A decent ending makes a rough beginning for a new season.
- ⚡️Candice Patton continues to do the most with what she's given.
- ⚡️Grant Gustin doesn't get enough credit for his comedic chops.
- ⚡️Tom Cavanagh. Always.
- ⚡️Big losses are hard, but this one stretches into the reaches of narrative struggles.
- ⚡️The series premiere would have made a hell of an ending, but doesn't do its job as the beginning of a story.
This post contains spoilers for The Flash.
“For the Flash to run again, Nash Wells must die,” is never a sentence I want to hear. Since inception, Tom Cavanagh’s Wells iterations have been one of the strongest aspects of The Flash. The idea of the series without him isn’t a great one to kick of Season 7 with, but it’s also not where this story was supposed to begin. “All’s Well That Ends Wells” was the last episode they managed to get in the can before COVID hit, they just felt what was used as the Season 6 would be a better ending than this week’s premiere. Unfortunately, that doesn’t end up being totally true.
Obviously, no time has passed since last season and this one. This means that Iris (Candice Patton) is still trapped in the mirror-verse, Eva (Efrat Dor) is running amok in Central City, and The Flash (Grant Gustin) is still losing his powers. Eva’s found herself with all the time in the world now that she’s free of her prison and The Flash can’t stop her. Currently, her primary goal is to end Black Hole and remove its influence in the city. Sounds like a good deal outside of the fact that she doesn’t care who dies in the process. Oh, and the tidbit where she continues to imprison Iris.
Candice Patton continues to make the best out of a largely exhausting situation while trapped in the mirrorverse. The series’ treatment of the character has rightfully been called out for years now, so the fact that the second she started to get her own thing going she got trapped and separated from the whole of the story is a little exhausting. All the same, keep shining, lady. Admittedly, this story feels dragged out even longer than it already was thanks to the unexpected gap between the seasons.
As you can guess from the title of the episode, The Flash’s season premiere largely belongs to Wells. Grant Gustin gets to flex some of his comedic chops when the Wells get zapped into him accidentally, but this is Wells’ story. Thanks to the Council of Wells, Nash learns that the artificial speedforce won’t work without a human conduit. Though resistant to the idea of dying, he eventually makes the ultimate sacrifice to ensure that The Flash is able to stop a jet that will kill hundreds of people.
Before his death, Barry asks him “How can I be The Flash without a Wells on this team?” The point of this question is to ultimately illustrate that the power was with Barry all along. However, all it does is drive home the fact that Cavanagh’s performance of the many iterations of Wells has been a defining characteristic of the show. “Father figure” characters often die off, but Wells had long since evolved past that in this series. His sacrifice will bring a tear to viewers eyes, but you can’t help but look at it and feel as if it were all just so… avoidable.
Don’t worry, reps from The CW have confirmed that Cavanagh isn’t leaving The Flash, but we don’t know how or in what form we’ll see him in the future.
And so, Season 7 kicks off with The Flash getting his groove back! This should prove troubling for Eva (who now realizes that she died when she was thrown into the mirror and may be the mirror double after all), and Barry has a real chance to get Iris back now. However, this still feels like such a strange beginning. The series gets some leeway, given the extenuating circumstance of it all, but it’s hard to get jazzed for the rest of the season when we kick off with such a downer.
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