The Flash went full Back to the Future Part II on us

first_imgStay on target It’s a shame that DC has struggled so much to get its cinematic universe off the ground because their superheroes have been (more or less) consistently killing it on the small screen for four years now. Beginning with Barry Allen’s introduction in season two of Arrow, DC and the CW have built a solid stable of superhero shows with intertwining stories more meaningful than anything Marvel is able to make happen.Ever since the season two finale of The Flash, fans have wondered how Barry’s actions would affect not just his own story, but the entire Arrowverse. Well, we don’t have an answer to the bigger question just yet, but we did get to see the world Barry created when he went back in time to stop Reverse Flash from killing his mom.Things are going surprisingly well for Barry. His parents are both alive, together and happy. He’s actually living with them and they, not knowing about the other timeline, are starting to give him a subtle push out the door. Understandable, since he’s in his 20s with a full-time job and still lives at home. He’s even finally worked up the courage to ask Iris out. And since they didn’t grow up together in this timeline, she says yes. There’s even another Flash out there fighting crime, so Barry doesn’t have to.Who is the new Flash? (Photo: Keiynan Lonsdale and Grant Gustin, Screenshot via CW)We all know this can’t last. Whenever Barry starts to think about events from his original timeline, he loses some of his memory. He asks Reverse Flash/Eobard Thawne, who he’s been keeping locked up, what’s going on. Thawne explains that this new timeline, Flashpoint, is overwriting the old one. Soon, Barry won’t remember that he even is The Flash and the change will be permanent.Barry refuses to believe Thawne and finds the other Flash, who is engaged in a battle with another speedster known as The Rival. When other-Flash falls from a window, Barry rushes to his aid and is surprised to learn that he’s Iris’s brother, Wally. I say “he’s surprised” because come on, we all knew.Barry learns that Iris and Wally have been working as a crime-fighting sibling duo and offers to help them defeat The Rival. He tries to get his old team back together only to find that they aren’t quite the same people he knew. Cisco is a selfish billionaire tech entrepreneur; Caitlin is a pediatric ophthalmologist, and Joe is an alcoholic who doesn’t talk to his kids much. Man, how did Barry’s mom do all this?Caitlin Snow (Danielle Panabaker), Cisco Ramon (Carlos Valdes) and Barry Allen (Grant Gustin) in “Flashpoint” (Photo: Screenshot via CW)Barry convinces them all to work together, explaining the situation via a timeline drawing that looks exactly like the one Doc Brown drew in Back to the Future Part II. He and Wally, dubbed Kid Flash under protest, fight and defeat The Rival, who reveals his identity as Edward Clariss. Unfortunately, Wally is wounded in the fight, and his accelerated healing isn’t working. Barry realizes his happiness comes at the expense of everyone he loves and returns to ask Thawne to kill his mom.Thawne goes back in time once again, kills Barry’s mom and brings him back to where he was before the end of Season 2. Well, almost. As he joins Joe and Wally in a toast to his deceased father, he learns that Iris no longer speaks to her family. We’re left to wonder what else Thawne changed. Oh, and the Edward Clariss of this timeline is awoken by a strange voice to find the word “Alchemy” scratched into his mirror. I guess we know who this season’s big bad will be.Doctor Alchemy has been a recurring villain in The Flash comics. His main ability is transmuting any element into any other element. Can’t wait to see how they do that on the show. In the comics, Edward Clariss has never been Doctor Alchemy, so it’s likely that we haven’t actually met Alchemy yet. That he plans to use Clariss somehow and that was his voice at the end of last night’s episode.Edward Clariss (Todd Lasance) watches the word “Alchemy” scratch into his mirror. (Photo: Screenshot via CW)The Flash has become the best superhero show on TV, outpacing Arrow by embracing its cheesy, silver-age comic book past. This is the series that made us take villains like Weather Wizard, Captain Cold, and Gorilla Grodd seriously. It managed to include all the ridiculously complicated time travel and parallel universe stuff comic book fans are used to and make it work on TV. That’s no small feat.So far, the third season is no different. One episode in and we already have multiple timelines and the promise of more cartoony comic book villains to come. And with all the time travel between this and Legends of Tomorrow, the crossover episodes this season should be even crazier than normal. Top Movies and TV Panels to Keep on Your Radar for SDCC 2019’The Flash’ Season 5 Finale Recap: 2 Big Bads and 1 Pre-Crisis last_img read more

