Wednesday, 5 October 2016

The Flash- Season 1 Episode 1: Pilot

"You're not a hero. You're just a man who got struck by lightning."

Yes, I'm jumping straight into the Arrowverse, as though I didn't already have enough ongoing TV shows, but bear with me. I'm not necessarily going to start watching them in strict order but I'll get it sorted before any real crossovers, if you'll please ignore Green Arrow's cameo here!!!

This is a very assured pilot episode, especially as superhero origin stories are notoriously difficult to make narrative sky interesting. This manages to be both gripping TV and to set up a premise with lots of hooks for future narrative use. Barry Allen is a police pathologist who is extremely good at his job, as shown by the Sherlock-style visual narrative tricks. He also has a traumatic event in his childhood in which his mother Nora died in bizarre circumstances and his dad Henry was wrongly imprisoned for the crime; that's powerful stuff right there.

We're introduced to his step-sister Iris West, with whom he has a bit of romantic tension, and his solid detective step-dad, Joe. All this is established before the inevitable Event; a particle accelerator which gives him super-speed, and he's helped in this by Dr Harrison Wells of STAR Labs, ably assisted by Caitlin and Cisco. That's a solid set-up right there.

Issues? Well. Grant Gustin is a good actor but I'm not sure if his boy band looks are quite appropriate for a part like this, but time will tell.

Incidentally, it's a nice touch that Barry's dad is portrayed by the same actor who played the Flash back in the early '90s.

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