Tuesday, November 3, 2015

The Flash Episode Guide: Season 2, Episode 5 - The Darkness And The Light

For a summary of the episode guide layout & categories, click here.


The good news is that the Harrison Wells of Earth 2 (a.k.a. Harry) has come to join the battle against Zoom. The bad news is that he's an arrogant dick and everyone is reluctant to work with him. And that's ignoring that he's the spitting image of the man who caused the STAR Labs team so much pain.

But they will have little time for bickering when Zoom's latest minion - a thief called Dr. Light - begins robbing banks to lure The Flash into a fight. And after Barry's first encounter with Dr. Light leaves him blinded, he'll have to do something truly heroic - go on his first date with Patty Spivot while unable to see!


Doctor Who (The Earth 2 Harrison Wells acts like some of the more arrogant incarnations of The Doctor, even mistakenly calling someone Ricky as The 9th Doctor did when speaking to Micky Smith), The Steve Martin film Roxanne (the scene of Cisco trying to guide a blind Barry through a date through a headset) and The Flash and Vibe comics of Geoff Johns (Cisco's ability to sense things about "breachers" mirrors the comic-version's ability to find and track inter-dimensional disturbances.)


How did Harry travel from Earth 2 to Earth 1 when a speedster's power is needed to jump worlds? Or were they wrong about that when they stabilized the breach in STAR Labs basement?

Why do the Earth 2 meta-humans need to kill their Earth 1 counterparts? It made a sort of twisted sense in the case of Atom Smasher, who was already a hardened killer and actively looking to lay low in Central City. But Dr. Light was actively looking to escape from Zoom and get out of town and it wasn't like anyone was in danger of confusing her and the Linda Park of Earth 1.

Jay Garrick seems to change his tune on helping Barry and proving he isn't a coward pretty quickly between Barry going after Dr. Light and Barry's return to STAR Labs.

Kendra says she just moved to Central City, but we saw her in town the day of The Singularity opening some seven months earlier. Was she lying for some reason?


The date between Patty and Barry is the high-point of the episode and Grant Gustin and Shantel VanSanten make the whole affair fun and uplifting to watch.

Tom Cavanagh is always a joy to watch but his turn as "Harry" is amusing in a totally different way. You can tell he's having fun playing yet another variation on the Harrison Wells character at this point.


The special effects for this episode - with Barry catching Joe's bullets before they can hit Wells, dodging light blasts in his first encounter with Dr. Light and the speed mirages during Barry's final fight with Dr. Light - are of particularly high quality, even by the standards of this show.

Flash Facts

Harry Wells, indifferent to the deaths his Earth 1 counterpart caused, refers to Ronnie as Ricky, much to Caitlin's annoyance. This may be a nod to Doctor Who, where some versions of The Doctor were arrogant and didn't bother remember people's names. Indeed, the Ninth Doctor continually addressed Mickey Smith - the boyfriend of his companion Rose Tyler - as Ricky.

There are several characters in the DC Comics universe who go by the name Dr. Light.

The first Doctor Light was a Justice League villain with the unlikely name of Dr. Arthur Light. Dr. Light possessed an advanced power suit that gave him the ability to project and manipulate light energy. There are two conflicting stories as to how he acquired the suit. One says that he stole advanced technology from the planet Thanagar after accidentally opening a portal there. The other had him developing the suit with the aid of his partner, Jacob Finlay. In either case, Dr. Light eventually internalized these powers and no longer required a special suit.

The second Doctor Light was a Japanese scientist by the name of Kimiyo Hoshi. Both a medical doctor and an astronomer, she was empowered with the ability to generate and control light like a living star by The Monitor during the Crisis On Infinite Earths. Arrogant and spiteful, Kimiyo was a reluctant hero, at best and continued to live her life as a scientist, only utilizing her powers when absolutely necessary. Still, she did serve in Justice League Europe for a time and became good friends with the Wally West incarnation of The Flash.

The DCTVU version of Dr. Light appears to be an amalgam of both versions of Dr. Light. Like the first one, she is a thief by trade. Like the second one, her powers are natural rather than technologically based, though she is described as drawing power from starlight rather than generating it naturally. She is also an Asian woman, though the comic-book Dr. Light was Japanese and Linda Park (in the comics at least) was an American of Korean ancestry. (Strangely, the actress who plays Linda Park on the show - Olivia Cheng - is a Canadian of Chinese ancestry!)

The ability to channel energy by absorbing starlight is the main power of the man DC Comics heroes who went by the name Starman.  The first Starman, Ted Knight, was a member of the Justice Society of America along with Jay Garrick.

The DCTVU version has the ability to generate blinding bursts of light as well as focused lasers capable of cutting through a bank vault. She also seems to be able to convert the light into explosions with a concussive element capable of knocking people over.

Dr. Light's costume on the show uses the same black and white color scheme of both Dr. Lights from the comic.

Curiously, no version of Dr. Light until now, has ever worn a mask.

