This week on The Flash, Barry faced off against someone from his past, and on Arrow, Oliver dealt with a stalker, and his own repressed feelings for Felicity. Next week I believe there will be no new Arrow because of the Thanksgiving holiday, but there will be an episode of The Flash, so look for my recap of that next weekend, back on my usual Saturday schedule. But first, my thoughts on this last week’s episodes!
The Flash, “The Flash is Born”
Barry (in costume, with blurred voice) meets with Iris again to tell her she needs to stop writing about him, but he has to run off to help stop a car thief. This car thief turns out to be a metahuman with the ability to turn himself into steel, and Barry gets beaten pretty bad before he manages to get away. When Barry shows up to work the next day, he realizes the metahuman he faced the night before was his childhood bully, Tony Woodward. Detective West goes to see Dr. Wells looking for help in solving the murder of Barry’s mother, but Dr. Wells tells him it’s highly unlikely someone with abilities like Barry’s could have been responsible for his mother’s death. Cisco develops a robot for Barry to practice fighting against, and Eddie notices something seems to be off between Barry and Iris, and suggests Barry keep in mind that good friends are hard to come by.
When Barry and Eddie go in search of connections to Woodward, Barry runs out ahead of a suspect, and tells Eddie that he “took a shortcut.” Meanwhile, Woodward shows up at the coffee shop where Iris works, asking if she knows who the Streak is. Iris’ coworker spots Woodward’s mugshot on the tv, and Woodward panics, crushing Iris’ phone with his metahuman ability right in front of her. Iris posts on her blog saying she has info for the Streak, and he knows where to find her. Barry goes to see her, and gets confirmation of where Woodward’s hide out is, but he makes the foolish decision to go there right away, and Woodward knocks a big shelf over onto him. Caitlin and Cisco rush to help and find him still trapped under the shelf. Back at S.T.A.R. Labs, Dr. Wells chides him for running over there foolishly, and Barry shouts that he couldn’t beat Woodward as a kid, and he can’t beat him now either, even with his powers. Cisco explains that if Barry hit Woodward at the right speed and angle, he could do some serious damage, but it’s faster than he’s ever run so far, and Caitlin reminds him that if he does it wrong, he will probably die.
When Barry goes back to the office, Detective West says that they got an anonymous tip about Woodward’s location, but he got away. Eddie says he needs to blow off some steam because he’s so angry about it, and then he decides to give Barry a punching lesson, but Barry ends up punching a hole in the punching bag. Detective West and Dr. Wells go out for a drink together, and West confronts Wells about the fact that he started up his new lab so soon after Barry’s mother’s murder. Dr. Wells avoids answering, tells West to look up a name, and leaves. Woodward kidnaps Iris and Eddie and Barry have to call their training session to a close as they frantically try to find her. Woodward takes her back to their old elementary school, and says he wants her to write about him instead of Barry, because he’s already killed the Streak. Iris manages to pull the fire alarm, alerting West and Barry to her location.
Barry goes and tries to fight with Woodward, but quickly realizes the only way he can beat him is to do the supersonic punch that Cisco calculated for him. He runs and pulls it off, and while Woodward is recovering, Iris gets in a punch of her own, knocking Woodward out. Woodward wakes up locked in S.T.A.R. Labs, and Barry reveals his identity to him, explaining that they were both changed by the same thing, but Woodward used his gift to hurt people, and Barry used his to stop him. Barry locks him away with a satisfied little happy dance, having finally defeated his childhood bully. West goes to visit Wells again and apologizes, having realized that Wells moved to Central City after the death of his wife and fellow scientist. He renews his request for Wells’ help in solving the case, and Wells says Barry is lucky to have Detective West on his side. Barry goes to see Iris and they make up, and Iris gets the idea to rechristen the Streak as “The Flash.” While Detective West is looking through the file on Barry’s mother’s murder, the metahuman who did it shows up, steals the file, and leaves a threatening message on the wall warning him to stop investigating.
