‘The Flash’ 4×02: ‘Mixed Signals’ Roundtable

Oh, how we’ve missed The Flash. And we’re not just talking about hiatus. Following a season where The Flash went too dark and resembled something that wasn’t what it once was, The Flash is baaaaack baby.

Our Fangirlish writers Alyssa, Lizzie, Lyra, Charles, Kayla, and Jade and our lovely guest Funmbi, from one of our favorite sites: We So Nerdy,  are breaking down the second episode of The Flash season 4! Here we go!

Describe your thoughts about “Mixed Signals” using just six words.

Alyssa: This is The Flash I love!

Lizzie: Imagine that, this is fun again!

Lyra: Every superhero needs therapy right now!

Sarah: Wow I really enjoyed that!

Charles: Fun, Therapy and Adventure oh my!




Kayla: No, Barry, we are The Flash.

Funmbi: Sweet, hilarious, and so much fun!

Jade: Love, action, and humor are back!

Describe your thoughts about “Mixed Signals” using a gif.

Alyssa: 

Lizzie:

Lyra:

Sarah:

Charles:

Kayla:

http://usedpimpa.tumblr.com/post/166122356996/new-giphy

Funmbi:

Jade:

Design GIFs - Find & Share on GIPHY

Over the last six months Iris has been the leader of Team Flash. What does Barry’s return to the team mean for Team Flash? How can they move forward and be an efficient team?

Alyssa: Well, this certainly isn’t the Team Flash that Barry left six months prior. Like most things, it has evolved, and you can’t ignore how things have changed. More importantly, you can’t force yourself back into your old position now that things have changed. There definitely needs to be open communication, as Lizzie said, to really allow this team to mesh well with the changes. This reminds me of how Team Arrow eventually evolved to include more than just Oliver. Team Arrow wasn’t just Oliver’s crusade anymore. It was also Felicity’s, Diggle’s, Thea’s, Roy’s, Laurel’s, and now the new team. Same with Team Flash. In Barry’s absence, Iris, Cisco, Wally, and Joe really stepped up and invested themselves in this crusade. It wasn’t just about honoring Barry. It was also about protecting the city and doing what’s right. They’re all heroes, after all.

Lizzie: With communication. Barry needs to listen. He wasn’t gone for a long weekend, he was gone for six months. And I know he’s just excited to be back and being The Flash again, but team dynamics have shifted and he needs to learn to readjust. And the team needs to readjust to him, too. Cisco might not need to be out on the field so much, for example. It’s all about finding their place in the dynamic. One thing I’m curious about is – do we need Wally at this point? Not saying I don’t enjoy the Wally/Iris/Joe dynamics, but another speedster on the team, one that’s always painted as being SLOWER, doesn’t seem like a thing that would work long-term unless they, you know, actually gave Wally a storyline. So what is it? Is he getting a storyline of his own or can he go to the place superheroes can actually have fun in (yes, I mean Legends of Tomorrow).

Lyra: Barry’s return to the team means that Team Flash is going to be struggling between what they were and what they are. Time has passed and Iris has transformed them into a lean and mean machine that’s completely different from how Barry ran things. And whether Barry likes it or not, Iris isn’t going to just sit on the sidelines anymore and let things happen to her family and friends. She’s in the fray fighting alongside them.

If they’re going to move forward Barry needs to accept the things have changed and that the team kept going without him and that they thrived. That acceptance and trying to find a balance between them and their leadership styles is the only way that they’re going to survive heading this team together. Because that’s what they are, co-captains of a crime-fighting team.

Sarah: I think it means clearly an adjustment with twists and bumps are going to be in the immediate future for Team Flash. Iris stepped up those six months when Barry was gone, and it’s naive to assume that after half a year they could ever go back to the way they had before. As much as I know all of them are happy to have Barry back, I think they’re going to have to find a new way to, for lack of a better word operate as a team.

