Good God, this was a crushing episode of THE FLASH. This is the best episode of the series so far that nearly had me in tears. Remember last week I said that Barry (Grant Gustin) is quite possibly the villain of the show? Well, that now seems to be true as “The Wrath of Savitar” brings Team Flash to its knees and more than likely has done some permanent damage to personal relationships, and may even break Team Flash for good. More than anything, emotional punishment hurts more than physical punishment.
As Team Flash works to get Wally (Keiynan Lonsdale) faster, Barry and Iris (Candance Patton) announce their engagement. However, Wally’s hallucinations of Savitar over the course of a week have become so bad now that Savitar can get physical with him. This acts as the first rift in Team Flash and it only gets worse as Savitar manages to find everyone’s weaknesses and twist the knife leading to tragic ends for everyone.
Lies and betrayals hurt more than any punch can give. And there were multiple betrayals and secrets this episode. First, starting with Wally not telling anyone about Savitar sooner. As we’ve seen, Wally’s ego and pride have now gotten the best of him and that ends up being his downfall. But before we get to his downfall, let’s start with why Savitar is manifesting himself in the first place. We all thought the philosopher’s stone was in the speed force along with the box that was holding it. Well, it seems that the betrayal that Savitar prophesied is none other than Caitlin Snow (Danielle Panabaker) who kept a piece of the stone to see if it could be used to get rid of her powers along with her Killer Frost alter-ego. Understandably hurt, Julian (Tom Felton), who has come back from London, as he thought he would be the Judas as Savitar has been using him as his own personal puppet. Julian goes even so far to ask her if the reason he was brought on the team was just to be used to find a cure for Killer Frost.
Speaking of Julian, I felt very bad for him this episode. On top of Caitlin, Barry has to access his mind twice in order to talk to Savitar. Julian does not want to be a puppet for him again. Even the second time H.R.(Tom Cavanagh) had to speak up on how messed it was that they’re making him go through this again. Cisco (Carlos Valdes) is not all pleased with Caitlin or Barry this episode too. Rather than say it verbally, it was more in his facial expressions and body movement. Seriously, Valdes did great work on this episode with a very restrained performance that spoke volumes.
Wally, only wanting to make himself better, continues to train with H.R.. They both get the idea that the only way to stop Iris’ death is for him to see it firsthand. Having Cisco vibe him to see Iris’ death (something Cisco was not for), Wally makes a discovery that even Cisco tells Wally not to break. Wally makes Barry tell Iris that the real reason they got engaged is to change the future and this goes just as well as you can imagine. Iris is devastated that Barry is marrying her out of fear instead of love. She wants to be his wife, not someone he has to save. She tells Barry that because of this a part of them will “always be tainted.” On top of that, Joe (Jesse L. Martin) and Iris are hurt that Barry didn’t ask him for his blessing in the marriage as it means a lot to the both of them.
The team comes to discover that Savitar is trapped in the Speed Force and needs the entire stone to free himself, hence why only Barry and Wally can see him. With that, they discover that Wally has taken the last piece of the stone to throw into the Speed Force. As Savitar taunts Wally about not being fast enough, Wally manages to go fast enough to open a portal to the Speed Force and throw the stone in. Welp, Barry arrives just in time to see Wally sucked into the Speed Force and Savitar freeing himself. After a brief face off, Savitar manages to gravely wound Barry as the team manages to save his life, they may not be a team anymore.
Savitar had said multiple times this episode that Barry is the true villain of the story. This is something I’ve said multiple times in these reviews, that Barry is responsible for all of their problems and with the big revelation that Flashpoint is directly responsible for his creation. We are even back at the moral quandary from last week as Savitar knows that Barry cannot kill him as he is too good of a person to take him out. It hurts to see that Barry in the final shot of the episode acknowledged that he is the bad guy.
I cannot stress enough how writers Andrew Kreisberg and Andrew Wilder have done a great job of not only bringing this whole season into focus but making everyone their own worst enemy this episode. Same goes for director Alexandra La Roche who managed to get some really great performances this week from the cast as well as delivering the episodes turning points with such emotional heft that it works in spades.
Who is Savitar? How does Savitar know all of Team Flash’s secrets? Can Barry save Wally from being trapped forever in the Speed Force? And is Team Flash done? Stay tuned true believers. And don’t be afraid to comment below or tweet me if you need help processing this episode.
Season 3, Episode 15 (S03E15)
The Flash airs Tuesdays at 8PM on The CW
A lifelong film enthusiast since he can remember, Brandon is an indie filmmaker/screenwriter and freelance critic who resides in Trenton, NJ. Feel free to hit him up on Twitter to talk movies, shows, and music (especially hip-hop).
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Brandon Norwood | Contributor