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Recap / The Flash (2014) S1 E22 "Rogue Air"

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After realizing that the Particle Accelerator is charging up again, which will kill the imprisoned metahumans, Barry hatches a plan to get them moved to Lian Yu, Oliver's island prison. Only he needs Captain Cold's help to do it.


  • Actor Allusion: The episode practically shows Wentworth Miller's character ultimately causing a Prison Break for Barry's Rogues Gallery.
  • All-Loving Hero: Barry is adamant that the meta-humans won't die if the Particle Accelerator goes back online.
    Barry: "Wells" made them what they are. And I know he doesn't care if they live or die. I do!
  • Antagonist Title: Notice the Rogue in the title?
  • Anti-Climax: Downplayed: Eddie is found within the first 7 minutes of the episode, after the past few episodes made a big deal about his capture. And not by any impressive means either; they heard him calling for help from under the Particle Accelerator.
  • The Artifact: Joe finally brings up the seemingly forgotten second reason why the Pipeline exists, namely, that Team Flash was supposed to be working on a way to bring the metahumans back to normal, something which was never brought up until this episode. Crosses into Motive Decay, since the team has been focused entirely on how to help Barry catch these people, and not on how to actually undo what had happened to them.
  • The Bad Guy Wins: Snart, as usual. He cons Barry into destroying his police records and by freeing the metahumans he might get some new members for his Rogues Gallery.
  • Badass Boast:
    Barry: I don't care how fast you are. You can't fight all three of us at the same time.
    Eobard Thawne: Oh, I can't? Trust me. This...this is gonna be fun.
  • Batman Gambit: Averted, Thawne couldn't care less if Barry moved the meta-humans or not. In fact he's impressed he tried to help them.
  • Big Damn Heroes:
    • Iris knocks Peek-A-Boo out before she can murder Caitlin.
    • Firestorm and Arrow come in to help Barry in the final five minutes.
    • Barry stops Thawne from killing Oliver just in time.
  • Bittersweet Ending: Barry's plan ultimately falls apart, Eddie is still shook up over his capture and he ends his relationship with Iris due to him being unable to ignore what he learned about the future. In fact, the only thing that prevents a Downer Ending is that Eobard gets captured at the end, thanks to Firestorm and the Arrow arriving to help Barry. And even then, it's not clear if Eobard intended on this.
  • Blood Knight: Eobard Thawne is quite excited to fight three superheroes at once.
  • Brick Joke: Barry couldn't reach Oliver because he has no idea where Nanda Parbat is supposed to be. At least this time he now has an excuse for being late rescuing Team Arrow from imprisonment (and death).
  • Brig Ball Bouncing: Mark Mardon is shown in his containment cell in the Pipeline bouncing a ball off the wall since the small, bare cell has no other forms of entertainment to offer. Then the cell gets gassed to sedate him.
  • Brought Down to Badass: After Oliver initially nullifies Eobard's Super Speed, the latter is still able to hold his own against the now trained-by-Ra's al Ghul Oliver.
  • The Bus Came Back: Firestorm and Arrow. This is the first time the latter shows up here since "Flash vs. Arrow". Also the living villainous Metahumans (including Reverse-Flash in the final moments of the episode) at this point.
  • Car Cushion: Thawne lands on one after Firestorm blasts him off the roof. He almost walks it off until Oliver puts another arrow in him.
  • Chronic Hero Syndrome: Barry goes to great lengths to keep the meta-humans from being killed. Something which is lampshaded by Thawne.
    Eobard Thawne: I'm impressed you went to such great lengths to keep those people from harm. Ever the hero, huh, Barry?
  • Continuity Nod:
    • Remembering how liquid seems to float up when Thawne is using his powers, Cisco brings along orange soda.
    • Barry successfully fights and drives off Nimbus by using the arm-fan trick Thawne instructed him how to do in an earlier episode. Thawne uses this trick himself later in the episode on Firestorm.
  • Continuity Snarl: It's anyone's guess where exactly Oliver is in his own show's timeline during his appearance here, with contradictory producer statements about it. The one certainty is that it happens before episode 23 of his own show's third season.
  • The Cowl: Barry tries to be this type of hero and fails, and pep speech from Joe reminds him why he's The Cape. Specifically, he tries to take a page out of the Arrow's "extreme times calls for extreme measures" and manipulate Snart into getting what he needs. The failure comes from not being ruthless and cunning enough to have any sort of leverage over Snart, nor does Barry have any contingency plan for if anything goes wrong.
  • Deal with the Devil: Barry makes a deal with Snart. Unsurprisingly it goes horribly wrong.
  • Even Evil Has Standards: Despite betraying Barry Snart stops the other villains from murdering him.
  • "Eureka!" Moment: Thawne gives his hideout away when Team Flash find out that the Accelerator's been powering up again, and Barry reasons that Thawne couldn't have turned it on unless he's been in S.T.A.R. Labs all along.
  • Evil Is Petty: Snart sticks Barry with the bill for his meal and kills Deathbolt because he owed him money.