On Barry’s part he needs to not assume things will automatically go back to the way they were, and find his way into their new dynamic. I don’t think it’ll be easy for anyone, but they aren’t the type of people to give up on each other easily so I have faith they’ll figure it out.

Charles: To not expect bumps on the road as Barry rejoined the team was foolish. Iris had become leader and a damn good one. It will a challenge for all the pieces to fit once more with the new dynamic but I have faith that the team will make it work.

The only problem is what will happen with Caitlin and her powers? Also Wally’s role in the team is in question. That could lead to some tense moments as well.

Kayla: In Barry’s absence, Iris took over being the team’s leader. Despite her hesitation in the premiere about pulling Barry out of the speed force, Cisco  went ahead and did all he could to bring Barry home. Barry’s return means the team is whole again. In those 6 months, everything was put on hold. The wedding, their lives. None of them knew if Barry would ever return. As Iris said in this episode, she couldn’t tell much of anyone where he was because those people didn’t know about him being The Flash. Now, life can return. As you saw, Barry needed to catch up…and not just on Game of Thrones, but with everything else that happened in the time he was gone. Barry just jumping back into things caused problems for the team, Iris in particular. So, I’d say communication between all team members is key. Something Barry had to learn in this episode.

Funmbi: It was very clear in the Season 4 premiere, that Iris picked up the mantel of being Team Flash’s leader. This was probably the case for several reasons–Iris needed some way to fill her time in Barry’s absence. Taking a leadership role in Team Flash was probably also an opportunity to Iris to honor Barry’s memory by taking up his mission as the Flash and protecting Central City. In fact, this was likely the same for Joe, Wally, and Cisco too. Now that Barry’s back, I actually think it’s more important for him to fit into the new dynamic rather than taking the lead and expecting others to follow. For example, in the scene when Barry was trying to figure out the best to stop the careening car, he made a misjudgement based on assumptions and old information. Iris and Team Flash gained a lot of experience and knowledge in Barry’s absence and it should be put to use. Basically, communication and compromise will be key.

Jade: Everybody stepped up and tried to fill the void left behind in Barry’s absence, but there was a void to fill. So of course the team is complete now that he’s back. But Barry isn’t the only one who changed over the several months he was in the speed force. I wouldn’t be surprised if we see other characters struggling to adjust, as well. Hopefully they take a page from Iris and Barry’s book – and Caitlin’s advice – and realize that communication is key to moving forward and becoming an even better team than they have ever been.

Would you be mad if Barry went ahead and planned your wedding? Breakfast? Your future by going into the time vortex? Why do you think Barry was acting this way? And do you think that conversation after therapy was what they needed?

Alyssa: Hell yeah I’d be mad! And that’s not just because I always need to be in control. Okay, well that’s definitely a main part of it. I mean, I understand that his intentions were good, but you don’t go ahead and plan everything without Iris’ input. Marriage itself is about these two becoming partners for life. They’re no longer just a team on Team Flash. They’re about to be a team in life. That requires communication. That requires teamwork. That requires consideration. Like I said, I don’t think Barry meant any of it — especially the time vortex jump — out of bad intentions, but the fact of the matter is that it wasn’t the right thing. I think Barry was just overcompensating for the time that he’d missed; for leaving Iris without him for so long. Like anything, I think he was just trying to help Iris. As far as that conversation after therapy, that was definitely needed. It was refreshing to watch two characters — and not just two characters in a superhero show — talk through their issues in such an honest and genuine way. They opened up to each other, they listened to each other, and they emerged a stronger couple as a result.

Lizzie: OF COURSE I’d be mad. A wedding is not about one person, it’s about two. It’s about coming together and becoming partners in life. It’s symbolic, of course, but if someone is making all the decisions about the actual event, how does that bode for the future? Now, I think Barry was just excited and he was trying to make up for the team away and he wasn’t actually trying to ignore Iris’s wishes, but trying to make her happy. Either way, Barry, NO. Some girls don’t dream of planning their wedding, that is true, but Iris had a BINDER. She probably had some ideas of what she wanted and wanted to be involved in the planning.

