Run, Barry, RUN!
Even Zoom gets a chance to urge Barry on in The Flash's finale.
R.I.P. Henry Allen
We pick up right where we left off last week as Henry drops dead at Barry's feet. Barry sets off after Zoom:
It looks like he's caught him -- but it's only a time remnant; the real Zoom appears and sneers that Barry could pull the same trick: "You just have to be willing to kill yourself." Surprise surprise, Barry does not laugh at the play on words.
And then it's time for the funeral! Barry's too overcome to eulogize his dad, so Joe steps in and talks about how much Henry lost before saying that he was "proof that love can get you through the darkest of days, and that love will keep him alive in all of our hearts." Sniff. I'm not made of stone! But Barry seems to be, as he grits to his dad's grave, "I'm gonna find him, Dad. I promise I'm gonna take from him what he took from you." I'd point out that Barry's not respecting his father's last words, but that's going to be rendered irrelevant soon enough.
That Quote"I had no idea that you were The Flash. What you did for me, all the things that you've done for everyone, this whole city, and this with your dad and Zoom. I'm so sorry."- Wally West, who's kind of a good dude now -
BrainteaserQ If Zoom tells Barry he just wants to know who the fastest man alive is, how can Barry settle the question?A By racing Zoom, of course!Q If the rest of the team figures out that Zoom actually wants to use his and Barry's combined speed to set off the pulsar-equivalent Mercury Labs "Magnatar" in order to destroy the entire Multiverse, can they get Barry to abandon his plan to race Zoom?A Does the face above look reasonable?
From The Desk Of S.T.A.R. Labs
To allay your inevitable confusion once you come to in a cell in S.T.A.R. Labs (which contained Black Siren only last week; don't worry your head about where we put her), we're here to tell you that you're way too distraught to effectively race Zoom at the moment. And before you get mad at any particular one of us, especially authority figures Joe and Harry who are basically your only two remaining dads in this world (can't speak for the Multiverse, should it survive), you should know that all your friends agreed to this plan. Every single one. Even though it seems one hundred percent you won't rot in this cell for the whole episode, it's gonna happen, because there is literally no one in the opening credits who is not in on this plan.
Your friends, in alphabetical order:
That's it! No one else!
J. Walter Weatherman Lesson
You Had One Job
So the S.T.A.R. team has a plan to dispatch Zoom without involving Barry: With Cisco having used a thermal trace to locate Zoom, Caitlin will approach Zoom to distract him while the others move into position. Joe and Harry will then hit him with the Boot (not sure why they think this will be effective when other metas have shaken it off, but okay), and then Cisco will open a breach (an variation on what he did when he contacted Barry in the Speed Force, I guess) and they'll knock Zoom into it; once he's gone, they'll disarm the Magnatar. Joe then intones that they all agreed to the plan, and if anything goes wrong, they'll stick with it, NOT THAT THAT'S OMINOUS OR ANYTHING.
But to start, the plan goes well enough; Caitlin draws Hunter out with (very obviously fake, I must say) talk of how she made a mistake; she ran away from him because she couldn't face the idea that she is, as Hunter said, dark inside like Killer Frost was, but she sees now that he was right. He seems to believe her but says that it's too late -- but when he puts his hand through her, she's only a projection. And the distraction has allowed the rest of the team to move into position, and Harry succeeds in shooting the boot around Hunter's neck, after which Cisco opens a portal. But when Joe tries to shoot him with the same tranq they used on Barry, the gun jams, so he's forced to rush forward and stab him manually. And then:
That Quote"Barry sure has an ample number of fathers to kill."- Hunter Zolomon -
Plot Lightning Round
Cisco can't get a fix on Joe's location, and Harry reports that he won't be able to disarm the Magnatar! Then Wally shows up and can't believe they all took Zoom on without Barry! And with that, let's all forget about Wally, because what could he possibly get up to having expressed that sentiment!
