Thursday, 30 October 2014

THE FLASH, 1.4 – 'Going Rogue' • ice and smoak

Thursday, 30 October 2014


Crossover alert! Arrow's beautiful boffin Felicity Smoak (Emily Bett Rickards) makes the trip from Starling City to Central City in "Going Rogue", ostensibly to visit her friend Barry (Grant Gustin) after hearing he's out of his coma. As a confidant of The Arrow, Felicity's let into S.T.A.R Labs' inner circle about Barry's new powers, during a time when jewel thief Leonard Snart (Wentworth Miller) decides to up his game and defeat the city's new super-sonic do-gooder...

"Going Rogue" was easily the best episode of THE FLASH that's aired, helped by the fact The CW viewers have a deeper connection to Felicity's character than everyone else on The Flash besides Barry.

I'm also in the camp that thinks 'Balicity' is a more appropriate relationship than 'Olicity' on Arrow, but thankfully too old for it to keep me awake at night (making Tumblr .GIFs). I just know that Rickards and Gustin have a fun, easygoing chemistry together, and their characters fit very nicely as a potential couple. It was perhaps unwise to throw Felicity into the mix so early, as the show's trying to make us care about Barry's unrequited feelings for Iris (Candice Patton)—which is generally a bit icky because she's practically his stepsister.

Away from the entertainment of seeing Felicity interact with the Barry and the rest of the Flash cast (I especially loved her awkward attempts to keep The Arrow's true identity a secret), this episode managed break some of the formula that's started to solidify around the show...

There was no metahuman for Barry to fight this week, just an experienced and intelligent robber called Leonard Snart (a.k.a. Captain Cold, on account of the fact he used a stolen cryonic gun to slow Barry down with blasts of sub-zero ice). Prison Break's Wentworth Miller played this comic-book villain, and used his brooding good-looks to great effect. It helped he looked supercool in those high-tech goggles, too. While not the most exciting actor to have ever lived, Miller's always had a quiet charisma and focus that suited the role of Snart perfectly. He's the best adversary the show's given us at this point (a Lex Luther-meets-Mr Freeze type), and I'm pleased they're keeping him around for another appearance, or more. Let's just hope he doesn't eventually become prone to making chilly puns.

On a purely technical level, kudos to the production team for the effects and stunt-work this week. The climactic sequence where a passenger train was purposefully derailed, forcing Barry to rescue multiple carriages of people, mid-crash, was a stunning achievement for a humble TV show. I don't even mind when you can spot Barry's CGI stunt-double during such moments, because there's enough chutzpa with the staging and camera-work to sell it.

Overall, you can tell this was a great episode when even a subplot with Joe (Jesse L. Martin) adjusting to the fact his partner Eddie's (Rick Cosnett) dating his daughter, didn't bother me. It was given the right amount of focus considering everything else happening, and didn't detract from anything. I was feeling deflated after last week's humdrum episode killed a solid start to this new superhero show, and there are still some problem areas that need to ironed out with The Flash (it's far from perfect), but there wasn't much to fault here. I only hope it didn't accidentally prove Arrow's done a better job casting its supporting characters, and "Going Rogue" simply reaped the rewards of getting Miss Rickards on-screen...


  • Is there time to swap Felicity with Dr Snow (Danielle Panabaker) on the show, permanently, then write Iris out? And yes, Felicity's dress was incredible.
  • I liked the moments when Dr Wells (Tom Cavanagh) displayed more of a ruthless, intolerant streak around Cisco (Carlos Valdes) after the loss of the lab's cryonic gun. Viewers already know Wells isn't to be trusted, given the fact he's manipulating events and has knowledge of the future, but hopefully Cisco's character can benefit from slowly beginning to doubt Wells' good intentions.
  • This episode was directed by Glen Winter. Heh. Winter. Cold. Geddit?
  • What is it with comic-book bad guys with icy temperatures in their arsenal and a desire to steal diamonds?
written by Geoff Johns & Kai Yu Wu • directed by Glen Winter • 28 October 2014 • The CW