The Flash season 7 episode 18 aired on 20 July 2021.
Here’s what you need to know about The Flash. It is a family show, both in tone and story. And it took that ‘family’ idea to some weird places this season, but in its final hour, we saw the beginning of a real family.
At the Heart of it
I’ll get this out of the way so we can talk about the real good parts of the finale. Barry confronts August Heart in his mind. After some taunting and threatening, it eventually surfaces that August is after organic speed. In particular, he wants Bart’s, because he doesn’t like Bart’s attitude, or something.
In the real world, Amnesiac August can’t remember the mind exchange but figures from Barry’s reaction that he was a terrible person. Then eventually the Flash does give him organic speed as part of a ploy, and he decides he likes being the bad guy anyway. He absorbs his clones (thus ending the Godspeed civil war) and fights the Flash in real present time.
Karan Oberoi performed well in what little time he got. In the mindscape, he really showed how pretentious and self-important August Heart is. He made Amnesiac August really look regretful. I think The Flash should have really slowly let this plot unfold over the course of the season instead of cramming it in 3 episodes, because they did find a good actor here.
Speaking of speedsters…
Okay, so another plotline that the show should have built up consistently over the season: Kristen Kramer.
Godspeed clones start duking it out on the highway, forcing Joe and Kramer (and escaping Central City citizens) to ditch their cars. When a Godspeed grabs Joe and raises a vibrating hand, Kramer somehow activates super speed to whisk him to safety.
The woman who was so against metas turned out to be a meta, who would’ve thought? (That was sarcasm. I’m sure everyone saw this coming from a mile away.)
Later on, Kramer goes for tests and eventually tells Joe that she must have been a meta all these years – she really would have died in the sabotaged mission but for meta-healing.
Maybe they could have written this discovery in a little earlier so 1. we actually see her arc from her authoritarian vendetta against metas to understanding metas and 2. so she could have been more integral to the plot? Like, being able to call on superspeed in moments of duress could have come in handy against the godspeeds. Think about it, Kramer looked like the main antagonist in the first half of the season, then suddenly and nizarrely got relegated to a D-plot.
The Flash Family
To help fight the godspeeds, Speed Force gave everyone who’s ever touched the speed force a boost. Yep, that means Speedster Iris returns! Plus speed boosters for Barry, Nora, and Jay, and a convenient revival for Bart. Too bad Wally isn’t here to join in.
Cue awesome fight scene showcasing Bart and his lightning throwing stars, Nora jr and her lightning lasso, Jay and his frisbee helmet, and BARRY AND IRIS fighting back to back like a speedster power couple.
However, they are still outnumbered by the Godspeed clones and need Allegra and Chester to bail them out. So Barry and Iris form another plan…
Wow, just when I thought we got all the cameos we were going to get…
Instead of fighting multiple clones, they decide to give August Heart organic speed and fight just one Godspeed Prime. While Barry faces Godspeed alone, Iris goes to the Force House with a task for Speed Force……
They retrieve Thawne. Yep. Reverse Flash. Our OG speedster villain. The version with Harrison Wells’ face. Although he keeps vibrating his entire self which blurs his face (so they don’t have to pay as much to have Tom Cavanagh’s time?).
But anyway, we got Jay back. We got Nora back. We have Bart. I didn’t consider they would bring back Eobard Thawne too.
Godspeed – to be fair – does try to live up to his ‘god’ title by drawing lightning from the sky and holding it like he’s Zeus or something. The Flash and Thawne do the same – though less dramatically. They just grow their out of the air.
And then the three speedsters proceed to have a lightning-sabre fight. All that’s missing is the Star Wars OST.
Thawne does a Jayna (oh wait she’s not canon any more) and stabs Heart with his light(ning)saber. WOW. OH WOW. Oh Barry, what did you expect? The reverse flash promises to kill the Flash himself, and before leaving.
“The best sequel since ‘The Empire Strikes Back'”
So all is good in the world. Barry gets down on one knee and re-proposes to Iris. It’s the moment we’ve all been waiting for: West-Allen finally get a proper ceremony and renew their vows!!! I would like to toast everyone who pestered the writers into making this happen.
Everyone gather at the West house. Jay’s wife Joan and Cecile are dropping hints to their partners. Bart Allen performs Jonah Mutono’s ‘1949’ for his parents (JORDAN FISHER SINGING!!!!!!). Joe is about to burst into tears as his two kids reaffirm their love for one another. Too bad Wally isn’t here to join in.
Cisco, decked in Star Labs regalia, took a last minute course to officiate the vow renewal. He hilariously makes small side commentary outside his official lines (“Nice entrance” to Iris when she’s descended the stairs to join Barry, calling the renewal the “best sequel since ‘The Empire Strikes Back'”, “That was beautiful,” on Iris’ vows, then to Barry, “Good luck following that, you.” On Barry’s actual vows: “Okay, that was decent. Ten points for Gryffindor.”) And then he forgets his most important line:
“Am i missing something? The kiss!! Oh yes, do the thing.”
And then Barry and Iris kiss, for a very long time, in Flash time so they don’t make out in front of everyone.
Roundup thoughts and Flash points
Oh my god. They did it. They finally filmed a kiss scene.
I thought it was never going to happen because of virus concerns and all.
I thought this season started out strongly, then became a convoluted mess in the middle. It tried to shoehorn in too many plotlines when they were already operating with less episodes than usual. But it still had its moments. And honestly, with an ending like that, who could complain too much now.
There are a few more little things I loved about this episode. Bart and Jay. Jay’s pleasant surprise when Bart calls him ‘Uncle’. Bart’s stunned look when he sees living Jay Garrick (much like Barry meeting Jay, his father’s doppelganger, for the first time). When Bart almost ran into danger and Jay was able to talk to him. Jay acknowledged that he’s only known Bart for a few minutes, unlike Barry pulling the Dad card (remember Nora had to remind him he hasn’t known Bart for all 29 years). We got a glimpse of how and why Bart took to his Uncle Jay so much.
There was Barry trying to be in with the kids, telling Bart his singing was ‘crash’. That’s not how you use the word, apparently.
By the way, was anyone else expecting a Jordan Fisher rendition of ‘Runnin’ Home To You’?
Lastly, there was the throwback to season 1. It started with August Heart telling Barry “The impossible is your thing” – a callback to the old opening titles. And it culminated with Eobard Thawne’s return. I dare say Reverse Flash will antagonise our scarlet speedster again next season.