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Recap / The Flash 2014 S 2 E 4 The Furyof Firestorm

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Season 2, Episode 4:

The Fury of Firestorm

Professor Stein rapidly deteriorates: the Firestorm matrix in his body will kill him in a few days unless a replacement partner for Ronnie can be found. The S.T.A.R. Labs team must decide between two potential candidates—a fellow scientist named Hewitt, and a former high-school quarterback named Jax. Meanwhile, Barry and Patty's relationship starts to grow beyond being coworkers, and Iris must decide whether or not to have a relationship with her mother.


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Tropes:

  • Aesop Amnesia: Joe zig-zags this trope. On the one hand he's very open with Iris about her mom. On the other hand, he refuses to tell Barry about the other Wells. Which doesn't matter since they run into each other at the end.
  • Age Lift and Race Lift: In the comics, Hewitt is an elderly white multimillionaire who turns himself into Tokamak to restore his youth.
  • Alliterative Name: Two new ones within seconds of each other: Henry Hewitt and Jefferson Jackson.
  • Arbitrary Skepticism: Let's see—so far there's been a talking gorilla, two speedsters, two weather controllers, and countless other metahumans in Central City. Barry laughing off the idea of a shark-man seems like this trope.
    • Although he might just pretend — after all, he already met him in the Season 0 comics.
  • Bad Liar: The moment Patty tries to lie about a case involving Earth-2 Wells, Barry knows something's up. She herself warns Joe that she is terrible hiding secrets.
  • Big Damn Heroes: The ending has Earth-2 Wells saving Barry and Patty from King Shark.
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  • Blatant Lies: Aside from Patty being a Bad Liar, we have Cisco. When asked by Caitlin if he'd reject the chance to be a superhero, he hesitantly says "sign me up" despite the fact that he knows he does have powers and hates it.
  • Brick Joke: Patty asks Barry to investigate a mysterious tooth, saying she thinks that it probably belongs to a shark-man. He laughs this off as implausible, but guess what shows up at the end?
  • Broken Ace: What Jax became after the particle accelerator explosion caused his Game-Breaking Injury.
  • The Call Put Me on Hold: Happens to Hewitt. He takes it personally.
  • Call-Back:
    • Professor Stein mentioned how he and Ronnie went to Pittsburgh to understand their Firestorm powers, and he's doing it again with Jax.
    • Jax wanted to know if one of the perks of being Firestorm is flight. Cisco asks Ronnie a question along those same lines during "Fallout".
    • Stein teaching Jax during the merging brings to mind Harrison instructing Barry over the radio.
  • Call-Forward: Jax stated in the intro of the episode, right after the football game he flat out states that it wasn't his victory, the team did it. In this clip for Legends of Tomorrow, he says that he likes being part of a team.
  • Calling the Old Man Out: Iris tells Francine where she can shove her attempted reconciliation.
  • Carpe Diem: The Stock Aesop of the week. Jax takes a great personal risk to accept the Call to Adventure. Indirectly, he inspires Barry to pursue Patty. Professor Stein also tells Cisco to take a lesson from Jax and not to fear his metahuman powers.
  • Celebrity Paradox: Jax offers to put on Céline Dion, saying he has the Titanic soundtrack. Victor Garber (Professor Stein) played Thomas Andrews in Titanic.
  • Composite Character: Actually averted. At first glance Jax is may seem like a composite of Ronnie Raymond and Jason Rusch, he's actually a native to the comic (though was never a part of Firestorm).
  • Continuity Nod: Francine has MacGregor's Syndrome, the same disease that the Arrowverse Clock King has.
    • It also calls back to Batman & Robin, where both Mrs. Frieze and Alfred Pennyworth had various stages of the disease.
  • Curbstomp Battle: Hewitt may be powerful, but he's also one of the only metahumans that wasn't a threat to Barry the entire episode. Forget using powers against him, Firestorm took him out with a single punch! King Shark might be included here as well, since Wells did him in with a single shot.
  • Dark and Troubled Past: Hewitt turns out to have a sealed criminal record from his younger days.
  • Entitled Bastard: Dr. Hewitt really thinks he deserves to be Firestorm which is why he's non-compatible with Dr. Stein.
  • Establishing Character Moment:
    • In the flashback to the night the particle accelerator exploded, Jax is shown being congratulated by his teammates for winning a football game, with Jax telling them that "the team won," showing his team spirit and humility. Jax then helps a classmate who fell off his crutches to safety as the dark matter wave nears the stadium, showing the heroism that would make him a worthy inheritor of the Firestorm mantle.
    • Hewitt has a smaller one; His first line of dialogue has him saying how he always knew he was "destined for greater things," making it clear how arrogant he is.
  • Failed a Spot Check: Barry is so absorbed in his own thoughts that he fails to notice a 20 foot shark-man hybrid sneaking up on him.
  • First-Name Basis: Rather than calling her "Mom", Iris calls her estranged mother "Francine" to emphasize how much they are disconnected from one another.
  • Gallows Humor: Professor Stein on his condition deteriorating further:
    "At least we know that Hewitt's stability isn't the only one in question."
