Saturday, October 26, 2019

The Flash Episode Guide: Season 6, Episode 2 - A Flash of the Lightning

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


Faced with the news of his apparent death having been pushed forward almost five years, Barry turns to Earth 3 and Jay Garrick for advice. Meanwhile, Killer Frost takes the first steps toward building a life of her own and Cecile's career as District Attorney comes into conflict with her identity, as she crosses paths with a metahuman criminal she believes is innocent in spite of all the evidence.


Crisis on Infinite Earths (the episode title and the imagery of Barry's death) and the 2008 Titans series (character of Allegra Garcia)


Ralph's screams as he is hit by Allegra Garcia's heat waves sound silly.

It is said that ultraviolet light travels 80 times faster than Barry Allen's top speed. Yet Barry traveled faster than light in the last episode, running into and out of the black hole generated by Chester P. Runk.


Grant Gustin's tearful performance as he describes what he saw in the future is a high-water mark for his career.


Barry's visions are truly horrific and bring the imagery of the universe dying from Crisis on Infinite Earths to life.

Flash Facts

The episode title is taken from Crisis on Infinite Earths #8 - the comic in which Barry Allen apparently died. This, in turn, is taken from a poem by William Knox; Oh, Why Should the Spirit of Mortal Be Proud?

Oh, why should the spirit of mortal be proud? 
Like a swift-fleeting meteor, a fast-flying cloud, 
A flash of the lightning, a break of the wave, 
He passes from life to his rest in the grave.

The character of Allegra Garcia first appeared in Titans #28 in December 2010. Born in the Amazon jungle and raised in the slums of Rio, she was the biological daughter of the supervillain Wavelength and inherited his ability to manipulate electromagnetic energy.

The Arrowverse version of Allegra Garcia is an American metahuman, who was running a car-jacking operation in Keystone by the time she was 20. A petty criminal since she was 13, she developed metahuman powers while in custody and gained the ability to manipulate radio waves.

Jay Garrick has a map of the Multiverse which makes mention of Thaddeus Brown living on Earth 51. In the comics, Thaddeus Brown was a master escape artist and the first person to use the name Mister Miracle. He mentored both Scott Free and Shilo Norman, who would go on to take up his name and costume as crime-fighters.

Jay Garrick's map identifies Earth-13 as the home of Wells The Grey - a wizard version of Harrison Wells. In DC Comics' cosmology, Earth-13 is a world of magic where Etrigan (as Superdemon) is the leader of a team of magical heroes known as the League of Shadows.

Jay Garrick's map makes reference to Earth-18 having great tequila. In the cosmology of DC Comics, Earth-18 is the home of the Justice Riders - a Wild West version of the Justice League.

Jay Garrick's wife is a neurologist named Joan Williams. In the original Flash comics, Joan Williams was Jay Garrick's love interest and eventual wife.


Cisco uses a nanite camoflauge cocktail designed by Ray Palmer to disguise Killer Frost's eyes and voice so she can pass for a normal human woman with white hair.

The key fobs for modern cars run on radio waves, making it possible for a metahuman who can manipulate radio waves to break into a car by radiating the right frequency.

Barry builds a mobile Gideon from parts salvaged from the plinth in the Time Vault.

Without speed-healing, just a brief touch of antimatter could erase a person from existence.

Jay Garrick has been charting antimatter signatures across the multiverse. He has an algorithm which has determined that the entire multiverse is in danger.

The Neural Hyper-Collider harnesses neural electricity and transfers it across super-luminal particles, allowing the human consciousness of a speedster in his physical prime to travel across space-time past any physical barrier, including antimatter.

Ralph determines that Allegra Garcia is innocent based on the burn pattern of the victim's body. Ralph says it looks like the victim was burned before the car crashed and exploded. Since Allegra can only control radio waves and not microwave radiation, this proves someone else had to have attacked her.

Jay Garrick's helmet is used to channel the tachyons into Barry's frontal cortex and ignite his synaptic pathways.

Jay detects temporal energy as Barry's mind moves past the antimatter barrier to the future.

Dr. Williams claims that a person who has experienced collapsed neural pathways can stimulate those nerves by hearing poetry.

When Barry's neural synapses were overloaded, it created a state of neutral entropy - a near shutdown of the nervous system. Barry compares the sensation to feeling like every nerve in his body is on fire.

According to Dr. Williams, a speedster's synapses fire at ten times the rate of a normal human, meaning a speedster experiences neural entropy with ten times the pain. It typically takes a day or two to recover, even with a speedster's accelerated healing factor.