Cisco's powers, as described in this episode, are consistent with those of his New 52 counterpart.  In the comics, Vibe is described as having the power to find and track inter-dimensional breaches. He acquires these abilities after his DNA is rewritten following his being caught in the event horizon of an Apokolyptian Boom Tube.

The trick Harry suggests to Barry - running so fast that he creates a speed mirage of himself - is a trick that The Flash used in the classic comic books to confuse those enemies who had a chance of hitting him. This trick was also used by The Reverse Flash in 109.

The new barista at C.C. Jitters that Cisco asks out is named Kendra Saunders. She has the same name as the modern Hawkgirl in the DC Comics Universe and we will discuss her history in a future entry.

At the episode's end, Cisco adopts the name of his comic book counterpart - Vibe.


A human from Earth 1 is genetically indistinguishable from their Earth 2 counterpart.

Stars have a temperature of 5,300 degrees Kelvin and a blinding luminosity.

Cisco claims he can use STAR Labs satellite to scan for any irregular solar radiation emissions to track Dr. Light.

Barry temporarily acquires solar retiinopathy. His retinas are severely damaged but, owing to his faster-than-normal healing abilities, Harry estimates that he will recover fully within 6.25 hours.

Harry's Metahuman Awareness App watch flashes red when pointed at a metahuman and blue when pointed at a regular human.

Barry creates a speed mirage of himself by running so fast that he creates multiple after images of himself.

Dialogue Triumphs

Cisco: So let me get this straight? You're the doppelganger of the man who murdered his (Barry's) mom, and is responsible for both Ronnie and Eddie's deaths?
Caitlin: Yeah, but he's not even the doppelganger of the Dr. Wells that we knew, because that Dr. Wells' body was taken over by The Reverse Flash, who was really Eoboard Thawne and Eddie's distant relative from the future.
Harry: (pause) Yeah, I didn't follow any of that. I'm my own man. I had nothing to do with the murder of your mother or your friend Ricky.
Caitlin: His name was Ronnie!
Harry: Him either.

Joe: I just want one week where we're not surprised by somebody from our past!

Cisco: (To Harry) You know, our Dr. Wells may have been evil but you're just a dick.

Harry: What did he do to you? I know he caused The Singularity. He killed Barry's mother. Blah. Blah. Blah. Blah. What did he do to you? You can barely look me in the eye? Why is that? What did he do to you?
Cisco: He shoved his hand through my chest. He stopped my heart.
Harry: (chuckles) Ouch. Okay THAT would do it.

(Iris sees Harry and tenses up)
Iris: You... look just like him!
Harry: I'm guessing my counterpart did something to offend her as well?
Cisco: Her fiance died because of him.
Harry: (pause) Oh.
(Harry turns and leaves the room)
(Cisco is monitoring Barry's date with Patty through the sunglasses Barry is wearing)
Cisco: Dude, she looks amazing! You have to tell her how amazing she looks.
Barry: You look amazing, Patty.
Patty: Uh, thanks. I actually had a really hard time trying to figure out what to where. Like, if I should wear a dress or if this color was a little weird?
Barry: No! You look great!. Um, yeah, no, that - what WOULD you call that color?
Patty: Um - huh.. I don't know?
Cisco: I can't tell! The feed's black and white!
Barry: Yeah, well, whatever it is, that color should thank you for wearing it.
Cisco: (laughs) My man!

Party: I think another thing too. I think you can't see me.
Cisco: Abort!
Barry: What?! What do you mean?
Patty: I think you can't see me. Come on, I would not be a good detective if I couldn't have figured this one out.
(They both laugh)
Barry: Uh - yeah.
Patty: Yeah.
Barry: I'm really sorry and embarrassed that I didn't say anything.
(Barry tucks his glasses into his jacket pocket) 
Cisco: Barry?
Barry: I had my pupils dilated earlier and I really didn't want to cancel.
Cisco: Barry! I lost my eyes!
Barry: No, you have a great smile.
Patty: Really? How do you know I'm smiling?
Barry: Just a hunch.

(As Patty guides a still-blind Barry)
Patty: Funny how we've skipped straight to the hand-holding part.
Barry: Yes.
Patty: We've arrived at my car.
Barry: Ah. (pauses) Well, do you think we've reached the good night kiss stage?
(Patty guides Barry's hands onto either side of her face. He smiles and they kiss. They both break the kiss,  laugh and Barry opens his eyes, which have finally focused again)
Barry: This is burgundy, by the way, And you look great in it.
Patty: Now you can see?
Barry: I can.
Patty: That must have been some kiss.
Barry: I guess so.


Harry Wells created a series of Meta-human Awareness Apps. They are capable of instantly detecting the presence of a meta-human and can even sense the approach of a speedster seconds before they arrive.

Eight months earlier on Earth 2, Jay Garrick, as The Flash, publicly accused Harry Wells of creating the metahumans with his experiments and dark-matter radiation being expelled beneath STAR Labs.. Wells denied the charges and Garrick was unable to prove anything.

Harry Wells has a daughter.

