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As Team Flash argue about how to address the fate of Caitlin and Frost, Pied Piper comes to STAR Labs seeking help fighting a new version of The Fiddler.
Dark Knights: Metal (presence of The Red Death)
Joe's sudden fears about Cecile putting herself at risk because of her increased powers seem illogical, given she's already putting herself at risk as a metahuman defense attorney. Also, he doesn't seem to have similar fears about both his sons who have speed powers or his reporter daughter who has been repeatedly kidnapped and taken out of reality because of various supervillains.
When Pied Piper mentions being attacked by someone called The Fiddler, Iris makes reference to Izzy Bowin and says they were friends the last time they met. Iris apparently forgot that Izzy Bowin was killed by The Thinker shortly after they met, so this Fiddler can't be her. (It's possible that Izzy was one of the lucky metahumans resurrected after Crisis on Infinite Earths.)
Grant Gustin seems to be channeling Stephen Amell in the scene where he lays down the law with Chillblaine.
Danielle Panabaker makes Kihone into an instantly engaging character.
The use of rainfall and storm effects in the background of this episode is fantastic
Pied Piper's nightclub is called the Krakatoa Club. This is a reference to the loudest sound in recorded history, which was the 1883 eruption of a volcano on the Indonesia island of Krakatoa. The eruption was heard almost 3000 miles away and is estimated to have been nearly 310 decibels at ground zero. To put that in perspective, 200 decibels is lethal to humans and sounds measuring 150 decibels can rupture eardrums.
This episode introduces a new version of The Fiddler. Much like the new Captain Boomerang, this Fiddler is a convicted criminal who seems to have been empowered by The Red Death. Her real name is Andrea Wozzeck and she seems to be a metahuman with sonic control powers, which she can focus through a specialized violin. Her fine control is such that she can trap people in a state out of phase with reality or cause a person to develop a arrhythmic heartbeat that will slowly kill them.
The Fiddler traps the employees of Pied Piper's nightclub out of phase with reality. This is similar to a stunt from The Flash comics where The Fiddler, joining forces with The Thinker and The Shade, caused Keystone City to become trapped in a pocket dimension.
Chillblaine says the CRC was supposed to unzip Frost's neural DNA from Caitlin and isolate her brain patterns. Unfortunately, a power fluctuation caused the process to malfunction.
The new Fiddler is armed with a teleporter, similar to the one used by Captain Boomerang.
When the CRC fails in STAR Labs, Chester detects tachyon feedback when the neural conductive readouts start surging.
A sonic cuff in STAR Labs' medical bay is able to stabilize the heart arrhythmia that the Fiddler instilled in Pied Piper.
Chester runs a full diagnostic on the CRC. He determines that neural DNA could never unlock Frost's consciousness. He says the only way Chillblaine's plan would work is to use endogenous neural imprints, creating a literal map of Caitlin's mind.
Hartley boosts the efficiency of his Pied Piper gauntlets by 400% while planning how to fight The Fiddler.
Barry says that Dr. Thomas Snow's notes reveal that he tried to create a Caitlin 2.0 that wound be immune to ALS, but instead he created a daughter with two mixed consciousnesses Reversing the process would kill one of the two consciousnesses. .
Rather than killing Hartley's employees, The Fiddler traps them in a vibrational phase. This is apparently painful and described as a fate worse than death.
(Barry has a seat opposite Chillblaine at a table in his favorite bar.)
Chillblaine: You're wasting your time.
Barry: And you screwed up, Mark. Badly.
Chillblaine: (grunts) Yeah.
Barry: I know why you did it.
Chillblaine: (amused) Okay. No, go ahead. Enlighten me.
Barry: Because you love Frost. With all your heart. And you still do. Sometimes when we love someone like that we do the wrong things for the right reasons.
(There is a long pause as Barry considers his next words.)
Barry: I know I have.
Chillblaine: (skeptical) Please.
(There is another long pause.)
