‘The Flash’ Season 1 Finale Review: A Brilliant Conclusion

21 May 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

‘The Flash’ EP on “Heartbreaking” Finale Death, Season 2 Speedsters and Villains.

Tuesday night’s Season 1 finale of The Flash was surprisingly powerful, an emotionally poignant, no-nonsense episode that ended on a great cliff-hanger. I don’t think it’s a controversial statement to say that the two best live-action, non-humorous superhero TV shows ever appeared in the past year: “Daredevil” and “The Flash.” Though the starring heroes don’t have much in common other than a fondness for red, these series maintained a level of quality previously found only in the best superhero movies, like “The Dark Knight” and “Captain America: The Winter Soldier.” “The Flash” didn’t have much if any bad acting, and some performances were terrific—especially Tom Cavanagh as diabolical but not cartoony Harrison Wells/Eobard Thawne/Reverse Flash and Jesse L.“Fast Enough,” was filled with tears, weddings and time-travel jargon (and maybe some peeks at some super-powered futures for our favorite characters?), but those last 10 minutes blew everything else out of the water.One of the newest members of Team Flash finally became a hero in his own right during The Flash’s freshman finale—but he did so by sacrificing his own life.

Barry Allen’s whole life has been shaped by witnessing his mother’s murder as a child, and his father’s subsequent prison sentence after he was wrongly accused of the crime. The plan worked, and Eobard vanished from existence after Eddie shot himself, leaving Barry (Grant Gustin), Eddie’s former girlfriend Iris (Candice Patton) and the rest of the team to mourn. Also, Grant Gustin as Barry Allen pulled off the difficult trick of being a goody-goody hero you don’t want to punch, in the tradition of Christopher Reeve. “Daredevil” did have some bad acting—mostly by Elden Henson, who made for an insufferable Foggy Nelson. That said, “Daredevil” had two of the recent best performances in any TV genre by Charlie Cox and Vincent D’Onofrio (as Matt Murdock and Wilson Fisk).

Barry was wrestling with giving up his whole life with Joe and Iris, and meeting Caitlin and Cisco, by going back in time and saving his mom from getting murdered. Seeing that the man in yellow was getting the upper hand, Eddie (Rick Cosnett) decided to shoot himself, knowing it would effectively erase his descendant from the timeline.

Earlier, Barry made the decision not to prevent his mother Nora’s (Michelle Harrison) death, because doing so would prevent him from becoming The Flash and would mean that all the good he’s done as the hero would be undone. With Ronnie (Robbie Amell) by her side, Caitlin (Danielle Panabaker) is all for the idea – “The chance to be with someone you love seems pretty cut-and-dried to me.” However, though nobody involved would even remember the difference, Cisco (Carlos Valdes) is upset by the idea that he and Barry may never meet in the parallel universe that would be created by this decision. Eddie’s sacrifice, his moment of true heroism, was an emotionally stirring moment—even though it was straight out of Looper. (And I don’t mind that it wasn’t entirely original, it was still deeply effective.) The conversations surrounding coincidence and destiny really set the tone for the episode, too, both for Eddie and Barry. Daredevil is a boxer, lawyer, ninja, blind man, vigilante, and Catholic who feels every stab at his body and soul: Cox captured all of the above and more. It seems an easy choice for Barry to go back and save his mother and keep his father from prison, but he knows it means he’d never end up living with Joe (Jesse L.

But D’Onofrio stole the series, creating a Kingpin (Fisk’s nickname in the comics) who’s a vulnerable, sophisticated man-monster with a desperate, doomed desire to be a better person. In a chat with The Hollywood Reporter, executive producer Andrew Kreisberg reveals that Cavanagh will remain on the show as a series regular, weighs in on Eddie possibly returning, and teases “a bunch more villains” as well as additional speedsters for season two. We’ve got the scoop from Flash boss Andrew Kreisberg: ANDREW KREISBERG: As always with these things, they’re literally the worst decisions you can make for yourself personally. These rivalries featured well-developed foils who mirrored each other in ways that were compelling overall, though at times a little on the nose. “Daredevil” pounded the similarities between Fisk and Murdock (violent tendencies, dead fathers, messiah complexes) into our heads frequently and clumsily.

Wells/Eobard Thawne (Tom Cavanagh) previously revealed that Barry and Iris end up marrying – but Gustin told PEOPLE at the CW upfronts on Thursday that Barry is not really factoring Iris into his life-changing decision. “As Barry has said – and which I truly think he believes – is that he wants her to be happy and he wants Joe to be happy. If, ultimately, they wouldn’t know the difference if Barry changed the past, he’s not really worried about his relationship with Iris at this point.” Added Gustin, “It’s more about his family and making sure everyone’s going to be okay. Advantage: “The Flash” Superhero costumes usually look silly in live action: it takes a sharp design to pull off something that’s faithful to the comics but not utterly absurd. For the bulk of “Daredevil,” the costume issue was dodged as a young Matt Murdock fought mob guys and ninjas in a homemade black getup that was, even after sober reflection, badass. When we named Eddie’s character and gave him the last name of Thawne, there was a whole subset of the audience that believed he was the Reverse Flash, which was intentional.

