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THE FLASH: (Re)Unions Are Hard

The Flash’s second episode (“Mixed Signals”) hit all the right notes (not unlike Shubert). It was funny, charming, and heartfelt—a lighthearted, but powerful confrontation of truths. The Flash Gang is back together again. Cisco is wonderfully quippy (“Dude, I’m protecting you from her. She would’ve vaporized you guys.” and “You just had to fall for the girl in head to toe black leather.” Oh, we’ve all been there, honey.). And Barry and Iris do something surprisingly awesome: they go to therapy.

While it’s initially played for laughs (Grant Gustin’s delivery of “We’ve been to a few funerals.” was hilarious), it does yield some excellent revelations, apologies, and confessions—as well as a stellar performance from Candice Patton, who is doing her best work this season. I, honestly, have never liked Iris this much. It’s good to see her being part of the team, trying to figure out how to be Barry’s Work Wife and future actual wife.

But what has my heart the most is Caitlin and Cisco, riffing off each other to get shit done. It’s a major component of the show, their friendship and complement nerdery. And I love it. But I am wondering when Caitlin is going to come clean about her Frost problem, because giiiiirl, something’s got to give. And I would bet my hat—kidding, I don’t own a hat—that she confesses to Cisco first. I also keep waiting for Gypsy to be a little jealous of her relationship with Cisco. I’ve seen no indication that would be a thing, but it wouldn’t be the first show to do that.

Speaking of Gypsy, I love her. So much. She’s the only one who can match Cisco’s snark, who can casually saunter around dressed like an extra from The Matrix and not look foolish. And I also hate the word schmoopy (“And I hate the word schmoopy and people who use it.”), so we’ve got that going for us. Like Gypsy, I’ve been the “it’s fine,” cool-on-the-surface girl. But as Gypsy demonstrated, it’s super important to use your words. People aren’t mind readers (metahumans not withstanding), so it definitely pays to be honest and open in a relationship. That seems to be the central theme of the issue, honestly, and not a bad thing to learn.

I wasn’t particularly invested in the villain. A human computer virus enacting revenge of those who wronged him didn’t thrill me. I also think his near-murder via an insulin pump had some technical issues, but that’s not a deal breaker. The character just felt a little flat to me, as if Eeyore suddenly decided to go on a slow, deliberate murder spree. I couldn’t care about him or for him. Or the people he was after (they were, objectively, terrible).

But the situation did give us a chance to see Barry’s new suit malfunction, leaving Cisco to gape, “Frak me, he’s locked me out of my own program.” BSG forever, y’all. *ahem* But seriously, the flotation device feature made me laugh out loud, as did Caitlin’s simple fix for what Cisco made it for. It was curious to see Iris swoop in with the save, mostly because I keep expecting it to be HR or Cisco. But also because she doesn’t have a scientific background. She just seemed to base her suggestion on…a hunch? It all worked out in the end (and I loved the “Run, Barry. Run.”), but it was an awfully big gamble.

Speaking of a happy ending, Cisco’s 111 make-up date was adorable. I mean, Gypsy wore A Dress. That was a stunning wardrobe choice that made me go, “Daaaaaaamn.” And while Cisco confesses that, around the lab, “Baby, we are always catching a deranged killer around here.”—he also promises to always make it up to her. And it was super sweet, and they’re so great together. A precious cinnamon roll and a badass lady of snark.

We got a quick glimpse at the Borg’s version of Mr. Freeze, and while I’m curious, there’s also something weirdly unassuming about him. Watching him play the piano was rather normalizing, and I really want them to push him to the forefront a bit faster. (Yes, I want The Flash to move faster. Who would’ve thunk it?)

My only quibble is that we haven’t seen Tom Cavanagh this season yet. Come on, y’all, I need my Ed fix. I mean, Wells.

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Welcoming the Future, Treasuring the Past.