Barry Allen might have a new lease on life in The Flash Season 4, but he’s still too lazy to read the user’s manual for the flashy new suit Cisco made for him. This bit of oversight causes more problems than any villain in Episode 2, and it makes Peter Parker’s suit problems in Spider-Man: Homecoming look like the child’s play it is. There’s also a super-dangerous technopath and couple’s therapy to contend with, but that’s nothing The Flash and Barry Allen can’t handle, right?
In the season premiere, the amnesiac Barry came through for Iris and used his new suit in a pinch to quickly defeat the Samuroid, but in Episode 2 we learn that the new suit has a ton of cool new features that get comically misused. Despite Barry Allen being able to read a book faster than Jonathan Travolta in Phenonemon, he doesn’t bother spending the few seconds it would take to breeze through it. A faster-than-ever Flash then spends most of Season 4, Episode 2 struggling to adjust to life with an over-complicated new suit.
Nice one, Barry. Maybe it’s something he can talk about in couple’s therapy?
Barry’s happier than ever in “Mixed Signals,” pulling a Risky Business while cooking breakfast in his underwear. TThe CW really wants us to know that this is a fun season, and you know what? It’s working.
But why wouldn’t Barry just spend the seconds it would take to read Cisco’s manual? The Flash even spends a minute at the start of the episode with Barry watching 6 months worth of watching TV at a thousand times the speed — (Jon Snow died! Oh, he’s alive again.) — reminding us of this aspect of his powers.
Barry and Iris work out some of their relationship issues while a new suit takes center stage at times. Cisco tells us the suit has “self-repairing armor, nano-liquid circuitry, and a custom-made HUD.” Pretty cool, but it doesn’t help when Barry loses control, especially because he’s not communicating well with Cisco, Iris, or his suit.
Barry and Iris go to couple’s therapy — twice — and despite Barry doing things like canceling training and planning their wedding without her, what Iris is really mad about is Barry leaving at the end of Season 3 without even consulting her.
Barry’s always rushing ahead or away or into oncoming danger, and hardly ever does he slow down enough to consider his future wife’s thoughts or feelings. Therein lies the great irony of being a speedster hero: He’s not always keeping pace with his loved ones.
Barry and Iris work out some of their relationship issues while a new technopath meta-human starts targeting his former tech buddies. So it’s a shame that Barry isn’t in control of his cool new suit for their final confrontation during which Kilg&re (pronounced “Kill-gore”) is able to control Barry’s suit and shoot Iron Man-style energy blasts to take out Wally.
What else can this crazy new suit do? Puff up like a blowfish apparently, but also self-destruct — which Barry only narrowly avoids by throwing a bolt of lightning at himself. Only through team unity and strong communication can Barry and the rest of Team Flash save the day just in time.
When all’s said and done, Barry realizes that he’s only as strong as his team, chief among them his new co-leader and fiancée Iris.
The Flash Season 4 has indeed returned to its lighter, more fun-loving roots, and who knows where the rest of the season will go. The Thinker is still largely milling about in his obscure lair, looming over the horizon.
The Flash Season 4 airs Tuesdays on The CW at 8 p.m. Eastern.
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