Breakfast is good. The going into the vortex thing? Not so much if they didn’t discuss it, which I think they did. But it all goes back to, even if they did, Iris has a right to her feelings and Barry needs to chill and let her process.

Which is why the conversation after therapy was – wow. Blew me away. That’s probably the most mature conversation any two people have ever had on  DCTV show. Iris asserted herself and what she needed from the relationship and Barry didn’t try to talk over her, just listened and I just had a lot of feels all over. Can we get that all the time? And from every couple?

Lyra: I’m the kind of person who doesn’t want to plan her wedding and would be absolutely okay with showing up the day of the wedding and going, “Let’s do this shit!” I wouldn’t even mind breakfast, preferably in bed, if it meant I didn’t have to do it. That being said, the only reason why I would be okay with my partner doing that for me is that I would trust them and know that if it’s a big decision they would ask me. That’s what life partners do and that’s what Barry doesn’t understand.

He loves Iris but he doesn’t think or trust in her ability to make decisions with him. He’s not doing this out of spite. If anything it’s out of ignorance. He’s the hero, the main star, and like anyone else about to enter into a serious relationship like marriage, it’s a hard thing to fathom. You’re not making decisions just for yourself anymore. You’re partners now.

The conversation they had after therapy was also about trust. Iris needed him to know that she will always have his best interest and the cities in her mind. Because of that she needs Barry to trust her, let her in, and work with her when it comes to their future. And honestly, this might be the first time I felt like I could connect and relate to Barry and Iris on a human level because every couple, correction, every successful couple talks about trust and actually implements it.

Sarah: Oh I’d be pissed off if he thought he could plan it and then come back to say “this is how it’s going to go” with no say in the matter. It’s one thing if he did it to pass time in the Speedforce it’s another to actually force your choices down anyone especially your loved ones throats. I know Barry wasn’t actually trying to do that, he was ridiculously excited to get to marry the woman he loves. However that doesn’t excuse coming back and making decisions himself they should be making together.

Which is why I was supremely happy they went to couples therapy. It’s not something that’s often seen on television in a light like this, but it was a refreshing turn,and one they clearly needed to help communicate what they weren’t able to say for most of this hour.

Charles: This is one of the questions I really couldn’t answer but I will say this. I am very glad Barry and Iris went to couples therapy. there is a few other DC couples that could use a therapy session or two.

Kayla: If I were planning a wedding, and my fiance made decisions about it without me knowing, I’d be mad, yes. Especially with how long Iris has waited to marry Barry. Anything planned for a wedding should be a mutual decision between the bride and groom. I know Barry was trying, but he really should have consulted Iris.

I did however think him making breakfast was sweet, and I’ll take that any day. Even if he eats most it.

I honestly thought that Barry and Iris had discussed him going into the speed force in the season 3 finale. I thought she knew the sacrifice he was making to protect everyone. So her reaction in this episode about feeling abandoned made no sense. I mean, I get it. I’d feel abandoned too if I was about to marry the man of my dreams and he decided to go sacrifice himself to the speed force to save the world. Especially if I didn’t know if he was coming back. However, I thought they had discussed it.

Why do I think Barry is acting this way? I think he’s just trying to make up for missing 6 months. He feels guilty. However, before the wedding gets back on track, Barry and Iris really needed to talk it out. Everything. In this instance, Iris was in the right to get a relationship counselor. They need to communicate better in every aspect of their lives. So, yes the conversation they had after therapy was exactly what they needed.

