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Recap / The Flash 2014 S 6 E 7 The Last Temptation Of Barry Allen Part 1

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Ramsay Rosso offers a last-minute reprieve for Barry before the Crisis starts.

  • AB Negative: Which is for once a good thing, since Barry has type O-negative, which makes him a universal donor.
  • Arc Welding: While the Ramsey and Crisis plots have been thematically related (sharing S6’s Central Theme of mortality), in this episode Ramsey’s offer of immortality to Barry becomes intertwined with the pre-Crisis plot.
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  • Ascended Fanboy: Allegra tells Iris that her articles about the Streak or the Flash were a good inspiration for her. She later got to work with Iris.
  • Brainwashed and Crazy: At the end, Barry becomes controlled by Rosso.
  • The Bus Came Back:
    • All of them in Barry's mind: The Speed Force as Nora Allen, Nora West-Allen as a baby, and Eobard Thawne.
    • Caitlin also briefly returns after spending several episodes letting Frost take the wheel.
  • Battle in the Center of the Mind: Barry is fighting Ramsey Rosso's corrupting blood in his mind.
  • Beam-O-War: A variant of this is used when the Speed Force's lightning and Bloodwork's blood collide for control of Barry. The imagery is almost the same.
  • Call-Back: During one of Ramsey's visions, he shows Barry headstones of everyone he's lost throughout the series.
  • Call-Forward: The toy chandelier decorating baby Nora's crib is adorned with her outfit's insignia. And one of her baby clothing is primarily purple.
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  • Cliffhanger: See To Be Continued.
  • The Corrupter: Ramsey, throughout the episode, tries to sway Barry to his side.
  • Crucified Hero Shot: Barry when the Speed Force and Bloodwork are struggling over him.
  • Dark Is Evil: Barry's lightning turns black after Ramsey has taken control of him.
  • Deconstruction: Of the Omniscient Morality License. After six seasons of being aloof and obtuse towards Barry and not caring about his personal wants and needs in the face of The Needs of the Many, despite the effect it has on Barry's mental state, the Speed Force loses Barry to Bloodwork who offers him a seemingly more helpful and considerate solution.
  • Even Evil Has Standards: Rosso sounds horrified about what's going to happen to the world, and (according to the Speed Force) legitimately intends to prevent it, which makes sense given that preventing death is his entire motivation.
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  • Exact Words: "Took me a while, but yeah. I beat it."
  • Face-Revealing Turn: When Cisco slowly puts a hand on Barry's shoulder, Barry whirls around and snarl, revealing that Bloodwork has indeed taken over.
  • Failed a Spot Check: With Iris leaving her laptop unlocked and the future Crisis article opened, it’s almost as if she wanted Allegra to find out about Barry and Crisis.
  • The Final Temptation: Duh. Barry has to decide on whether or not he will find a way to survive in spite of what the future demands, something that can only be done with Rosso's help.
  • Flashback Cut: When Barry attacks the Speed Force appearing as his mother by vibrating his hand through her heart, he realizes by quickly flashing back to his real mother's death that he resembles Eobard Thawne in this situation.
  • A Form You Are Comfortable With: Deconstructed in Barry's breakdown towards the Speed Force, as he angrily calls it out for assuming the appearance of his deceased mother for the apparent purpose of emotionally manipulating him to serve its purposes.
  • The Fourth Wall Will Not Protect You: It's hard to figure out when reality ends and Barry's mindscapes begin.
  • Free-Fall Fight: Ramsey and Ralph engage in one.
  • God and Satan Are Both Jerks: At the end of the day, both the Speed Force and Ramsey were Manipulative Bastards and Well Intentioned Extremists to varying extents. Though the Speed Force is definitely A Lighter Shade of Gray.
  • Good Angel, Bad Angel: Strongly Played for Drama and Deconstructed, with Ramsey as the devil and the Speed Force as the angel.
  • Hope Spot: It seems that the Speed Force manages to reassure Barry by validating his fears of the coming Crisis and praising his capacity to be a hero, until it obliviously tells him that Ramsey didn't lie and is capable of helping him survive.
  • Immediate Sequel: The episode starts where the last one ended - with Ramsey and Ralph fighting.
  • Internal Reveal:
    • Ramsey learns Barry is the Flash and fated to die in the incoming Crisis.
