For a summary of the episode guide layout & categories, click here.
Traveling to the future seeking to stop himself from destroying the Earth, Barry becomes trapped in a Reverse-Flashpoint, living on borrowed time in a timeline where Eobard Thawne is The Flash and about to marry Iris West! Faced with a new Team Flash that sees him as an enemy, Barry will have to make an unthinkable alliance to get back to the past.
Flashpoint by Geoff Johns (evoked by Eobard Thawne, who cites it as his inspiration in making himself The Flash), The Flash comics of Mark Waid (creator of modern Reverse-Flash origin) and The Flash #165 (Reverse-Flash tries to marry Iris)
Eobard's speech at the rehearsal dinner at the beginning of the episode isn't precisely like his speech at the end of the previous episode.
Ryan Wilder and Alex Danvers change into their superhero suits instantly between the scenes on either end of the title card sequence.
Caitlin Snow was not in attendance at Iris and Thawne's rehearsal dinner. (Maybe she volunteered to monitor the city case of an emergency?)
It is unclear why Damien Darhk is alive in the new timeline. (Presumably Thawne may have arranged his resurrection so that he could go on to kill the Legends, preventing them from being able to interfere in his establishment of the Reverse-Flashpoint.)
It is also unclear why Ryan Choi is single in the new timeline, when he was happily married and had a young daughter during his last appearance in Crisis on Infinite Earths. While this could be an unintended side-effect of the Reverse-Flashpoint (like Barry accidentally awakening the Frost persona in Caitlin Snow during Flashpoint) it is somewhat strange that Batwoman and Sentinel don't seem to have had their timelines changed at all.
Neal McDonough has a fantastic turn here as Damien Darhk, managing to be gleefully evil and yet somewhat sympathetic in how he chooses to nobly sacrifice himself to save his daughter.
It also should be noted that the chemistry between Javicia Leslie and Candice Patton is fantastic and you can truly believe they're best friends, despite this being their first episode paired opposite one another.
Again, top-notch effects work for the fight scenes.
The title teaser of this episode is changed to show scenes of Eobard Thawne in place of Barry Allen.
The idea of the Reverse-Flash taking Barry Allen's place and marrying Iris West comes from The Flash #165 (November, 1966).
Ryan Choi's Atom costume is modeled on the classic Atom costume worn by Ray Palmer in the comics.
Sentinel is able to reconfigure her weapon into a paralysis ray capable of temporarily holding a speedster.
The Particle Eradication Distributor (PED) is a device that can erase any type of matter. It was created by Ray Palmer. Combined with the power of a Time Stone, the PED can erase any unsolidified anachronisms on the temporal plane.
Chester determines that the Reverse-Flash is running on limited speak, making him harder to track as he's generating fewer negative-tachyons than normal. He is able to compensate for this by synching Ryan Choi's Atom bracelet's microsensors to the satellite, allowing it to better isolate minute signals.
Batwoman has a Velocity-Zero gun that can temporarily disrupt whatever connection a speedster has to any type of Force.
Leaving a person in bed alone after a night of passion is known as the French Exit.
Barry determines that he'd need to reach a speed of Mach 20 to open a time portal. This requires a runway 40,000 miles long. While he could run around the Earth that quickly, the pressure he exerted on the mantle while doing so would cause cataclysmic changers to the Earth's core. He would only have two minutes to open the portal before the damage he did reached the point that it could permanently damage the world.
Barry estimated his odds of success as 2%.
The speed wake of Barry's build-up generates 100 earthquakes around the globe and a tsunami in Japan.
Ryan Choi's new Atom suit allows him to increase the molecular density of Damien Darhk's sword by a thousand fold, making it weigh two tons.
Thawne: You got a lot of nerve showing up here, Allen.
Barry: It's been you this whole time. Despero, Armageddon, Joe.
Iris: Don't you dare say my father's name, you murderer!
Barry: Guys, it's me, Barry. Iris is my wife.
Barry: I'll show you it's me.
(Barry raises his hand and releases the costume from his ring. He changed reflexively, not noticing that his costume is now yellow - the costume of the Reverse-Flash!)
Barry: Thawne, what did you do?
(Thawne just looks at Barry and shakes his head.)
Thawne: You're not the Flash, Allen.
(Thawne runs out of the room and back. He is clad in a familiar red costume.)
Thawne: I am.
Thawne: Iris West is my lightning rod now, Reverse-Flash.
Barry: What the hell did you do?
Thawne: Nothing you haven't done before.
Barry: You created a Flashpoint.
Thawne: Wrong. I created a Reverse Flashpoint. I started by doing a little housekeeping at S.T.A.R. Labs, and then I took care of the one father you had left.
