Armed with a new stretchy suit, Ralph is ready to help The Flash fight crime. And none too soon, as the two face a metahuman with the power to make inanimate objects come to life! Meanwhile, in their efforts to track down DeVoe, Cisco and Harry seek the help of The Council Of Wells' - a think-tank made of the various Harrison Wells of various realities.
The Firestorm comics of Gerry Conway and Pat Broderick (character of Black Bison), Rick and Morty (The concept of the Council of Ricks), the Fantastic Four comics of Jonathan Hickman and Dale Eaglesham (The concept of The Interdimensional Council of Reeds)
The whole opening mugging scene is a prime example of what happens when the show goes too far trying to be funny. Ignoring the stupidity of a mugger trying to rob two people in broad daylight in an open area, why didn't Barry catch the bullets before or after they bounced off Ralph?
Ralph is a jackass but he does have a point about how Barry should have been fast enough to stop The Black Bison from escaping AND rescue her victim from the knight she was animating. This is made doubly clear when Barry later slaps power-suppressing cuffs on Black Bison in mid-monologue, rendering her powerless.
Considering how high-and-mighty Barry has been about law and order lately, it's totally unbelievable that he'd give Ralph a pass on returning The Black Bison necklace to the Sioux reservation when all of its assembled parts were legally stolen property in the eyes of the CCPD.
While it's perfectly in keeping with Ralph's character in the comics to not care about a secret identity, it seems odd that Ralph would be allowed to sit with a child that isn't his own in a hospital or that the parents of the girl his negligence hurt would allow a strange man to stay with their daughter without them being there. The girl also seems awfully non-nonchalant about a strange man watching over her.
The episode title is a play on the 1989 comedy When Harry Met Sally...
While dealing with the mugger, Ralph suggests using his arm as a giant slingshot or turning himself into a big slinky. While these stunts are more commonly pulled by Plastic Man, Ralph has used his elongated limbs to shoot projectiles and reshaped himself into a spring before in the comics.
The idea of an inter-dimensional think-tank, as represented by The Council of Wells', is probably best known to fans of the show Rick and Morty. This show had The Council of Ricks - a governing body made up of the multiverse's various versions of super-scientist Rick Sanchez who took it upon themselves to police themselves while protecting themselves and the multiverse from other threats.
The Council of Ricks was itself a parody of an idea introduced in Jonathan Hickman's run on the comic book Fantastic Four - The Interdimensional Council of Reeds. This body was made up of various versions of super-scientist Reed Richards, who gave up all ties to their world in order to protect reality.
The Black Bison first appeared in Firestorm Vol. 2 #1 (June 1982) and was created by Gerry Conway and Pat Broderick. Representing a sort of evil and magical parallel to the scientific process that merged Ronnie Raymond and Martin Stein to create Firestorm, The Black Bison was formed when the spirit of Bison-Black-As-Midnight-Sky possessed the body of his great-grandson, Black-Cloud-In-Morning (a.k.a. John Ravenhair).
Black-Cloud-In-Morning changed his name to John Ravenhair and sought a more secular life free of the traditions of his family, becoming a high-school teacher in Queens, New York. Despite this, John still took care of the aged Bison-Black-As-Midnight-Sky at his home and honored his great-grandfather's request to wear a special talisman that, unbeknownst to him, was an artifact of The Black Bison cult. When Bison-Black-As-Midnight-Sky died, shortly after performing a ritual to bind his spirit to the talisman, he was able to take control of John Ravenhair while he was taking his class to a history museum that housed several artifacts belonging to The Black Bison cult. With these artifacts Bison-Black-As-Midnight-Sky became the villain known as Black Bison and declared war on all those who had stolen the heritage of his people.
The DCTVU version of Black Bison has a lot in common with her comic-book counterpart, despite having a non-magical origin. Mina Chaytan has the metahuman power to animate effigies - i.e. realistic statues, suits of armor, mannequins, skeletons, etc. The comic book version of Black Bison also had this power, through the use of the magical Black Bison Coup-Stick. Mina Chaytan and the comic book Black Bison also share a common motivation - fighting back against those they see as exploiting the heritage of their people.
Ralph gives Caitlin's measurements are 34-25-34. These correspond to those of actress Danielle Panabaker, according to her profile on HealthyCelebrity.com
As in the comics, Ralph's powers seem to have given him some degree of super-strength along with super-durability and elasticity. We see Ralph holding a speeding car in place with his bare hands.
Real hypnosis can be used to recover memories.
Based on an avulsuion and the claw marks left at the scene of Black Bison's first murder, Barry determines that the dead man was killed by a large, predatory animal with four-inch canines and a bite force of 5,000 PSI which weighed over one ton. No such animal exists, but a stone panther fits the bill.
Harry contacts The Council of Wells' using a multiverse holo-projector.
The granite panther statue is totally normal apart from being filled with traces of dark matter on a molecular level.
Caitlin guesses that Black Bison's powers work by leaving a psychic imprint on objects, creating a sort of telekinetic puppetering through a subconscious link. This power is limited in that she can only manipulate effigies - i.e. representations of living creatures.
Cisco constructs the prototype for Ralph's super-suit from an unnamed material with an adaptive nano-weave structure that is malleable on a sub-molecular level.
Harrison Wolfgang Wells has a unique theory on the behavioral upbringings of nano-serial killers.
