Thursday, December 5, 2019

The Flash - The Last Temptation of Barry Allen

The two-part mid-season finale of The Flash wraps up the Bloodwork (Sendhil Ramamurthy) storyline whose infection of the Flash (Grant Gustin) leads Barry down a darker path and puts everyone in Central City at danger. While "Part 1" primarily deals with Barry's inner turmoil fighting against the infection, "Part 2" is more a straightforward monster episode feature the regulars on the run from Bloodwork's zombies. The plot allows for Allegra (Kayla Compton) to step-up and play a crucial role in helping to stop Ramsey, and elsewhere "Nash" Wells (Tom Cavanagh) continues his hunt for the Monitor (LaMonica Garrett).

While certainly different from other villains the show has used, the payoff to Bloodwork proves to be underwhelming. Dark Flash worked in part, although there are various aspects to the costume change (all which disappear when Barry is cured) that don't make any sense, and the CGI version of the Bloodwork to close out "Part 2" also felt like an unnecessary cost to the show's limited budget. The choice of Barry allowing himself to be infected by Ramsey to fight him from the inside allows for some tension among Team Flash before they discover just what game Barry is playing. "Part 2" ends with a final gathering among friends. It's a nice moment heading into Crisis, although Elongated Man (Hartley Sawyer) is notably absent (as he is from the entire second-half of the two-parter).

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