Sunday, May 12, 2019

The Flash Episode Guide: Season 5, Episode 21 - The Girl with The Red Lightning

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


With Cicada plotting to unleash a biological weapon that will kill every metahuman in Central City, Team Flash goes on high alert. As Joe and Cecile organize an effort to distribute the metahuman cure that Caitlin is mass-producing, Barry, Iris, Ralph, Cisco and Nora focus their efforts on trying to catch Cicada. As Sherloque tries to see to the safety of the latest love of his life, Ralph wonders... why did The Reverse Flash have such an interest in stopping Cicada in the past?


The Flash comics of Geoff Johns and Doctor Who (Ralph makes a reference to "timey wimey crap.")


Cisco is awfully indifferent to the question of where the mirror gun sends the material it zaps. That seems like a mighty important thing to determine since their hope was that the gun would disintegrate matter - not teleport it.

Why is everyone so down on Ralph wanting to figure out what Thawne's interest in stopping Cicada is? Especially Barry, who should be more paranoid than anyone about Thawne's angle! Granting that Ralph is a bit of a goofball, he's also the one who figured out a way to track Cicada before anyone else.

Barry chews Nora out for trying to see through Cicada II's eyes, saying that Cicada II could have done the same thing and pinpointed their location. It seems a safe bet that Cicada II already knows where to find them, given that the first time they fought Cicada II was when she came to STAR Labs to save her Uncle Orlin! (What makes this even more nonsensical is that Nora says she made sure there was nothing in her eye-line that said STAR Labs!)

This also begs the question of why Cicada II hadn't just come back to STAR Labs and finished them off, given that they can't fight back against her with the dagger neutralizing their powers.

Joe suddenly feeling incapable of taking command really doesn't ring true for his character.

Barry and Iris continue to be the worst and Nora finally gives them the "I am a grown-ass woman and can make my own decisions." speech that has been coming all season.


Tom Cavanagh's chemistry with Kimberly Williams-Paisley is such that you almost forget that the romance between Sherloque and Renee has taken place almost entirely off-camera and that she only appeared in one episode before now, nearly half a season ago!

Flash Facts

Sherloque claims that the average smartphone owner checks their phone 110 times per day on average. This is a fair average between various studies, which chart the average as being somewhere between 50-150 depending on the average age of the survey takers.


The cryo-atomizer.was originally developed by Tannhauser to combat large fires caused by droughts. It did this by dispersing cold air particles into the atmosphere, triggering focused, heavy rainfall.

With the cold particles replaced with the metahuman cure prototype, Cicada II could infect all of Central City, painfully killing every metahuman in the city.

The second piece of equipment Cicada II steals is a Quantum Tunnel Converter - the first prototype of its kind. The converter can transform dark matter energy to practical energy, allowing her to use her dagger to supercharge the atomizer - possibly boosting it to cover the whole of the USA rather than just Central City.

To connect the Quantum Tunnel Converter and the Cryo-Atomizer, Cicada II will also need a Hyper Conduit.

Sebastian Ollins is said Looks to be renting a warehouse he retrofitted it with fiber-joules technology to test out his experiments.This includes a cutting edge Hyper Conduit.

Hacking the cryo-atomizer requires a quantum computer. Connecting three nodes to the control processor inside will override the system.

Dialogue Triumphs
Barry: Hey, you find anything? 
Cisco: (testily) Confirmation that She-cada hasn't stolen everything she needs.So we have some time. 
Barry: Finally some good news.
Cisco: Except what she did steal was a Quantum Tunnel Converter. The first working prototype of its kind.
(Both Barry and Nora look stunned.)
Ralph: Yeah, that's the same face Cisco made when he heard.

Nora: Guys, listen. I saw Grace and I almost saw where she was. Right now she is putting her pieces together and when that is done, thousands if not hundreds of thousands of people are going to die.
I can't stand around and do nothing.
Barry: Yes, you can because that's what we're telling you to do.
Nora: When I first got here, I would rush in to fix things and by doing that, I always ended up making them worse. But I am not that person anymore because of you. You showed me how to use my powers. You taught me how to make the right choices. And right now, I am choosing to face this risk.
Iris: Nora, this is a terrible idea.
Nora: I know you feel that way. But I don't. I'm an adult capable of making my own decisions. I've made up my mind about this. So I am asking you, please, as my parents, stop trying to keep me away from this danger and start helping me face it.


Eobard Thawne was incarcerated for 15 years before his death sentence was to be carried out.

The method of execution to be used on Thawne will somehow channel Thawne's own power to end his life.

Team Flash determines that Cicada II must need something else for her plan besides the cryo-atomizer - otherwise she already would have released the faulty metahuman cure.