H. Lothario Wells had a unique theory on narcotics in molecular psychiatry.
The Council of Wells ultimately decide to find DeVoe by using the Bates-Novick method to determine why each of the bus metahumans developed they powers they did and combining that with Harrison Wolgang Wells' models of statistical elimination. H. Lothario Wells then suggests taking that information, enhancing it with a psych profile based on DeVoe's previous actions, using a predictive algorithm that he created and then running that information through Wells 2.0's quantum cerebral chip. This leads them to Clifford DeVoe - a professor of history who matches their psych profile by 92%.
Barry: A superhero's first job is to protect people!
Ralph: Oh God. What's the second job? Long-winded lectures before noon?
The Mechanic: We need to talk.
The Thinker: The only way it can end... with my victory.
The Mechanic: What?
The Thinker: (sighs) Fine. Let us take the long way and continue.
The Mechanic: Today, for the first time, events will align that give Team Flash a chance to discover your identity. This is earlier than you anticipated!
The Thinker: It is of no concern.
The Mechanic: Like Hell! You know what's at risk! What we are doing? If you have miscalculated by even a decimal-
The Thinker: There is not a decimal, a fraction, an infinitesimal variable beyond my thought... beyond my mind. Even now, of the 7,798 variations of this argument, I have anticipated them all and know how it ends.
The Mechanic: Then how does it end?!
The Thinker: The only way it can end... with my victory.
(The Mechanic just stares at him and walks out of the room.)
Barry: Do you remember back in the day, when we wouldn't calmly consider a stone statue our prime suspect?
Joe: No. I actually don't.
(Harry kicks Wells The Gray off of their channel.)
Harry: Sorry. That was a... bad connection.
Wolfgang Wells: Ja, that was a terrible connection.
Wells 2.0: Good on ya! That dude was strange.
(Wells 2.0 brings a lizard on a stick up to his lips and takes a bite.)
Wells 2.0: We had a Cisco on my Earth once. He was delicious.
(Cisco is running through the technical explanation for how he made a costume that can stretch with Ralph.)
Ralph: Don't know what that means. Don't care. Just yank the tarp off. I'm ready for my super-suit!
Cisco: Ralph... this tarp IS your super-suit.
Mina Chaytan: That which you call "a peace pipe" is no such thing. It is a sacred gift for prayer from Ptesan-Wi - bringer of the seven scared rights - The White Buffalo Calf Woman. You'd never hang a Christian cross upside down. Or lay an American flag on the floor. Yet you destroy that which is wakan - what is holy - by letting it touch your filthy flesh. But I am here to teach you the price for your impudence.
Cisco explains that he's unable to use his powers to see the bus being hit by the dark matter wave because of the interference caused by the dark matter wave itself.
Dr. Sharon Finkel - Iris and Barry's therapist - last seen in 402 - makes an appearance, agreeing to hypnotize Ralph.
Ralph has an uncanny ability for guessing women's measurements with one glance.
While under hypnosis, Ralph sees The Weeper from 405. He identifies two women and cannot see their faces but is able to guess their measurements (34-32-36 and 38-34-32, respectively). He also sees a figure wearing a jacket with a black bison emblem on the back.
Cisco Ramon is 5'7".
The Harrison Wells of Earth 12 is Harrison Wolfgang Wells. He is German, holds four PhDs and has authored a book called Everything Is Meaningless, So Why Did I Buy This Book? In mannerisms and personality, he resembles the character of Dieter from the Saturday Night Live Sprockets skits.
The Harrison Wells of Earth of Earth 47 is a billionaire inventor, publishing tycoon and general champion of free speech named H. Lothario Wells. He dresses like High Hefner, is an apparent womanizer and has the mannerisms of actor Matthew McConaughey.
The Harrison Wells of Earth 22 is Wells 2.0 - an Australian cyborg from a world where man and machine had to merge to survive the apocalypse. His mannerisms and appearance seem to be based on the Mad Max series of movies.
There is also a Harrison Wells - Wells The Gray - who resembles Gandalf from the Lord of the Rings books. We do not find out what Earth this Harrison Wells comes from, if he is a real wizard or just some loony crashing the Council of Wells meeting channel.
Wells 2.0 apparently ate the Cisco Ramon of Earth 22. He was delicious.
Caitlin's measurements are 34-25-34.
The fifth of the bus metas is a woman named Mina Chaytan. She is a Native American of the Sioux-Lakota tribe. She was a professor of cultural anthropology at Central City University before she was fired following her arrest on charges of breaking in and entering, trespassing and burglary while trying to "reclaim" several Souix artifacts from a museum.
On Earth 22, apologizing is a crime punishable by banishment under Krung The Face-Crusher.
Ralph sent the reassembled Black Bison necklace back to the Sioux reservation.
Raised in South Africa and educated at the University of Oxford and The University of Johannesburg, Clifford DeVoe is a professor of history at The University of Central City. He lives at 43 Hibbard Lane. His specialty is the history of warfare and military strategy with a research focus on the early Middle Ages.
When Team Flash arrives at 43 Hibbard Lane, they find The Mechanic and The Thinker, apparently posing as Husband and Wife. Clifford DeVoe appears to be a middle-aged man confined to a wheelchair.
Killer Frost apparently took control of Caitlin's body to go to Burning Man.
The Bottom Line
A ultimately harmless and fluffy piece of filler that goes too far in trying to course-correct the series' dark tone in Season Three. It's telling that all the characters given more serious material to tackle this year are barely in this episode (i.e. Caitlin, Iris, etc.) and the running gag with all the various versions of Harrison Wells is finally starting to wear thin.