  • Evil Versus Evil: Mark Mardon and Kyle Nimbus are about to lay the smackdown on each other while being transplanted.
  • Evil Versus Oblivion: Barry tries to invoke this with Snart, pointing out that the metahumans could destroy the Central City he loves so much to rob. Snart praises the argument but later ignores it.
  • Exact Words: Snart promises to help Barry transport the metahumans and protect him should anything go wrong. He just didn't say anything about not releasing the metas himself.
  • The Farmer and the Viper: When asked about his betrayal, Snart points out that he is a criminal and a liar and that he likes to hurt and to rob people.
  • Foreshadowing: Barry mentions he tried to contact Oliver and Firestorm to help him move the meta-humans. Guess who shows up in the last 10 minutes?
  • Four-Philosophy Ensemble: The metahumans are villainous examples; Mark Mardon is The Optimist, Roy Bivolo is The Realist, Kyle Nimbus is The Apathetic, Shawna Baez is The Cynic and Jake Simmons is The Conflicted.
  • Four-Temperament Ensemble: Again, the metahumans; Mark Mardon is Choleric, Roy Bivolo is Phlegmatic, Kyle Nimbus is Sanguine, Shawna Baez is Melancholic and Jake Simmons is Leukine.
  • Foe Romance Subtext: This sums up the relationship between Lisa Snart and Cisco. During the episode she continuously teases him and his reactions clearly suggest he enjoys it as well.
  • Funny Background Event: In the video feed of the imprisoned metahumans, the astute viewer can see Mardon bouncing a baseball against the wall and a bored Jake Simmons lounging on the floor.
  • Horrible Judge of Character: Barry tries to get his team to fall in line with trusting Snart by vouching for his character, saying that Snart's a man of his word — after all he didn't even tell his sister Lisa about the Flash's secret identity. Barry completely mistakens the motive for this, it's not honor; Snart just sees it as part of a game he has with the Flash, anything else is acceptable including double-crossing Barry and shooting Deathbolt in the face. Moreover, he overlooked the possibility for Snart using Exact Words to his advantage.
  • Humiliation Conga: Barry's Deal with the Devil blew-up on his face, big time.
  • I Shall Taunt You: After the meta-human move becomes a disaster, Eobard Thawne shows up to the front of STAR Labs and gives a friendly wave at the camera, which causes Bary to lose it and go face him.
  • Idiot Ball: Barry grabs it firmly by trusting Snart. Though, in all fairness he is desperate for help in trying to transport the metahumans and going to Snart seems like the only option he has at the moment. Furthermore, this is lampshaded by, well...EVERYONE. And Barry has a nice speech showcasing he's near breaking point.
  • I Lied: Unsurprisingly, Snart makes a very untrustworthy partner.
  • I Want My Beloved to Be Happy: Eddie breaks it off with Iris saying he's known all along she was really in love with Barry that newspaper just confirmed it.
  • Mythology Gag:
    • Cold mentions that Ferris Air closed down after one of their test-pilots disappeared.
    • After her initial escape, Shawna attacks Caitlin and tells her she doesn't know how it feels like being a prisoner. Later in the episode, Roy Bivolo Hate Plagues her. The Villain of the Week is Captain Cold. Are all these Killer Frost references/Foreshadowings?
    • Peek-A-Boo and Mist turn tail, and Deathbolt gets iced, so who does Snart take up on his offer to join the Rogues? The Weather Wizard (an actual Rogue member) and Rainbow Raider (who was a reject of the group).
    • Eobard Thawne produces his costume from his ring. In the comics, Barry would often store his costume inside his ring.
    • Sure they probably won't be using the name any time soon (but who are we kidding, really?), but the team of superheroes that take on the Reverse Flash basically is the Justice League.
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero:
    • Although Barry meant well, the metahumans are now free to cause more chaos, and some of them might end up joining Snart's gang (like the Weather Wizard).
    • Also, albeit indirectly, Barry's plan and his trusting of Snart more than likely got a pilot killed (due to the Weather Wizard hitting it with lightning once the truck's Power Nullifier started to fail).
    • Being kept in a box for weeks, if not months, hasn't done much for Shawna's disposition.
  • Nerds Are Sexy: Lisa Snart appears to feel this way, if we assume her flirting with Cisco is for real. She seems to be genuinely delighted when Cisco comes up with a code name for her, telling him that "smart is sexy".
  • Noodle Incident: We never do find out what was Snart's bargain to Barry in their first discussion; the whole clean slate deal was actually Snart's second offer.
  • Not Me This Time: Played with: Eobard is quick to inform Barry that the plan to move the metahumans ultimately going to hell was not part of his plan. In fact, he was kind of impressed that Barry went to the length of trying to save them.
  • Only Friend: After the crap Oliver's been through for most of Season 3, Barry's probably the only person to still trust him unconditionally, which is why Barry didn't hesitate in asking for his assistance in the metahuman transport (the only reason Arrow wasn't there was because Barry couldn't get in touch with him, not knowing where Nanda Parbat is). Ollie would later ask him for a favor later down the line.
