It seems like forever since we’ve seen Team Flash in action, so it seemed fitting to start the episode with them battling an enemy. It truly felt like old times. Of course, it quickly became clear these weren’t old times, but it was a nice way to start the season nine premiere.
Barry Allen (Grant Gustin) and Iris Wast-Allen (Candice Patton) ended up in a time-loop, not from The Flash’s making for once. It was funny when Iris thought Barry had traveled them back in time. The Allens went through the same day 58 times. Like with any time-loop episode or movie, they had a lot of learning to do.
In Supernatural, “Mystery Spot,” Sam had to learn that he couldn’t stop Dean from dying, though he never really learned that lesson, did he? The Flash had a similar take when every time Barry died, they woke up and started the day over again.
It seems the lesson Barry had to learn was he couldn’t follow a map of their future to ensure Iris lived. This was no way to live. It meant every single choice was already made. Iris couldn’t live this way. But Iris had to learn that she had to make choices. Whether they be the ones the map said or the ones she made on her own.
I loved that instead of letting CatCo buy Central City Citizen Media, she got a loan from Sue to expand her empire on her own terms. She bought Coast City Gazette because they had layoffs and brought those writers under her wing. Who is to say this wasn’t how she ended up with her empire in the first place? And a great storyline to fit in CatCo and Kara name drops.
With Iris expanding her company (her getting pregnant in three months) and Barry going after the Director of the CSI department role, it really feels like the show is coming to an end. They are making the stepping stones for the pinnacles of their careers. All they have learned in the last nine years have led them to this. Hopefully, they will live happily ever after in the lives they are carving out for themselves, but this is the Arrowvers, and with 12 episodes left, anything could happen.
The writers may have started with a more lighthearted episode because it appears that the rest of the season could be dark. After leaving off in the season eight finale not knowing what had happened to Catlin Snow (Danielle Panabaker), it turns out she didn’t turn herself back into Frost, but someone else entirely. But it’s unclear who she is or if she means Barry and the team any harm.
Plus, Team Flash may be facing its most dangerous speedster yet, one with a Batman sign. From what I hear from the comics, this could be Red Death, a combination of Batman and The Flash. It’s unclear if this is the new villain and if it is, how much like the comics they will be. But, it is clear that they seem pretty scary and plan to kill Barry’s friends or isolate him from his friends and family. The Flash is strongest when he’s with his team. So, this could be a pretty dark season.
And possibly a bittersweet one too. Joe (Jesse L. Martin) tells Cecile (Danielle Nicolet) he wants to leave Central City. While Cecile has leveled up and is honing her new powers, he’s ready to leave it all behind. Who can blame him, after everting the’s experience. That will be a sad ending watching him go, but could give him the best ending for his character and family.