Arrow, “Draw Back Your Bow”
In a flashback to six months ago and the attack of the mirakuru soldiers, we see the woman who would become “Cupid” get rescued from the soldiers by Ollie and Diggle. Back in the present, Captain Lance meets with the Arrow and tells him Isaac Stanzler was murdered with a distinctive red-tipped arrow, and left dressed up like the Arrow. Felicity walks in on Ray Palmer shirtless and doing the “salmon ladder” exercise and mutters to herself that she has a type. Ray asks her to accompany him on a boring work dinner the next night and at first she refuses, but then he pulls out a fancy dress he bought her for the occasion and Felicity changes her mind (definitely not her most shining moment). Ollie sees her on tv at a press conference with Ray and Diggle can tell he isn’t happy about it.
When Oliver breaks open the arrowhead from Stanzler’s murder, he finds a small piece of paper with an address. He and Diggle go check it out and find a creepy shrine to the Arrow. A phone rings in the apartment and it’s Cupid telling Oliver about her next victim. Felicity promises to help Ollie find her, but reminds him she has dinner with Ray Palmer that night. Oliver still looks miserable at the thought of it, but tells her to do what she wants. Felicity figures out Cupid is a former cop named Carrie Cutter, and a possible location for where she is holding her next victim. Roy and Ollie go in but Cutter finds Roy first, and knocks him out. When Ollie refuses her advances, she runs off, leaving behind the mob boss who she was about to kill. Roy is angry with himself for letting Cutter get the best of him, but Ollie’s assurances that it’s not his fault are tossed aside. Diggle finds out that Cutter had become obsessed with her partner and sent for psychiatric help back when she was a police officer. While Oliver goes to talk to her former psychiatrist, Diggle goes to talk to Felicity. She says Oliver made his choice, and Diggle says they both know it was the wrong choice. Felicity says Oliver should come talk to her himself if he has something to say. Ray then loans a 10-million dollar necklace to Felicity for the dinner, saying that the dress was ‘missing something’ (and promptly making my internal creep alert go off, I admit).
Cupid has a man triangulate the approximate location of the Arrow’s home base, and then kills him after he gives her the information. Captain Lance calls the Arrow to say that Cupid has killed again. Ollie says he needs Felicity there and Diggle confronts him saying he just wants Felicity away from Ray Palmer. At the business dinner, Felicity seals the deal for Ray by convincing the mine owner to trust Ray. Ollie agrees to meet with Cupid, and when he arrives at the location he suddenly remembers having saved her that night six months ago. He tells her he can’t be with anyone but Cutter tells him he’s lying, and they fight. Cutter drops the two of them down onto subway tracks and handcuffs Ollie to the tracks, but he breaks out and pulls them both off the tracks just in time. Oliver hands her over to Amanda Waller to join the Suicide Squad, and Diggle tells Oliver that based on Felicity’s reaction to what he said to Cutter, he needs to tell her the truth about how he feels before it’s too late.
Ray comes to thank Felicity for getting the deal over dinner, and he ends up kissing her, right as Oliver comes to see her, so Oliver leaves without saying anything and angrily throws stuff around when he gets back to the Arrow cave. Roy and Oliver bond over the fact neither of them are feeling very well, and end up going over to Diggle and Lyla’s home for dinner. At the newly christened “Palmer Technologies,” Ray is shown working on a fancy protective suit of some sort, that apparently the mine Felicity just helped him purchase was necessary for. In Hong Kong flashbacks, Maseo goes out to meet a contact while leaving Oliver back at the apartment. Nine hours later, he still hasn’t returned. Oliver and Maseo’s wife, Tatsu, have to work together to track him down. They believe he has been killed but when they return to the apartment, Maseo is there, alive and well. The last bit of the episode shows one man killing another with a fancy boomerang, presumably somewhere in Starling City.
I wasn’t particularly impressed with any of the women on The Flash or Arrow this week. Iris continued to put herself in harm’s way despite all of her loved ones cautioning her that it might put her in danger, and then when her life was in danger she spent most of her time hoping the Streak would show up and save her. Then on Arrow we had a woman suffering from mental illness that caused her to obsess over and stalk the Arrow because he had saved her life, and Felicity, who is convinced to take part in a boring business dinner by being given an expensive dress, and loaned an even more expensive diamond necklace, and is then kissed by her boss at the end of the night. Laurel was also noticeably absent this episode, considering how she seemed to be spending more time in the Arrow cave in recent episodes. I think at this point what I am most excited for is the much-hyped Flash/Arrow crossover episodes coming up the first week of December.
Writer’s Note: My apologies for this going up late! I was at a conference in DC and didn’t have as much time to sit around with just me and my computer as I usually do.