Zoom returns to Earth One, now intent on conquest. And he is not alone, having brought with him the metahuman Rupture, who is out for revenge against those responsible for the events that led to his brother's death. And who is his brother? None other than Cisco's Earth Two counterpart, Reverb! As Team Flash rushes to find a way to stop Zoom and Barry debates whether or not he can run the risks that come with reactivating the STAR Labs Particle Accelerator a second time to restore his speed, Iris wonders whether or not to reveal her new-found romantic feelings for Barry.
Justice League of America's Vibe #1 (Origin of Rupture), Fringe (Cisco compares Harry's reduced particle accelerator to The Vacuum from this show.), World of Warcraft (Cisco evokes the name of Leroy Jenkins and refers to Rupture as the World of Warcraft version of his brother), The Princess Bride (Cisco calls Rupture Inigo, in reference to a character who was out to avenge his father's death), William Shakespeare's Hamlet (Barry's indecision here while being beset by the demands of multiple father figures mirrors Hamlet's main conflict), the Harry Potter books (Harry makes a sarcastic jibe about Cisco making a wand to go to a Harry Potter convention that turns out to be accurate, Cisco shouts "Expecto Patronum" when summoning the lightning bolt), Back To The Future (the need for a precise lightning strike to make an invention work, Cisco shouting "Great Scott!" - the catch phrase of Dr. Emmett Brown) and the 1931 Frankenstein film (much of the imagery with Cisco on the roof of STAR Labs, Barry strapped down and Harry playing the mad scientist).
Harry says that Rupture is a metahuman but then says that all of his power comes from his scythe.
Nobody really stands out this week but the team effort of the ensemble manages to salvage a fairly clunky script that tries to substitute pop-culture references for wit.
While meeting Cisco at a bar, Dante requests that the bartender put on the Diamonds game. In the DC Comics universe, The Diamonds were Central City's Major League Baseball franchise.
In the pre-Crisis DC Comics universe, Cisco Ramon was the oldest of several brothers, His younger brother Armando developed the same sonic-based powers as his brother and, following Cisco's death, became a hero to honor his sacrifice. He went by the code names Reverb and Hardline.
In the New 52 DC Comics universe, Cisco was the youngest of the three Ramon brothers. The oldest brother was Armando and the middle brother was Dante. The three were attacked during Darkseid's first invasion of Earth, with Armando presumed dead and Cisco developing his Vibe powers after being caught in the wake of an exploding piece of alien technology.
It was later revealed that Armando Ramon did not die but was teleported to the planet of Apokalyps. It was here that he was brainwashed and trained as a warrior, serving directly under Steppenwolf - general of Darkseid's armies. Armando was given the power to travel between dimensions and given the name Rupture.
The DCTVU version of Rupture is the Earth Two version of Dante Ramon. He seems to be primarily based on the New 52 version of Rupture in terms of costume and he wields a similar weapon. However, he is nowhere near as powerful as the New 52 Rupture, who has powers on par with Vibe and is able to travel between worlds independently. Also, his name is Dante Ramon - not Armando Ramon.
Cisco develops a holographic projector that, using STAR Labs satellite, is able to protect a hologram of The Flash anywhere in Central City. This encourages the illusion that The Flash is still up and running, provided The Flash doesn't need to do anything that requires touching something, speaking or going indoors.
Cisco is later able to overcome this difficulty, using a mobile version of the same system that can be contained with a van. This enables him to place a hologram of The Flash inside C.C. Jitters during the fight with Rupture.
Harry builds an abbreviated version of the particle accelerator that Eobard Thawne built on Earth One. Harry figures out a way to isolate the antimatter and dark energy, directing the to Barry instead of across the whole of Central City.
Jesse is able to "hot-wire" the door to The Time Vault. She says there is a motor inside the wall. All they have to do is provide electricity for it to turn on and open the door.
Harry also injects chemicals used in fingerprint analysis into Barry's body, as these chemicals were present in his system when he was struck by lightning.
Cisco: (As he's getting readyAll right, Cisco. This is where all those countless hours gaming in your basement are about to pay off.
Henry: I've watched you grow ever since you became The Flash. And I am so proud of that man. But ask yourself - do you really need powers in order to be that person?
Barry: It just feels like every time something good happens in my life, it's taken away.
Henry: Well, maybe it's time we did something about that.
Caitlin: You know they're going to figure out a way to stop you, right?
Zoom: Who? Barry? Wells? The police? No. Nobody can stop me now. Not anymore.
Caitlin: So what's your plan? You're just going to kill everyone?
Zoom: Not everyone.
Caitlin: Then why are you keeping me here?
(Zoom has another flashback of his being condemned to a cruel orphanage.)
Zoom: Because I don't want to be alone anymore.
Caitlin: I am never going to be with you!
Zoom: You think that you're not like me. But I've seen the darkness inside of you, Caitlin. Just like it was inside Killer Frost. All you have to do is unlock it.
(Joe and Harry set Wally and Jesse up inside The Time Vault, turning it into a panic room of sorts.)
Joe: All right. We'll bring down some more supplies later. (hands a tablet to Jesse) How you can reach us.
Jesse: And exactly how long are we supposed to be in here?
Joe: Until someone lets you out. This isn't ideal. None of it. But Zoom's here. And until he's taken care of, this is what we're doing. This is the safest place for the two of you right now.
Wally: What are you going to do?
Joe: Whatever we can.
Wally: Joe, let me do something!
