With production shut down early due to the coronavirus pandemic, the current season of The Flash had a few episodes still left to shoot when everything went dark. So this season came to an abrupt end with one heck of cliffhanger.
Spoilers ahead for “Success is Assured,” the latest episode of The CW’s Flash, which aired Tuesday, May 12, 2020.
Eva is finally loose from the mirror dimension, and the newly minted Mirror Master is wasting no time in plotting the death of her traitorous husband. We find out a bit more about how Eva ended up trapped in the mirror dimension — it turns out Carver was there when it happened, and opted to leave her trapped there purposely so he could profit from her company and weaponize her tech. So yeah, we already knew he was a bad dude, but doubly confirmed — he’s a bad dude.
After being warned by Barry, Carver quickly realizes Eva really is free and gunning for him. So after his own metahuman assassin team is turned against him, he turns to Barry and Team Flash for help. We get an interesting turn here, when Eva (via her evil Singh clone) offers to give Barry back Iris if he’ll hand over Carver. Barry considers it, which understandably irks Nash (especially after his vision of Harry notes that, yeah, the “old” Barry would’ve never considered that offer). It’s an interesting turn here, to show just how much Barry is unraveling without Iris, but sadly we don’t get to see where that self-doubt is leading yet with the season cut short.
As for the plan to save Carver, it calls for getting him back to the McCulloch tech offices, where he’s set up a high-tech panic room that’s been designed to protect him from Eva in the event she ever did get loose. As you can probably imagine, it doesn’t go all that well. Eva turns his light-powered assassins against him, and they slug it out with Team Flash while Carver tries to hide out in his panic room.
But in a truly boneheaded twist, it turns out Carver’s mirror-less panic room isn’t all that foolproof, as Eva simply takes a page out of The Ring and climbs out to get him through the reflection in the computer screen monitor. Seriously, man. Your panic room has screens?! Why not just go straight-up concrete or something? It’s cheaper, and way less reflective surfaces. Regardless, the Mirror Master is in the building, and sends a pile of glass shards headed straight for Carver …
Until Barry jumps in front of them and takes all those shards to his own chest. It’s a hero’s moment, and a nice payoff after considering to cut a deal to trade Carver’s life for Iris. Barry does what a hero does and sacrifices himself to save a life — even the life of a sleazeball like Carver. It’s all for nothing, though, as Eva simply pushes a shard through Barry and uses it to kill Carver. Thankfully Barry apparently has enough super speed healing powers left to recover, but Carver is dead.
Then something interesting happens: Eva lets Flash and his team go, and makes it clear she has no beef with the city’s heroes. She wanted to kill her husband for leaving her in the mirror universe. Now that she’s done that, she’s taking her company back over and re-entering public life. This sets up a fascinating change of pace from past villains. Eva tells Barry they’re on the same side, essentially, since they both wanted to take down Carver. And … she’s not wrong. Obviously, the Flash’s solution wasn’t to kill him, but the deed is done. Eva is obviously a baddie, and she’s responsible for trapping Iris and Singh, but wouldn’t it make some sense for Barry to try and find some common ground at this point, especially if she’s able to help get Iris back?
At this point, we simply don’t know, since the episode ends with Team Flash regrouping to take on Eva (with Joe back from protective custody!). But they’re a bit short-handed, as Caitlin/Frost is leaving with her mother to try and stabilize her condition.
We do get a great closing moment with Barry and Caitlin, though, and it’s been way too long since we’ve had one of those. She reminds Barry that his real “force” is Love, and to never forget that. Is it a bit cheesy? Sure, but it still speaks to the heart of this hero and this show, and what drives both. Sadly, we’ll have to wait until next season (hopefully!) to see how this story gets resolved.
As for Iris, she’s still kicking around the mirror universe. Just when she gets a break in tracking down the real Singh, she fractals out and disappears. So yeah, big cliffhanger there that will leave us wondering what’s up with Iris through the summer.
Sue Dearbon also makes a surprise reappearance this week, having cut a deal with Carver to replace her parents in his evil organization to set them free. Of course, she only did that to get a shot at stopping Carver herself, but Eva beats her to the punch. Sadly, Sue’s freedom doesn’t last long, as Eva frames Sue for Carver’s death. So it seems Sue is heading back out on the run as a wanted woman.
The big battle at episode’s end is a wild one, with the scene washed in red and taking full advantage of some comic-panel-style split screens. Really fun cinematography and framing there.
Next up: The episode ends with a “To Be Continued” tag, and hopefully it will be. Eventually. Productions are still shuttered due to the coronavirus pandemic, and no word yet on when they’ll eventually be able to resume. So here’s hoping we get some answers sooner rather than later. One big question, too, is whether they’ll actually finish out the episodes as written for this season or retool them into next season’s premiere to resolve enough and set up whatever comes next year. Whichever way they go, we can’t wait to get back to Central City.