This week on The Flash, Britne Oldford stars as Shauna Baez (Peek-a-Boo) a metahuman who’s mastered the power of teleportation via quantum entanglement. After breaking her boyfriend Clay Parker, out of Iron Heights prison, Barry Allen is tasked with solving the case by taking the residual DNA particulates found at the crime scene to S.T.A.R. Labs for analyzing. Aiding Barry in his investigation is his incarcerated dad Henry who discovers that Clay owes money to a local crime boss, who just happens to be planning a major heist. Meanwhile, hard at work, Dr. Henry Wells and Cisco discover the secret to stopping Peek-a-Boo. Granted, the series can’t turn out a new A-list super-villain every week, but Peek-a-Boo is a letdown on the heels of Reverse-Flash, Heatwave and Captain Cold. And it’s not just her name that makes her disappointing – any metahuman whose powers don’t work in the dark is pretty lame in my book. It doesn’t help that the script by Aaron Helbing & Todd Helbing doesn’t do much to flesh out her character and by the end of the episode, we don’t know much about Shauna or her motives. The final showdown between her and The Flash is also disappointing since Barry is able to capture Shawna by simply removing the lights in a tunnel, and thus effectively making her unable to teleport. Peek-a-Boo is a pretty disposable character, and while I understand the character in the comic was co-created by Flash executive producer Geoff Johns, her reincarnation on the silver screen just doesn’t work.
Thus far, The Flash has managed to find a nice balance between its procedural and serialized elements, but “Crazy for You” is all over the place. There are so many subplots – and so much is going on – with so many characters coming and going – it’s no wonder it feels utterly disposable. After several episodes that do a wonderful job in expanding on the show’s mythology, The Flash hits a few speed bumps this week – and Peek-a-Boo is just one of the many problems. The Cisco and Hartley B-plot provides a heavy dose of exposition explaining how Martin Stein and Ronnie Raymond transformed into one entity on the night of the explosion (via quantum splicing) – but the execution of these scenes is problematic – or better yet, sloppy. Cisco letting Hartley Rathaway out of his cell is a bad idea from the start, but letting him go a second time after Hartley attacks him on the rooftop is unforgivable. Their fight sequence is poorly choreographed; and Cisco’s backup plan to use the sound wave distorter to stop Hartley is silly – especially since Hartley could, and does remove the implants in the end (something he’s done once before).
In spite of its many problems, “Crazy for You” features several highlights starting with the father and son reunion. John Wesley Shipp and Grant Gustin have such great chemistry playing father and son that the final scene in which Henry lets on that he knows Barry’s the Flash is perhaps the best moment in the series to date. Last week I discussed how the emotional pull between fathers and sons is an ongoing theme this season. Barry might be the object of affection for many women on the show (Iris, Caitlin, Felicity and now Linda) but the best scripted, and best acted scenes, all revolve around Barry and his three incredibly supportive father figures (Wells, Joe and of course Henry). Hopefully we’ll get to see more of Henry Allen in the near future.
At the heart of the episode is the incredible chemistry between Grant Gustin and Danielle Panabaker – and so it’s no surprise the biggest highlight comes when Barry takes Caitlin out to a Karaoke bar. Not only does Malese Jow make her debut as Linda Park, but we also get to see Caitlin getting drunk and performing a duet of “Summer Lovin” with Barry (albeit brief). The Flash has shown sparks of romantic interest between the two all season, but if anything, this episode certainly proves they make a power couple. Sadly, those familiar with the original source material and/or those familiar with TV tropes shouldn’t be surprised if we never see them actually hook up. And that wouldn’t be such a bad thing if not for the fact that Barry only has eyes for Iris, arguably, the least interesting character on the series. And even if the writers do manage to make her character more compelling, it still won’t change the fact that Grant Gustin and Candice Patton have absolutely no chemistry, whatsoever. If the series is to step away from faithfully adhering to the comic book, changing Barry’s love interest would be the way to go.
– Ricky D
Does anyone else find it weird that Peek-a-Boo is given a life sentence in the STAR Labs basement for attempted armed robbery?
Cisco: “I’d be comfortable calling it ‘our suit.’”
Henry Allen: “Word around here is Parker pulled a Shawshank.”
Rathaway: “Curiosity’s a maddening thing, is it not?”
Cisco: “How can you speak six languages and still sound like a dick in every one of them?”
How cool was this week’s stinger? We get our first ever genuine look at Gorilla Frakkin’ Grodd!!!
Grant Gustin can actually sing well!
Barry: “My social life consists of running at super-speed and Netflix.”
Barry: “Guess I’m a lot faster than a speeding bullet!”
Caitlin: “Did you sneak a peek at my goods?”
Barry: “I wouldn’t be much of a hero if I did.”