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Thankful Amid the Chaos on THE FLASH

The Flash’s seventh episode (“O Come, All Ye Thankful”) had a lot of poignant, powerful moments. It was certainly less lighthearted than usual, with Nora being angry and emotional about her dad constantly rushing headlong into danger. And, oh yeah, dying. (At least he didn’t sing a song about it, but I digress.)

As much as I didn’t like Nora regressing to a sullen, flouncing child…she was also super compelling in her reasoning. Even when she asked Barry to lay down the Flash mantle, and I cringed, I understood exactly where she was coming from. The very real emotions on display were a hell of an argument: “But when I saw you die today, it reminded me that I’m mad at someone else about losing you: you. … How many times does it have to be you? … Please dad, don’t make me go through it again.” Granted, asking that of her dad was a huge misunderstanding of who he is. But it was also a very honest, relatable ask. I loved how that was handled. And I loved how Nora came back around with her version of the repeating line: “Run, dad, run.”

You know what else I loved? Getting Cicada’s (sorry, Orlin) backstory, beginning with his tragic awful and ending with his powerful rage-grief at his sister’s kid being in a coma. The snippets were treated to were beautifully rendered and constructed, demonstrating his character growth, his transformation. I mean, the dollhouse was a super great touch—extending the metaphor of fixing up and building, both literally and figuratively. Islie Hirvonen did a fairly awesome turn as Gracie, from her quiet trepidation, knowing she’s not wanted to the “rat bastard” scene at the school.

It was lovely to see Liam McIntyre as Martin, who his daughter apparently wanted to kill. The Helen Hunt reference alone made her character worth it (as did Cisco’s reluctant “I’ll allow it,” in response to Caitlin’s “Weather Witch?”), although I do wish we’d get a slightly more reasonable villain at some point. I feel like they’re all foiled by their own evil singlemindedness. Well, and Barry, who had to contend with, as Cisco put it, “By the beard of Zeus, she’s making a tornado made of lightning.”

And my absolutely favorite thing was Killer Frost appearing out of nowhere, ripping into Sherloque and Cisco for being holiday fun party poopers, then sauntering off with, “You nerds coming to Thanksgiving or what?” I love her character so much, and I love how much she took those two goons by surprise. It’s great to have the Frost Queen back in action. I missed her.

It looks like next week, judging by the previews, is going to have me shouting, “Barry, no!” a whole lot. The more things change, the more they stay the same, I guess.

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Welcoming the Future, Treasuring the Past.