Joe: Wally, there isn't anything you can do right now. Sit tight.
(Joe exits through the door. It starts to seal up as Jesse runs for it.)
Jesse: Okay, but what about the -
(The door is sealed.)
Jesse: - bathroom.
(Jesse looks at Wally and they both chuckle.)
Wally: This room have Wi-Fi, at least?
(Joe walks into a lab where Wells is scribbling equations on a plastic clear-board.)
Joe: Wally and Jesse are all good.
Harry: Thank you.
(Joe looks at the condensed particle accelerator Wells has built.)
Joe: So this is what it takes to get Barry his speed back?
Harry: Yeah. It's not uncomplicated, but... almost there.
Joe: I've told you before - once Barry makes up his mind, it's impossible to change it.
Harry: Well, then we need to convince him that this is the only way before he decides not to do it, right?
(Henry Allen enters the lab.)
Henry: Shouldn't have to convince anyone to do anything against his will. Joe, we're talking about Barry, right? I mean, I can't... I can't imagine that you don't feel the same way.
Joe: Henry, right now I don't know what the right thing to do is.
Henry: Seems clear to me.
Harry: This isn't just about your son, Henry. It's about the people in Central City. About saving those people. This is about stopping Zoom.
Henry: Your daughter is safe! This could kill my son!
Harry: I'm not going to let that happen.
Henry: The last time he was struck by lightning, he was in a coma for nine months! How did that happen?
Harry: I know what I'm doing!
Henry: You're messing with something that is out of your control! And what if it did work? I mean, what then? Joe? He goes up against Zoom? The monster that snapped his back, almost killed him and then took the one thing that he's convinced now he needs to make him whole?!
Harry: This is the way. This is the only way! The people of Central City need The Flash!
(They turn around to see Barry standing in the doorway.)
Barry: I know that you care about me. Each of you. In your own way. You all have your own point of view on this. But the decision is mine. I have to make it on my own.
Zoom: (To a video camera) Central City! The Flash you've seen in your streets is a fake! A hologram meant to give you hope. But there is no more hope. There is no more Flash. And there is no one left to protect your city... from me. (To Captain Singh) Tell the rest of your force, Captain, that their policing days are over. (To Barry) You're only alive because of Caitlin. Try something like this again and my affection for her won't stop me from killing you. Or the rest of this city!
Barry: One of the cops Zoom killed tonight... he had a son. Same age I was when Mom was murdered. And now another kid has to grow up without one of their parents because The Flash wasn't there to stop that monster! I left this city unprotected by giving up my powers to Zoom. I enabled him to rule this Earth. I need my powers back.
Henry Allen has been spending the last few months living in a cabin outside of Central City.
Garrick is the maiden name of Henry Allen's mother/Barry's grandmother.
The TV Show Fringe - which Cisco references - does not exist on Earth 2.
Cisco has a vibe vision of his brother. This later turns out to have been Rupture.
Wally tells Joe he's thinking about quitting engineering to do something to help people - maybe become a cop.
C.C. Jitters is one block away from the CCPD headquaters.
Dante Ramon, Cisco's older brother, was last seen in 116. Dante refers to the events of the episode and how he and Cisco were kidnapped by Captain Cold and Heatwave.
Cisco and Dante have not grown closer in spite of their shared experiences.
Cisco does not like watching professional sports.
Dante does not own a car.
Iris confesses her feelings to Barry.
Dante finds the letter that Cisco wrote in 213 that he asked Caitlin to give his family if he didn't return from Earth Two.
Zoom kills all the cops on Captain Singh's task-force except for Joe West and Captain Singh.
Zoom also kills Rupture
Harry has a list of metahumans from Earth Two.
Harry notes that Earth Two has less metahumans than Earth One, since he was able to contain the STAR Labs Particle Accelerator explosion. He suggests it just seems like Earth One has less metahumans since most of them stay in hiding due to presence of The Flash.
Cisco uses the Weather Wand he first built in 115 to create the lightning needed to give Barry his speed back.
Wally and Jesse are caught in the energy blast formed by Barry's dissipation.
Wherever the cabin that Henry Allen was living is located.
Harry tells the rest of Team Flash about how Zoom took over Central City on Earth Two - by killing government officials and police officers and recruiting metahumans for his army, killing anyone who opposed him.
The Fridge Factor
Iris doesn't seem to have any purpose on the show now apart from being a romantic interest for Barry. At least Candice Patton has made the character likable - a task that Katie Cassidy failed with Laurel Lance under similar circumstances on Arrow - but it is still worrying that Iris has nothing else going on in her life after some broadly successful attempts to give her a story of her own.
The Bottom Line
There's a lot of good moments in this episode. Unfortunately, they involve the subplots that get the least amount of attention. Seeing Caitlin use her brains to help the team despite being Zoom's hostage is good. Seeing Jesse and Wally interact and bond despite their different backgrounds is interesting. And the conflict between all of Barry's father figures is well-acted if nothing else.
By contrast, seeing Cisco try to bond with his annoying jock brother reminds us why we haven't seen the character in over a year. Seeing Iris decide that NOW is the time to unburden herself on Barry makes her seem selfish and unsympathetic. Rupture may be the least-interesting metahuman villain to date and is certainly the most undefined. And the ending in which Barry "dies" would be unconvincing even if we didn't have a preview less than a minute later assuring us that Barry is just lost in time and space.
Overall, it's very flatly written, saved only by the charisma of the ensemble cast and has little purpose other than setting up the grand finale for the second season.