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REVIEW – The CW’s ‘The Flash’ Season 9 Premiere is a Strong Start to the Final Run

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As we wait for the recently announced slate of films and TV shows from DC Studios to release, the current era of DC TV, affectionately known as the Arrowverse, is coming to a close. The Arrowverse is the shared universe of DC TV shows on The CW that initially began with Arrow in 2012. While there were once five of these shows simultaneously airing, The Flash is the last one standing. I get emotional just thinking about this series being the conclusion to the last 11 years of storytelling, because I have been consistently following the Arrowverse since The Flash began back in 2014. The nostalgia and reverence I have for these shows rivals that of my love for Star Wars

Given my love for the Arrowverse, and The Flash in particular, I was beyond thrilled to have had the opportunity to watch the premiere episode of the final season, or the final run, of The Flash – “Wednesday Ever After”. The series returns with a heartwarming episode centering around the leading couple Barry Allen (Grant Gustin) and Iris West-Allen (Candice Patton). Their chemistry is unmatched, and dedicating the premiere to their relationship sets us up for a great start to the season.

Watch the final season of The Flash, Wednesdays at 8 PM/7PM central on The CW!

The Flash Final Season Key Art
The Flash Final Season Key Art

Official Summary

Barry Allen (Grant Gustin) lived a normal life as a perpetually tardy C.S.I. in the Central City Police Department. But his life changed forever when the S.T.A.R. Labs Particle Accelerator exploded, creating a dark-matter lightning storm that struck Barry… bestowing him with super-speed and making him the fastest man alive — The Flash!

After defeating the Reverse Flash once and for all, it’s one week later following their epic battle… and Barry and Iris West-Allen (Candice Patton) are reconnecting and growing closer than ever before.  But when a deadly group of Rogues descend on Central City led by a powerful new threat, The Flash and his team—Caitlin Snow (Danielle Panabaker), Meta-Empath Cecile Horton (Danielle Nicolet), the light-powered meta Allegra Garcia (Kayla Compton), brilliant tech-nerd Chester P. Runk (Brandon McKnight), and reformed cryogenics thief Mark Blaine (Jon Cor)—must once again defy impossible odds to save the day. But as The Rogues are defeated…a deadly new adversary rises to challenge Barry Allen’s heroic legacy.  And in their greatest battle yet, Barry and Team Flash will be pushed to their limits, in order to save Central City one last time.

Based on the characters from DC, THE FLASH is from Bonanza Productions Inc. in association with Berlanti Productions and Warner Bros. Television, with executive producers Greg Berlanti (“The Flash,” “You,” “Titans”), Eric Wallace (“Teen Wolf,” “Eureka”), Sarah Schechter (“You,” “The Flight Attendant,” “Riverdale”), Sam Chalsen (“Sleepy Hollow”), and Jonathan Butler (“Bella and the Bulldogs”).

Iris West-Allen (Candice Patton) and Barry Allen (Grant Gustin) in CW's The Flash
Iris West-Allen (Candice Patton) and Barry Allen (Grant Gustin) in CW’s The Flash

REVIEW – Focusing on Barry and Iris

“Wednesday Ever After” is a Groundhog Day style episode, where Barry and Iris are stuck in a time loop after the Flash’s encounter with the new Captain Boomerang; the day resets to Wednesday no matter what they try. This forces the couple to work through their conflict over Barry’s mapbook, and how to get out of it. If time loops interest you, I recommend watching or rewatching other time loop episodes the Arrowverse has to offer! Some of them include Arrow 8×06 “Reset”, Legends of Tomorrow’s 3×11 “Here I Go Again” and 7×10 ‘The Fixed Point’, and The Flash 5×14 “Cause and XS” and 7×06 ‘The One With The Nineties’. These episodes tend to be my favorites because they force the character(s) to tackle their problems head on, and dive deep into the characters’ emotions in that episode. Typically though, it’s just one person stuck in the loop whereas here it is Barry and Iris, which adds the cool wrinkle of showing how two people deal with being stuck reliving the same day together.

This episode takes place a week after the defeat of the Reverse Flash in the last season. Using information he’s gathered when he time traveled and Gideons records, Barry has created a mapbook of his future together with Iris, and their family. After everything Barry has gone through and everything he’s lost, he wants to create the perfect future with Iris, and avoid surprises in the future; he even tells Iris some upcoming milestones for the couple. This generates a conflict since Iris isn’t too keen on the idea. She wants to make her own choices, as opposed to knowing everything that will come her way. They both have really great perspectives, and seeing them talk about it was so touching. Grant Gustin and Candice Patton deliver incredible performances here, and it is easy to see it from both of their perspectives. I enjoyed watching them figure out how to move forward.

The Flash season 9 premiere is solid. The fights with Captain Boomerang (Richard Harmon), while brief, are cool thanks to the use of slow-motion shots. Harmon brings a great personality to the character, it would be fun to see more of him this season. I hope we can get more action in the rest of the season, since there wasn’t very much here. Because this season is introducing us to a new speedster villain, Red Death in episode 2, I hope we can get longer, more complicated fight scenes similar to early seasons of the show. If they are able to bring more comic-book type action to combine with the excellent drama this cast provides, we could be up for an extremely strong ending to The Flash. I cannot wait to see where it goes from here.

RATING – 4/5 Pocky

Pocky Rating 4
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Jorgie is a pop culture fan and contributor at POCculture.com. He loves learning about visual effects, production, film, and art, and how they all come together to make films like Star Wars.

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