Chillblaine: Are you saying you're not mad at me?
Barry: No, I am. But I understand why you lied. But there's something you need to understand now too: how we operate. You are part of this team now. And that means we have your back. But you need to have ours. Which also means no more going rogue.
(Chillblaine sighs, clearly skeptical.)
Barry: Mark.. if you lest us in... we work together... we can do the impossible. But we have to stick togehter.
Snow: You're not a killer. I can tell.
Hartley: You don't know me!
Snow: Actually, and I can say this quite truthfully, I think I know you better than I know myself.
Hartley: I used to be a meta-criminal. A Rogue, as they say. I used to hurt people all the time. And I enjoyed it.
Snow: What changed you?
Hartley: (frustrated) Oh, Roderick, okay? (pauses) Roderick.
Snow: You changed to keep him safe. That's beautiful. But that's not real change, is it? Deciding to change for the person you love doesn't mean you've decided who you want to be. That's a choice you still have to make for yourself.
This episode picks up where 901 ended, with the rest of Team Flash joining Barry in answering Caitlin's distress call.
The woman who looks like Caitlin with blue streaks in her hair introduces herself as Snow. She says that despite her appearance, she is a blank slate with no memories or powers.
Chillblaine makes reference to Barry destroying Caitlin's lab in 816.
Chillblaine explains that Snow was born of Caitlin's sacrificing herself to try and bring back Frost in 819 and that Caitlin is now dead. Thankfully, he has a plan that will bring her and Frost back to life.
Chillblaine says he can bring Frost and Caitlin back if he's loaned a steady power source.
Team Flash agrees to help, though Barry seems reluctant.
When the rest of Team Flash leave them alone, Snow asks Chillblaine how she did, revealing there is some kind of deception in play. While Snow is unsure about what they are doing, Chillblaine reassures her this is what Caitlin would want.
Allegra and Chester agree to discuss their kiss from 901 later, once Frost and Caitlin are fine.
Joe tells Cecile that he does not want her on the front line as a superhero. This is the main reason he wants to move from Central City.
Hartley Rathaway (aka Pied Piper) and his boyfriend Roderick last appeared in 618.
Hartley and Roderick are revealed to now be running a dance club called the Krakatoa Club. It is located at the corner of Park and Second in downtown Central City.
Hartley is attacked outside his club by a woman armed with a high-tech violin, who calls herself The Fiddler.
Barry pulls Snow out of the CRC when it starts failing.
Snow says that the CRC hurt her.
Snow accidentally lets it slip that Chillblaine 's plan was to bring back Frost and Caitlin rather than just Caitlin.
Chillblaine defends his decision to lie to Team Flash by pointing out that Barry destroyed Caitlin's lab when he learned about her plan to resurrect Frost.
An intruder alert in the med lab informs Team Flash of Hartley breaking into STAR Labs, seeking treatment for the arrhythmia he developed after being attacked by The Fiddler.
Hartley confirms that The Fiddler who attacked him is not Izzy Bowin from 414.
The new Fiddler is confirmed to be working for Red Death. She is throttled for failing to complete her mission in attacking Pied Piper and is told that if she fails a second time she will die.
Barry tracks down Chillblaine at O’Shaughnessy Pub, getting drunk.
Barry says he will help Chillblaine resurrect Caitlin and Frost, but he will need to be completely honest to him and the rest of the team from now on. Chillblaine agrees, albeit reluctantly.
Chester and Chilblaine work on repeiaring the CRC while Barry gets Dr. Thomas Snow's notes about how he created Frost while trying to cure Caitlin's ALS.
Snow meets Hartley while he is upgrading his Pied Piper gauntlets. She confirms that she does not have Caitlin's medical knowledge or Frost's ice powers.
Snow realizes that Hartley is worried about Roderick being hurt by The Fiddler.
Snow believes killing is wrong and that deciding to change for someone doesn't really make you change.
