In Review: The Flash, Episode 18 “All Star Team Up”

It's sad if the best thing I can say is "Could be worse."

The Flash, Episode 18 “All Star Team Up” Broadcast on April 15, 2015

Written by Grainne Godfree & Kai Yu Wu

Directed by Kevin Tancharoen

“Previously on The Flash“, Barry and Felicity Smoak exchange good-byes, Ray Palmer looks at the 3D specs for his suit, Joe tells Cisco that Dr. Wells keeps secrets, Barry believes Harrison is the Reverse Flash, and Eddie is shown that Barry is the Flash. In the present, Joe and Eddie are in a squad car chasing a vehicle in an industrial area; it’s the third attempted robbery that evening. The Flash zips into the back seat to help, dropping off a man who should be arrested for indecent exposure. Switching Joe with the driver from the car on the run, the chase ends. Soon after, a jewelry store is being looted, but is stopped by the arrival of the officers and the Flash. Eddie doesn’t look thrilled with Barry’s intervention or Joe’s mirth. At Hudson University, Dr. Lindsay Kang gets into her car and is enveloped in a swarm of bees which pour out of her air conditioner vents. No one is around to hear her screams as the insects attack. Cue opening title card.

The next morning, Eddie and Joe are at the scene of the murder, and Barry tells them Kang’s body is covered in small punctures; she must have gone into anaphylaxis. Joe wants Barry to take the woman’s blood sample to S.T.A.R. Labs so it can be analyzed quickly. Barry feels weird going there because of his suspicion of Wells’s true identity. Cisco and Kaitlin have to be told, Barry says, but Joe says they cannot because they might slip up before Harrison or they might be on their mentor’s side. Reluctantly, Barry agrees. At S.T.A.R. Labs, the gang has learned it was bees whose toxicity was off the charts that killed the doctor. Their postulating is interrupted by the arrival of Felicity Smoak. She asks them to go outside to see boyfriend Ray Palmer’s arrival.

This was an okay episode, but had no scream out loud moments. The story split three ways: Barry’s worries over his so-called friends’ loyalty, the identity of the murderer using bees to commit murder, and Iris’s concerns about Eddie. Barry’s worries were decently given and bounced off of visiting Felicity, and it was nice to see him be a doubter. Felicity was the right person for him to spill his guts, considering her past with Oliver Queen. The Bug-Eyed Bandit was a major improvement over that character from the comics, though she’s barely seen in the episode, though her coolest scene comes outside a window–that was clever. And for Iris and Eddie, I disliked Iris before, now I absolutely hate her. I have no sympathy for that character and I can’t believe that Barry’s still pining for, considering what happens toward the end of the episode. The bee effects were really good, as was the Atom’s action sequence, though I’m finding myself disliking the suit, like many fans are. It’s way too similar to Iron Man. His powers should be organic, or smaller.

The good: Grant Gustin getting to play troubled, Emily Bett Rickards stealing her scenes, Carlos Valdes getting some sensational character growth and revelations, an excellent solution to Barry’s plight after the second commercial break, Brie Larvan’s top, and the Flash getting another new, and appropriate, power.

Fun lines: “Hi. I’m Ray,” “Barry Allen, are you jealous?”, “He means the suit,” “Too much?”, “Thank god, it’s food,” “Mama’s been away from a keyboard for too long,” “I never had a nemesis before. Kinda like it,” and “They feel real.”

The bad: An unspectacular villain, a script with internal conflicts that don’t really progress the season’s story arc, Ray Palmer being an overly dim Bruce Wayne, and I really hate Iris now due to that final scene.

The final line: Not fun, but not horrible. Just meh. It’s sad if the best thing I can say is “Could be worse.” Overall grade: C

Patrick Hayes was a contributor to the Comic Buyer's Guide for several years with "It's Bound to Happen!" and he's reviewed comics for TrekWeb and TrekCore. He's taught 8th graders English for 20 years and has taught high school English for five years and counting. He reads everything as often as he can, when not grading papers or looking up Star Trek, Star Wars, or Indiana Jones items online.
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