    • Iris and Kamilla learn that Allegra knows about the Flash's identity, while Allegra learns that Kamilla also knew about that and that Cisco is or was Vibe.
  • Intrepid Reporter: Allegra keeps trying to get Iris to talk about a certain other story she's working on in private, but to her annoyance, Iris is fixated on the Maelstrom story.
  • It's All About Me: Variation: after bringing up how Barry saw numerous different permutations concerning his death in the Crisis, Ramsey asks how many of them involved him being present.
  • It Sucks to Be the Chosen One: Barry's call out to the Speed Force includes the fact that he never chose to become the Flash, he basically Got Volunteered by the Speed Force itself. He never wanted to be a hero and accept so much tragedy into his life.
  • Jerkass Has a Point: Barry acts angrily towards the Speed Force, but rightfully states that it was the cause of his family dying.
  • Kneel Before Zod: After successfully infecting him, Ramsey has the Flash kneel before him at the end of the episode.
  • Leaning on the Fourth Wall: The episode is set two days before Crisis similarly to how the Crisis would shown in two episodes after.
  • Locked Out of the Loop: Allegra manages to find out about the Crisis by accident due to waking up Iris' laptop from sleep mode.
  • Lover Tug-of-War: How Ramsey and the Speed Force fight over Barry in his mind.
  • Manipulative Bastard: Ramsey plays on all of Barry's doubts about his fate in Crisis and his desire not to leave his family to convince him to accept the "gift" of his infection. The Speed Force plays the same role, once again using Nora Allen's appearance to convince Barry to accept his fate in a less malevolent, but no less manipulative fashion.
  • Manly Tears: Barry's face is full of tears due to his fear of dying in the Crisis and that his death leaves a void in the team or Central City.
  • Mind Rape: Ramsey's infection does a number on Barry's mental state as he tries to bring the Flash under his control, confronting him with reminders of his dead friends and a vision of a baby Nora that Barry cannot hold. By the end of it, Barry is a half-sobbing wreck, inches away from accepting Ramsey's offers of immortality.
  • Mundane Utility: Barry uses his powers to phase a needle into Ralph's skin, since it can't be punctured.
  • Mythology Gag: Looks like Barry has become the Negative Flash at the end of the episode, which was the form he had when facing Rosso for the first time in the comics.
  • Next Sunday A.D.: The events of this episode and retroactively those of the previous episode take place around December 9th, two days before Barry vanishes during Crisis.
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero!: The Speed Force accidentally makes Barry prey to Ramsey's corruption by telling him that his manipulations are the truth. It takes too long to clarify that Barry's body will survive, but Barry's identity won't as it will be subsumed to Rosso's will and he won't be able to feel any of the things he wants to so desperately live for.
  • Nightmare Face: When Cisco attempts to talk to Barry at the ending, he turns back with a Slasher Smile, Black Eyes of Evil and Scary Teeth.
  • No Good Deed Goes Unpunished: Barry donating his blood to Ralph to save him makes him get Ramsey's blood infection into him and makes him prey to Ramsey's manipulations.
  • Not Himself: When Barry seemingly recovers from the infection he dismisses Iris' questions in favor of working. This sudden coldness quickly tips her off that he's not himself anymore.
  • Not So Different: Barry striking down the Speed Force in the shape of Barry's mom with a vibrating hand, directly invokes his Eobard Thawne's image; we even get a brief cut to Thawne standing over Nora to reinforce this.
  • Omniscient Morality License: Deconstructed; the Speed Force understands Barry's mortality and nobility, but is still operating on a different moral scale and cannot convince him to fight Rosso's infection so he can sacrifice himself in the crisis later. It informs Barry that Rosso is right in being able to save him, but waits too long to include that Barry's personality will be gone as well, making survival pointless, instead arguing that it's "not his path" first. It's this and the apparent callous manipulation of Barry's life for something outside of his control that pushes him into submitting to Rosso's infection.
  • Once More, with Clarity!: Short-form: after getting checked up at STAR Labs, Barry went home, poured himself some water, and began tensing up...only for the Speed Force to appear in the form of his mother. As she reveals, what actually happened is that Barry blacked out after pouring the water.
  • Out-of-Character Alert: A supposedly recovered Barry doesn't pay attention to Iris, which rings alarm bells in her and makes her realize that Barry is Not Himself. Also counts as Spotting the Thread in this case.
