After an interesting setup to the Cold War arc, “Fail-Safe” definitely delivered in many aspects, not the least of which was once again setting up interesting teams of characters, and having solid performances.
Let’s start with Martin Stein, who was the star for sure. As his will was put to the test as he tried to hold back the secret of Firestorm. It was good to see his knowledge of his friends come in handy, as that opening scene with Cisco could’ve easily been disastrous, but, his time with Cisco (especially in the early parts of Flash Season 02) showed him the truth. Then, when they tried to threaten him personally, he should the iron of a man who knew what he was fighting for.
This was only compounded by Jax, who was feeling rather worthless because he was separated from Stein. However, a fun connection with Kendra not only helped him show his worth, but it was the key to solving the mystery on how to save Stein. And it was truly Jax that saved him in the end, using the true power of Firestorm to stop the abomination that had been created.
The other fun pairing here was Ray and Mick, who were stuck together in the Goulag. Much like his time with Snart, this duo was full of comedy, as well as revealing bits about the character. Ray really is the most pure of all the team, and it showed here as he took a beating for an old man because he didn’t like seeing him punished for no good reason. Which of course ticked off Mick in his own way, as he let him get beat up instead of helping him. Then, in return, when they were tortured in front of Stein, Ray took a beating for Mick, which lead to Mick saving Ray when the escape was going on. Much to the chagrin of Snart.
Ah, Snart, what a complex character he is. When he’s not flirting with Sara (what a pair that would be), he’s concerned with his own goals and agendas and loyalties. I found it interesting that he was trying to save Stein’s life by convincing Sara not to shoot him, but then was willing to leave Ray behind. True, this could be answered by his dislike of Ray’s “goody two shoes” personality, and his like of Sara, but it did feel a bit weird. Still, it was nice for his loyalty of Mick to shine through.
Then there’s Rip, he really sold the impact of the mission as we found out what happens to the world should they fail to stop Savage in this time period. Seeing numerous Firestorms destroy Star City was very poignant, as was Gideon’s statistical breakdown of how likely the future was going to be set. Yes, we knew a little that this would likely go well enough to save the future. But the death of Carter proved that anything can truly happen within reason.
Anyway, his willingness to kill Stein to save the future showed how much he’s willing to stop Savage in order to save the future both near and far. But then, to save Stein the way he did (and blow up Savage in the process) was fun to watch, as he’s very capable of changing his mind.
With the Cold War reset to its “normalcy” you’d think the time for celebration would be at hand…NOPE! They were thrown into the future…where Star City is a near wasteland…AND WE MET CONNOR HAWKE!!! I love this show.