We are two weeks from the Crisis and the team is ready on The Flash…maybe… “The Last Tempation of Barry Allen” just gives me the chills.   Barry (Grant Gustin) just named the Elongated Man, Ralph Dibny (Hartley Sawyer) as an official hero of Central City when Dr. Ramsey Rosso (Sendhil Ramamurthy) attacked him.  It’s not clear what Ramsey wants with Ralph or why he would attack him.  I’ve got a bad feeling about this. 

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RALPH’S STAND

Ramsey and Ralph fell from the STAR Labs roof, fighting all the way down. Ramsey shoots his blood darts at Ralph. Ralph tries to avoid the blood darts, but three darts hit him and he absorbs the blood.  At first nothing major happens, but then Ramsey takes his ‘gift’ back…and he takes some of Ralph’s blood with it, leaving him weakened. Ramsey says his destiny is to heal all of mankind and he can’t let Team Flash get in the way of that. Ramsey runs away as Frost (Danielle Panabaker) shows up.

Frost takes Ralph into the lab. They don’t know what is wrong with him or how to fix him, so Frost let’s Caitlin take over. Caitlin says Ralph’s elastic cells aren’t mending. She suggests Barry give him a blood transfusion so the speed healing will repair Ralph’s cells. They don’t know if it will work but they don’t have any other ideas. Cisco (Carlos Valdes) reminds them that Ralph’s skin is elastic, so no needle can penetrate it. Barry has to phase Ralph’s arm to get the needle through. He starts the transfusion and they wait.

Barry fell asleep while watching over Ralph. Iris (Candice Patton) wakes him up and lets him know that Ralph is stable. ARGUS is taking Ralph to a secure location to recover. Barry gets upset.  He wonders what would have happened if he hadn’t been there. And if the team is really ready for Crisis.  It’s two days away.  Iris tells Barry  not to let doubts get the best of him. He prepared the team and they are ready for what comes next. 

MIND GAMES
Barry has nightmares about Ramsey on The Flash

The Flash — “The Last Temptation of Barry Allen, Pt. 1” — Sendhil Ramamurthy as Ramsey Rosso and Grant Gustin as Barry Allen — Photo: Katie Yu/The CW — © 2019 The CW Network, LLC. All rights reserved

Barry goes home and closes his eyes. He feels something behind him and turns to find Ramsey smiling back at him. Ramsey says he just wants to talk and calls Barry, ‘Flash.’ Ramsey has Barry all figured out. He knows how Barry got his powers and that he’s worried about the coming Crisis.  It’s almost as if he’s reading Barry’s mind.   Barry tries to hit him but his fist goes through Ramsey. He doesn’t know how Ramsey is there, but Barry says he’s coming for him.

Ramsey wants to know more about the Crisis, in particular, the part he plays. Barry says he’s not there and Ramsey is surprised. Ramsey says Barry should be scared. It is the end of the world. He shows Barry what the coming Crisis looks like and Barry wakes up from his nightmare.

Barry asks Frost check him out. Everything is A-Okay except for a rise in cortisol. She says he just had a nightmare but he says it felt like something else. She gives him a sleep monitor to read his vitals in case he has another nightmare. That way she can see what’s happening when he feels weird again.

Barry goes home and runs around the house to make sure he’s alone. He ran so fast he broke a sweat. Barry never sweats! He goes to get a glass of water and gets a weird feeling again. This time when he turns around, his mother, Nora Allen (Michelle Harrison) is looking back at him. He asks if it’s a dream and Nora says its worse.

STAKEOUT

Nash Wells (Tom Cavanagh) told Allegra (Kayla Compton) that Barry is the Flash last week.  Now Allegra is pouting because Iris is keeping secrets from her.  While at the Citizen office, Allegra accidentally hits a key on Iris’ computer that brings up the cover of the Citizen.  It’s teh Flash edition and the headline reads “FLASH MISSING. VANISHES IN CRISIS.”

Iris arrives and says they have a big story to cover. The story is the mystery organization that took Allegra’s cousin Esperanza, aka, UltraViolet. Kamilla (Victoria Park) was able to pull more photos from Ralph’s bow tie camera.  One of the photos is of a car. Joe (Jesse L. Martin) ran the license plate and they tracked the car to a nearby parking garage. Iris wants to find the driver and ask him some questions. Allegra asks if there are any other stories to cover, but this is paper’s focus. Allegra and Iris go on a stake out.

They find the driver. At first he doesn’t want to talk to them, but then Iris shows him the photos and threatens to print them in her paper. He tells them that he’s a courier of rare items for rich people.  Esperanza (Alexa Barajas) was an acquisition for the government. He has nothing to hide and even gives Iris his business card. Allegra thinks the story is a bust, but Iris says they missed something.