Thawne: Because after our last encounter, it was clear to me you were faster than I was, and that the only way to defeat you... Was to become you. So I ran back to the year 2013 and made sure that I was the one struck by lightning. I was the one that Iris West wrote about as the Streak. I led Team Flash. I was the one Iris West fell in love with. I stole your life! And because every hero needs a villain... I created that, too.
Barry: You wore my face. It was you that attacked the city that day. That's why they don't trust me.
Thawne: Made you think you were crazy, crazy enough to beg, literally beg Jefferson Pierce to steal your speed. What's it at now, 5%? Maybe less?
Thawne, what you've done destroys the world. It creates Armageddon.
Barry: No, it's true, damn it!
Thawne: I would not create a perfect world just to watch it die. As a matter of fact, the only thing that is set to expire is you. And do you know why? Because I finally did what I set out to do all those years ago. I killed you as a child.
(Barry tries to punch Thawne but his hand just passes through him. Like he was a ghost.)
Thawne: You can do that all night long. But the fact remains, at the stroke of midnight, my timeline will solidify... And you will cease to exist. And your precious Speed Force cannot help you now, because in this timeline, she chose me. An Iris chose me. I've won. I finally won. Who's faster now?!
(Damien Darhk is strangling Barry with his magic.)
Darhk: Don't make me ask you again. Who are you?
Barry: Thawne's the real Reverse-Flash. (gagging) Erase me from the timeline at midnight.
(Suddenly, Darhk drops Barry on the ground. He stares into space, stunned as he considers this.)
Darhk: Man, he is good! I mean, that's like a... work of evil art. The question is now, what do I do with you?
Barry: (still gasping) You could still help me.
Darhk: "Help me?" No, I'm the bad guy. I don't help heroes.
Barry: But you're also a father, which means you know what it feels like to love someone with all your heart and soul, like your daughter Nora.
Darhk: My Nora's dead. I am done listening to you.
(Darhk gets ready to do his choking spell again but Barry starts speaking faster.)
Barry: She's supposed to be alive! And she is in the timeline I'm trying to restore. In my timeline, a demon was gonna take over her soul, but you switched places with her. You gave your own life so she could live.
(Darhk considers this and pulls his Time Stone from his pocket.)
(Barry nods and touches the Time Stone. Darhk sees the moment of his death in the original timeline.)
Nora: Dad, why?
Darkh: Because I love you. And I couldn't watch you become a monster. Like me.
Darhk: It's true. My Nora doll's supposed to be alive. I sacrificed myself to save her.
(Barry is having a crisis of faith about being fast enough to get the time portal to open.)
Darhk: Why do you think I'm helping you? You think I want to die? I don't. But if sacrificing my life means that Nora gets to live the life that Thawne stole from her, then yeah, I'm gonna do it because my love for her is what keeps me going every damn day in my life. I mean, who do you think I built this whole empire for? Iris, your family, your friends, they are what keep you going.
Barry: Iris doesn't remember what we had.
Darhk: Well, that doesn't matter. You do.
(Chester and Allegra kiss as the world is falling apart. Caitlin Snow watches this tunned.)
Caitlin: When did this happen?!
Ryan Wilder is Iris West's best friend and the Maid of Honor at her wedding.
Iris West was Ryan's Maid of Honor at her wedding to Sophie Moore.
Ryan wants to have a baby, but is worried about balancing pregnancy with being Batwoman.
Allegra is said to be living in London now, but is considering a job offer in Gotham City.
Reference is made to Barry Allen being responsible for killing Sara Lance, Nate Heywood, Ray Palmer and Cisco Ramon.
Barry tries to talk sense into Iris, calling her his lightning rod.
Thawne confesses to altering the timeline so Joe West died, sabotaging the safety equipment at STAR Labs so that it wouldn't detect a radiation leak and attacking Barry's friends and the people of Central City in 802.
Cecile Horton uses both the Thinker's Chair and the Medusa Mask of the Psycho Pirate to boost her powers to try and find Barry.
Iris notes that Barry called her his lightning rod - a pet name that only Thawne had used for her previously in private.
Alex notes the awkwardness between Allegra and Chester and asks what is going on.
Allegra tells Alex that she and Chester hooked up for one night after a "lusty" D&D session, but that when she woke up the net morning he was gone. By the time they talked about it, they decided it was better they stay friends.
Chester is working on a new costume for Ryan Choi.
Barry finds the PED in the secret compartment in the pinball machine in Chester's lab.
Barry runs Damien Darhk out of STAR Labs rather than let him kill Ryan and Chester. This tips Darhk off that something is off with the man he knows as the Reverse-Flash.