Any CW show skews at least a little toward a teen audience, while being on Netflix allowed “Daredevil” to include borderline R-rated language and violence. “Daredevil” did some great things with the freedom—like the virtuosic episode two corridor fight—but it sometimes felt dark for the sake of being dark, as if grimness equaled quality. Years of mega-bleak “Daredevil” comics are why Mark Waid and Chris Samnee’s current run—which has embraced swashbuckling fun—has been so refreshing. “The Flash” had a smart, seemingly effortless balance between family drama, Buffy-style monster-investigating, metahuman slugfests, and sci-fi adventure. While Rick won’t be a regular, Flash is the kind of show between hardcore sci-fi and time travel that I wouldn’t be surprised if this isn’t the last we’ve seen of Eddie Thawne.

Not only was it the end of the season, and everyone from the crew to the cast has just been killing themselves to make this show as good as it could be, it was also incredibly emotional. This crimelord-artist pairing was believable, heartfelt, and unusual for the superhero genre, while the Barry-Iris-Eddie foofaraw was a bit of an eye-roller.

But the episode just stops there, leaving us wondering whether Barry succeeds in closing the wormhole, or whether we’ll be in a completely alternate universe come season 2. Advantage: “Daredevil” Matt Murdock’s father didn’t want to disappoint little Matt by taking a dive in a fight, so Battlin’ Jack Murdock won and was killed, orphaning Matt and giving him a lifetime of guilt.

And what does this mean for all the hints we got of Caitlin and Cisco’s possible futures as Killer Frost and Vibe, or that glimpse of Jay Garrick‘s helmet? The great thing with our show — you saw it with Colin Donnell and with Caity Lotz [whose deceased Sara is returning for spinoff Legends of Tomorrow] — is just because you are dead doesn’t mean you’re not coming back. It doesn’t completely obliterate all of their memories of Eddie and everything, but it has the desired effect of “harm to Eddie means harm to Tom Cavanagh’s character.” Eddie has been struggling these last few weeks, hearing about the future and about how there is no place for him in the future. One of the great things about Flash—that was always designed to be that way, but has turned out far more emotional and better than we ever could’ve hoped for—was just how much people care for these characters and how much the characters care about each other. Both had enough Easter eggs to give the Easter Bunny back problems, but “The Flash” wins for improbably bringing Gorilla Grodd to TV, alluding to the original event comic “Crisis on Infinite Earths,” and even throwing in the winged helmet of original Flash Jay Garrick.

To lose somebody like Eddie—who has never been anything but a good guy and is the one who sacrifices himself not just for our characters, but for the world—that’s going to have an impact and it’s not something that’s going to go away right away. Like with a tragedy in any of our lives, every day you get further away from it, it gets a little bit easier, but it’s really about integrating it into your life moving forward. For us, what made it even more heartbreaking is that Eddie didn’t kill himself because he didn’t have anything to live for, he killed himself because he had everything to live for. Once people come back in season two, they’ll look back at some of these episodes in season one and go, “Oh wait a minute, I see where this came from.” Yeah. We’re really excited. [Executive producer] Greg [Berlanti] and myself and [executive producer] Geoff Johns and the writers, the cast, the crew, the directors — we are so proud of this season of television.

I can’t imagine trying to top what they’ve already achieved, but if they stay as focused and as restrained as they did this time around, we’re in for another treat when Season 2 airs. I’m a little curious (perversely curious?) how relations between Ronnie and Caitlin will affect him, though I suppose that’s better left off the show. (I suppose they haven’t waited until marriage either, for that matter.) Ultimately, this was a terrific episode in a terrific season that managed to unshackle itself from unnecessary character drama just in time. Yeah, now that people have seen the finale, there were some things we’re letting happen faster than people are expecting and there are other things we’re slow playing. You have a love triangle, which we’ve seen a million times in movies and television, but to get a glimpse of the future where you actually hear who the two are that are going to end up together, that puts an interesting wrinkle in that relationship. I read somewhere online, it said, “CW confirms Hawkgirl not in Flash season finale.” I said, “That’s so weird that the CW put out this thing about it.

I asked our line producer, “Look, I know this is last minute, but is there anyway we could stage her as part of the crowd?” We picked up that shot.

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