The breach in the basement of STAR Labs on Earth 1 connects to the basement of STAR Labs on Earth 2.

Harry Wells now takes responsibility for creating the metahumans of his world.

Once again, it is confirmed that the Big Belly Burger franchise exists on both Earth 1 and Earth 2.

Joe tells Barry about the break-in at Mercury Labs from 204 and how Dr McGee claimed to have seen Harrison Wells.

Barry refers to Eddie's sacrifice erasing Eobard Thawne from existence in 123.

Linda Park is seen for the first time since 203. It turns out her Earth 2 counterpart is Dr. Light.

Eric Larkin, the editor-in-chief of the Central City Picture News, is seen for the first time since 111. He is killed by Dr. Light.

Joe taught Iris how to fire a pistol and gives her one to protect herself.

Patty refers to the shark-monster from 204. She named him King Shark. Cisco approves.

Cisco decides - to avoid confusion - that the should call the Earth 2 Harrison Wells "Harry".

Cisco gets a "vibe" of Dr. Light robbing a bank. This is the first one he's had since 202.

The local newspaper on Earth 2 is called The Central City Citizen. This also the name of the future Earth 1 newspaper Eobard Thawne consulted regarding the stability of the timeline.

Jay Garrick and Harrison Wells know each other. They don't like each other. At all. Wells is determined to beat Zoom as quickly as possible. Garrick wants to train Barry further before attempting a direct confrontation

Jay says that Dr. Light was a thief, not a killer and could be reasoned with. Wells says Zoom has the ability to manipulate people into doing what the wants now and they can't count on that fact.

Eobard Thawne and Harry have very different musical tastes. According to Cisco, Thawne's were better.

Zoom apparently knows that Barry Allen is The Flash and that he dated Linda Park.

Patty once arrested her boyfriend (soon to be ex-boyfriend) while on a date, after he got drunk and insulted the waitress.

Coffee does exist on Earth 2. Indeed, Jay thinks it may be the one constant in the multiverse.

Jay Garrick fought Zoom many times and nearly died in all of those encounters. He admits to being afraid of Zoom and maybe shying away from fights with him. Garrick does not trust Wells at all and notes that Wells was happy to deny responsibility for creating the metahumans on Earth 2 so long as he was making money off the crisis with his Metahuman Awareness Apps.

When Patty was 9, she drowned and was legally dead for two minutes before her dad revived her.

Earth 2 has a Tahiti, but Jay Garrick has never been there. He has, however, been to Atlantis and loved it. Atlantis in Earth 2 is above water and Jay has a close friend from there. He describes it as the kind of place you never want to leave.

Jay and Caitlin are blasted by Dr. Light before they can have their first kiss.

Barry and Patty have their first kiss.

Barry is much faster than Jay, despite Jay having more practical experience and having mastered a few more tricks with his speed than Barry.

Harry deduces that Cisco has powers and uses his Metahuman Awareness App to prove that Cisco is a metahuman  The watch also detects Barry as a metahuman and says Caitlin is not a metahuman. He reveals this fact to the rest of the STAR Labs team.

Cisco is able to use the mask to get a "vibe" on where Dr. Light is.

The trick Harry suggests to Barry - running so fast that he creates a speed mirage of himself - is a trick that The Flash used in the classic comic books to confuse those enemies who had a chance of hitting him. This trick was also used by The Reverse Flash in 109.

At episode's end, Dr. Light is locked up in the pipeline and the STAR Labs team - minus Jay Garrick - decides to go with Harry's plan to use Dr. Light as bait to lure Zoom into a trap.

We first saw Kendra Saunders in 123 among the people watching The Singularity open. She says that Central City is bigger than she's used to and very different from where she used to live. She agrees to a date with Cisco.

Harry is seen stalking Barry, Caitlin and Cisco at CC Jitters.

Zoom has Harry's daughter held hostage.


The opening scene, where Jay Garrick accuses Harry Wells of creating the metahumans, takes place at STAR Labs on Earth 2, eight months earlier.

We see Harry's daughter being held captive by Zoom in a cage somewhere on Earth 2.

Untelevised Adventures

Jay Garrick refers to having fought Dr. Light before, saying that she is a thief rather than a killer and that she can be reasoned with.

The Fridge Factor

Averted hard in the case of Patty, who figures out that Barry is blind on their date. Granted, it wouldn't take a detective to figure that out, but it's a welcome change from the usual comic cliches where the hero's love interest never notices things like the hero wearing sunglasses at night.

Averted again as it is Iris who stops Dr. Light with a well-placed gun-shot.

The Bottom Line

It isn't bad. But there's a lot going on and very little of it (the new Harrison Wells, Cisco's powers being revealed to the team, Dr. Light being an evil version of Barry's ex-girlfriend/Iris' co-worker) is given the weight it deserves. Ironically the best parts of the episode are when things slow down and we get to see Barry and Patty's first date and Jay flirting with Caitlin, talking about how Earth 2 is different from Earth 1.

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