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"The Flash": "The Flash Reborn" S4E01 Episode Recap, Review and Easter Eggs

The Flash (2017) - "The Flash Reborn" Kid Flash (Keiynan Lonsdale), Joe West (Jesse L. Martin), Vibe (Carlos Valdes

Title: "The Flash Reborn" (Season 4, Episode 1)
Directed by Glen Winter
Original airdate: October 10, 2017
Teleplay by: Todd Helbing, Eric Wallace
Story by: Andrew Kreisberg

Highlights

  • Kid Flash and Vibe team up to protect Central City with mixed results
  • Peek-A-Boo makes a peek-a-boo cameo
  • A Samurai is terrorizing the city and demands Flash fight him
  • Flash comes back from the Speed Force Prison with a neurological condition
  • Caitlin appears to have Killer Frost under control but isn't back with Team Flash
  • The Samurai is defeated and Barry gets his groove back with Iris
  • The new villain Thinker is revealed

Recap

[Warning: Spoilers for the Flash]

It's been six months since Barry Allen (Grant Gustin) volunteered to be trapped in the dimension known as "The Speed Force". The episode opens with Wally dressed as Kid Flash (Keiynan Lonsdaleand Cisco Ramon dressed as Vibe (Carlos Valdes) chasing a meta-human around the city with Iris (Candice Patton) running support back at STAR Labs which is a nice change of pace. Often she’s just the damsel in distress.

Peek-A-Boo (Britne Oldford) is on the run but Iris figures out her pattern of jumping to every third rooftop. Vibe and Kid Flash corner her but she gets the drop on them when they fall out of the portal. Just when she’s about to John Woo the two Joe (Jesse L. Martinknocks her with a neutralizing gun and the police arrest her.

The four go back to STAR Labs and Iris is chewing them out saying too many guys are getting away. What’s the group called now? Team Kid Flash and Team Vibe both get nixed. Cisco is back to being his fun, goofy self and it’s great. Last season’s story arc was great for his acting, but it’s nice to see the fun back.

Back at Joe’s house, Joe, Iris, and Joe's girlfriend Cecille (Danielle Nicolet) are making plans for her to move in. He loves his collection of vintage jazz records but she wants them out. When Cecille leaves the room Joe suggests they work through the grieving process, but Iris refuses and takes off.

Iris hears a loud noise at her apartment and calls Team Kid Flash\Vibe and an honest-to-goodness samurai is standing in the street. Kid Flash surprises everyone by speaking fluent Japanese and asking what the guy wants. Big Samurai isn’t named but he wants to fight The Flash or he’ll destroy the city.

Back at the Lab Cisco says they have to bring Barry back from the Speed Force prison. To the surprise of everyone, he’s been working with Harry Wells and Team Arrow on a solution. Joe and Wally are onboard but Iris shuts them down. She is fierce.

Cisco heads to a bar where Caitlin (Danielle Panabaker) is working as a bartender. She’s figured out a way to control Killer Frost but refuses to say how. Maybe it's the goth clothes with the ripped jeans, black fingernails, and attitude. The two have the vibe of old friends even though it’s obvious some time has passed. These guys have great chemistry. Anyway, she agrees to help Cisco bring Barry out of the speed force.

Iris shows up at STAR Labs looking for the team but tracks the van to the track. Joe and Wally are on board but it gets real awkward real fast when they realize Caitlin is there. Joe and Caitlin hug it out which seems like a silly way to resolve the conflict. I mean she kidnapped his girlfriend and handed her over to the psychotic speedster Savitar. It couldn’t hurt to give him a little more time.

Cisco modified the Speed Force Bazooka they used to fight Savitar and has an orb set up to take Barry’s place. He fires the bazooka but nothing happens. Or so it would seem. Across town, a portal opens up in the middle of the street and a yellow flash flies out. It’s naked Barry Allen (Grant Gustin) and he ends up stopping a truck before collapsing.

Back at STAR Labs Iris is chewing them out for the experiment. Then she turns on Caitlin. Joe defends her, but you can tell Iris is still mad about the whole kidnapping-and-almost-getting-killed-by-Savitar thing.

Iris tries to get them refocused on the Giant Samurai but Cisco repeats Joe’s point that of everyone there she should be the one who’s trying the hardest to get her fiance back. It's a good point and they never really explained that motivation by now.

