TV Review: ‘The Flash’ Episode 2.12 – “The Fast Lane”

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Warning: If you haven’t yet seen episode 12 of “The Flash,” be forewarned: Here be spoilers.

For the first time this season, Barry and Wells didn’t just interact, they bonded. Now that Barry is single again, he has more time to focus on how to get Zoom, starting with helping Wells close the 52 breaches that lead from Earth-1 to Earth-2. Speed reading is “annoying” to Harry, but Barry does it anyway. While Barry laments on the fact that he can help Wells and how he’s part of the team now, Harry makes sure to let Barry know that if the choice was to help Team Flash or his daughter, he would choose his daughter every time. “I will betray you.”

And he does, implanting a d212 fast lane-2evice on Barry’s suit that took, according to Caitlin, 2% of his speed, making him slower and therefore not able to get to Iris in time to save her from a shard of glass. There was angst, of course, and the surprising part about the entire situation is that Harry actually confessed. Out of guilt, a good conscience, finally feeling like part of the team? Probably all three. As punishment, he gets punched by Joe. Can’t say he didn’t have it coming this time. I’m glad Harry owns up and decides to tell the team that he gave Zoom The Flash’s speed force. It’s very mature of the show to do and not go back down the same lane it did last season. What he didn’t tell them is that Zoom stabbed himself with it like an addict on heroin.

Barry’s speech about how Wells shouldn’t be punished for taking his speed because he did it for his daughter and how they’d all do the same thing if it was someone they loved was a great bit. It proves that Barry Allen isn’t his speed that makes him a hero, but his willingness to see the good in people. And after successfully closing one breach, Barry and the rest of Team Flash decide that it’s time to finally go to Earth-2.

Elsewhere, Francine has passed away (off-screen, unfortunately) and Wally is angry and still distant from the remainder of his sudden and instant family. Iris is unhappy to hear that Wally is still drag racing and challenges Joe to step up from being a friend to Wally and actually fulfill the role of a parent. Joe is afraid to drive (no pun intended) Wally away, so Iris steps up and goes into undercover journalist and protective big sister mode to take down the head of the street racing, who also happens to be a target of this week’s meta-human, Tar Pit. After spending most of the season being a pseudo-therapist and supporting friend/daughter, Iris finally gets to dive into the action by doing what she does best, being a reporter and a strong force to be reckoned with.

212 fast lane-4I’m glad that Wally is finally getting some major character development and the hints at his love of speed aren’t subtle, but good for who we know he’ll become in the future (which we know is coming, just not sure when). After Iris is hurt and a talking to with Joe, Wally realizes that his family isn’t just there, but they want to be there for him and protect him as well. They’re not just for show. There’s nothing like a major incident to jar someone awake and Iris’s injury shook up a couple of plot lines and moved the story forward overall. This show is at its best when there’s great character interaction and development on all fronts. My one major nitpick is that the meta-human of the week was pretty lame and, although the episode started off with his backstory, it didn’t really go anywhere and he was one of the most forgettable villains we’ve seen so far.

The field trip to Earth-2 is next week! Who else is excited?

Random Thoughts: 
Where is Jay? The show gives us Hunter Zolomon and now Jay is missing from this episode. Does the theory that Jay is Zoom thicken?

This was Wally’s first official interaction with The Flash!

Did anyone else feel kind of bad for Barry after speeding his way to the doorstep of his house before leaving when seeing that Wally is there in what I assume is his place at the table? He’s really giving the Wests their space, but he’ll no doubt be a part of everything once some base dynamic has been established, which I think it has.

Harry has to live in constant shadow of the references Team Flash make to former Harrison Wells. It’s getting better and this time around, Barry actually used the reference as a good thing.

Iris West proved again that she is capable of being more than just Barry’s love interest. More of Iris being an ace reporter, please.

“Did I just create a meta-human tindr?”
“Mhmm.”
“Nope, not starting that fetish.”

“Who’s the best hacker in the world?”
“Felicity Smoak.”
“What is wrong with you two? That is not friendship.”

The slow motion scene when Barry is trying to grab the piece of glass that ends up impaling Iris is really well done.

Zoom is a legit speed addict. Good to know.

80%
80%
Awesome

While the meta-human Tar Pit wasn't anything exceptional, "The Flash" focused on developing the characters, relationships, and the plot, which all worked out favorably and made for a strong episode.

4star

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About Author

Mae is a Washington, DC-based film critic, entertainment journalist and Weekend Editor at Heroic Hollywood. A member of the Washington, DC Area Film Critics Association (WAFCA), she's a geek who loves discussing movies and TV. She is also a voting member of the Black Reel Awards. If she's not at the movies, she's catching up on her superhero TV-watching, usually with a glass of wine in hand.

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