Hartley says Central City is the metahuman violence capital of the world.
Barry determines that there is no way to bring back Frost and Caitlin - only one of them can survive.
Team Flash put it to a vote as to which Snow sister they should bring back.
Chillblaine, unsurprisingly, votes for Frost, saying that Caitlin wanted to give her life to save Frost.
Allegra votes for Frost, presumably because she was closer to her than Caitlin.
Chester votes for Caitlin, saying that after his experiences with Deathstorm in 809 have convinced him that no good can come of trying to bring the dead back and that, given the choice, Caitlin is only mostly dead.
Iris votes for Frost, later telling Barry that she never really got to know Frost when she was alive, having not really given her a chance to reform and be part of Team Flash.
Barry says he needs more time to think, but Chillblaine says he'll only wait eight hours before making another attempt at bringing Frost back.
Barry admits he was mistaken to destroy Caitlin's lab in 816, saying the last thing he said to Caitlin was "I'm sorry" but that he wasn't.
Cecile speaks with Snow about how she is feeling, after discovering that she cannot read her emotions or mind. She is apparently the first person Cecile's powers didn't work on.
Snow loves rain and nature because she feels connected to all living things yet disconnected at the same time. She says that everything in nature has a purpose and she hopes to find a purpose of her own.
Cecile says that something about Snow seems inherently friendly and she is not scared of her, despite being unable to read her mind and emotions.
Snow says that she is cure of only two things. First, whoever she is she likes herself. Second, she doesn't want to go back into the CRC.
Barry and Iris tell Snow that they are going to let her decide if Frost or Caitlin should come back, based on the logic that Dr. Thomas Snow didn't try to force his daughter to decide which personality would be dominant and they can't make that choice either. Only Snow can.
Hartley leaves STAR Labs to confront The Fiddler after she returns to the Krakatoa Club.
The Flash easily takes out The Fiddler and destroys her Fiddler. It is then that she reveals that, like Izzy Bowin, the instrument only focuses her powers. She is still able to attack him and Hartley with a sonic scream.
The Flash stops Hartley from killing The Fiddler and reveals that his employees and boyfriends are trapped out-of-phase with reality.
With Flash's help, Hartley uses his gauntlets to save all the people Fiddler phased. This also cures Hartley's heart problem.
The Fiddler steals Hartley's gauntlets after Captain Boomerang stuns the crowd with a trick boomerang that seems to put them out of phase with the rest of the room. They teleport away together.
The Fiddler is identified as an ex-con named Andrea Wozzeck.
Snow decides that she wants to be her own person and refusing to go back into the CRC.
Hartley uses his powers (and a sonic scream) to destroy the CRC, saying he just helped a new friend when Chillblaine asks if he knows what he did.
Chillblaine swears revenge on Pied Piper and leaves STAR Labs, furious.
Snow decides to take the name Khione - the Greek snow goddess Dr. Thomas Snow references in his notes in 405.
Barry and Iris decide to take a trip to go see Old Faithful in Yellowstone National Park.
The team go out and dance at the Krakatoa Club.
Allegra asks Chester to dance with her.
In the final scene, Captain Boomerang and The Fiddler construct some sort of device that seems to stabilize Red Death.
Red Death says that The Flash disgraced them, but they will have revenge.
O’Shaughnessy Pub on the south side of Keystone City.
Chillblaine's interactions with Khione before she contacted Barry are undescribed.
Barry meets with Dr. Carla Tannhauser to get access to Dr. Thomas Snow's notes.
The Bottom Line
An incredibly disjointed episode. There's a lot of good moments here, but there's surprisingly little unifying the two storylines, apart from Snow/Khione pestering Pied Piper and inspiring his becoming a real hero. The Piper and Chillblaine plots are otherwise unconnected and the brilliant moments are outweighed by the bits where the rest of the ensemble gets in the way of the story. It also doesn't help that the new Fiddler is barely developed as a character or a threat.