Just then they get a call from Cecile who takes them to what looks like a mental institution where Barry is writing crazy symbols on the walls.

We’ve been waiting for a sweet reunion but those hopes get dashed when he goes off on melting stars and ice cream. Caitlin jabs him with a sedative and they take him back to STAR Labs. All his gibberish may be a form of code and Cisco sets out to break that code.

Barry wakes up to the tune of Lady Gaga but starts drawing crazy symbols again. Iris asks everyone to leave and starts telling him how hard it’s been to believe he might be dead. It’s a shame she couldn’t open up to her Dad, but love is complicated sometimes. After running around the lab like a tornado Caitlin hits him with a freeze gun saying “expecting someone else?”.

The Samurai shows up early and Wally tries to impersonate Barry. It doesn't go well and he gets stabbed in the leg by a sword. It feels like every time he gets beat down, but he always gets back up. The Samurai knows he’s not the Flash and tells them he’s still going to destroy the city and flies off.

Wally’s going to be down for five hours, but Cisco’s still trying to translate the code. Or so he thinks. It pops out as “This house is b--ching.” Cisco is ready to give up but Caitlin is there for him. It’s always nice to see them together again.

Joe goes to Wally and tenderly shaves off the beard and he and Iris have a heart-to-heart. Samurai shows up and Iris volunteers herself as a hostage.

When Barry finds out he suits up and chases after them. He takes her to a wind farm outside the city of all places. Seeing Barry dodging falling windmills is amazing so the writers know what they’re doing. He jumps on top of Giant Samurai only to find out it’s a robot under the mask.

Back at STAR Labs Caitlin and Cisco talk and she says she’ll be around but isn’t ready to rejoin Team Flash. When she comes back to the bar Norvak tries to rough her up but gets a serious case of brain freeze as Killer Frost returns. Caitlin gets back control and it’s revealed that she’s working with someone.

Cut to a woman named The Mechanic who's repairing the Samuroid and a guy in a big chair who says he’s “thinking” about his next move now that The Flash is back.

We're left with some questions: Can Iris and Barry make up for the lost time? How is Caitlin getting Killer Frost under control and what will it mean for the team? What is the Thinker's plan and how does it involve The Flash?


Review of The Flash "The Flash Reborn" - Recommended

Overall: It was a good episode. I actually would have preferred to have Peek-A-Boo as the villain since the sword-wielding robot wasn't very scary to me. What was wonderful was the exploration of Team Flash without Flash. Everyone shifted roles and took on new responsibilities. So that was fun to watch. Cisco is back on point and it's hilarious to watch him stumble over his highly-prized nicknames.

Unfortunately, the premiere wasted some good storylines. What would have happened if Barry hadn't come back? Does Barry's return mean that Iris is back to being the worrying girlfriend? What if Joe hadn't gotten over Caitlin's betrayal so fast?

Plenty of questions going into next week and it's a solid season premiere for the Flash. Kreisberg has written some of my favorite episodes and this one doesn't disappoint.


Easter Eggs in The Flash "The Flash Reborn"


  • "Poker Face" by Lady Gaga - Cisco plays this song to help wake up Barry. This song was also played in the pilot episode.

  • "Excelsior!" - Cisco says this when he figures out how to decode Barry's writing. This is a popular word that Marvel comics creator Stan Lee says to express excitement.

  • Samurai Jackass - Cisco tries out the nickname on the Samuroid robot. It's a reference to the popular animated Cartoon Network show Samurai Jack.

  • Flash Cover - When the Samuroid lifts Wally with his sword the scene is similar to the cover of The Flash #181 (1968) named "the Attack of the Samuroids".

  • "Great Caesar's Ghost!" - Cisco says this when he gets surprised. It's the catchphrase of The Daily Planet editor-in-chief Perry White.

  • "You wouldn't like me when I'm frosty" - When Caitlin gets muscled by Norvak she says this and it's a reference to the famous catchphrase in the 1970s The Incredible Hulk series. In the opening credits, Banner says, "Mr. McGee please don't make me angry. You wouldn't like me when I'm angry."

  • Life the Universe and Everything - In Douglas Adams Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy a race of beings build a supercomputer and demand to know the answer to the "Ultimate Question of Life, The Universe, and Everything".
Check back with the Geek Twins for more The Flash TV news, recaps and reviews!

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