Back on Earth-2, Zoom tells Joe that all his fucking with the Speed Force over the years resulted in it sending the Time Wraiths after him! He then goes on that the man in the iron mask is yet another Jay Garrick, and "when I defeat Barry, I'll have a Flash from two worlds to keep me company"! Joe does not seem to take a lot of solace from the revelation that Zoom doesn't plan to kill Barry!
Wally of course lets Barry out of his cell, and with few appealing alternatives at this point, the team agrees to back him in his resolution to race Zoom! But it would have been pretty funny if they'd tranq-ed him again!
Cisco Vibes Barry's image over to Zoom's lair, and the two of them agree that they'll race, with Joe remaining unharmed but a prisoner until after it's over! He's like the buxom blonde in '80s karate video games, tied up on the sidelines as the men fight to rescue her! Kids, ask your parents!
Hunter sneers at the fact that the whole S.T.A.R. team is there to back Barry, and they confront him about his evil plan! Hunter corrects them that he's not destroying the entire Multiverse; he'll leave Earth-1, the center of it all, intact so he can rule it! Barry's friends then all agree to die with him if necessary, which is comforting enough I guess!
Hunter and Barry agree that they'll run around the Magnatar, and if it reaches a sufficient power level, Barry loses! But if he stops racing, all his friends die! WILL HE FIND A THIRD OPTION!
Fight! Fight! Fight!
Zoom vs. The Flash
With Zoom growling "Run, Barry, RUN" -- awesome -- the two of them take off. Zoom seems to be getting what he wants -- until Barry starts moving fast enough to produce a time remnant of his own. Real Barry then zips down and frees Joe, while the Barry remnant runs fast enough to "create his own pulse," which by being out of phase, will counteract the other one. (I'm quoting directly here, so if it makes no sense, don't blame me.) The point is, this happens:
Bye bye remnant, and bye bye Zoom's big plans. Barry fights Zoom to the ground, and when a bloodied Zoom guesses Barry won't kill him, the second part of Barry's time remnant plan reveals itself:
Winner: The Flash, with an assist from the Time Wraiths.
Wrap It Up
Barry explains that he needed a way to draw the Time Wraiths out of the Speed Force and that he figured the Wraiths would be far more interested in Zoom than in him! Risky, but what else could he have done I guess!
The Man In The Iron is finally Unmasked -- and it's Earth-3 Jay Garrick, who looks JUST LIKE BARRY'S DAD! Of course, this seemed like one of the major possibilities when Henry told Barry the name "Garrick" ran in his family, but it's still a pretty great reveal!
Earth-3 Flash destroys the mask -- which by the way had a power dampener in it -- but keeps Hunter's helmet, figuring he can redeem it! Harry and Jesse then offer to take him to Earth-2 on his way home, and that means this Harry is going home NOOOOOOO!
But yes, Harry (who tells Barry he's a better man than he was when he got to Earth-1, thanks to Barry, WHOOONK) and Jesse say their goodbyes, and then Cisco opens a portal and Earth-3 Jay takes them through! But we'll see Harry again soon, right? I SAID "RIGHT"?!
Love, Hate & Everything In Between
Goodbye, My Love
Out on the West porch, Barry tells Iris that he's too broken right now to pursue a relationship with her. Iris responds by telling him that he waited for her for years, and she's willing to do the same for him: "Wherever you need to go, whatever you need to do, do it. And when you get back, I'll be here. I love you, Barry." They share a suitably slo-mo kiss, and he tells her he loves her too, but when she's inside, he breathes, "That's why I'm so sorry. But I have to do this." WHAT CAN HE MEAN?!?!?!?!
Well, what he means is that he's running back to the scene of his mother's death and stopping the Reverse Flash this time. After he knocks him out, he sees his other self at the door:
And then he goes to his terrified mother and tells her she's safe. What does this mean for the timeline? Well, if you really want to know, I'll say this word: Flashpoint! Otherwise, I'll answer my own question more simply: IT'S FUCKED! Great job, Barry! Chew on that over the summer!