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TV REVIEWS: FTN Reviews The Flash Season 5 Episode 2: Blocked

October 17th, 2018 by Todd Black Comments

The Flash brought in an interesting dynamic with adding Nora (Barry and Iris’ new daughter) to the mix. And now the challenge is to make her and new villain Cicada feel worthy without feeling unnecessary or treading on old ground. While “Blocked” did fall in some ways, it didn’t fail in those in my opinion.

First and foremost, we got to see Cicada in action in ways The Flash usually doesn’t do so early in the season. For here, we got to see Cicada without his mask, and actually going to his day job. Why is that important? Well, because unlike Reverse Flash, Zoom, Savitar, and Thinker, he honestly is a regular guy (at least in the comics), he’s just got a really special lightning bolt. And unlike all of them, a very personal reason for being who he is. Which was teased in the episode.

As for Nora, she continued to be the “eager beaver” and tried to do everything with her father as well as show him that she could be just as good as him. While a bit annoying at times, I actually warmed up to it because of Joe. Who reminded Barry of a time when he went overboard to try and impress him, and it backfired, revealing that this is exactly what Nora is doing for him. This led to a great moment of clarity for both Barry, for me, and for hopefully all viewers. As Nora noted, she only knows her father from the Flash Museum, and that museum (more than likely) only shows his greatest hits, so she never knew the struggles that he had to go to be the man that she pictures him as.

So, showing Nora footage from Season 1 and him struggling to understand his abilities was a great touch, and a great learning moment for Nora. Which she used to great effect in the battle against Block.

Before I get to the newest meta, I want to talk about the other sidestories. First up, Cisco…why did they do this storyline?

Granted, I was ok with him noting that he was not over Gypsy’s breakup with him (which I’m still not happy about), but to go this far with that? Yeah…no. Ralph continues to be annoying to no end, and then Caitlin got involved in it!

At least her storyline was better, as she went through the natural stages of confusion and anger when finding out that someone you thought was dead was indeed alive. And the reveal that her mother wrote the death certificate adds new layers to the mystery in a rather compelling way.

Likewise, Cecil dreading losing her powers not out of vanity, but because she was afraid of not being a “perfect mother” was actually rather touching. What mother (or father for that matter) wouldn’t want to have that link to their child from birth? Smoothing over much of what makes the first years of baby life so stressful for parents. But, with Joe once again as the figure of wisdom, she realized she didn’t need it.

Finally, with Iris, I was very happy to see her get back to her investigate roots as she tried to “keep herself busy” as she waits for Nora to warm up and open up to her. I hope this gets some light shed on it soon, because we can’t have half a season of these two being standoffish and awkward. So for Iris to realize who Cicada was is pretty significant, as is Nora knowing who he is…

Which brings me to the villain of the week. Sadly, this was another throwaway character whose story was basic and just for plot moving so that Nora could both screw up and save the day. The twist with Cicada was honestly the saving grace of the plotline, as we got to see how he could stand up to Flash, Vibe, and Elongated Man all at once. It was very compelling.

Faults aside, “Blocked” honestly was a good episode. They have got to balance out things more though, else it’ll fall into old tropes.

4 out of 5 nerds

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Todd Black is reader of comics, a watch of TV (a LOT of TV), and a writer of many different mediums. He's written teleplays, fan-fictions, and currently writes a comic book called Guardians (guardians-comic.com). He dreams of working at Nintendo, writing a SHAZAM! TV series, and working on Guardians for a very long time!