The Flash (6×18)- “Pay the Piper”
Written by: Jess Carson
Directed by: Amanda Tapping
This week opens with Joe in witness protection and he’s looking like most people are feeling after six weeks of house arrest- I mean, “quarantine.” That is to say, frustrated and crazy. Uh-oh, he’s hearing voices… but since they’re voices recapping his situation I don’t think he’s crazy yet. Joe then pulls a gun on a dark corner of the room… Maybe-
Nah! Barry emerges from the shadows looking like a guy that literally lost a fight with a mirror and he tells Joe about the Iris dilemma. Joe points out all the things they should have noticed but didn’t and he and Barry both beat themselves over not protecting Iris.
Barry returns to STAR Labs and tells the team and no one is taking it well. Cisco specifically and when he presses Barry on Kamilla possibly being dead Barry’s speed-gauge and his anger-gauge both redline and he starts to vent which causes everyone to fight before Cecile gets them all on track trying to fix things instead of argue. So while everyone else goes off to try and find a way to crack into the mirror dimension Barry heads off to work on the artificial Speed Force because he can’t exactly be the Flash with a forty-time in the eight second range.
While he’s down there he gets some visitors, first Allegra who’s trying to figure not only what she missed but if she’s now in charge of a newspaper and then by Godspeed!
Long time, no see buddy and you can talk! How have you been? What’s that? You want Barry’s speed or you’ll kill a bunch of people? That’s our Godspeed!
With things getting worse all the time the team is really coming together… to tear into each other but one thing comes out of their bickering. Godspeed used his powers to manipulate sound and who does the gang knock that can help them fight sound powers? That’s right! Hartley Rathaway aka the Pied Piper.
Good thing he hates the Flash so much for something Barry doesn’t remember doing and good thing Cisco figured out that it was because way back in what would have been Season One Barry nearly killed Hartley’s
boyfriend (We’re pretending we don’t know that and it’s not obvious for some reason) henchmen, Roderick and left him trapped between life and death. So he’s sure to help. Well, not really but Nash believe if they can help save Roderick they can get Hartley’s help in return.
Since Ralph can’t really help with that he gets a text from Killer Frost and the two talk about her worries concerning going to Caitlin’s mother for help because “she doesn’t really know her” and Ralph attempts a reverse psychology pep talk.
Meanwhile, Barry goes to Hartley’s lair to try and talk to him about Roderick and maybe getting his help and Hartley is as receptive as you’d expect since he doesn’t think there’s a way to fix Roderick with Nash’s help.
It’s about time to pop over to the mirror dimension. Iris finds Kamilla at STAR Labs and since the last time Kamilla saw Iris she shot Kamila with the mirror gun and sent her here. Kamilla is trying to study the other things the mirror gun sent to the mirror dimension but not having much luck and Iris seems to be breaking down. So they’re going to have to put Kamilla’s plan on hold.
Back at the regular STAR Labs Hartley is making friends with Barry and Cisco the only way he knows how while Cisco returns fire with equal venom before they try their plan to save Roderick. The first attempt doesn’t work (when does it ever?) and Hartley storms out. Only for Godspeed to return and demand Barry’s speed within one hour or people start dying.
Barry goes back to working on the artificial Speed Force and it’s time for the Nash version of the Harrison Wells pep talk. Which is basically getting Barry angry enough to admit he doesn’t trust himself anymore without Iris around and that helps him realize why Hartley’s so pissed off. In another part of the lab, Cecile gets Cisco to admit that he has the same doubt issues as Barry and he needs to get over that before he can help Kamilla.
After Barry tries to get through to Hartley in the Pipeline Cisco calls Barry to show him that Godspeed has stolen his clones’ speed and has taken hostages. Barry can’t let Godspeed kill people without at least trying to stop him so he rushes off to fight Godspeed without any sort of plan.
Shockingly, it doesn’t go well but lucky for Barry he did manage to get through to Hartley and with his help Barry’s able to defeat Godspeed… Well, Godspeed’s latest clone. So Godspeed is still presumably somewhere in the future sending clones back… in time… to steal Barry’s speed.
This feels a bit familiar all the sudden.
Anyway! One good thing did come from Godspeed’s defeat. They have created a charged substance that can help Roderick’s body stabilize without killing him. So with that adventure handled and a quick scene of Eva emerging from some kind of science pod everything is all set for next week’s exciting season finale of Stargate SG-1!
I mean the Flash! (Sorry Amanda Tapping, I had to at least mention it.)
Pretty Good episode. I liked seeing everyone having trouble with this because someone you love turning out to be someone else literally would leave you in a dark place. The return of Andy Mientus as Pied Piper was very welcome and setting himself as someone that can be a threat or an ally depending on what the writers need is also very smart.
My one complaint is completely unreasonable of course, that being this is probably a terrible direct set-up for a season finale but it was never supposed to be so I’m putting that aside as best as I can. Then again, with the news of that getting out also came the knowledge that they were setting up a Thawne return for next season and that was in the back of my mind the whole time I was watching the Godspeed plot playout. I really hope they stick with this when the show returns… Whenever that is.
Anyway. This was a solid episode and I’m both intrigued by this week’s season finale and hoping that Amanda Tapping returns to the Flash in one way or another very soon.
Things We Learned:
- Pied Piper’s anger came from the injury of his lover at the hands of The Flash.
- Pied Piper knows the secret identity of Barry and most likely identities of Team Flash.
- Godspeed is working with someone or multiple people in the future. “We deserve your speed.”
- Iris’ mental state is deteriorating quickly.
- Will Piper become an ally of the team going forward?
- Is Joe still in Witness Protection?
- What does Atlantis have that Cisco needs and will he make it back in time for the finale?
- Is Godspeed working with or for Thawne in the future?
- Is there an “Identity Crisis” on the horizon for the DC/CW-verse?
- Barry still seems to muster Speed, as are Thawne and Godspeed somewhere in the furture so is the Speed Force really even dead?
- Considering the film, am I the only one that wants Aquaman to be played by this man in the DC/CW-verse?
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