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THE FLASH: Season 1 Review

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My name is Barry Allen. And I am the fastest man alive. When I was a child I saw my mother killed by something impossible. My father went to prison for her murder. Then an accident made me the impossible. To the outside world I am an ordinary forensic scientist, but secretly I use my speed to fight crime and find others like me. And one day, I'll find who killed my mother and get justice for my father. I am the Flash!

The Flash finished strong with a fantastic season finale last week and satisfyingly delivered a rock solid first season. The flash is one of my favorite superhero characters and initially I wasn’t happy that the TV show took precedence over a feature film, but I’m glad it happened that way as it gave the property's rich mythology a chance to shine in the small screen. Even with other notable superhero shows on TV like Arrow and Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., The Flash quickly stole their thunder (pun) becoming the best superhero show this year.

Grant Gustin (Barry Allen) did a superb job in portraying the scarlet speedster showcasing a dynamic mix of humility, humor, and even narcissism. I wish he’s a tad more muscular but it’s just a minute nitpick. The entire supporting cast were wonderful and their chemistry, undeniable. Carlos Valdes (Cisco Ramon) was funny and witty. I enjoyed his task of naming the metahumans. Danielle Panabaker (Dr. Caitlin Snow) was your resident sexy yet capable scientist. However, my favorite was Tom Cavanagh (Dr. Harrison Wells). His incredible gravitas were simply captivating! Sure he’s a villain, arguably the best but he’s not completely evil. He truly cared for his team and that made him impossible to hate.

The father and son relationship between Barry and Detective Joe West (Jesse L. Martin) was one I especially enjoyed. In contrast, Barry’s relationship with Iris West (Candice Patton) was one that often made me peeved. I just found it cheesy, forced and melodramatic at times. Yet, when she’s on screen with her boyfriend Eddie Thawne (Rick Cosnett) she really shines. Speaking of Rick Cosnett, his portrayal of a tough detective was the most unconvincing. He just didn’t moved or talked like a detective – too feminine (even my wife noticed).

One of the factors that made The Flash successful was due to the show’s willingness to please its fans by sticking very close to the source material. Add to that the fact that Barry obtained his powers from the very beginning unlike other shows. What’s even more impressive was the show’s rogue gallery. Even though some villains were forgettable, there were several that really stood out such as The Trickster, Captain Cold, Gorilla Grodd, and of course Reverse Flash. If the show was given 16 episodes instead of 23, that would’ve made the story progress a lot smoother and avoided the weak and superfluous “villain of the week” formula. 

In terms of the special effects, The Flash mostly succeeded. The only issue for me is when they use CGI in almost all of the battles. I fail to see why they can’t keep The Flash’s face real especially if the scene is in slow motion. Again, minor nitpick. In addition, the visual as well as the soundtrack were all on point.  

Overall, the first season of The Flash knocked it out of the park. I thoroughly enjoyed all the crossover episodes and all the guest superheroes that appeared throughout the season such as Arrow, Firestorm, and the ATOM. I felt that the team-up delivered some really awesome geek-out moments. At this point with all these superheroes and Supergirl (debuting soon), we’re awfully getting close to a TV version of the Justice League (hey, you never know). Even though the finale ended with a cliffhanger, there were closures as well. And that made it satisfying but at the same time intriguing, as we wait and start speculating what season 2 might bring. Until then, may the “Speed Force” be with you!   

Rating: A- 

BY: Jovanni Febrero 
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