Cisco determines that the blast that injured Ralph was pure ultraviolet radiation. Had it not been for Ralph's relative invulnerability, he would have been burned to death instantly. As it stands, Ralph got what he describes as "the sunburn from Hell" and has visible burns and blisters on his face..

UV rays have shorter wavelengths than radio waves but are still part of the electromagnetic spectrum.

Most UV rays generated by the sun are absorbed by the ozone layer of Earth's atmosphere.

Ultraviolet light travels at 186,000 miles per second, which is 80 times Barry Allen's top-speed.

Ramsey notes that Mitch Romero's body showed no signs of hemorrhaging, but his blood coagulated with an unidentifiable biological substance.

Dialogue Triumphs

Barry: (opening narration) I stared at that newspaper for so many years. "Flash Missing, Vanishes in Crisis." First it felt like a guide. You know, like proof that things were headed in the right direction? Then it became a sword hanging over my head. A part of me always felt like if I vanish in whatever crisis is coming... Maybe I was still out there somewhere, looking for a way to come back to you.

Joan Williams: I've discovered that poetry can stimulate collapsed neural pathways.
Barry: Lady Gaga usually works for me.

(Joe is questioning Allegra in an interrogation room.)
Joe: Okay, help me understand why you pleaded guilty this morning and now you're suddenly innocent.
Allegra: A girl can change her mind.
Joe: What were you doing at the witness' apartment?
Allegra: Just needed to hash it out with him, prove it was wasn't me he saw.
Joe: That's something a detective would do.
Allegra: I'm trying to be a reporter, okay? Figured this was as good a time as any to get some experience. Get a story and my freedom. But what's the use? You'll always see me as a criminal anyway.
Joe: You know what I see? I see that scared little kid that I used to pick up for robbing liquor stores when she was 13. That same girl that I would check on in juvie who would always tell me to leave. This morning, I get a ping that you'd escaped from your meta-cuffs, and we find you in the location of the dead State's witness. If you're a reporter, how does this story play out?

Joe: Our badges, your emblem, they're symbols of the strength that we're charged with to get back out there. And we don't make the choice to die. We would never choose to do that. But when we hear the call of duty... we're willing to make that sacrifice. And that's not giving up, Barr. That's what you call resilience. And I know you to have plenty of that.


Ramsey Rosso meets with a weapon's dealer named Mitch Romero.

The weapon's dealer he met with in 601 was called Gat.

Ramsey originally paid $500 for the anti-matter gun. Mitch wants $5000 for the new one.

Ramsey's arm turns into a black liquid mass, seemingly draining the life from Mitch Romero when he is attacked.

Ralph and Cisco take Killer Frost to a gallery opening at the space curator by Cisco's girlfriend, Kamilla, at her request.

Kamilla is aware of Caitlin's secret identity.

Allegra Garcia is a career criminal with the power to manipulate radio waves.

Allegra Garcia was arrested at the scene after a man named Salvador Traversoni lost control of his car and crashed. The evidence suggested that Garcia had tried to use her powers to take over the car.

Cecile senses that Garcia is lying when she tries to plead guilty to all the charges against her.

Cecile takes the unusual step of requesting bail for Garcia rather than accepting the guilty plea and a 15 year sentence.

Barry decides to time-travel to December 11, 2019 - one day after he is supposed to disappear. He is stopped by a barrier of antimatter in the Speed Force, which wounds him.

Earth-3 has blimps as an apparent public transport.

Jay Garrick was last seen in 415.

Jay Garrick has officially retired as The Flash of Earth-3 and now walks with a cane.

Jay Garrick has a map of the multiverse with extensive notes regarding several Earths. He has Earth-1 labeled as the home of Barry Allen, Earth-3 as his own home world, and Earth-38 as the home of Supergirl and Superman.

The map also lists two undesignated Earths and includes numbers higher than 52 - the supposed cap number of universes known to Harry wells at the time of Crisis on Earth-X.

Earth-13 is apparently the home of Wells the Grey - the wizard version of Harrison Wells seen in 406.

Earth-15 was apparently destroyed in the year 1986. This was the dead Earth to which Cisco sent Fallout's radiation in 410.

Earth-18 apparently has great tequila.

Earth-19 is home of the Breacher Agency, which employed Cynthia and Josh.

Earth-30 apparently only has vegan cuisine or only allows Vegans to live there.

Earth-51 is the home of Thaddeus Brown, who was mentioned in 520.