Funmbi: I LOVED the scene with Risky Business Barry, in his underpants, singing, dancing, and making breakfast. So yes, Barry can always make me breakfast anytime. However, I do think that he goes too far by unilaterally making those decisions about the wedding. I know that, for Barry, it comes from a place of deep love. He wants to take care of Iris, lessen the things that she has on her plate. But given the fact that a wedding is meant to be one of the most important days in a bride’s and groom’s lives, both Iris and Barry need to have an equal role in making these plans. And like the wedding, Team Flash is the same way. One of the absolute best quotes of the night is when Iris says: “You are not The Flash, Barry. We are.” First: SO MANY FEEEEEELS. Second: this is the absolute truth. Barry and Iris are building a life together and that definitely includes the superhero antics.

Jade: First, let me say that I think Barry had the absolute best of intentions with everything he did this episode. That said. Unless one person has specifically said they don’t want any part of the wedding planning (because it causes them too much stress and is bad for their mental health, for example), then it is absolutely wrong for one person to just take over the wedding planning. I never wanted to get married and certainly never planned my ‘dream wedding” before I met my husband, I was irritated by the entire planning process, and I still would have murdered him if he’d planned the whole thing without asking for my input. Weddings are about two people. Both people’s wishes should be taken into account. Barry and Iris presumably had some discussions about the issue before they chose Save the Date cards, so Barry had to know she wanted to be involved. He went too far, even with the best of intentions.

Breakfast? It’s a sweet gesture, and I don’t think there’s any problem with going all out to show someone you care like that. I don’t think Iris minded the gesture so much as the prospect of tackling a 27 course breakfast. Maybe moderation next time? Similarly, I don’t think Iris rationally expected an hour-long conversation before he went into the speed force. But she grieved after losing him, and part of that grief is anger. Anger at the situation. Often even irrational anger at the person.

Feelings don’t have to always be good to be valid and important – and, more importantly, to be needing to be discussed. Barry was doing what he was doing because he was happy to be back and because he wanted to embrace his life and his love for Iris. But the conversation is absolutely what the needed. Iris has been denied a voice for far too long. Her feelings won’t always be positive or rational or even fair. Neither will his. People’s feelings aren’t always all of those things. But they both need to be able to express and discuss them, because that’s what makes relationships work.

Why was it important for Barry and Iris to go to therapy? Do other superheroes and their significant others need to go to therapy? Why haven’t they?

Alyssa: I feel like this was something that The Flash really needed to do was to highlight more of the reality that these superheroes encounter. Yes, there are superheroes. No, they’re not inhuman. Yes, they have real problems. Yes, therapy is something that everyone could benefit from to some degree, and Barry and Iris were two of those people. Despite Barry’s return, there were some serious issues that the pair hadn’t discussed. Just because Barry returned without remembering what happened, Iris has been living this hell for six months. Not just living it, she’s been repressing her emotions to an unhealthy degree. Sure, Barry returning nearly made her whole again. But his re-appearance doesn’t erase the memories from the past six months; it doesn’t take away the pain she’s felt and has been pushing down. Iris was mad at Barry. She was pissed at Barry. He left her alone. You can’t just ignore that. And while she tried to, I’m glad she finally got the chance to unload on Barry. And it certainly helped matters as they’re on the path to rebuilding and moving forward.

Lizzie: We probably all could benefit from therapy, and superheroes are no exception. Barry and Iris, in this particular case, were having communication issues. Barry was trying to compensate for something he just couldn’t compensate for, and Iris just didn’t know how to express her very valid feelings without making Barry feel bad. And so I was very happy, surprised yes, but happy, not just when Caitlin suggested it (and like TALKED TO IRIS OMG THEY CAN TALK), but Iris listened to her, and then Barry agreed to it. We all need help sometimes. We all need to talk to someone. That doesn’t make us weak, it makes us strong. We’re taking control.

In fact – Oliver and Felicity, please. Kara, Mon-El, while we’re at it. Hey, Alex, Maggie ..you don’t have to break up. GO. TO. THERAPY.

