his own nemesis).

I’m sure that there’s a hand-wavey way of explaining all this, multiverses will likely be blamed (after all, that was Silver Age Flash’s helmet that bounced out of the portal). But for now, I appreciate the Flash showrunners giving us a Gordian knot to play with for the summer. I just hope they can keep up the pace in Season 2! 

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