  • Genius Bruiser: Jax is no dumb jock, he had a 4.0 GPA in high school. Caitlin lampshades that he could have gone to college without his football prowess (Jax then counters that he couldn't afford it without a football scholarship).
  • Hair-Trigger Temper: The main reason Hewitt isn't the right partner for Stein. Unfortunately, this comes up after he gets powers from trying to merge with Stein.
  • Heroic RRoD: Since he's not sharing the Firestorm matrix anymore, Professor Stein is undergoing this.
  • How Do I Shot Web?: Played with. As Firestorm, Jax initially has some trouble with the flying bit, but he gets the hang of things rapidly. It helps that he's already athletic and that he has a copilot.
  • Humble Hero: Jefferson "Jax" Jackson. Which is why he's compatible with the Firestorm matrix.
  • Immune to Bullets: King Shark simply shrugs off Patty's pistol fire. Unfortunately for him, he's not invulnerable against an energy blaster gun.
  • Inhumanable Alien Rights: Barry and the others decide to lock Hewitt up until he decides to keep quiet on everything he's seen in Star Labs.
  • Insufferable Genius : Hewitt is brilliant, he knows it, and thinks this instantly makes him better than anyone else; this attitude was already causing him some job issues before gaining his powers.
  • Internal Reveal: Flash finally comes face-to-face with Earth-2 Harrison Wells.
  • I Shall Taunt You: Barry and Jax do this to Hewitt to wear him down.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: What Cisco and Caitlin think of Hewitt. Turns out he's just a Jerkass.
  • Jerkass Ball: Caitlin was really dismissive of Jax, to the point that she accused him of flaking when things got tough without looking at his circumstances or history. She gets better though.
  • Long-Lost Relative: Turns out Francine had a son (confirmed by Word of God to be Wally West) eight months after she left Central City. But she didn't tell Joe about him. Iris however did some digging and found about him. Iris doesn't know if Joe's the father or not, and she doesn't want to know because if Joe is the dad, Iris knows he would flip out that he never got to raise his son. Either way, it only hardens Iris' resolve to not reconnect with her mom.
  • Missing Mom: Iris comes to terms with this, and tells her mom to stay missing.
  • Mood Whiplash: Barry is giving one of his close of episode monologues, about moving on, and implying that he's about to ask Patty out...and then King Shark shows up and attacks him.
  • Mythology Gag:
    • Caitlin refers to Hewitt's powers as being something like a tokamak (a type of fusion reactor). The comic book Henry Hewitt is knows as Tokamak, The Living Reactor.
    • The episode title, from Firestorm's at-the-time most recent run and 2nd comic run ('82-87).
    • Iris' mom reveals that she's dying from MacGregor's Syndrome. Also a Continuity Nod, since Clock King had the same condition.
    • When asked what kind of treadmill the super-treadmill is, Cisco says it is "cosmic" in reference to the Cosmic Treadmill of comic Flash fame.
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero!: After Hewitt, the match whom Caitlin wanted to be Professor Stein's partner, gains powers from trying to merge with Stein, he turns out to have a Hair-Trigger Temper. And Caitlin nearly scares Jax off the Call to Adventure.
  • No Mere Windmill: Patty's theory of a shark-like metahuman loose in the city is dismissed by both Joe and Barry, only for King Shark to ambush the Flash at the end of the episode. On orders from Zoom, of course.
  • Not in This for Your Revolution: The initial reason Jax showed up to S.T.A.R labs was that he thought they were going to repair his knee. When he found out it was about him being a metahuman, he left.
  • One Steve Limit: When Jax's character was first announced months ago his name was given as "Jay Jackson". His name was presumably changed to avoid having two Jays. Averted with Henry Hewitt, who has the same first name as Barry's father.
  • Put on a Bus: Stein and Jax go back to Pittsburgh to get a better handle on their abilities. Just in time for Earth-2!Wells to show up. And for them to make an appearance in Legends of Tomorrow.
  • Psychological Projection: Caitlin seems drawn to Hewitt because she originally sees a lot of Ronnie in him. Jax is actually far closer in personality and has Ronnie's good heart though.
  • Refusal of the Call: Jax, at first, until Caitlin tells him You Are Better Than You Think You Are. Once he gets over this, he flips right over to Jumped at the Call.
  • Shark Man : King Shark.
  • Snobs Vs Slobs: Most of Team Flash originally think that since Hewitt is a scientist he's a better match for Stein than the working class Jax. Barry however think both men deserve an equal chance, and in the end his faith in Jax is rewarded.
  • Swiss Cheese Security: Wells is not only able to break out of S.T.A.R labs with no one noticing he was ever there in the first place, but he was also able to break into Mercury Labs and escape with stolen tech.
  • Trailers Always Spoil: It was well advertised that Jax would be the new Firestorm.
  • Working-Class Hero: Jax is a blue collar mechanic.
  • Wham Shot: Earth-2 Wells revealing himself to Flash.
  • You Fight Like a Cow: Flash's tactic for defeating Hewitt.
  • You Wouldn't Like Me When I'm Angry: Hewitt's attempt to merge with Stein results in his gaining fire powers fueled by rage. Fortunately, he burns himself out before he can do too much damage.
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