Lyra: It was important for Iris and Barry to go to therapy because everyone has problems and it’s not shameful to seek help. Contrary to popular belief superheroes aren’t perfect and they’ve got a lot of shit to work through with a heaping of guilt always on top. And this move of making them go to therapy just makes them more relatable and more human.

Every single superhero out there can learn from these two and should go to therapy themselves. They are the ones that suffer the most in silence because they think it’s their burden to bear to protect others. But they aren’t alone and they don’t deserve to live a life full of misery or loneliness where they can’t talk to a professional or seek help when they need it.

As for why they haven’t gone to therapy, it’s a storyline that most writers don’t want to invest time in. It’s an easy way of keeping your character damaged and broken enough that they’ll continue having the same problems over and over again, basically giving you the opportunity to make seasons of brooding manpain. Or woman pain. We’re starting to be more equal opportunity here when it comes to superheroes and brooding.

Sarah: Speaking from experience therapy is a wonderful and freeing period where you are given the freedom to express yourself without judgement or fear of making things worse. The stress of a speed force separation is not exactly a typical topic but when you step into that space it can give you that freedom to work out things that might have been too hard to broach on your own. Barry and Iris clearly love each other but a committed relationship takes work and therapy was one excellent way of putting in the effort in this case to do that.

I think any superhero that wants someone to talk to that they don’t have to worry about speaking honestly to would like therapy. Only person I’d kick into a therapist’s office though is Oliver, like GET IN THERE YOU NUT!

Charles: Barry and Iris love each other, there’s no doubt there. But sometimes you have to have these times to clear the air so you can both come out stronger together. As Iris said, we are The Flash and Westallen is stronger now after this therapy session.

Kayla: It was very important for Barry and Iris to go to therapy. As I stated above, smart suggestion from Caitlin and even smarter of Iris to take the advice. I’ve already mentioned them having communication issues. As a superhero, Barry is constantly putting his life on the line for people. He and Iris NEED to communicate clearly if they are to ever to have a successful, healthy relationship.

I don’t know why they haven’t done this sooner. Maybe neither seems to think it was needed. In the past, they did always seem to communicate better. Seeing as they grew up together, maybe they thought they knew each other so well that they didn’t need it. Being in the speed force changed Barry. He had a literal rebirth. He also missed a lot, and so not communicating as clearly could also be a part of this.

Funmbi: These therapy scenes are some of the most hilarious television I’ve seen this year. (BTW, I want all the outtakes from filming because I bet they were hilarious too!) It’s clear that Barry and Iris live highly unconventional lives, so them trying to articulate that for a therapist without revealing the Flash things is really funny to watch. Plus, as the therapist says, Barry and Iris have been through A LOT of trauma. What’s most fascinating to me is that Barry seems to have dealt with all his baggage. I don’t think Barry remembers his time in the Speed Force, so we might never know what happened to him during those six months. But whatever it is, Barry seems a lot lighter. He makes breakfast, catches up on Game of Thrones, and he’s physically faster than ever. At the same time, we see that Iris is NOT OK, and that’s also a result of Barry leaving for the Speed Force. He just left her, and it’s important for Barry to hear her concerns and provide assurances that they are in this thing together. Therapy was a great opportunity for Barry and Iris to come to those agreements. In terms of other superheroes that need therapy, I’m thinking that Kara would benefit from talking to someone. In 3×02, Kara confesses to Alex some of her fears about being responsible for Mon-El’s death, and that is good for her.

Jade: It might be easier to ask what superheroes don’t need some therapy, let alone which relationships couldn’t benefit from some therapy. I would actually love to see Olicity go to therapy, particularly if they injected some tongue-in-cheek humor about the writers jerking them around unnecessarily while they did it. (Stop messing with them and Just. Let. Them. Be. Happy.) Sanvers could use some therapy to work through their apparent issues. I suspect Karamel will need some therapy when he returns.