Earth-221 is the home of Sherloque Wells. This is likely a reference to the address of Sherlock Holmes - 221B Baker Street.

Earth-X is home of the Freedom Fighters and was encoutered during the Crisis on Earth-X storyline.

Jay Garrick suggests that he can send Barry's mind past the antimatter barrier to see the future.

Since the last time Barry saw Jay, he has gotten married to a woman named Dr. Joan Williams. She is the spitting image of Barry's mother, Nora Allen.

Jay says that he and Joan hit it off after he consulted her because he needed a neurologist's help to chart how his powers were affecting his body as he aged.

Joan asks Barry if she reminds him of anyone from his Earth. He says she does, but does not say she looks like his mother, saying only she looks like "someone special."

Ralph determines that Allegra Garcia is innocent, based on the injuries of Salvador Traversoni being inconsistent with those of someone trapped in a car that exploded.

Ralph and Iris go to question the witness who identified Allegra Garcia as the killer. They find Allegra Garcia standing over his dead body. Startled, she sends a blast at Ralph, which burns his face.

Joe West is able to stop Garcia from escaping, thanks to a metahuman restraint shooting gun.

Barry sees billions of potential future timelines while under the influence of Jay's machine. He also sees the deaths of himself, Iris, Killer Frost, Ralph Dibny and Cisco Ramon as the antimatter waves destroy Central City.

Curiously, Cisco is back in his Vibe costume in Barry's vision.

Barry makes reference to the pilot episode and how he usually hears Lady Gaga when he wakes up from being knocked into a coma.

Allegra Garcia dreamed of being a reporter as a girl.

Joe West picked Garcia up for robbing a liquor store when she was 13.

Jay and Joan transport Barry back to Earth-1.

Iris tells Joan that she looks like Barry's mother.

Barry tells Joe about the newspaper from the future and his visions and how he feels he's going to have to sacrifice himself and there's no way to avoid it.

Team Flash have alerts set to their phones to warn them if the MAC is having problems processing Chester P. Runk's bio-energy.

Killer Frost has taken up drawing as a hobby.

Allegra Garcia says she can see the radiation around her - not just control it. She specifically mentions gamma waves and microwaves but says she can't stop herself from seeing them.

Cecile tells Allegra about her telepathic and emphatic powers.

Allegra Garcia says she has a cousin, Esperanza, who was with her the night of the particle accelerator explosion. Esperanza had the same tattoo as Allegra - a gang symbol. Allegra claims she was forced to join the gang when she was younger and that the fight she got in the night of the particle accelerator explosion was due to her trying to get out of the gang.

Ralph retrieves Esperanza Garcia's records and discoverers that she was in a vegetative state before being taken into the custody of a redacted government organization the night of the particle accelerator explosion.

Esperanza Garcia now calls herself Ultraviolet. It seems to be her preferred wavelength, though she seemingly has the ability to control all wavelengths of the electromagnetic spectrum, generating an EMP that knocks out the power at the CCPD headquarters.

Esperanza Garcia was hired to kill Salvador Traversoni. She then tried to kill the witness who identified Allegra and Allegra herself to hide that she was still alive.

Ultraviolet's existence hints at a secret organization that is exploiting young metahumans and training them to be assassins. Ralph says he plans to look into it.

Killer Frost buys some artwork to decorate the medical lab. She says she used Caitlin's credit cards to do it. This leads Ralph to declare that her next life lesson will involve personal finance.

Cisco puts Killer Frost's first self-portrait up among the other artwork.

Ralph's mom used to date a trapeze artist - No Net Nick.

Cecile decides to resign as District Attorney and become a defense attorney specializing in metahuman defense.

Cecile acts a reference for Allegra and gets her an internship with Iris' newspaper.

Jay says he'll keep monitoring the anti-Matter outbreaks from his lab on Earth-3.

Ramsey Rosso examines the body of Mitch Romero, which comes to life as he is performing a biopsy and knocks him out.



The Bottom Line

A decent episode, though I wonder how much the audience cares about Cecile's crisis of faith regarding her career and the addition of Allegra to an already overburdened cast of supporting characters. It's depressing how little screen-time Cisco, Ralph and Frost have here but at least Ralph is allowed to do some real detective work instead of being the comic relief.

On the other hand, Grant Gustin is acting his heart out of Barry's coping with his unavoidable death and Jesse Martin gets some great material as Joe. So while I question how well some of the new story additions will stick, at least there is little that is outright annoying.

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