In this episode of The Flash season 2, “King Shark,” Barry and the team receive a visit from Arrow‘s Lila and Diggle. The couple makes the trip to Central City to warn Barry that King Shark has escaped from an A.R.G.U.S. holding facility. Alas, the dangerous meta-human makes a visit of his own to the West home, putting Barry’s loved ones in danger. Meanwhile, in the episode’s final scene, we get a look at the man behind the Zoom mask. Read on for the big reveal.
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The Team Reacts to Losing Jay
At the start of the episode, Team Flash is reeling from Jay’s “death” at the hands of Zoom. (Yes, Zoom put his hand through Jay’s chest before he pulled Jay through the breach, but I do not understand why it is automatically assumed that Jay is dead. He had the Velocity-9 in his system, which Caitlin learned can repair cell damage, and if the V-9 gave him back his speed, it could’ve also given him accelerated healing abilities, but I guess that does not matter in light of the episode’s final twist.) Even though Jay is dead, Barry wants to go back through to Earth-2, but Harry says all of the breaches are closed for good, so there is no way to get back. They will all have to focus on moving on with their lives.
When they are alone, Harry tells Cisco and Barry that they should keep the information about what they learned on Earth-2 to themselves. He doesn’t think Joe, Iris or Caitlin should know anything about their Earth-2 doppelgangers. Barry and Cisco agree to keep the secret, but it is clearly eating Barry up. He’s barely able to pay attention during family game night, and Joe and Iris know something is going on with him.
Some Friends Come to Town
Meanwhile, Lila and Diggle arrive at one of many A.R.G.U.S. holding facilities where Waller kept some of her secret projects. As the new Director of A.R.G.U.S., it falls to Lila to clean up the mess Waller left behind, but Diggle knows that his wife can handle it. Alas, they hear an alarm and head to Aquarium 3, where King Shark has just broken out and killed a bunch of A.R.G.U.S. agents/security guards. Diggle’s reaction to seeing King Shark is priceless. Will he ever get used to the idea of meta-humans?
Diggle and Lila head to Central City to tell Barry that King Shark is on the loose. Poor Cisco thought King Shark was dead, but Lila says that is just what A.R.G.U.S. wanted them to think. Diggle says they just wanted to give Barry a heads-up, but he should let A.R.G.U.S. handle it. But after their recent loss, Barry does not want to sit on the sidelines while the last of Zoom’s henchmen terrorize his city. He wants to end everything connected to Zoom, which means taking care of King Shark for good.
Since King Shark is from Earth-2, Barry and the team ask Harry about who King Shark used to be. Harry says the man was a marine biologist named Shay Lamden. They discover that Lamden’s Earth-1 doppelganger died as a result of the particle accelerator explosion, but his widow is a research scientist who just happens to be studying sharks. Caitlin and Cisco go to talk to her while Barry heads out with Lila, Dig and the A.R.G.U.S. teams to search for the dangerous meta.
Alas, their search yields no results, just a few more dead bodies. Meanwhile, since Harry was able to track down Grodd, he starts working on a way to track King Shark. Unfortunately, he is not having much luck with that task, but he is willing to accept help from his genius daughter. Harry and Jesse work together on tracking King Shark, but it is the research Cisco and Caitlin get from Lamden’s widow that ultimately helps the team find King Shark.
Is Caitlin Becoming Killer Frost?
Throughout different moments in the episode, we learn that Cisco has been worried about Caitlin’s behavior since Jay’s death. Barry chalks it up to grief, but Cisco is concerned that Caitlin’s “cold” behavior could be the first step in her journey to becoming evil like her Earth-2 doppelganger.
He eventually tells this to Caitlin despite promising Harry that he would keep it a secret. Cisco blabbers on that Caitlin’s doppelganger was an “ice queen” known as Killer Frost who took great pleasure in killing people, and Caitlin is acting just like her. Caitlin says that she has to be cold and detached because if she lets herself feel all the pain and anger brought on by Jay’s death, she will fall apart. For now, she just wants to focus on finding King Shark.
Later in the episode, Caitlin plays a cruel but hilarious joke on Cisco by pretending to be her Earth-2 doppelganger. After Cisco calms down from the heart attack she almost gives him, Caitlin tells him that even though she is sad and needs some time alone, she is not going to turn into Killer Frost. Caitlin also points out that she does not even have the meta-human gene, which leads me to think this is a foreshadowing moment for Caitlin somehow gaining the meta gene later on.
Barry Tries to Bond with Wally
During their failed attempt at family game night, Barry realizes that Wally is not fond of him. Iris and Joe think that is just because they have not spent much time together and they just need to bond over something they have in common. To that end, Joe calls Barry and says Wally could use his help on an engineering project he is working on. Despite everything Barry is already dealing with, he agrees to help Wally out.
Alas, Wally interprets Barry’s help as Barry trying to take over, and Wally is not interested in that. After one too many almost-arguments, Barry calls Wally out on not liking him and Wally sarcastically remarks that everyone likes the perfect Barry Allen. Barry realizes Joe and Iris have been talking him up and that must be hard for Wally. Alas, before they can clear the air, King Shark attacks the West home.
Barry manages to speed away from the house when Wally is distracted and gets King Shark’s attention. He tells the meta that all of the breaches to Earth-2 are now closed, so King Shark will be stuck on Earth-1 where he will be locked up for a long time. Barry battles King Shark, but things do not go well. Luckily, Barry’s backup arrives and King Shark flees back to the water.
