(Writer's note: All speed puns are absolutely intentional)
Season 2 of The CW's hit The Flash has been nothing short of spectacular, and it kicked things into high gear with episode 5: The Darkness And The Light. Earth 2 is in the house and in full effect for this one with new characters (Dr. Light), a new storyline (Earth 2 Wells) and one of my favorite characters on the show returning.
LINDA PARK IS BACK BITCHES! I love Malese Jow's portrayal of the strong and sassy sports journalist, and giving us some more insight into who Linda is via her interactions with Iris was great. Linda is a character who I hope has more screen time coming her way - She's complex, interesting and a great part of the Flashverse. Unlike a few other characters so far this season...
Give me more Linda, more Cisco, and as little Jay Garrick and Caitlin Snow as possible; Sorry for any shippers out there rooting for these multiverse crossed potential lovers, but these two have been bland almost all season. Garrick came in with SO much hype after the helmet Easter Egg of season 1's finale, and Caitlin finished Season One SO strong. They have both lost all momentum, and they can't keep up with the rest of these stellar storylines. Even when she has had potential good moments this season, Danielle Panabaker has made Dr. Snow into too much of a one-note character. During a conversation in a vehicle, there is a really great scene going on between Snow and Garrick with TONS of Earth 2 Easter Eggs and....I just didn't care.
But for every letdown of those two, this show has provided seven more great moments: This has been a strong season for Jesse L. Martin & Candice Patton, and Shantel VanSanten has been a delight as Patty Spivot, but this has been the season of Carlos Valdes' Cisco. In Episode Five we see Cisco's next step take place. As a character, no one has grown more since we met him than Cisco, but all the while he retains the goofy humor and sense of wonder that makes him so relatable and fun. This episode in particular allows him to shine as a Cyrano of sorts for Barry (ed note: go read a book, you guys), and in a WONDERFUL moment hitting on Kendra Saunders, the new girl at Jitters (the stunning actress who will be Hawkgirl, Ciara Renee).
Of course, then there's Barry. Grant Gustin continues a run of really strong episodes in "The Darkness and The Light," but not just when he's on the run - Barry Allen has been really great this season and the highlights have come when he's not doing Mach 3. Barry's interactions with Patty in this episode are...I can't think of a better word than adorable. They're freaking adorable. Barry is blinded in a fight with Dr. Light and while blind, provides some of the sweetest moments in the show's young history. And the genuine concern when he realizes Linda is in danger? Gustin has taken on this role and continues to absolutely run with it. With each week, the task facing Ezra Miller (DC's movie Flash) becomes more Herculean.
The progression with Earth 2 Dr. Wells and the big reveal as to his motivation set us off in a new direction for the team at S.T.A.R labs and laid the groundwork for the next plot arc. Also, the more we see of Zoom, the more I love him. Pure evil, a monster, and severely lacking in the humanity department, this shadowy mastermind is really pulling out every trick in the "I'm evil as shit" handbook. We also meet Dr. Light in this episode (Cisco has to be getting annoyed all the Earth 2 metas are pre-named) and she does not disappoint. On a related note? Big props to the editing and special effects team on The Flash. Speedster stuff has constantly improved, last week's surprise meta looked incredible (no, I won't spoil it) and Dr. Light's powers looked amazing.
Line of the week goes to Cisco, while acting as Barry's guide on a date:
"I'm still here, creepin' and peepin'!"
The Flash "The Darkness And The Light" gets 4 Cisco pick up lines out of 5.