DC on The CW: Mid-Season Finales

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DC's Legends of Tomorrow --"The Chicago Way"-- LGN208a_0307.jpg -- Pictured (L-R): Neal McDonough as Damien Darhk, John Barrowman as Malcolm Merlyn and Matthew Letscher as Eobard Thawne -- Photo: Jack Rowand/The CW -- © 2016 The CW Network, LLC. All Rights Reserved
All images by The CW.

Hello, everyone. If you don’t mind, I’d like to break format a little. Normally, this is where we’d start with, “Hey, welcome, wow that was something, right? Here’s who all contributed to this week’s recap, now let’s dive into it…” However, after two weeks of crossovers, mid-season finales, and WTF moments, I think now would be a good time to pull back a little and catch our breaths, don’t you?

This season started where last season ended for The Flash. Aside from losing his dad, things were going well for Barry. Zoom was defeated. He and Wally were getting along and not fighting for Joe’s affection. Earth-2 Wells was an okay guy. Cisco can vibe, and that helps. Finally, Barry and Iris were together. But Barry’s a little selfish and wants all the good time feels, so he went back in time and saved his mother from being murdered by the Reverse-Flash. That created the Flashpoint timeline, which again, was going pretty well for Barry, until he jacked it up and Wally was killed. Barry resets the timeline (again) by freeing the imprisoned Reverse-Flash and allowing–no, asking–Eobard to kill Nora Allen. Again. Another trip back to the future, and Eobard says that everything is back to normal for him, but Barry’s still hosed. Then Eobard speeds off to Legends of Tomorrow.

We’ve spent the first half of the season dealing with the ramifications of Barry jacking the timeline. He keeps moping that everything has been his fault because he created Flashpoint, when really, everything is his fault because he screwed over the Flashpoint timeline and created the present timeline for our CW original shows The Flash, Arrow, and Legends of Tomorrow.

savitar

Savitar has been The Flash‘s big bad so far this season, attempting to destroy Barry by bringing the worst parts of the discarded timelines crashing down on Barry in this present, warped timeline. Savitar is the result of Barry’s jacking with time. We know that Savitar uses the memories of dead loved ones to twist people into doing his bidding, namely, opening the box containing the Philosopher’s Stone, which releases Savitar into this timeline. What if the stone is nothing more than a door that allows aspects of other timelines (powers for metas and Savitar himself) to flow into this timeline?

The question I have is where is Savitar? Better yet, when is Savitar. He says is the future. He is aware of the other worlds, other timelines, and knows everything there is to know about Barry and his team. Is he really trapped in the box, or inside the stone, or is that just a device to anchor Savitar to this timeline… one which he otherwise wouldn’t be able to inhabit.

So, who is Savitar? I don’t think he’s a reject from a Michael Bay Transformer’s movie. On these CW shows, villains wear masks primarily for one reason. Think about it. We didn’t know the Reverse-Flash’s identity until the season one mid-season finale, and even that was a bit of a swerve. We didn’t see Zoom’s face until well into season two. The same goes for the Dark Archer in Arrow season one, Chronos in Legends of Tomorrow season one, and even Alchemy this season on The Flash. Why? Because they were characters we would have recognized. We knew all along that Slade Wilson was Deathstroke, and we saw the faces of Ras’ al Ghul, Damien Darhk, and Vandal Savage from the get-go. For this reason, I think that if we saw Savitar unmasked, we would recognize his face.

Right now, I’m leaning toward Savitar’s roots being in The Flash‘s season two finale. In order to beat Zoom, Barry used Zoom’s trick of manipulating time in order to create multiple versions of himself in a single timeline. Bad stuff. Draws out time dememtors, which jumped on Zoom instead of Barry because Zoom had a longer rap sheet of time crimes at that moment. The time-unhinged version of Barry was sacrificed in order for Barry to defeat Zoom. That was a version of Barry from the future (by at least a short time) that came back to preserve the existing timeline, which fits with Savitar’s self-description. That would also explain why Savitar knows so much about Barry.

What if that unstuck-in-time version of Barry didn’t simply die? What if that version of Barry isn’t cool with being sacrificed and unmoored from the timestream? What if that version of Barry watched our Barry piss away the original timeline that he had died to preserve when our Barry created Flashpoint? What of that version of Barry is intentionally trying to create enough havoc in the current, warped timeline in order to get our Barry to try and fix it one more time in order to restore the original timeline? What could possibly cause Barry to try and reset the timeline again after swearing off all that time meddling? Losing Iris, which is what Barry saw in the vision of the future.

Could Savitar as time-dislodged Barry be why 2056 Barry warned Rip in the uncovered transmission that this current timeline is warped because it is built upon Barry’s meddling and that Rip shouldn’t trust Barry when the two meet in this timeline. Could the Barry not to be trusted be the Savitar-Barry trying to use the Legends to do his bidding? I’m assuming that Rip will rejoin the Legends by season’s end and we’ll find out.

Which leads us to Legends of Tomorrow, where Professor Stein is dealing with his own meddling with the timeline. Here’s Reverse-Flash again, who told Barry that his life is pretty much back to normal in this timeline, trying to recover the Spear of Destiny in order to control all of reality. To me, that sound like just the sort of thing Barry might need in order to fix and restore the original timeline, which is what Savitar might want (per my conjecture), and really wouldn’t have an impact on Eobard at all, if this timeline and the original timeline are, from his perspective, not dissimilar. If the comics have any bearing on the TV shows, it’s going to take a lot of speedsters to help Barry defeat Savitar. Maybe Eobard is looking for the Spear in order to make a bargain with Barry and possibly help him defeat Savitar. The enemy of my enemy and all that. A long-shot, I know.