Wally and Iris are helping Joe clean up their destroyed home when Barry comes back to check on them. Wally, thinking Barry just hid away during the fight, calls Barry a coward before leaving. Barry tells Joe and Iris not to worry about it and to stop talking him up in front of Wally because he is far from perfect.
Later in the episode, Joe reads over Wally’s engineering project and congratulates him on a job well done. Joe also tells Wally that even though he will always be protective of Barry, that does not mean he cares any less for Wally and Iris. Barry is Joe’s son, but so is Wally. Here’s hoping this conversation helps ease the tension between Wally and Barry because I would really like to see them become friends one day.
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Barry and Co. Bring Down King Shark
With King Shark in the wind after his attack on the West home, the team is disappointed that Harry has not found a way to track him yet. Luckily for them, Caitlin found something in Lamden’s widow’s research. Caitlin explains that in order to track their prey, sharks use something called passive electro-location. This means that King Shark is able to sense the electricity in Barry’s system. Caitlin says they can use the same principle to track King Shark by using active electro-location. They can reprogram their satellite to pick up the electricity King Shark gives off. They then locate King Shark near the waterfront.
Barry and Caitlin team up with Diggle, Lila and the A.R.G.U.S. team to bring the meta down. Cisco makes a Flash lure that will mimic the energy Barry generates, and King Shark will go right for it. Cisco also stocks the lure with enough tranquilizers to knock the meta out for a long time. They have a container on stand-by that will be able to hold King Shark once they take him into custody, but King Shark avoids their first trap. Barry then lures King Shark out into open water and uses his speed to electrify the water. King Shark is then electrocuted and the A.R.G.U.S. team reels him in.
Lila takes King Shark into custody and promises they will work on a way to cure him. Diggle then has a nice heart-to-heart with Barry and we get a hilarious moment of both Diggle and Lila being awed by Barry’s speed. They really are the perfect couple.
Barry Comes Clean
After King Shark’s attack on his home, Barry finally breaks down and tells Joe and Iris what happened on Earth-2. He explains that he met their doppelgangers and that Iris-2 was the detective in the family. Our Iris thinks this is very interesting, but Joe tells her not to get any ideas. Barry goes on to explain that Joe-2 was a lounge singer who did not like Barry-2 very much and says that everything went wrong when some meta-humans showed up while he was out with Earth-2’s Joe and Iris.
A devastated Barry explains that Earth-2 Joe got killed during the metas’ attack, and even though he knew it wasn’t really his Joe, he still felt the pain of that loss. Our Joe realizes that Barry blames himself for Joe-2’s death, but it turns out that Barry blames himself for more than just that. In a fantastic performance from Grant Gustin, Barry tearfully says that everything from Zoom’s arrival on their Earth to Jay’s death is his fault and now he has left another world at Zoom’s mercy. Still reeling from the information about their Earth-2 doppelgangers — including Iris’ newfound knowledge that her doppelganger was married to Barry-2 — Joe and Iris do not know what to say to comfort Barry, but a talk from Diggle helps Barry gain some much-needed perspective.
Diggle knows first-hand what it is like to lose a man and he knows that the guilt can eat you up, but he tells Barry that it does not have to be that way. Instead of letting his guilt destroy him, Dig tells Barry to use it so he never has to lose another team member.
Barry decides to do just that, so he gathers his team together to tell them his plan. First, Barry apologizes to them. He knows his choice to go back and save his mother had a lot of consequences that they will all be dealing with for the rest of their lives, but he is prepared to own that choice. Barry says that they may have been the ones to bring Zoom to their Earth, but they will also be the ones to stop him. Barry does not know how just yet, but he says they will find a way to open the breach again because they are not done with Earth-2. Barry will not allow Jay’s death to be in vain, and the next time they face Zoom, Barry plans to beat him. It is a great speech, but I doubt it will be that easy to take Zoom down, especially once the team learns who is behind the mask.
Zoom’s Identity is Revealed
In the episode’s final scene, we travel back to Earth-2 to see Zoom carrying Jay’s body back to his lair. Zoom then pulls off his mask and we see that Zoom is really … Jay Garrick. Or at least he has the face of the man we have known as Jay Garrick. Is this “Jay” really Hunter Zoloman, aka Zoom’s alter-ego in the comics? What does that mean about the “Jay” that Team Flash has gotten to know over these last few months? Are they two different people or has Zoom just been posing as someone Team Flash can trust? If they aren’t two different people, how did Zoom/”Jay”/Hunter create the body he carried back to his lair? And what does this reveal mean about the identity of the masked man Zoom has been holding hostage? Thankfully, we have a four-week hiatus to ponder all of these questions.
What did you think of this episode of The Flash? Were you shocked by that final revelation or did you assume “Jay” was somehow involved with Zoom? Do you think Joe’s talk with Wally will help Wally let go of his resentment toward Barry or do they still have some issues to work out? How will Iris deal with the knowledge that her doppelganger was married to Earth 2’s Barry? Is Caitlin right that our Earth will never have a Killer Frost or is her comment foreshadowing Caitlin’s own meta transformation? Let us know your thoughts in the comments section.
The Flash airs Tuesday nights at 8pm on The CW.
(Image courtesy of The CW)