I have been really looking forward to Kevin Smith's episode, because last season he did amazing things with the cast. And no doubt, "Killer Frost" is the best of the season so far. Like last time, Smith really brought out the best in all of the actors. But the scatterbrained nature of the show's overall story arc, while definitely improved with this one, kept even Smith's episode from being truly perfect.
Still, this has been the most enjoyable episode of the season. Kevin Smith should direct all the episodes, IMO.
(spoilers beyond the fold)
"Killer Frost" picks up right where it left off last time, as Wally has been encased in an Alchemy cocoon, and Barry is getting his butt kicked by an invisible speedster god called Savitar. Joe ends up duking it out with one of Alchemy's robed acolytes and knocks him out for questioning later. Meanwhile, Savitar decides to go for a sightseeing tour of Central City, and drags Barry around in some of the coolest computer-generated special effects so far in the show's history.
|No foolin', the CW spent some serious money on this fight sequence. Totes worth it.|
Anyway, as Barry proceeds to get his ass kicked, Cisco ports Caitlin to the scene of the fight, and she uses her powers to save Barry's life.
|This Killer Frost chick, I like her. Let's keep her.|
Happy to report that after three seasons, Caitlin Snow now, finally, has a worthy story and a worthy role on Team Flash. With the new Wells not being a scientist, and Cisco being more of a techie, Caitlin is now the quintessential biomed specialist. They need her. I mean, they needed her before, but she was always overshadowed by the scientist-Wells, so this was a super nice change of pace. It was also lovely watching her fight against the Killer Frost persona. I don't know if it was just that she finally had a script worth a damn, or if it was Kevin Smith magic, but Danielle Panabaker was boss in this episode.
She made a genuinely intimidating villain when she did give into her Killer Frost persona. Desperate to have Alchemy get rid of her powers, she ends up questioning the acolyte Joe caught at the beginning of the episode, and not in a very nice way. This is followed up by her abducting Julian and forcing him to help her find other alchemy acolytes. During this sequence, confronted by Barry desperately trying to get her to stand down, Killer Frost ends up revealing to everyone just how much Barry screwed up with his selfish Flashpoint shenanigans. Specifically, Cisco finds out that his brother Dante was still alive before Barry messed with time.
Again, Kevin Smith magic or was this talent always latent in Carlos Valdes? Probably both, but either way, Cisco's rage and pain going forward was very real. Team Flash is falling apart at the seams as the results of Barry's selfishness is fully revealed.
|You. Are. An. Asshole, Allen!|
|This kiss was the COOLEST.|
God, I love Caitlin so hard right now.
Okay, so they end up capturing her, and she's in full-blown Killer Frost persona now, with no sign of our beloved Caitlin Snow despite the pep talk. Meanwhile, Joe has had enough of being helpless and enlists HR's reluctant aid in ripping open the cocoon, because to hell with science!
|Hipster Wells is all like: I'm just sayin', this is a bad idea. For once, HR is right...|
She tries. Oh, she tries. But much like Magenta/Frankie way back earlier in the season that was a clear foreshadowing of the Killer Frost/Caitlin struggle here, there is enough Caitlin left that she can't actually kill him. This gives her enough strength to retake control of her body from Killer Frost.
Dude. Acting. Such a great scene!
Okay, Cait is back and using her awesome medical superpowers, she develops a thing that they need to inject Wally with so that his brain and his speedster powers can sync up. Hurray Caitlin, for saving the day!
Wally is super psyched to be a speedster, and it really is fantastic to have Kid Flash in the fold.
|His joy here reminds me so much of Kara Danvers the day Flash "flashed" some ice cream into her hand...|
I'm gonna go out on a limb here and guess that only the combined awesome of Flash and Kid Flash is going to defeat Savitar later, with hopefully a dash of Jesse Quick as well.
Julian saw Caitlin when she abducted him, of course, so Barry goes to the hospital to plead with him to keep her identity a secret. The price tag for Julian doing this, however, is pretty hefty: he demands that Barry resign from the CCPD. Without much hesitation, Barry selflessly does so to protect Caitlin, in an act designed to try to make up for the mess he made with his earlier selfishness.
In other news, we find out that Dr. Alchemy is just another acolyte, and that he is really just a servant of Savitar's. Apparently... a reluctant servant? As it turns out, the writers decided that they weren't going to be coy with the reveal of Alchemy's identity. I mean, all the signs have been pointing to Alchemy being Julian, like for weeks, but it seemed so incredibly obvious that I dismissed the idea that the writers would actually do this.
But I guess Malfoy gonna Malfoy and serve a greater darker power, and just as reluctantly as He Who Shall Not Be Named, because it seems like Julian isn't super happy to be Savitar's pet.
|Better than being a Deatheater, I suppose...|
Don't get me wrong, her pep talk with Barry telling him to man up and become the leader the team needs him to be, was a well done scene. Chalk that up to Smith magic, and the fact that Candice Patton is a criminally under-used actress here. But I feel really bad for her, because her only role is as the team's counselor, but hell, even Deanna Troi got to wear an actual uniform (eventually) and take the test to be a commanding officer. Sorry to say, I do not have much hope for Iris' lot improving anytime soon.
Overall, an excellent episode, as the full consequences of Barry's actions drop on him finally. There was, curiously, zero lead into next week's huge Berlantiverse crossover, so while I'm excited about it, I'm also giving the CW the side-eye, because unless Arrow or Legends of Tomorrow leads into the alien invasion this week, I find it curious that aliens suddenly appear out of literally nowhere to harry Earth-1.
But whatever, because Supergirl, Flash, Green Arrow, and White Canary. Together at last!