Sure, you could write off Snart’s return as Mick’s conscience, but the vision of Snart has a lot in common with Julian’s description of seeing his dead sister, which led him to finding Savitar, and Cisco seeing Dante, again because of Savitar. Notice how no one can see Savitar except the speedsters and no one can see the ghosts except those who Savitar is manipulating by preying on their guilt and sense of loss over the death of someone they loved. That could explain why Amaya couldn’t see Snart every time she walked in on Mick talking to “himself”. Could Snart be Savitar using Mick to either aid or hinder Eobard in his search for the Spear?

That leaves us with Arrow. We had an episode that got to the root of Prometheus’ identity. We were shown Ollie taking down Claybourne “four years ago”, which would have been during season one of Arrow. But, we were shown this for the first time now. As in “now that we’re in the post-Flashpoint timeline”. In other words, Ollie taking down Claybourne wasn’t shown during Arrow season one, so we might assume that it didn’t happen during the original timeline. But, it happened in this warped timeline, and thus, Prometheus. Again, the result of Flashpoint.

So, Laurel. My first thought is that it could be Savitar again. It will be interesting to see whether anyone else can see her when the show returns in January. It’s interesting that this vision/version of Laurel doesn’t appear until Ollie kills Felicity’s new boyfriend and later shacks up with the reporter, when he is at his lowest this season, which is what Savitar tends to prey upon. Another possibility might be that this is the Earth-2 doppleganger that Cisco and Caitlin captured last season when Zoom brought all the Earth-2 villains to Earth-1. The last time we saw Black Siren, she was locked in a cell at STAR Labs. If Prometheus has been following Ollie since the “it didn’t happen during season one” takedown of Claybourne, it’s not unrealistic to think that he would know about Barry being the Flash and might spring Eath-2 Laurel from her cell in order to mess with Ollie.

Dominators. Savitar. Prometheus. The Legion (albeit a small legion) of Doom. All the result of Flashpoint. Which begs the question, what happens if Barry does restore the timeline in order to save Iris? Is the current season for each of these shows going to be wiped in May 2017?

Thanks for indulging me there. I just wanted to try and connect a few dangling plot points that point to everything this season being Barry’s fault. Like we’ve said before, worst hero ever, and completely out of touch with who Barry Allen is supposed to be in the DC universe. With that all said, let’s wrap up this wall of text with a couple of thoughts from the mid-season finales.

The Flash, Episode 3.09, “The Present”
1) That was a very Dickensian Christmas episode. Ghosts of Christmases past and glimpses of a bleak future in an episode titled “The Present”.

2) And Iris dies in or around the season finale “five months from now”. So, now the mission for the second half of the season is to save Iris without telling Iris we’re going to save her. Because men. And men keeping secrets from the people they love.

Stay unpredictable, Berlantiverse.

3) I like drunk Wells. A lot.

4) If all of this is Barry’s fault for meddling with time, then where are the time dementors?

5) How can Barry continue to claim to be the “fastest man alive” in the open every week? Reverse-Flash was faster than Barry in season one. Zoom was faster than Barry in season two. Both Savitar and Wally are faster than Barry this season. In a post-fact world, we expect more from our make-believe super heroes!

Arrow, Episode 5.09, “What We Leave Behind”
1) Wait, Prometheus is some throw-away corporate villain of the week guy from season one? Say what?

No, wait, he’s the illegitimate son of a corporate villain of the week from season one that didn’t actually happen on-screen in season one…

… who went to Russia and studied the flying twist jump from some Russian lady who taught the move to Ollie.

That makes, like, zero sense, right?

2) Prometheus pulled the Heath Ledger Joker’s trick by duct taping a weapon to the hostage and making Felicity’s squeeze dress up like the bad guy. Green Arrow really is the poor man’s Batman!

3) Laurel? Did Barry chuck the box containing the Philosopher’s Stone into the speed force, only to have it land under a workbench in the Arrow Cave?

4) Where was Dolph? I missed him.

Legends of Tomorrow, Episode 2.08, “The Chicago Way”
That episode should have been a lot more fun than it was. I think the problem is that this season is chasing too many white rabbits down too many too-shallow rabbit holes. Let’s stop time aberrations! Let’s find Rex! Let’s kill Darhk for murdering Laurel! Let’s apprehend the speedster who killed Rex Tyler! Yes, I know they’re all connected, but focus here, Legends.

Coming up…
Tell us, readers, what you thought of the first half of the season for any or all of these DC on The CW shows. You can even throw Supergirl into the mix if you want. Is all of this really Barry’s fault? Are Savitar and Prometheus the result of Flashpoint and/or Barry destroying the Flashpoint timeline? With the four-part crossover delivering The CW’s highest ratings in six years, are these plotlines being connected in order for us to have another dose of “unofficial” crossover goodness at the end of this season, similar to Barry rescuing Team Arrow from Nanda Parbat in season three of Arrow, or League of Assassins Ollie helping Barry take down Reverse-Flash in season one of The Flash?

What are your theories? Your predictions? What are you hoping to see when these shows return in January? Let us know in the comments!

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