The Flash: 2.06 Enter Zoom
The trouble with a great first season of a show is that you go into year two expecting very big things. And while season one of The Flash was not perfect it did demonstrate how to make a fun, thrilling TV adaptation of a comic book hero week after week. Furthermore the premise of season two is bigger and bolder than year one - multiverses - so after a strong start anything less that brilliance is always going to fall a bit flat with audiences.
And Enter Zoom was both. After a slightly intriguing opening that saw an escaped Doctor Light defeat the Flash, we zipped back 72 hours to see what led up to that fateful moment. Not a lot it seemed; perhaps the episode should have been called Enter Zoom for the last ten minutes. So much of the episode was the setup of that bold plan to lure Zoom out into the open, using Doctor Light as bait. And of all the things go to wrong, Light is able to turn herself invisible, leaving her costume behind and escaping Star Labs. Which begs the question, is there an invisible alternate Linda Park running around Central City naked?
It wasn't dull though even if it felt a little uneventful at times. We learned a bit more about this alternate Wells and his personal history with Zoom who kidnapped his daughter. And the tenuous relationship he has with this world's Cisco added some tension as Cisco sought to learn more about Wells by using his newfound powers.
The stuff with this world's Linda was very amusing. I loved the training montage, complete with the cardboard cut outs of Cisco and Joe and the badly scripted dialogue as Barry and Linda 'played out' his defeat from the opening of the episode was particularly cringe worthy, though how they expected an observing Zoom to full for it I don't know. As for Barry revealing himself to Linda, it was a lovely sweet scene that brought depth to her character, proving she could be more than just a peppy co-worker for Iris and a fun match for Barry last year. This season's non Barry-Iris pairing is far more successful though. Barry and Patty have great chemistry together.
Of course with Linda discovering Barry's secret, I expected her to be dead by the time the credits rolled and with the shocking arrival with Zoom it nearly happened. The confrontation between the hero and villain on the rooftop was tense stuff and Zoom throwing Linda off the building and Barry rushing to save her was classic superhero fun.
And from there the episode went from okay to amazing. Zoom is a terrifying, demonic-looking Flash and having Candyman himself Tony Todd voice the villain is the icing on the cake. It put the dramatic showdown between the Flash and Reverse Flash last season to shame and as their battle commenced it became gripping and horrible to watch. Zoom literally beat Barry down and we were treated to one shocking moment after another as Zoom zoomed across the city, parading the broken Flash in his arms to the reporters at Picture News, the Central City police precinct and the heroes at Star Labs.
This was proper Bane / Batman stuff and it only became more shocking as the episode progressed. Even Wells couldn't stop him and the moment Zoom caught the bullet aimed to slow him down and drove it into Barry's chest it was clear the villain was on a whole other level to what had come before. While Barry survived, he ended the episode severely injured and unable to feel his legs. I am excited to see what Zoom does to step up his game for round two.
Enter Zoom was a little frustrating at times, padding out the episode until the moment the titular villain arrived. But when he did we got ten of the best minutes of The Flash has given us to date. My only frustration is that we're probably going to see things drawn out again until we get more of Zoom and compared to him, is any other villain going to measure up? I am intrigued but apprehensive to see where the show goes next...