The Flash, Season 2, Episode 2, “Flash of Two Worlds”
Directed by Jesse Warn
Teleplay by Andrew Kreisberg & Todd Helbing
Airs on Tuesdays at 8pm (ET) on The CW
It was in issue #123 of The Flash (released in 1961), that Barry Allen accidentally vibrated his molecules at lightning speed and found himself transported to Keystone City. And it was in this parallel universe that he met Jay Garrick of Earth-Two for the first time. Even since The Flash TV show started to dabble with time travel, fans of D.C. Comics have been hoping to see this reunion unfold on the small screen, and now that we finally got what we wanted, I have to admit, it was pretty spectacular. Things play out a little differently, of course, but that was to be expected, and fans of the comic shouldn’t have a problem since the execution was outright entertaining from start to finish.
“Flash of Two Worlds” kicks off immediately after the closing moments of last week’s episode as Jay Garrick quickly steps into the spotlight and lays out the entire multiverse concept to the S.T.A.R. Labs team. Even as a reader of the comic book, I was just as perplexed as poor Joe West in trying to keep up with everything he was saying. The concept of the multiverse was loosely established way back during the Golden Age of comics in 1940, and ever since, it’s been extremely difficult to keep up with all the timelines, universes, similar characters and various storylines that, in all honesty, don’t make much sense. It’s pointless to discuss the comic here, but what I will mention is how the CW series is doing such a great job in not overwhelming viewers with unnecessary details, and more importantly, not feeling the need to overexplain the science behind it all. But when they do, it’s handled with a sly bit of humor keeping the series lively at all times.
What we do learn, however, is all we really need to know. It turns out Jay was sucked into the portal that appeared at the end of season one and ever since he’s been living in Central City for months, secretly stalking Barry and his colleagues. Jay explains to everyone that he is the Flash on his world and that he was in a battle with a demonic speedster named Zoom when the singularity pulled him and taking his powers in the process. Prompted by last week’s appearance of the Atom Smasher — Jay warns our heroes that they are in danger but just before he has time to further explain, Barry is called out to help the fire department in an emergency situation. There he runs into another metahuman, named Sand Demon, sent from Earth 2 by Zoom, to kill him.
Sand Demon was never by any stretch of the imagination, an A-list Flash foe in the comic, and often he’s ridiculed as a cheap knock-off of Marvel’s Sandman. So it shouldn’t be a surprise that here, Sand Demon is a pretty minor footnote and is introduced solely to help advance the plot as appose to becoming a fully fleshed-out character. Unlike Al Rothstein, Sand Demon doesn’t have a complex back-story or any emotional baggage but he does present Barry with a challenge. Barry can’t figure out a way to stop him but luckily for him, Jay is an experienced scientist as well as a superhero and teaches him to wield his powers to create lightning, which he then hurls at Sand Demon, turning his body into glass.
The Flash season two isn’t wasting any time in giving fans what they want. Only two episodes in and we’ve already been introduced to the multiverse concept, Zoom, Jay Garrick, and Patty Spivot (Shantel Van Santen) who made her big debut this week as an ambitious upbeat rookie cop hell-bent on joining Joe’s anti meta-human task force. She’s got her reasons (as we later learn), and she seems like a perfect match for Barry and we can only assume she’ll play a major role in Barry’s life this entire season. It helps that her character retains her background in science from the comics and it also helps that Dustin Grant and Shantel Van Santen share terrific chemistry together. And while her tragic backstory might be a little too familiar in superhero lore, it at least gives the heroic Patty a reason for taking an interest in such a dangerous job.
Barry is extremely leery about having Jay around, which is understandable considering his previous mentor (also a speedster) killed his mother. Skepticism is Barry’s first reaction, but after a series of tests and a talk with Iris, he decides to trust Jay and asks for his help. Luckily for Barry, Jay becomes a valuable addition to the team, even if he is without his super powers, and in a climatic showdown The Flash from Earth One and The Flash from Earth Two recreated the iconic image for the cover of The Flash #123.
Another interesting part of this episode was watching Cisco learn how to harness his oracular powers. It seems he’s starting to see through the barriers between worlds and the fact that he even specifically used the term ‘vibe’ suggests he’ll be making that big transformation sooner than I thought. Cisco has been a great source of comedic relief for the show and so while I would like to see the show take a more dramatic approach with his character, I just hope he doesn’t veer too far off from being the Cisco we all know and love.
The episode concludes with a scene in the alternate Earth’s Star Labs, with none other than Harrison Wells. Yes, Wells is back as we only knew he would be, but the question becomes, is Wells on this earth evil as well? Perhaps he’s hiding a few dark secrets beneath his benign exterior?
Finally, we briefly encounter the last member of the new cast, Mrs. West played by Vanessa Williams. I suspect her arrival is leading to the arrival of a certain character who will become very important moving forward.
The “Flash of Two Worlds” is the ultimate in fan service, introducing the original Flash to the show, and opening the door for a multitude of new heroes and villains, not to mention 52 parallel universes. That said, it was disappointing that Jay didn’t have his powers, but I’m sure it won’t be long before we see the Crimson Comet in action!
- Does anyone else think it is a little too soon for Caitlin to be flirting with another man just after Ronnie’s death?
- Cisco: “I know you’re new here, so I’m just gonna break it down for you. The whole naming-the-bad-guys-thing, that’s my jam. But you know what? I’m gonna let you have that one. Because I actually kind of like it. I’m not mad at that one.”
- Jay Garrick: “I’ve been probed, prodded, even subjected myself to a full body scan.”
- Is Stein’s collapse at the end of this episode a result of something terrible happening to Ronnie?
- Cisco: “I hate it when they put a color in their name.”
- Jay Garrick: “I hear they call you the Scarlet Speedster.”
Barry Allen: “How about you?”
Jay Garrick: “Crimson Comet.”
- Dr. Stein and Cisco are able to locate 52 breaches with the other Earth!
- The biggest surprise was learning that while Jay is much older than Barry, he’s only been active as Flash for two years.
- Sand Demon first appeared in Firestorm: The Nuclear Man #51 in 1986.
- Martin Stein’s explanation of Multiverse theory is right in line with DC Comics lore.
- Patty Spivot was first introduced in 1977, and she was created by the legendary Flash writer Cary Bates and artist Irv Novick.