The Flash returns with a gravity-defying adventure that turns surprisingly dark

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Apr 10, 2018

The CW’s Flash returned with a case of the week that served as a nice foil for both Barry and Dibny to reflect on what type of heroes they’re becoming — and that there isn’t always a “right” way when it comes to saving the day.

Spoilers ahead for “Null and Annoyed,” the latest episode of The CW’s Flash, which aired Tuesday, April 10, 2018.

The writers dug fairly deep into the DC Comics canon this week for the metahuman Null, aka Janet Petty, who is one of the last remaining bus metas. Like her comic counterpart, this version of Null also controls gravity and can essentially send anything flying into the atmosphere with the touch of her hand. It’s a neat trick, and she’s been using it for classic thief cliches like stealing jewels. Team Flash is on the case, of course. After sending Barry into the clouds, Dibny saves the day with his unique style of improvisation and everyone learns a lesson.

It was admittedly a bit heavy-handed, but still a classic superhero story worth telling. Barry becomes frustrated that Dibny isn’t taking things seriously enough, which stems more from the fact that Barry just wants him to do things his way. It turns out Dibny is (obviously) using humor as a way to deflect his fear, and Barry learns to trust his new teammate. It felt like a bit of odd placement to do this story here, especially considering (as Iris actually points out) we’ve already seen Dibny step up to be a hero while Barry was in prison. He’s proven his approach can work, and Barry’s been working with him most of the season. Earlier in the year, sure, but here it just felt like an odd time to tell that kind of story.

Assorted musings

*It might not have been the “A” story, but this episode featured one of the most shocking and positively dark twists ever seen on the typically happy-go-lucky Flash. DeVoe’s wife comes to the realization that he’s been drugging her and erasing her memory to keep her compliant… and it turns out it’s far from the first time she’s figured it out. DeVoe just keeps drugging her week after week, and doing it again when she realizes it. The moment when she finds her old recorded warning was absolutely chilling. DeVoe has lost his humanity, which only makes him more terrifying. His wife is no longer a partner in this mission, but a prisoner — and she doesn’t even know it. 

*We also learn why DeVoe caused the Weeper to be created — so he could eventually use that metahuman ability to drug his wife, because he foresaw and planned his eventual memory-wiping years in advance. Again, that’s some dark stuff.

*It’s been a while since we heard much about Gypsy, but her old man showed up for a fun team-up with Cisco — which also served to set up a fun twist moving forward. Turns out Breacher is losing his abilities to old age, and Cisco is (understandably) terrified to tell him that fact. Despite some initial anger, he actually takes it well (sporting some killer retirement gear) and offers Cisco his old job as a bounty hunter. Cisco has been looking to spend more time with Gypsy, and a bad-guy-hunting duo would certainly solve that problem.

*So STAR Labs has a holo deck now? Well, that’s cool.

*Nice little easter egg from Dibny, naming their made-up comedy troupe “DC Comics.”

*This show is never afraid to get weird when it comes to the multiverse, and we get a peek at a world menaced by the evil vampire Lord Crucifer, which is just hilariously awesome.

*Yes, that was absolutely Jay and Silent Bob serving as security guards at the museum. Was it a bit distracting? Sure. Kevin Smith is behind the camera, though, so why not?

*Having Dibny make himself into a whoopie cushion was absolutely ridiculous, but yeah, it worked. Who doesn’t enjoy a good fart joke?

*We’ve seen Harry struggling with his mission to match wits with the Thinker, and he takes his approach in a dangerous and mysterious direction this week. After failing to solve the case this week, Harry sneaks into Reverse-Flash’s secret chamber and awakens the sleeping future super-computer Gideon. Might he use Gideon to try and super-charge the helmet? Could that wind up doing more harm than good?

Next week: The team looks to take on the Thinker, and it doesn’t seem to go all that well.