At the end of the day, even the best couples have issues they sometimes need to work through. They work through them with good communication – which was a problem for both Barry and Iris this episode. Their friends and loved ones couldn’t necessarily be objective (and there are some things they might not want to discuss in front of Iris’s father, or things they might not want their friends to feel they have to take sides on). So going to someone who could be objective is absolutely the right call.

Use a gif to express how you felt when Iris jumped into action at the intruder alert at Star Labs and held that gun?

Alyssa:

Lizzie:

Lyra:

Sarah:

Charles: 

Kayla:

Funmbi:

Jade:

In the midst of all this chaos Cisco bailed on Gypsy a couple times before making it up to her at the end of the episode. What direction do you see this relationship going in and why is it important for other members of Team Flash to also have lives?

Alyssa: I really hope that The Flash expand on the romance outside of Barry Allen and Iris West. Not that I don’t love them, but I’m also interested in the goings-on of the other main characters. Cisco has been long overdue in the romance department, and the dynamic that this show introduced with Cisco and Gypsy last season was a truly pleasant surprise that I really hope they pay off. It won’t be a central focus on the show — unless the actress is a regular — but we’ll get to see those moments where Cisco gets to love and be loved. All we’ve really gotten to see Cisco has been as the comedic relief or the lab guy. This is a new element to Cisco that we’re getting to experience — and it’s season 4! It’s about damn time.

Lizzie: Cisco and Gypsy are fun and I hope this continues to be a thing, and not like a once a year thing. Not just because we need another ship in this show, though we do, but because the characters become richer if you explore all facets of their lives. I love LabCisco, and I love Vibe, but Cisco is the type of character that can do all and get you to love him, so why not take advantage of that? And that really applies to all these characters, The Flash has a really good and fun ensemble and I think they lose by not taking advantage of that and exploring what these people do outside of catching metas.

Lyra: I agree with Lizzie on this one. Their relationship is something I hope to see more of. It helps me understand Cisco and the kind of man he is separate from that of Team Flash and gives me a romance that isn’t going through the same turmoil Iris and Barry are always wrapped up in.

It also makes the story richer. When I see side characters getting romances, meeting their families, or going through daily struggles, I connect with them. I become even more invested in the lives of the people around the hero and want the team to succeed for more reasons than one.

Sarah: I really like Cisco and Gypsy’s dynamic and it made me happy to see it get this kind of attention. Honestly my hope is that we get to see more of them figuring out their way as a couple. As frustrating as it was to see Cisco bail out the way he made it up to her showed he clearly cares and doesn’t want to take her for granted. I hope we get to see more of these two and flesh out their characters even more.

Charles: Gypsy and Cisco are a cute couple and I like how we got to view them in this episode. Gypsy being frustrated at Cisco’s lack of attention to her ( dude was ogling circuit boards!) to why Gypsy was upset about it all in the first place were good character moments for her. Then when Cisco made it up to her with the lovely dinner was a nice little romantic moment as well.

The importance of showcasing the lives of Team Flash is that even though he is the main character, it can’t all be Barry 24/7. We need to know what makes people like Cisco, Gypsy,Caitlin, Joe, Wally, etc. tick. What is their lives like when not chasing metas? That’s fun stuff to explore!

Kayla: I loved Cisco and Gypsy in this episode! I’ve always seen potential in them. In the past, Cisco has always been comic relief. He deserves love too. I hope they continue to explore this relationship. They both have the same powers and sense of humor.

I love how Cisco kept realizing he was in the dog house with Gypsy. I do realize the case was important and probably wouldn’t have been solved without Cisco, and I think Gypsy got it too, eventually. I’m glad he made it up to her. Their last scene is what made me have hope for this couple. I see potential.

It’s important for the other members of Team Flash to have lives outside of the lab or field because then the character becomes one dimensional. We don’t want that in season 4. Cisco is a fun character and definitely needs someone like Gypsy in his life.