  • Paper-Thin Disguise: When we first see Allegra in this episode, she is doodling the Flash's mask on Barry's photo in the newspaper while ranting about Iris keeping more secrets from her.
  • Poor Communication Kills: The Speed Force is able to convince Barry to keep fighting Ramsey's influence...until it reveals that Ramsey isn't lying about being able to save Barry. It doesn't clarify that Barry might physically live on but there won't be anything left of his soul until Barry's in the middle of an emotional breakdown over the Speed Force's manipulations and it can only fall back on Because Destiny Says So arguments, which doesn't do much to sway Barry.
  • Pun: "You're an Uber for the uberrich."
  • Red Herring: The suspicious guy caught on camera the past episode is just a courier. But he does seem to have a connection to The Conspiracy as his car mysteriously blew up following being confronted by Iris and her team.
  • Shadow Discretion Shot: When the enthralled Barry goes to Ramsey he's first shown in shadow with a shape that resembles his comics self before assuming his human(ish) form and coming on camera.
  • Shoot Him! He Has a... Wallet!: After Iris and Allegra confront the Maelstrom Couriers employee with the photos they took, he reaches into his jacket pocket. After Iris announces she has a taser, he announces he has a business card.
  • Shout-Out: At one point in his coma, Barry finds himself walking among the gravestones of everyone he failed to save, and stops before his own grave.
  • Spotting the Thread: Iris immediately recognizes that Barry is possessed.
  • Take My Hand: Rosso is shown extending his hand to Barry as part of his offer.
  • That Man Is Dead: Ramsey finally calls himself by his villain name "Bloodwork".
  • Third Line, Some Waiting: The main plot is about Ramsey trying to seduce Barry. Iris, Kamilla and Allegra also investigate Maelstrom Couriers, to find out more about the people who made Esperanza into what she is. In one scene towards the end, Nash also finally uncovers the entrance to the Monitor's lair.
  • To Be Continued: The first episode of the series to be a two-parter, with the first half ending with Barry under Ramsey's control as the latter declares his goal to spread the wonder of "Bloodwork".
  • Took a Level in Badass: It's noted how much more powerful Ramsey became since his last appearance.
  • Trauma Button: Seeing Barry affected makes Frost feel a trauma similar to what she felt when not knowing how to save Ralph.
  • Villain Has a Point: Despite the fact that Ramsey is trying to take over Barry's mind, he does have a point that Barry hasn't been trying to Screw Destiny concerning his fate in Crisis.
  • Villains Never Lie: Ramsey Rosso is attempting to manipulate Barry with his own feelings. Barry does want to grow with his family and raise Nora.
  • Voice of the Legion: When Ramsey appears before the enthralled Barry in person, his voice has becoming raspy and echoing.
  • Xanatos Speed Chess: When Ramsey infected Ralph with his blood, it was doubtful that he anticipated the events that would lead to Barry becoming infected. Nevertheless, he takes full advantage of the situation by attempting to turn Barry into his thrall.
  • We Can Rule Together: Ramsey tries to get control of Barry by trying to convince him that by using his powers, Barry could become a hero like no other: reviving people who needlessly lost their lives, be able to stop the Crisis and survive it, and be able to start a family with Iris.
  • Wham Line:
    • "[Ramsey] wasn't lying."
    • An alarmed Iris whispering to Cisco and Frost that "That's not Barry."
  • What the Hell, Hero?: Barry calls out the Speed Force on its many, many manipulations against him.
  • Whole Plot Reference: As the title indicates this episode is a reference to The Last Temptation of Christ. In both stories a hero lashing out against a distant God over his upcoming martyrdom is given a way out by a Satanic figure.
  • You Are Better Than You Think You Are:
    • Allegra encourages Iris to write the article on Barry's disappearance.
    • The Speed Force tries to do this with Barry. Unfortunately, Ramsey ruins it.
  • You Have GOT to Be Kidding Me!: Allegra when she learns she's the only member of the Citizen unaware of the Flash's Secret Identity.
  • You Have Outlived Your Usefulness: Implied to have happened to the courier Iris and Allegra tried to interview in regards to the organisation behind Esperanza's kidnapping and transformation. His car blew up in the very same place where the interview happened.

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