“The Flash: Enter Zoom” TV review

Courtesy of Warner Brothers Television.
Courtesy of Warner Brothers Television.

Part of the reason season one of “The Flash” worked so well was because of its main antagonist The Reverse Flash. He proved to be an excellent unstoppable force for The Flash to face off with. Now season two finds its main antagonist with another evil speedster named Zoom. As proven by this week’s episode “Enter Zoom,” he’s on an entirely whole other level than Reverse Flash … and it’s absolutely brutal for Team Flash.

After capturing and locking up Dr. Light in STAR Labs in last week’s episode, Team Flash needs to find a way to capture Zoom so he can stop sending metahumans from Earth-2 to Earth-1 through the breaches connecting both worlds. But after Dr. Light bends light so she can turn herself invisible, she escapes STAR Labs by leaving behind her clothes. Fortunately, Barry Allen (Grant Gustin) and Iris (Candice Patton) come up with a plan to capture and stop Zoom once and for all. The Flash asks Linda Park (Malese Jow), Dr. Light’s Earth-1 Doppelganger, to set a staged fight between Flash and a “fake” Dr. Light in which she defeats Flash. Team Flash hopes this staged fight can act as a trap to lure Zoom into Earth-1, and once Zoom appears Wells and Joe (Jesse L. Martin) will give him the element of surprise by shooting him with speed dampening serums once he enters the world through one of the breaches. It’s a strong buildup that makes this one of the best episodes this season.

The show has done a great job in making its multiverse storyline infinitely interesting. We’re very familiar with the show’s setting in Earth-1, but we’re not overly familiar with Earth-2 yet. We got a close look at Earth-2 in last week’s episode and we get and even more personal look in the world in this episode. In that world, Harrison Wells is alive and he actually has a daughter, Jesse Quick (Violett Beane). In the small glimpse we had, Quick tells her father if what Jay Garrick (Teddy Sears), The Flash of Earth-2, said was true that he created the metahumans that have been rampant in Central City on purpose. Quick is actually pretty fond of Flash and loves her father, but can’t seem to shake that something is off with him.

We also learn that later on, Zoom pays a visit to her school, Central City College. A very shaken Wells worries about her daughter upon learning the news and it’s revealed that Zoom specifically targeted the college to kidnap Jesse. This look into Earth-2 gives us more backstory into Earth-2 Wells and after his debut last week as a hard, abusive, pushover character, it makes him way more sympathetic. Cavanagh totally convinces the audience with this version of Wells, and adds more depth to his mysterious character.

Grant Gustin as The Flash adds more to his character as well. Like what we saw with Jay Garrick as The Flash in the previous episode assuming a more leadership role as The Flash, Gustin in this episode does as well. Even when members of Team Flash think he’s being ridiculous with his plan, he says that he can do it and that he won’t stop. This worries Joe who warns of the danger of an unknown enemy such as Zoom. The heart to heart conversations between Allen and Joe are great and Gustin and Martin really do have that father and son dynamic going on very naturally.

The episode’s plot is pretty solid throughout, but it is in the final moments that the episode takes a dramatic and drastic turn. As suggested by the episode’s name, Zoom finally arrives to Earth-1 and faces off against The Flash. And boy, was it amazing. Their battle is not only the best highlight of the season so far but one of the best in the series. It’s great to see such a comic book world come to life and seeing these two speedsters as much of it seemed to be ripped straight from the comics. Much credit to the character of Zoom as well because with his gruesome appearance and deep, brooding voice he’s a terrifying villain.

Zoom manages to literally break The Flash as he is incapable of moving. This leads to an absolutely amazing sequence in which Zoom carries The Flash’s broken body across Central City to show the media and the Central City Police Department their hero brutally beaten, proclaiming that “the days of The Flash protecting this city are over.” There’s a sense of impending doom actually seeing The Flash is such a beaten up state and even more shows how much of a grave threat Zoom is. It was pretty surprising seeing all of this happen and I wasn’t expecting to see this just yet. The showrunners deserve praise for adding such a dramatic development to the show.

It’s Wells’ realization and reaction upon seeing Allen’s body being carried by Zoom that his mission to capture Zoom is no longer in reach. His immediate delivery of his line “I’ve made a mistake” is powerful and shows how fragile and terrified Wells is. Cavanagh’s delivery is fantastic and he single handedly shows what every other character is thinking at that moment: how severely they underestimated Zoom.

This episode insanely changed how “The Flash” is going forward and brought out extreme consequences for our cast. The face off against the dreadful Zoom was severely underestimated and if they’re ever going to capture him, Team Flash needs an entirely different game plan to do so. With these developments, “Enter Zoom” is undoubtedly the best episode “The Flash” has had this season so far.

 

Rating: 4.5 stars

 

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