The Flash 3×18 Review: 'Abra Kadabra'

While The Flash has certainly been at the top of its game this season with these last few episodes, “Abra Kadabra” felt more like a filler episode at times. But I get it. It was molded to fit the circumstances needed to set up the next wave of episodes.
It sent us to the future and Killer Frost.
Honestly, “Abra Kadabra” was underwhelming for the most part until the final scene and the post-credits scene that set the stage for where we’re headed. Given as we’re headed into a month-long hiatus, I had been expecting a nonstop, action packed hour. But I have to say, those final two scenes were enough to keep me talking for the next month.

Let’s break down the two most significant moments from the episode:

To The Future And Beyond

As we wind down the final episodes of this third season and inch closer to D-Day where Iris’ fate hangs in the balance, you could say Team Flash is getting desperate. Basically they’re pushing the boundaries in order to figure out a way – any way – to defeat Savitar and save Iris’ life. This week’s episode proved just that as a futuristic villain named Abra Kadabra came to Central City to steal some tech to return home to the future. It just so happened that he also was holding an important piece of information: he knows who Savitar really is.
A couple of episodes prior, we learned that Savitar isn’t a God. He’s very much susceptible to vulnerability as Jesse Quick proved. Which meant that there was someone underneath that armor making things tick. But it also meant that there is a way to defeat Savitar. But the how? Well, that’s the big question isn’t it?
“Abra Kadabra” consisted of Team Flash’s pursuit of capturing this futuristic villain after the tease that he knows something about Savitar. But Team Flash had to deal with Gypsy, who had returned to their Earth to capture Abra Kadabra and return him to Earth-19 to face his crimes. So it was a race to find Abra Kadabra and the only lead that our team had at this point. We saw
Joe West go to extremes to protect his daughter, in what has always been my favorite part of this show. The heart. The emotion. The characters. The relationships. We saw Joe pushed to his moral limit because in his mind nothing else mattered other than saving his daughter. And this was the only real lead that they had at this point. Ultimately, that cost Team Flash a member of the team. While Caitlin, who was hit with shrapnel as Abra Kadabra escaped, survived the surgery – awake, I might add – it was the post credits scene that changed everything. (More on that below.)
But perhaps the most important part of this episode (before the post credits) came in the final scene when Barry alerted Iris and Joe that he knows how to defeat Savitar. For so long Savitar has boasted about him being a step ahead of Team Flash at every turn. It almost seemed hopeless. Until Barry figured out how he was doing it. Savitar was using his ability to travel through time – the future to be exact – to predict, rather see what their next move would be.
So Barry decided to level the playing field. We saw the extremes that our characters were willing to go to in order to save Iris, including Joe setting a killer free because he had the name of the villain that would kill her. Barry decided that he’s going to go to the place where he can get the answers he needs – the answers to defeat Savitar. Barry is going to the future. So we’ve far passed the exit of “Time Travel Ethics” at this point.
To fight fire with fire, you have to be willing to get burned. And it seems like Barry’s more than willing to walk into hell and back to save Iris.

Killer Frost Lives

While I’ve been trying to fight this future that Savitar has perfectly laid out, I knew deep down that it was only a matter of time before his prophecy involving Caitlin and Killer Frost came to fruition. In an episode that wasn’t The Flash’s most thrilling hour over these past few episodes, it was the final post credits scene that added life to the episode and almost dared the viewer to attempt to breathe. I can tell you, it was impossible.
As Caitlin laid in recovery in STAR Labs eating lime jello with Cisco, everything seemed like it was okay. Only everyone knows that nothing good ever happens in a post credits scene. It’s there for a reason. It’s like the beginning of a scary movie. Someone always dies. Just like something HUGE always happens in these post credit scenes.
But interestingly enough this scene dragged on for several minutes, and I tried to convince myself that everything was going to be alright. But I was fully expecting Killer Frost to emerge. I didn’t know how, I just knew it would happen. So when Caitlin went into shock and began seizing, I began to lose my mind. Cisco, Julian, and H.R. were scrambling to save her amidst shots of a lifeless Caitlin, terrified Julian, and a sobbing Cisco that had me screaming at my television.
I was waiting for one of them to pull the damn necklace off her. But no one moved. Like she wasn’t breathing for a solid two minutes before Julian finally yanked the necklace off despite Cisco’s reminder that Caitlin didn’t want this. Caitlin had said she’d rather die. But Julian wasn’t going to lose her. He knew that Caitlin needed Killer Frost’s healing abilities to save her life. That’s all that mattered in the moment.
As Killer Frost healed Caitlin’s injuries, she rose to life in a sea of ice and emerged on the other side as her worst nightmare, Killer Frost.
We knew it was coming. We knew it, and it didn’t hurt any less. It was more how Caitlin became Killer Frost that was tragic. The chilling reminder that she would’ve rather died than become this monster. But now she’s the very thing she never wanted to be. And we really don’t know if we’re going to get her back.
I mean, I believe we will. But it’s supposed to feel hopeless at this point. It’s also supposed to be an opportunity to explore a popular comic book character’s origin story before potentially shelving her until some other time in the future.
So the question is: What now?
Well, given the headline that we know, Killer Frost will be at large from now until the day of Iris’ “death.” So don’t expect Caitlin to return anytime soon if not at all this season. While Barry and Team Flash have attempted to prevent the future from happening, they’ve failed every time. Because Savitar has always been a step ahead of them. But perhaps that can change now that Barry has decided to level the playing field.
Maybe we don’t know Killer Frost’s fate after all?
Regardless, I have to admit that I’m super excited to watch Danielle Panabaker tackle Killer Frost once again. It’s always a delight to watch her play evil. And a reminder of just how important Caitlin Snow is to this show.

Five Things…

  1. Can we talk about that final post credits scene because HOLY S***! I knew that something was bound to happen given the placement of the scene. It can be equated to the beginning of a horror movie. You know something bad is going to happen. But that scene was filled with so much emotion, shock, and a reveal that we’ve been waiting for. Dear God, it was perfect.
  2. Caitlin Frost was not only awake during her surgery, but she helped guide Julian through it. Caitlin is a badass. Seriously. All of the awards. That whole sequence was intense and so well done.
  3. KILLER FROST! KILLER FROST! KILLER FROST! We knew it was coming. It was worth it. Killer Frost’s revival certainly lived up to the hype, and now we have to wait a month to see her chilly reawakening.
  4. Please give me more Iris and Joe scenes. That final scene with father and daughter brought me to tears as reality set in. This was a father who has gone to extremes to try and save his daughter. Only he finally realized that he doesn’t know how to save her. It broke my damn heart.
  5. So Hamilton is showing in Central City? Leave it to The Flash to find a way to my heart through my love and obsession with Hamilton. See, even superheroes have a thing for Lin Manuel Miranda. Also, can you hook a girl up?

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

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