During this week's episode of "The Flash," "The Wrath of Savitar" was truly felt as all of Team Flash dealt with heartache, loss, betrayal, and death. This was the episode where all of Savitar's prophecies came true: One will die, one will betray you, and one will face a fate worse than death. Wally's visions of Savitar caused Barry to bench Wally, which only led to Wally's isolation. Julian returned this week but didn't want to let Savitar speak through him, despite the Team needing those skills. Caitlin confessed to keeping a piece of the Philosopher's Stone, which put a divide between her and Julian. Barry and Iris' relationship went from the high of getting engaged to the low of falling apart after Wally revealed the truth to Iris about her future. Every actor delivered outstanding performances this week and the show got to a place of seriousness, of intensity that it has never been to before. Everything felt deeper this week, the stakes were higher, the reality of betrayal didn't seem forced or contrived. "The Flash" is a consistently great show every week, but this is hands down the best episode "The Flash" has ever done.
One Will Die
The first moment of celebration in the episode came when Barry and Iris announced their engagement to everyone. While Team Flash was elated over the news, Joe was pissed. He was happy that his daughter was marrying her "best man," but Joe was hurt that Barry didn't ask him for permission. This feeling only compounded when Wally, sick of being benched, asked Cisco to vibe him to the future. While there, Wally noticed that Iris wasn't wearing an engagement ring when she was killed by Savitar. Wally then confronted Barry about it in front of Iris. Iris realizing that Barry only proposed to her to change her future, which led her to say that she couldn't get married to him for the wrong reasons. This whole exchange was heartbreaking to watch. Barry has been in love with Iris his entire life, why did it matter that he proposed for the wrong reasons? He loves her and that's all that should matter. But it didn't, because Iris wasn't wearing her ring in the final moments of the episode.
One Will Betray You
After Wally confessed to seeing Savitar, the Team asked Julian if he would plug himself in to let Savitar speak through him. Julian was hesitant and angry, he didn't want to let that monster back inside his head. He agreed, only at the suggestion that Caitlin would be there with him and not look at him differently. Julian kissed Caitlin and then agreed to do it. Through two different conversations with Savitar, the Team realized that Savitar and the Philosopher's Stone were both in the same place: the speed force. For whatever reason, they didn't know that when Barry originally launched the Stone into the speed force in the winter finale. Caitlin admitted that she betrayed the Team in keeping stone, which put a divide between her and Julian. He couldn't understand why she would hold onto something that Savitar used to torture people, including himself. The only glimmer of reconciliation came when the Team realized that Caitlin keeping the Stone was the only thing keeping Savitar within the speed force.
A Fate Worse Than Death
Early on in the episode, Barry, Wally, and Jesse tried to see if they could run fast enough to stop Savitar in a practice situation. Wally was fast enough and "got to Iris" on time. The team began to celebrate, but their celebration was cut short when Wally confessed to having visions of Savitar. Barry completely overreacted and took Wally off the team in case Savitar was using Wally to spy on them. This left Wally feeling alone and isolated, which made him the perfect target for more of Savitar's taunts. At one point, Wally could even feel Savitar hitting him. Eventually, Wally tried to stop Savitar on his own, but because Wally didn't know everything the team had learned up to that point, he ended up doing exactly what Savitar wanted. Wally stole the final piece of the Philosopher's Stone and threw it into the speed force. This gave Savitar exactly what he needed to escape. Savitar then switched places with Wally and Team Flash watched in horror as Wally was sucked into the speed force. All that was left of him was his suit. It was burned and mauled into shredded pieces. Savitar then crawled out of the speed force, apparently free from the prison a future version of Barry had trapped him in.
The episode concluded with Savitar severely injuring Barry and escaping. But none of that compared to the brutal death that Wally experienced when he was being sucked into the speed force. Based on the trailer below, it's clear that Wally can be saved -- Barry just has to do what he did in the Season 2 episode "The Runaway Dinosaur" -- he has to go inside the speed force. When he was in the speed force last time, he had to face the death of his mother and get to a place where he could truly let go of her. Will Wally see visions of his mother too? He did see her when Savitar was taunting him, perhaps he will see her again.
Ghosts of Speed Force Past
Next week on "Into the Speed Force," Barry will enter the speed force for the second time in an attempt to #SaveWally. Barry will have to face a series of "ghosts" to get to Wally: Eddie Thawne, Ronnie Raymond, and Leonard Snart.
BARRY TURNS TO THE SPEED FORCE – Desperate to stop Savitar and save his friends, Barry (Grant Gustin) turns to the speed force for answers. H.R. (Tom Cavanagh) gives Jesse (guest star Violett Beane) some advice. Gregory Smith directed the episode written by Brooke Roberts and Judalina Neira. Original airdate 3/14/2017.
Airing Tuesdays at 8 p.m., “The Flash” stars Grant Gustin, Candice Patton, Danielle Panabaker, Carlos Valdes, Tom Cavanagh, Jesse L. Martin and Keiynan Lonsdale.