Season One, Episode Fourteen – “Fallout”
By Molly Jane Kremer and Jarrod Jones. All in all, an eventful episode: Ronnie Raymond and Prof. Martin Stein successfully separate via the F.I.R.E.S.T.O.R.M. matrix, Gen. Wade Eiling plays his hand, Det. Joe West lets Barry in on an earth-shaking secret, and Dr. Wells stands revealed. Sort of. If you’re not covered in goosebumps for the entire hour of The Flash every Tuesday night, it’s time to check your pulse.
WHAT WORKED: Det. Joe (Jesse L. Martin) and Barry (Grant Gustin) have needed a sit-down for a number of episodes, and “Fallout” provides. With Joe’s investigation into Nora Allen’s murder unearthing some rather, um, paradoxical results, it was only a matter of time before Barry got wise. But what our Scarlet Speedster intends to do with that information means that there will be serious consequences for the future – if Crisis on Infinite Earths and Flashpoint have taught us anything.
Clancy Brown’s Gen. Wade Eiling is one of The Flash‘s more inspired casting choices. The former Lex Luthor (Superman: The Animated Series, Justice League Unlimited, etc.) has more than enough menace to be an effective foil, not just for Barry, but for Ronnie (Stephen Amell) and Prof. Stein (Victor Garber) as well. Eiling’s animated series’ affiliation with the clandestine organization CADMUS could provide The Flash with Unlimited potential. (But, then again, there was that ending…)
Victor Garber and Stephen Amell finally got to play off each other in this episode, and the results were… really, really surprising. Garber’s huffy, stuffy Prof. Stein had everyone at S.T.A.R. Labs walking on eggshells, but the cocksure Ronnie was having none of it. It’s a wonderful scenario, and one that The Flash aced gracefully: for a hero to rise, two men who couldn’t find each other more repellent must unite. Remember, boys: teamwork makes the dream work.
WHAT DIDN’T: In such a breathless episode, there wasn’t much to pick apart. Towards the end of “Fallout”, it began to feel a touch claustrophobic in S.T.A.R. Labs, what with Caitlin, Barry, Dr. Wells, Prof. Stein, Ronnie, and Cisco all bantering on top of each other. But in reality, that wasn’t too serious an issue, and with the show putting Ronnie and Prof. Stein on the lam for the foreseeable future, The Flash‘s clubhouse remains comfortably exclusive.
“Ronnie, this isn’t the world you once knew.” – Barry. Such a great comic book-y line. We’re so pumped that The Flash is never afraid of letting its geek flag fly.
“We love you.” – Firestorm, to everybody, presumably.
BEST MOMENT: That ending. Though the rest of the episode had more than a few thrilling moments – Firestorm and the Flash racing towards the screen in victory, the attack of Gen. Eiling, Barry and Joe’s revelatory heart-to-heart – “Fallout’s” epilogue damn-near eclipsed them all, with Dr. Wells pulling a fast one on Eiling that portends head-exploding disaster for the Fastest Man Alive. *SPOILERS AHEAD* It’s official, Wells is the Reverse-Flash, and he has a 400 lb. friend waiting in the rafters: GRODD.
EPISODE’S MVP(s): Ronnie Raymond and Professor Stein. While it wasn’t immediately apparent, these two knocked “Fallout” out of the park with their polarizing personalities and their spot-on banter. Professor Stein’s grumpitude, while not seen to this extent before this episode, is a fitting foil for Ronnie’s sunny, go-getter disposition. We want more of the Nuclear Man.
– Caitlin just can’t seem to keep her stories straight about her “cousin Sam’s” hometown, but she offered a couple of nifty DC city shouts along with her gaffes: is “Sam” from Coast City, home of the Green Lantern? Or is he from Midway City, home to the Doom Patrol and the Silver Age Hawkman? Either way, we wanna go.
– I guess folk in the CW DCU get HBO too: Mason Bridge (Roger Howarth) tossed out a rather casual reference to Game of Thrones.
– And while we’re on the subject of Mason, the actor who portrays him, Roger Howarth, played that scumbag Todd Manning in One Life to Live. (Oh, Marty Saybrooke. Jarrod will never forget you.)
– A show full of meta-humans went and got a little meta itself: When explaining S.T.A.R. Labs’ new status quo to Ronnie, Barry says that all this craziness is “just a regular Tuesday for us”. Cisco answers Ronnie’s question about their run-in with The Mist by saying, “that was week three!” Very on-the-nose, guys.
– Ronnie’s chest is still inexplicably waxed. Maybe it’s from all that nuclear heat, or somesuch…? (We’ll wait for our No-Prize.)
– One of the ways they figure out that Ronnie and Professor Stein are still “linked” is that the Professor craves pizza exactly when Ronnie does, but Stein’s wife Clarissa (Isabella Hoffman) says the Professor always hated pizza. WHAT DOES THAT EVEN MEAN. HOW.
The Flash is on hiatus until March 17. A preview of the next episode, titled “Out of Time” is below.