The team elects to distribute the fully-functioning metahuman cure to as many people as possible, in case they can't stop Cicada II. That will save some people since, once cured, the anti-metahuman treatment shouldn't affect them.

It is agreed that the cure should be distributed at CCPD HQ.

Cisco tests the mirror gun on the STAR Labs satellite core, since it has a comparable level of dark matter to the gun and Cicada's dagger. It seems to either vaporize the core or send it somewhere else.

Captain Singh agrees to Joe and Cecile's plan to hand out the metahuman cure at CCPD HQ and places Joe in charge of the department and managing the distribution, while he goes to City Hall to argue in favor of the plan.

Sherloque approaches Renee Adler and tells her he knows that she's a metahuman, having seen her open a door without touching it in 513.

Cicada II arrives at Central City University while Sherloque is there.

As Nora approaches Cicada II, their psychic connection from 517 activates.

Nora's lighting turns red and purple again after her psychic connection activates.

Cicada II steals a Quantum Tunnel Converter from Central City University.

Renee Adler is revealed to be a magnokinetic - i.e. magnetism powers.

Nora says that her lightning turning red was a side-effect of Cicada II's rage channeling through her - not a sign that the Negative Speed Force is taking her over again. She says she can use that connection to find Cicada II, but Barry and Iris think it is too dangerous to risk.

Joe reopens the Cicada tip line and sets up police barricades 3 blocks around CCPD HQ.

Cicada has a psychic impression of panic and warns Joe that they are going to get slammed with panicking metahumans.

Cisco says that neither Staff Labs, Mercury Labs or Ivo Labs have a Hyper Conduit.

Ralph asks what interest Thawne has in stopping Cicada, but Barry dismisses this as unimportant.

Nora says the best place to find a Hyper Conduit in 2049 would be Ollins Laboratory.

According to Nora, Sebastian Ollins was a brilliant scientist in her time, who won a Nobel Prize for Quantum Engineering.

Sebastian Ollins was Cisco's college roommate.

Cisco claims Ollins couldn't stay awake through a single physics lecture and would have failed out of college had it not been for Cisco tutoring him.

Cicada II is able to steal the Hyper-Conduit before The Flash gets there and blows up the Ollins' warehouse.

Ralph points out there's a massive paradox involving Cicada II killing Cicada I and taking his dagger, because it doesn't explain where his dagger was in her future and how it could be used to kill future metahumans if Cicada II has it now. Again, Barry says this isn't as urgent a concern as finding Cicada II in the here and now.

Nora tries to use the Cerebral Inhibitor to block Cicada II's ability to read her mind while still being able to see through her eyes using their psychic connection.

Sherloque takes Renee Adler to CCPD HQ to get her powers removed.

Joe tells Cecile he's uncomfortable taking command in this situation, despite taking charge in the field countless times before.

Renee Adler decides that she wants to keep her powers.

Sherloque opens a portal to his Earth where friends of his can keep Renee safe while he helps Team Flash to stop Cicada II on Earth I.

Renee makes reference to the events of 515 and how the idea of multiple Earths isn't that strange compared to shark men and gorilla fighting.

Barry plans to use the Speedster-Proof Forcefield that Cisco built in Season One to contain Nora while she taps into her connection with Cicada II.

Joe stops a riot from breaking out at CCPD HQ, as the metahumans begin to panic.

Nora tracks Cicada II to the CCPD HQ.

Team Flash realizes that Cicada II is planning to use all the metahumans at CCPD HQ as a battery to super-charge the atomizer.

Barry asks Cisco to send the atomizer to Earth 15 - a dead Earth first mentioned in 410.

With the dagger plugged into the atomizer, Cisco has to disable the device rather than shooting it with the mirror gun or trying to vibe it away.

Cicada II confirms that she never had the power-negating dagger of her uncle before she came back in time to 2019.

Again, Ralph wonders what happened to the power-negating dagger if Cicada II didn't have it in her time.

Ralph realizes that the dagger must be what is being used to negate Thawne's powers while he is imprisoned and that destroying the Cicada dagger now will free him in the future.

The episode ends with Ralph shouting at Barry not to fire the mirror gun at the dagger, as Barry pulls the trigger.


Iron Heights Prison - 2049

Untelevised Adventures

Most of Sherloque and Renee's romance has taken place almost entirely off camera.

The Fridge Factor

Renee Adler's entire purpose in this episode is keeping Sherloque occupied as he has to save her (and nobody else) from Cicada II. This wouldn't be that bad if she had shown up more than once before this season.

The Boomerang Factor

Honestly, the only thing saving Team Flash at this point is the fact that Cicada II didn't see fit to break into their base yet again and kill them all.

The Bottom Line

A badly-written, poorly-reasoned mess that wastes the show's best actors. The end of the season can't come fast enough, just so we can be guaranteed of never seeing Cicada ever again.

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