Funmbi: Schmoopy is one of my new favorite words and it’s all because of Cisco and Gypsy. I enjoy their relationship so much. The fact that Gypsy would come back to spend One-One-One Day with Cisco means that their relationship is pretty serious. Cisco always puts work first and he’s such an integral part of the Team. In this case, focussing on the Kilgore case makes him oblivious to Gypsy really wanting to spend time with him. Thank goodness for Caitlin! (Incidentally, she is full of good advice in this episode. It’s her recommendation that Barry and Iris go to therapy.) And when Cisco puts together the One-One-One date for Gypsy at the end of the episode, it’s such a wonderful moment. I hope their relationship continues to grow. Cisco deserves to be in love and Gypsy complements him really well. Also, I don’t know where else to say this, but Cisco’s hair was looking very lush this week!

Jade: I absolutely adore Cisco and Cynthia (and I really wish they’d give her a new code name)! I think there’s a lot of fun ahead with those two. They have fantastic chemistry, and they brought their own share of humor and hotness this week. Since the first season, I’ve said that Cisco is a hell of a catch and they need to start acknowledging that in show. With Cynthia, they finally have!

It’s important for other characters to have lives for a few reasons. First, because when we love characters, we want to see more of them than we get within the narrow Sphere of Sidekick. Second, because good characters are three-dimensional characters. Giving every character depth only serves to make their characters better. And shows are only improved when every one of their characters is well-written, well-rounded, and three-dimensional.

Caitlin and Cisco spent some time geeking out and working together to solve this week’s meta problem. Why is their friendship so important? What does it mean for Team Flash?

Alyssa: Caitlin and Cisco’s friendship is important for a number of reasons but perhaps the most important, as everyone I’m sure is saying, is that it’s illustrating that men and women can be friends. BECAUSE THEY CAN. Men and women that are friends don’t always end up falling for each other. Things don’t always have to be romantic. In fact, most of the time it’s not. Caitlin and Cisco have had an amazing bond from the beginning, and it’s been important from the start because of the significance of having that strong dynamic that’s supportive, loving, and empowering.

Lizzie: BECAUSE MEN AND WOMAN CAN BE FRIENDS. I mean, obviously, they’re important as Caitlin and Cisco, not just as an example, but they also go against a trope that is so prevalent on TV that, at this point, it’s like TV is trying to convince of that platonic friendships do not exist. And that’s not a good message to send. Men and Women can be friends, and not casual friends in the way Barry and Caitlin are painted, but real, joke around, work together, finish each other’s sentences kind of friends. That’s possible and it doesn’t have to turn romantic and that’s crucial.

Plus, they just make a good team – in the chasing metas department, don’t they?

Lyra: For bit there I forgot that Caitlin and Cisco were friends. Like all other CW shows they don’t put much stock into friendships. As soon as you get a romantic interest your friends and family, and the relationships that you have with them, become secondary. And I honestly hate it.

I’m down for shipping. Always have been, always will be. But that isn’t everything that these shows are about. Sometimes the moments that break us and that we want to learn more about are from our friends and our found families. And it boggles my mind that shows on The CW haven’t realized that we can relate more to friendships and family than romantic relationships.

The friendship between Caitlin and Cisco is important, and worth screen time, because it started with them. They are one of the cornerstones of the show and they have some of the best chemistry. How could you not want them to spend more time together? And how could you not want to connect with others and their friendships through these two friends.

Sarah: To reflect reality as we know it that not every woman and man that become friends eventually fall for each other. I mean I have always loved their friendship and as great as their dynamic is, there wasn’t a second that ever had me hoping they’d be more. They work so well together and their trust is rooted in that. Throwing in romance just for the sake of it would ruin that, and honestly it would make Team Flash for lack of a better word WEIRD.

So to the Gods of writing I ask you leave hem as friends for the sake of their characters the team and the fans.

Charles: I really hope they don’t even have Cisco and Caitlin be a romantic couple. They work well as pals. To have it become romantic would just not feel right. Let them stay as the geeky best friends they are.

