In Review: The Flash, Episode 22 “Rogue Air”

A jam packed hour that will leave any viewer exhausted from all that occurs.

The Flash, Episode 22 “Rogue Air” Broadcast May 12, 2015

Written by Aaron Helbing & Todd Helbing

Directed by Doug Aarinokoski

“Previously on The Flash“, Eddie is kidnapped by the Reverse-Flash, Iris knows Barry’s secret identity, Wells reveals to Eddie that Barry marries Iris in the future, the gang discovers Wells is the Reverse-Flash and his secret room at S.T.A.R. Labs, Eobard escapes and sends a transmission to Barry that they’ll meet again, very soon. Now, Eobard narrates, “I want you to take a moment to think about all the things that define your life. And now imagine if, one day, all of that vanished. If you simply accept you new life, continue on. Or would you do whatever it takes to get back what was taken from you?” This opening pans around all the leads in different locations as they focus on something that means a lot to them, climaxing with Eobard Thawne stepping out smiling before a bound Eddie. “I can assure you, I will get everything that was taken from me.” Cue opening title card.

Iris is at Jitters, waiting for Barry. She’s holding a spiral of return labels that has her and Eddie’s shared address. She’s ordered too many and they intensify her sorrow. Barry’s arrival only causes her to mildly chastise him for not finding her beau. Barry counters with, “Wells took my mom from me. I won’t let him take someone from you, too.” His phone goes off; it’s Cisco. At S.T.A.R. Labs, Barry, Caitlin, and Joe have joined the technical whiz to see what he’s discovered in Wells’s wheelchair: it’s a piece of technology that resembles the inside of Gideon. It’s putting out enough electricity to power Central City. Cisco believes it’s a battery Wells was using to power himself up, and that’s why he’s been so much faster than Barry. An alarm then goes off–the accelerator has been reactivated. They quickly guess it’s Wells; that’s why they couldn’t find him–he’s been in the bowels of S.T.A.R. Labs all this time. Entering the accelerator, a familiar yellow blur rushes past them and Barry speeds after him. Cisco and Joe are left wondering what to do when a computer voice says, “Prisoner release protocol activated.” Peek-a-boo is the first to be freed, teleporting to the two men, stealing Joe’s gun, knocking him out, and then doing the same to Cisco. Caitlin comes running around the corner, causing the criminal to say, “Peek-a-boo.” The scientist runs, but the teleporting foe appears before her, punching her to the ground, and then begins to kick her. Kaitlin is about to be shot by the vengeance craving villainess, until she’s knocked out by Iris, who’s just arrived. Meanwhile, the speedsters are tearing through the city. Barry, not in costume, reaches for the Reverse-Flash, but his arch-enemy is too fast and bolts away. Barry is left frustrated and panting in the street. Back at S.T.A.R. Labs, Peek-a-boo is put back in her box. All the cells are still full, though our heroes now hear someone screaming, “Help! Down here!” The group finds Eddie. As Joe and Eddie climb up the ladder, Iris sees something on the ground. It’s the engagement ring he was going to give her. She closes the box before the first commercial break begins.

What didn’t fans get in this episode? This seemed like the season finale, but it was only the penultimate episode. Causing trouble for all were the Reverse-Flash, Captain Cold, The Mist, Deathbolt, Golden Glider, Weather Wizard, Rainbow Rider, and Peek-a-boo. The reason for getting all the villains together was very smart, and provided an excellent opportunity for Barry to show how he’s different from Oliver Queen. Wentworth Miller was eating up the scenery every time he spoke, making him a fantastic villain to cheer and boo. Watching Anthony Carrigan and Liam McIntyre act against each other was great, and foreshadows things to come. Doug Jones is one of my favorite actors and he was amazing, as always. I was wondering how Aaron and Todd Helbing would handle Cisco meeting up with Peyton List’s Golden Glider and it was so much better than I hoped it could be. The finale was a stunner, as it seemed like a budget breaker for the season for all the effects. Now if only some company could get the rights to make trading cards so I could see still images of that fight atop the building. This was spectacular.

The good: The script by the Helbings, fantastic action scenes courtesy of the effects department and director Doug Aarinokoski, Grant Gustin and Jesse L. Martin during their final scene, Tom Cavanagh relishing the part of the villain, Carlos Valdes getting the best lines, again, Rick Cosnett getting some heavy scenes and pulling them off effortlessly, Anthony Carrigan, Doug Jones, Peyton List, Liam McIntyre, Britne Oldford, and Wentworth Miller. The arrival of two (well, really three) friends, and I didn’t hate Iris this episode.

Fun lines: “Damn, you don’t get that at Radio Shack,” “What now?”, “They’re toast,” “People love their labels,” “We only break the rules to help people,” “We need to talk,” “I just needed something…constant in my life,” “Please tell me this is a joke,” “I am not uptight!”, “Really not enjoying being one of the good guys this week,” “We can’t all be doctors,” “One of their best pilots disappeared,”–Comic book fans will know who this is!, “Always pleased to meet a fan,” “and “This is gonna be fun.”

The bad: Cisco doesn’t know anything about the metal tube, except it’s from the future and it’s powering up the accelerator, yet he knows exactly how long it will take before it’s fully active? Nah, not buying that at all. That’s like putting a microwave without numbers in front of a Victorian scientist and they can predict when the meal will be done, though they have no idea how the machine works. Okay, Helbings, that was one I’ll let go to establish a countdown clock for the episode.

The final line: A jam packed hour that will leave any viewer exhausted from all that occurs. Overall grade: A

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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