Damien Darhk uses his Time Stone to see how the past was in Barry's timeline and sees his heroic sacrifice in L318.
Ryan is forced to return to Gotham City, after a call from Batwing confirms that Two-Face is on the loose again.
Ryan gives Iris a Velocity-Zero gun and promises to be back for the wedding tomorrow. She says that Batwing built it after an encounter with a certain "Lady in Red."
Iris is having trouble writing her wedding vows.
Iris has won two Pulitzer's in this reality.
Ryan says that she has decided she wants to adopt a kid rather than having her own.
Chester is once again confirmed not to drink alcohol.
Alex confronts Chester on his one-night-stand with Allegra.
Chester says that he went to go get coffee and blueberry muffins, wanting to have breakfast in bed ready for Allegra when she woke, but that Allegra was gone when he got home.
Chester never told Allegra the truth because they got attacked by the Legion of Doom immediately afterward and by the time he approached her, she didn't want to talk about it and kept telling him that night was a mistake.
Ryan Choi is a cynic about love and says he's spent years trying to help Chester get over Allegra.
Damien uses the Time Stone and sees Barry's past as the Paragon of Love, during Crisis.
Alex confronts Allegra on why she cut Chester off.
Allegra tells Alex that every relationship in her life ended with her getting kicked to the curb and waking up alone brought back all her bad memories of being abandoned.
Alex tells Allegra it is worth the risk of rejection to try and make things work with Chester.
Ryan Choi admits that for all his acting like he doesn't believe in love, he's scared of winding up alone. He too encourages Allegra to go for it with Chester.
Barry goes to Iris and tries to plead his case to her again.
Thawne shows up and tells Iris to just shoot Barry.
Iris shoots Thawne with the Velocity-Zero gun, but tells Barry to run before she changes her mind.
Barry meets with Darhk, who agrees to stay at his point of origin and keep in touch with him through magic.
Frost and Chillblaine confront Darhk. They are immune to his magic thanks to a shielding spell provided by John Constantine.
Ryan Choi, in his new Atom suit, ends the fight with Darhk, with his new costume.
Barry gets a sudden boost in speed when Iris realizes she does love Barry Allen.
Despero senses that Barry is telling him the truth when he tells him that the Revese-Flash framed him and the disaster he caused in the future and that the future is now safe, but he still decides to travel back to his own time to confirm it for certain.
Barry talks to Joe on the phone and confirms that he is alive again in 2021.
Thawne, once again the Reverse Flash, manifests in the Time Vault at STAR Labs and tells Gideon that he will change what is about to happen.
In the Reverse-Flashpoint reality, there are a number of changes beyond Eobard Thawne being The Flash - some of which are at odds with the current Arrowverse timeline.
The Barry Allen Reverse-Flash and Damien Darhk teamed up to fight multiple heroes, in a battle that killed all of the Legends of Tomorrow, including Sara Lance and Nate Heywood. They also killed Ray Palmer and Cisco Ramon.
Cisco Ramon was the director of ARGUS in this reality, rather than head of the R&D department.
In this reality, Ryan Choi became the Atom, but apparently never got married and had a daughter, as he makes reference to pretending to be a Don Juan but secretly being afraid of waking up alone every morning for the rest of his life.
Allegra Garcia was said to be working at a new job in London.
Allegra and Chester are revealed to have had a one night stand which ended awkwardly, as Chester left Allegra alone to get them breakfast and Allegra woke up thinking Chester had abandoned her.
Chillblaine is revealed to have reformed and is in relationship with Frost.
Ryan Wilder and Sophie Moore are married and planning to adopt a baby.
Ryan Wilder and Iris West are best friends in this reality and Iris was the Maid of Honor at Ryan's wedding.
Alex Danvers is also married in the new reality, but it is not confirmed it is to Guardian/Kelly Olsen.
Nora Darhk is dead in the new timeline, for unspecified reasons. There is a chance she was not romantically involved with Ray Palmer in this timeline.
John Constantine apparently left the Legends, as in the main reality, but still felt the need to help bring their killer to justice, providing Frost and Chillblaine with a shielding spell to protect them from Damien Darhk's magic.
Two-Face is said to be active in Gotham City again.
In the past before Barry resets the timeline to how it was before he left, Despero kills all of Team Flash accept Cecile.
A surprisingly good penultimate chapter. A lot of the subplots are given more time than they deserve and some of the character interactions are odd. For instance, it would make a lot more sense for Ryan Wilder to be approaching Alex Danvers about her worries about having children given Alex knows that struggle. Of course it's possible Alex never adopted Esme in this reality, which would make for a random change as strange as Ryan Choi no longer having a wife and daughter. Still, the performances are solid and more than make up for the incongruities in the script.