THE FUTURE YOU ALWAYS WANTED

The Flash — “The Last Temptation of Barry Allen, Pt. 1” — Grant Gustin as Barry Allen and Michelle Harrison as Nora Allen — Photo: Katie Yu/The CW — © 2019 The CW Network, LLC. All rights reserved

It’s not really Nora, it’s the speed force disguised as Nora. Barry is inside of another dream, brought on by an infection. When Barry gave Ralph the blood transfusion, a part of Ramsey’s cells were still in Ralph. That part made it’s way into Barry’s blood stream and now Ramsey is trying to take over Barry.  In reality, he passed out from the infection while at home…alone.

Ramsey starts messing with Barry’s mind, inserting himself into Barry’s world.  He joins Team Flash as they have dinner together.  Barry tries to run, but Ramsey says he can’t run from his own mind. Ramsey just wants to give him the gift of ever lasting life.

The real stinger is when Barry gets to see Nora as a baby. Ramsey says Barry can have a life after Crisis. He can be the dad he always wanted to be. He and Iris can be happy. All Barry has to do is join Ramsey.  He asks Barry if he has doubts and Barry says yes. Ramsey says he can give Barry the power to save the world from the Crisis and save him. He can give Barry the future he’s always wanted. All Barry has to do is choose life. Barry runs away to his childhood bedroom instead.

PROCRASTINATION NATION

Iris and Allegra go back to the office to regroup. Iris is brainstorming out loud and mentions Barry. Allegra suggests that they talk about how Barry is the Flash. She admits that Nash told her. Iris realizes Allegra wanted to cover a different story and says Barry’s identity can’t be exposed. Allegra doesn’t want to expose Barry though; she actually wants to talk about the headline she found on Iris’s computer.

Allegra says Iris has been avoiding the story all day. The date suggests that this will happen in two days. Iris says it’s not time to write it yet. Allegra tells Iris that she wanted to be a reporter because of Iris’ article about The Streak…the first name that Iris gave to the Flash. The article made Allegra believe in the impossible. That she could be like Iris.

Allegra says Iris gave her hope. And she still gives her hope every day since Allegra started working for her. Allegra doesn’t know how Iris is going to be able to write that article, but she knows Iris won’t forgive herself if she doesn’t finish it.

FROM A CERTAIN POINT OF VIEW
Nora Allen helps Barry gain control on The Flash

The Flash — “The Last Temptation of Barry Allen, Pt. 1” — Grant Gustin as Barry Allen and Michelle Harrison as Nora Allen — Photo: Katie Yu/The CW — © 2019 The CW Network, LLC. All rights reserved

Nora returns and tells Barry to be strong. Ramsey’s infection is getting stronger.  Barry says it’s getting stronger because he has doubts.  Nora says the job has always been difficult and asks what has changed for Barry. Well, he got married and met his future daughter.  Barry says he used to be driven by the past, now he’s living for himself.  He doesn’t want to die. 

Nora says no one is immune to fear and doubt. That’s what makes him human. Having the courage to move forward, even in the face of impossible odds makes Barry a hero. That’s what makes him the Flash.  Barry really needed to hear that.  Barry realizes Ramsey was lying about having the power to stop the Crisis and save Barry.   But Nora says Ramsey was telling the truth.  Ramsey manipulates the truth to spread his disease. That’s why he’s so dangerous, but that’s not Barry’s path.  

Barry gets angry, saying the speed force wanted him to leave his friends and family behind.  He’s angry because the speed force knew there was a way to save him. Nora tries to calm him down. 

At the same time, Cisco and Frost get an alert about Barry’s rising vitals.   Frost and Cisco got to Barry’s apartment and find him unconscious on the fllor.  Frost says she’s seen this kind of fever before. Barry is being taken over by Ramsey.  

TEAM CITIZEN

Joe calls Iris, Allegra and Kamilla to a crime scene. The guy they questioned is dead and no one saw anything. There are enough cameras around to capture any activity, but there is nothing on video. Joe says it’s like a ghost killed the man.  

Allegra says it gets worse. She found a button or coin or something that has some major UV radiation coming off of it. She tells Iris it’s time to call Barry’s friend the Flash. Iris informs her that Kamilla knows because Cisco used to be Vibe.

Iris says the story has gotten a lot more mysterious and lot more dangerous. She understands if Kamilla and Allegra want to bail out. They both say they are all. Ladies…and gentlemen…meet Team Citizen.

THE LAST TEMPTATION OF BARRY ALLEN

The Flash — “The Last Temptation of Barry Allen, Pt. 1” — Grant Gustin as Barry Allen — Photo: Katie Yu/The CW — © 2019 The CW Network, LLC. All rights reserved

Cisco and Frost take Barry to STAR labs and give him an anti-inflammatory to bring down his temperature. Cisco says they need some help with Barry and Frost freezes. She sees flashes of Ralph on the table and starts hyperventilating.

