TV Review: The Flash (1×18) “All Star Team Up”


The villain didn’t need to be in the episode. I understand that a part of the status quo of the show is a baddie of the week but when it takes away from the actual narrative, it’s time to cut them.  And boy, did the villain take away from much of the enjoyment of this week’s episode. After being marketed as being the BIG team-up between team Arrow and team Flash, it was ultimately a letdown when the show decided to allow a villain, who harnesses robotic bees, to take more of a spotlight than any of the multiple characters who deserved highlights this week.

I would have loved to have spent more time with Iris and Eddie this week. Candice Patton, who plays Iris, is doing a good job with keeping a character with little-to-no characterization, and she and Rick Cosnett have a sweet energy that plays well with the characters. If we’re not going to spend time with the two characters who jumped shows, why not spend time with two of the more undeveloped ones who actually star in the show?

This may all simply boil down to my absolute frustration of the treatment of Iris, which becomes more and more ludicrous with each passing week. My assumption is that the writers intend for Joe and Barry to come off as protective, wanting to save someone they love from unwanted threats. My hope is that the majority of fans, like myself, think that Joe and Barry come off as morons who are putting someone they love in harm’s way and completely devaluing the trust they share by keeping such a big secret from her while telling everyone else who has a pair of ears.

We could have spent more time with Cisco and Ray and their budding friendship because who wouldn’t want to watch two charming characters chill and talk science? Brandon Routh is absurdly charming even when his character comes off like a stalker and Carlos Valdes is the MVP of season one of The Flash so let’s see them bond rather than just hear about it.

Barry struggles! We could have seen more Barry angst which is totally and completely warranted considering the emotional tilt a whirl he’s been stuck on ever since realizing Dr. Wells isn’t who he claims to be. He’s spending his days with his mother’s murderer and can’t say anything about it due to the potential tragedy it could bring. I joked that at the awkward dinner he went to with Felicity, Iris, Eddie and Ray it seemed like he was short circuiting but if he was could you blame him?

I would have watched an entire episode of just the awkward dinner with Barry being a terrible fifth wheel.

The bee’s was just too much. I can deal with campy, hammy, scene -chewing, the works, etc., but not when it’s hugely inconsequential to the show and its plot. Brie Larvin aka the Bug Eyed Bandit (Emily Kinney) has one purpose and that is to prove that Cisco is a hero and can be trusted so that Barry can reveal what he knows about Wells to both Cisco and Caitlin at the episodes end.

Did we really need killer bees to know that Cisco wasn’t a bad guy?

The bee storyline diminishes what a cool revelation the ending is because it’s such a bizarre way to get there. Barry spends much of episode worrying about who he can and cannot trust and with the help of Felicity and Cisco taking a stinger to the neck for Ray he realizes that he has allies in Cisco and Caitlin and tells them that Wells is the Reverse Flash. Caitlin isn’t quick to believe but Cisco is, telling them that he’s been having what feel like memories lately that Wells is indeed the man in yellow and that he kills him. We of course know that this is in fact a memory but no one else on the show does, raising the stakes on Cisco’s future. It will be interesting to see how the show deals with the split opinions on Wells and his motives or if Caitlin will soon side with Barry and co.

But those damn bees.

Other things I liked:

Felicity being her old self on the show, rather than the high-strung and always 100% morally preachy character Arrow has turned her into for whatever reason. Also, Ray is well-suited for the tone of this show and I’d like to see Routh make another appearance. He and Grant Gustin should have gotten more time to bounce off of one another.

The CGI for ATOM’s flying scenes and the mention of the suit needing to go smaller.

The awkward dinner which really seemed terrible.

The bee puns. I love puns.

It just wasn’t a very good episode. Out of the show’s 18 episodes so far, this is the first time I’ve said I didn’t enjoy an episode which is something. We’re on the home stretch of the show and with only five episodes left, I’m ready for the crazy to begin.


She is a 23 year old in Boston MA. She is hugely passionate about film, television and writing. Along with theyoungfolks, she also is a contributor over at . You can contact her on Twitter (@AllysonAJ) or via email:
  • THANK YOU! I’m so sick of Joe especially, but also Barry and Eddie, using these antiquated patriarchal beliefs to control Iris’ life and break her trust in everyone. I really hope she finds out really soon, because I can’t take much more of this.

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  • Nikki M

    I really wish that they would have explored the irony that Iris is actually in the same boat as Barry. Iris is feeling betrayed by Eddie but doesn’t realize that it’s all because of Barry forcing him into his conspiracy. She doesn’t realize that her frustration is based on Barry not being honest about who he really is. The same Barry is infuriated by the that way Wells is deceiving everyone around him. Loved your article by the way. You made some really interesting points.