All Quiet on the Martian Front in Doctor Who

first_img HBO Max Scores Exclusive ‘Doctor Who’ Streaming RightsJo Tro Do Plo Plo No: ‘Doctor Who’ Welcomes Back Familiar Monster Stay on target This article contains spoilers for “Empress of Mars,” episode nine of Doctor Who season 10.The last thing I’m going to do is take sides. But I am still waiting for the shock and awe Steven Moffat promised during this, his final season of Doctor Who.“Empress of Mars” is yet another filler episode—a dramatic “Jules Verne, Edgar Rice Burroughs story of derring-do,” as writer Mark Gatiss described, to pad out the three-part Monk trilogy and give audiences a rest before the real action begins.“I suppose it’s quite close to the finale, so it’s probably a bit of a more straightforward adventure before it all kicks off again,” Gatiss told Den of Geek this week.The Doctor, probably showing off to his companions, takes Bill and Nardole on an unauthorized field trip to NASA. But their break-in is cut short when ground control discovers a bizarre bit of space graffiti under the ice caps of Mars.Suddenly, it’s off to the red planet circa 1881 to investigate.Quickly separated, Bill meets a mustachioed British Army sergeant, the Doctor encounters an Ice Warrior named Friday (a reference to Robinson Crusoe), and Nardole unintentionally takes off with the TARDIS.The colonel, it turns out, found Friday’s crashed spaceship on Earth, and agreed to help the jolly green giant repair his vessel and return home—in exchange for riches mined from Mars.“He promised us gemstones, you see, silver, gold. Treasure beyond our wildest dreams,” the soldiers explain over a cuppa.Bill (Pearl Mackie) and the Doctor (Peter Capaldi) meet Friday (via BBC)But, there was nothing there, according to Captain Catchlove (Ferdinand Kingsley).“Mars is dead. Dead as a coffin nail,” Colonel Godsacre (Anthony Calf) adds, informing his guests that Friday is the “last of his kind”—an ancient reptilian race that built themselves biomechanical armor for protection.Or is he?Of course not. What kind of caper do you think this is?The tale takes a turn for the vert when the British soldiers uncover the tomb of an Ice Queen. Coated in gold and shimmering with bling, the coffin (as the Doctor warned) is more than a simple sarcophagus. It is part of a complex hibernation system—the entrance to an Ice Warrior hive.Awoken after 5,000 years by the greed of mankind, her majesty Iraxxa (Adele Lynch)—all dreadlocks, cape, and curves—takes on an army of “noisy males.”As both sides fight to survive, Bill finally understands that the Doctor isn’t always in it for the humans.Captain Catchlove (Ferdinand Kingsley) gets power hungry (via BBC)“In this scenario, the humans are the invaders. On the other hand, the Ice Warriors have vastly superior armaments which will wipe the humans out,” the Time Lord tells his friend. “So what am I supposed to to?”Introduced in 1967, the reptilian humanoid race appeared alongside the Second and Third Doctors in the classic serials “The Ice Warriors” (1967), “The Seeds of Death” (1969), “The Curse of Peladon” (1972), and “The Monster of Peladon” (1974).They returned in 2013’s “Cold War,” also penned by Gatiss: The Eleventh Doctor and Clara Oswald meet escaped Ice Warrior Grand Marshal Skaldak on a Russian submarine in 1983.To his credit, Gatiss has a remarkable way of fleshing out supporting characters—from the Colonel haunted by his treason to the fiercely nationalistic Captain whose selfishness endures until his last breath. And good on him writing one of the only empowered female villains this show has seen since David Tennant piloted the TARDIS.The one-off episode is resolved with a simple choice—”the oldest one in the book”: Live together or die together.The Doctor, Bill, and Colonel Godsacre are imprisoned (via BBC)Things aren’t so simple for Team TARDIS, though: Nardole returns to Mars just in time for the Doctor and Bill, exhausted after saving the world again, to hitch a ride home. But their troupe has turned from a trio to a qualifying bobsled squad—now that Missy’s boarded the flight.Whether the mischievous Master has really changed her ways or is playing the long con remains unclear. Much like Gatiss’s future with Doctor Who.“I’ve no idea if it’s my last one,” he told Den of Geek about this week’s episode. “But if it were I’d be very happy to have worked on the show which I’ve loved for so long and to have written for four Doctors over 12 years.”Showrunner Moffat and stars Peter Capaldi and Michelle Gomez have already announced their departure following the 2017 Christmas special. But Gatiss remains mum on his plans to continue writing for the show under new boss Chris Chibnall’s reign.“It’s been amazing. It’s still a privilege and still a pinch-me kind of thing,” he said. “It’s remarkable. I never thought it would come back, I tried to keep a torch alight, but I really didn’t think so. It’s still amazing to me that it’s come back the way it has and been so wonderfully successful, so if this is the end then I’ll be perfectly content.”Missed episode eight of Doctor Who? Check out our recap of “The Lie of the Land.”last_img read more