Meanwhile, Nora says the speed force is not denying his sacrifice and burdens. They have only tried to be a guide on this path that he chose. Barry gets angry saying he didn’t chose the path. The lightning struck him, changing his life, his family’s life and he had no say. The black blood starts running down the walls.

Nora says Barry’s role is a vital part of the balance of all things. There are universal forces at stake that must be protected. Ramsey shows up and agrees with Nora, but says it’s a shame that she doesn’t care about Barry.  They go back and forth, trying to convince Barry that the other is lying. 

At the same time, Barry is just geting more angry.  He says his conneciton the speed force has cost the lives of his loved ones.  He asks Nora if she can feel pain.  Ramsey feeds into Barry’s anger by reminding him that the speed force isn’t human. Nora tries to convince Barry that the speed force needs Barry and values him, but it’s too late. Ramsey is too powerful. Barry says the speed force is manipulating him and that’s why it looks like his mom. He attacks Nora phasing into her.

BARRY’S CHOICE

Frost is still frozen and unable to help Barry. Cisco runs to his video arcade game and opens a secret compartment. Inside are three injection devices, labeled Velocity X, a substance that increases the speed of the user.

Ramsey pins Nora to the door. He tells Barry to take command of his life forever and take his hand. Barry reaches for Ramsey and Cisco injects the Velocity into Barry, releasing Nora.

Ramsey disappears to the other side of the bedroom door.  Nora tells Barry that Ramsey’s blood will save him from the coming crisis, but not his soul. He will lose his light, his joy, and everything that Iris loves about him.

Ramsey returns, says Nora is lying. He grabs Barry’s hand his blood crawls up Barry’s arm. Nora grabs the other hand, making lightning crawl up that arm. Nora says Barry can defeat Ramsey, but Ramsey says the choice is his.

Barry wakes up and everything is okay. His fever is gone, his heart rate is back to normal, and he’s alert. Cisco is happy to see that he beat the fever. Barry says it took him a while, but yeah…he beat it.

BACK TO WORK

The Flash — “The Last Temptation of Barry Allen, Pt. 1” — Sendhil Ramamurthy as Ramsey Rosso — Photo: Katie Yu/The CW — © 2019 The CW Network, LLC. All rights reserved

In the tunnels, Nash takes out a gun that blasts sonic waves. He breaks through the rock and finds a metal wall behind it with seven symbols carved into the metal. He says Mar Novu ran across infinite earths and now he has nowhere left to run.

Iris sits behind her computer and starts writing her article. She begins to cry, thinking about Barry and what’s to come. She gets a text and rushes out the door.

Barry explains what it’s like to be locked inside his head. He thanks them for helping him. Cisco is impressed that Barry was able to defeat a sentient infection.   Barry is done talking and wants to find Ramsey before the Crisis…that is less than thirty-six hours away.  

Cisco tries to talk to Frost about freezing up during Barry’s crisis. She says she talked to Caitlin. During Crisis, Caitlin will handle all of the medical emergencies. It’s what’s best for the team.

Iris arrives and tries to talk Barry into going home with him. He’s focused on his work and is basically ignoring her so she lets him focus on his work. She goes to Cisco and Frost and tells them, that’s not Barry. They slowly approach Barry. He’s supposedly running diagnostics on the system. Cisco reaches out to get his attention and Barry turns to face him. His eyes and mouth are black. Ramsey won.

Barry disabled the STAR labs computers before running out, knocking over everyone. Barry’s lightning is black and white as he runs to Ramsey. Ramsey welcomes his blood brother, the blood Flash. Ramsey says he is the world’s salvation, come to save it from all that ails it. Soon the entire world will embrace Bloodwork. Blood Flash kneels before Bloodwork.

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THOUGHTS

I’ve always wanted to see the darker side of Barry Allen, but this is ridiculous! The Crisis is just hours away and Barry isn’t Barry anymore! This is the real test for Team Flash without Flash.   It was interesting to watch Barry release his anger on the speed force. He always thinks of others first. For once he was thinking of himself and what he wants. And he finally admitted that he didn’t want to die. No one wants the Flash to die. I honestly don’t blame Barry for turning to the dark side.

OK… the real reveal was Nash’s findings. Some of those symbols kind of resembled the Arrowverse heroes’ emblems. There are seven symbols. Maybe for Green Arrow, Flash, Supergirl, Superman, Batwoman, Black Lighting, and White Canary? That’s just a guess, but there was clearly an arrow on that line of symbols.  

I’m so ready for this Crisis, but the Flash has me shook! We need our Barry back!

 

 

 

 

Noetta Harjo
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