Review: The Flash ‘Escape From Earth-2’ A Glass Box Of Mystery

With the team split between two worlds, the number of conflicts doubled, as Team Flash takes on every current conflict that has been in the forefront of their minds.

Earth-1 Barry is in captivity, Earth-2 Barry is coming to grips with reality that his other worldly twin was a mere couple of feet away from him. Harrison Wells is the closest to getting his daughter back as he ever could be. Jay, at least we hope it is, is a mere child’s joke away from another chance as regaining his speed. All that and more on Tuesday’s episode of The Flash.

It seem’s that a haunting monologue is the new starting point for many episodes to come. As Zoom is racing through Earth-2 Central City, he is heard calling out to Wells, knowing that he is back in his home world and itching to get a run at his daughters capturer. A feat that has been falling short since she has gone missing.

Overall, the episode shied away from any of the major storyline. Really having two world’s full of story to sift between, it was a real central plot driven episode, which was a nice break from the dozens of arcs going on through this season.

The goal was simple, save Barry, return to Earth-1 and lock Zoom back in Earth-2. Easy, right?

Well, like any episode, things get muddy real quick. In the search for Barry, and the harder search for Zoom’s lair; Harry, Cisco, E-2 Barry and Iris Allen put E-2 Barry’s CSI skills to the test and set out to find an unlikely ally, one who would know where Zoom’s hideaway might be. From the heartbreak of her leader killing her love, Killer Frost was the center of attention, and Cisco knew that he could get her to cooperate. Barry battles his cell, unable to get out of the glass-like case.

With software that might be useful on Earth-1 some day soon, E-2 Barry cross-referenced heat signatures, obvious related temperature drops and other markers, the hunt for Frost was on. Which led them right to the middle of the forest.

Back on Earth-1, reeling from the threat of Geomancer, we see the Central City Picture News and Iris is hard at work. But, a new sheriff in town seems to have other ideas. A new editor, Scott Evans, flexes his power muscle and strikes down a Flash “fluff piece,” wanting more hard hitting stories that put the Flash in a negative light. In an almost 180 degree direction, it seems that this new editor is ready to dirty his name and prepare the city for when the Flash is not there. In fairness, the sudden disappearance of the Flash is one to create controversy and to cause some worry that the lives of Central City’s residents may face danger that is far beyond stopping. However, this vendetta that came hastily screams of a hidden reason, one of which I believe we will be seeing very shortly.

One of the bigger events from last week going into this is the first taste of Jay Garrick and his speed. In his first confrontation with Geomancer, his Velocity-7 induced speed burst quickly wore off, but was around just enough to get Geomancer’s attention and set the stage for round two. The solution was not the Velocity-6 that was created, obviously leading to the development of Velocity-7. However, much like it’s predecessor, the effects were temporary and detrimental to those who use it. As we have learned, Jay has dabbled with Velocity-6, leading him to his current health state.

His second run-in was a good segway for the debut of Velocity 9. In an almost Microsoft-like way, Caitlin Snow seemingly skipped over the entirety of Velocity-8 and went right for nine. With Geomancer causing a tremor and toppling a building, Jay skipped the whole testing part and immediately injected it right into his bloodstream. In what could only be described as one of the coolest scenes that was a long time coming, we could see the spark in Jay’s eyes. One thing was for sure, Jay was back in business.

Sprinting away, Jay answered the call of Geomancer, aware of a second Flash in Central City and saved the people that we’re almost trapped inside the rubbled and debris.

While overall it was an underwhelming event and no physical altercation took place, it was a new change with the addition of a fourth speedster to the roster and the third current one running about. Despite this long awaited breakthrough, he was clearly run down from the rediscovered speed, opting to lay down while he adapts to the change. Upon looking at the further research of the Velocity-9, Caitlin realized a breakthrough in the V-9 and how it is helping Jay’s regenerative abilities and is actually healing his ailments. After trying to announce it to him, the third and final appearance of Geomancer happened right in S.T.A.R. Labs, as he must have followed Jay back to the labs and launched a full-on attack on her and Iris, with Jay nowhere to be found.

Unwavering, Geomancer attacked the ground and caused a tremor that seemed like it was going to take the entire lab down. Heading for the gun to subdue him, Iris and Caitlin were amazingly well-prepared for the unsuspecting attack. Things looked like they were going south fast, but Caitlin managed to get the gun and knock him out. Later on, Joe put the neck dampener on him and locked him up in the basement, preparing him for Iron Heights.

At this moment, things began to get interesting.