  • Opening Narration: Thawne gives after the intro, which shows some insight into his motives:
    Eobard Thawne: I want you to take a moment and think about all the things that define your life. All the people you love. Your job. Your co-workers. Your home. And now imagine if one day in a flash all of that vanished. Do you simply accept your new life, continue on or would you do whatever it takes to get back what was taken from you?
  • Pipe Pain: After Eobard is Brought Down to Badass, he grabs a pipe to attack Oliver with, though the latter eventually manages to grab it from him.
  • Power Nullifier:
    • Cisco uses the future-tech power source found in Thawne's wheelchair to build one of these in the truck used to transport the rogue metahumans.
    • Oliver has designed arrows that vibrate at a specific frequency that temporarily disable the Reverse-Flash's powers.
  • Power-Up: The reason why Thawne is faster than Barry? Inside the wheelchair is a machine that acts like a battery to supercharge Thawne.
  • Remember the New Guy?: If you only watch The Flash or missed the episode of Arrow where he showed up, chances are you have no idea who the hell Jake Simmons/Deathbolt is.
  • Rogues' Gallery Transplant: The main premise of the episode involves the literal transplanting of Barry's Rogues Gallery to Lian Yu.
  • Rule of Cool: The only reason why Oliver would show up even though it causes quite the Continuity Snarl — so three heroes can kick ass and form the genesis of the Justice League.
  • Screw Destiny: Iris tries to invoke this by saying that some newspaper from the future doesn't decide her and Eddie's future — she does! Eddie, however, isn't as convinced.
  • Screw This, I'm Outta Here:
    • Peek-A-Boo is quick to turn tail and flee when the rest of the rogue metahumans make their escape attempt. Or rather, when they began fighting the others.
    • Kyle Nimbus realizes that he can't beat The Flash, and at best will only fight him to a stalemate. When Jake Simmons and Mark Mardon attack Barry, Kyle takes the opportunity to run away.
  • Ship Tease: Lisa does a lot of flirting with Cisco.
  • A Simple Plan: Barry plans to move the meta-humans to the ARGUS prison on Lian Yu, so they won't fry when the Accelator goes back up. Naturally it all goes to hell.
  • Spoiler Opening: The appearance of Arrow and Firestorm at the end of the episode is supposed to come as a surprise, but the names of their actors are shown in the opening credits. The surprise was also spoiled in advance when some on-screen TV guides explicitly stated that Arrow and Firestorm were guest stars.
  • Stealth Hi/Bye: Snart is at his (presumably) hangout, having no caper in mind as of late, and then finds Barry is there right behind him with a proposition. This counts as an example since there were no effects (either special or auditory) that usually heralded Barry when using his super speed.
  • Took a Level in Jerkass: So far Peek-a-Boo had been one of the most sympathetic villains, as she was more a thief that broke her boyfriend out of jail and seemed to have no interest in actually harming, much less killing people, but here she flat-out tries to murder Caitlin. Had to Come to Prison to Be a Crook and Create Your Own Villain are in play.
  • The Unreveal: After the team learn of Thawne's hiding place, the latter immediately races out of there and out of the city. Where he went during his absence, and whether he had any reason to go somewhere, are left unanswered.
  • Unskilled, but Strong: Unlike Oliver (who's fighting skills are superior to Thawne but is helpless against his Super Speed) and Barry (who has similar powers but isn't at Thawne's level with them) Firestorm is the only one of the trio who actually has the offensive power to harm Thawne, best shown when he makes him stumble with a single blast. However they've clearly never fought a supervillain before and Thawne is easily able to immediately blast Firestorm away. Once Barry is able to set them up though Firestorm is the one who's able to mostly take him out with a little assist from Oliver to keep Thawne down.
  • Villain Has a Point: Played for Laughs. Caitlin is offended that Lisa calls her uptight. Nobody from Team Flash comes to defend her and the look on Barry's face suggests that he agrees with Lisa's assessment.
  • Villainous Rescue: Cold saves the Flash's life by killing Deathbolt.
  • Villain Team-Up: After briefly trying to get at each others' throats, the Pipeline prisoners decide to pool their efforts into helping each other escape, as well as getting revenge on Team Flash.
  • We Hardly Knew Ye: Jake Simmons/Deathbolt (see Remember the New Guy? above).
  • What the Hell, Hero?:
    • The district attorney gives Joe one of these when Joe "hypothetically" asks if she would be willing to assist in transporting illegally held, undocumented metahuman prisoners from one extrajudicial prison to another.
    • Joe calls Team Flash out for just keeping the meta-humans imprisoned and not freeing them. He really gives it to Barry for thinking he could trust Leonard Snart, and for erasing Snart's criminal record in the process.
  • Wrench Whack: How Iris saves Caitlin from Shawna Baez.
  • You Owe Me: Why Snart engineered the metahuman breakout — so he can invoke this somewhere down the line to expand his gang. Also why he spared Barry's life and even saved him from Deathbolt.