Kayla: The friendship between Cisco and Caitlin is very important to Team Flash. It’s been there since before the pilot. They both were in the lab when the particle accelerator exploded, giving them their powers in the process (eventually). It became a bond that can’t be undone.

I love how they were both able to use their abilities to help solve their meta problem. And them geeking out, it’s adorable. Without their teamwork in this episode, I doubt anyone else would’ve been able to do what they did in this episode.

Funmbi: Caitlin and Cisco have been been homies from the beginning, and I love how, in spite of ups and downs, this friendship is still strong. In the case of Team Flash things, Caitlin and Cisco bounce ideas off each other and make really critical breakthroughs. It’s always nice to have a friend who will to a celebratory, flaily jig with you. But outside of that, Caitlin and Cisco are genuinely friends. They help each other through difficult times in their personal lives (e.g. Ronnie’s death, Dante’s death). Cisco is the person who brings Caitlin back to Team Flash after the Killer Frost debacle, too. I hope their relationship remains a close, platonic friendship because men and women can totally be just friends without romance. It’s great to have Caitlin and Cisco as a representation of this.

Jade: The friendship between Caitlin and Cisco has always been one of my favorites. I love how they have always been there for each other. Cisco has always been the person closest to Caitlin on the show, so it only makes sense for them to highlight this relationship and how much they care about each other in the first two episodes of the season. And it’s an important part of Team Flash because it’s far too easy for these shows to occasionally forget that the characters aren’t just together – they aren’t just friends – because they all work together as part of the same team. They interact, they’re friends, and they care about each other because they’re friends. Even if Barry had never gotten powers, Cisco and Caitlin would still be friends and would still care about each other. It gives a depth to their characters and their dynamic that is an important part of the show.

Do you have any theories about where these other metahumans are coming from?

Alyssa: It’s gotta be The Thinker, obviously. I think the better question is why is this bad guy creating these new metahumans? Obviously it’s to further his agenda — whatever that may be — but it’s definitely something that has to do with messing with The Flash.

Lizzie: Bad guy created them, OBVS, to fuck up shit, obviously. Other than that, not really, I’ve avoided spoilers and I’m glad for it. I’d rather be surprised. And, honestly, as bad as this sounds, I’m more interested in the good guys on this show.

Lyra: Considering how The Flash makes it look like it’s super easy to jump between this version of Earth and another, it’s probably that. Whoever this villain is he’s very advanced and technologically capable. He probably found away from his Earth to this one and is trying to collect his metas from when they crossed over.

Sarah: My guess is in line with Lizzie’s. Personally I think whoever is making these Metahumans is not only a villain but someone who was here when the particle accelerator exploded.

Charles: With Lizzie here – Thinker created them. For what purpose? Looks like right now, to test The Flash. Why is he doing this? Now that we have to wait and see.

Kayla: Honestly, no. This is the part of the episode that confused me. As it’s only the second episode, I’m sure through the season they will reveal it. These shows have a way of doing that.

Funmbi: I have NO idea, but what I do know is that the Thinker and his female associate are up to no good. The only thing that stands out to me is when Caitlin is working at that bar, she apparently has some connection to Amunet Black. Maybe Amunet will know some more…

Jade: Since the villain created at least some of the metas last year, the villain was responsible for bringing many of the metas to this world the year before, and the villain created all the metas to create the Flash in the first season…it would be nice if the villain wasn’t responsible for the metas this year. And yet. I totally expect it will turn out the Thinker is behind them. I would love to be surprised, though!

The Flash airs Tuesdays at 8/7c on The CW.



Alyssa Barbieri

Senior Managing Editor

Teacher by day, writer by every other free moment. Obsessed with sports, TV, books, movies, and superheroes. Proud shipper and supporter of strong female characters. TV Editor and Sports Editor. I write about DCTV, This Is Us and so much more.
Contact: alyssa@fangirlish.com.

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