With Barry and Jesse finally face to face and trying to figure out a way to escape, a third face began to stir the rumor mill and wild guesses on Twitter. A mystery prisoner donning a steel mask, only able to communicate via taps on the glass was a mystery up until this point. Clearly, he has a role in the whole scheme of things, because why would Zoom hold a random person hostage. Zoom is way too calculated and concise to be as random as to hold someone if they weren’t of some value. He is holding Jesse as a bargaining chip so Wells cooperates in stealing Barry’s speed, and he is holding Barry in order to sap his speed.

It’s only until Jesse and Barry discover that the tapping is in sync with a certain pattern. He never goes above five taps, but it’s obvious that he is attempting to say something. Boiling it down, Barry realizes that he is using a form of tap code. Using a 5×5 grid of the letters of the alphabet, excluding the use of K for C since they’re similar phonetically, they finally have a way to talk to this man in the mask. His message is simple, J…………A………..Y…………Jay? As in Jay Garrick?

The discussion was brief, as Zoom rushes in and cuts him off, scolding him for talking, clearly trying to hide some big piece of the puzzle. Zoom approaches Barry’s cell and easily phases through, grabs Barry by the neck and threatens him for attempting to get him to talk.

Rumors began, as well as my own thought process running rampant, what did he mean by J-A-Y? My only logical explanation, could the Jay that we know right now be a veil for Zoom? I mean, it makes sense. Zoom’s end game is really to become the fastest and strongest speedster in the multiverse. Could he actually be a Jay clone behind the mask and actually projecting another Jay lookalike. We have actually seen Zoom’s alter ego, Hunter Zolomon in the park scene when Jay was showing Caitlin his Earth-1 twin. While there isn’t much to see in the few close shots of the masked mystery, a profile shot shows what looks to be a Jay Garrick-like person.

Nothing angered me more than when they just sort of left that plot right there. Moving onward with the story, Wells, Cisco, Iris and Barry, with the help of Killer Frost, managed to make their way up the hill and happen upon an old abandoned cable car area. In a place that only a speedster can reach, Frost uses her powers to create a wall for them to climb. Once up there, they easily get Jesse out, and turn to Barry and attempt to free him. Frost tries to freeze the glass but fails, and it’s only when Wells identifies it as carbide that the only way for him to get out is to phase through. Knowing that he cannot make up the difference of the different frequencies that the two Earth’s have, Barry comes face to face with his Earth-2 self, who offers some words of encouragement, almost like giving yourself a pep talk in the mirror. Sure enough, he takes it on slowly and manages to phase through the pane and into the crowd.

Concerned about his silent friend, Barry attempts to free him, but is quickly thwarted by Zoom, who returns to his lair. Things get a bit deeper when he thanks Killer Frost for bringing them to him, despite Cisco’s pleas to her and his reminding her of Ronnie/Deathstorm’s death at the hands of Zoom. Giving him the cold shoulder, it seems that Zoom and her had baited them perfectly and Zoom was about to kill Jesse, but was blindsided by Frost, who showed that she does have a warm heart. Barry tried to save the masked man, he was desperately out of time and promised him that he would be back to save him when this was done and over with.

Allowing the team to escape, they were faced with an issue. With Geomancers attack at the lab, the speed cannon was badly damaged and the breach became unstable. Improvising on the fly, Jay used the remainder of his V-9 to open the breach long enough while Joe opened the override switches to keep the portal open. Getting everyone through, Zoom was able to take Wells back, but Wells was able to dose him with the speed dampening serum and Barry pulled him back through to Earth-1. All seemed good, until Jay was ripped back through to Earth-2 by Zoom, and the episode was done, leaving a lot to be answered.

All in all, The Flash continuously delivers on all cylinders, and this episode was nothing short of that. While the weaving of storylines was relatively small this week, the overall plot progression was a well paced thing. It’s always exciting seeing Zoom and Flash face to face, because you really never know how things will end up. Zoom clearly has issues in sapping his speed, even though he has tapped Jay’s speed and ripped it from him. Which raises the question about Jay entirely, and why Zoom is unable to leech from him directly and needed Wells’ help this time.

With next week already pointing fingers at the resurfacing of King Shark and his return to cause mayhem in Central City, it’s likely we will see a small break from Zoom and focus on Barry getting better, faster and stronger. A lot was shown, and a lot more questions have been posed, which is heading towards a dazzling finish of season two.

Sean McGrath
Sean McGrath
2015 Journalism graduate of State University of New York at Fredonia. Loves sports, movies, TV, video games, cold drinks on hot nights and hot drinks on cold nights, and anything thats classified as nerdy. Married with two cats.

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