The Flash, S1 Ep03 – Things You Can’t Outrun

The Flash has done a commendable job building its new world and new characters. While Grant Gustin’s Barry Allen is indeed the star of the show, we’ve also been treated to other characters sharing the spotlight, further developing their personal struggles. In a plot that revolves around a meta-human who can turn himself into a poisonous gas, Caitlin Snow, Cisco Ramon, and even Eddie Thawne, are fleshed out a bit more in “Things You Can’t Outrun.”

The Flash, S1 Ep03 - Things You Can't Outrun (01)

Robbie Amell guest stars as Ronnie Raymond

One of the best aspects of “Things You Can’t Outrun” was the further development of Caitlin Snow. In last week’s episode it was revealed that her fiancée, Ronnie Raymond, died during the particle accelerator incident. In this week’s episode we got to see how his death actually played out in some very effectively done flashback scenes. Robbie Amell, former Tomorrow People actor and cousin to Arrow‘s Stephen Amell, guest starred as Ronnie. During the day of the incident, Ronnie had heroically sacrificed himself to prevent the particle accelerator from causing more damage than it did. His apparent death scene was a bit cliché and reminded me of other moments in TV and film where a hero sacrificed himself for the good of the many. That being said, it was very effective and compelling. The loss of Caitlin’s fiancée has caused her to be a bit cold and closed-off and in “Things You Can’t Outrun” she is required to cope with that traumatic loss yet again. Fortunately, Barry is there to console her when she brings herself face-to-face with the particle accelerator responsible for Ronnie’s death.

We also learn a bit more about Cisco Ramon, as he still feels some sense of guilt for having to lock Ronnie in with the accelerator during the incident. It’s nice to see another layer to that character as it shows he can be more than just a comic relief. Perhaps he even uses his humor to cover up some of his grief.

This episode also shined a little light on Eddie Thawne as we find out he’s against the idea of hiding his relationship with Iris. When I first heard that The Flash would include a character named Thawne I figured they would make him out to be mean and arrogant based off the what I know of the character Eobard Thawne from the comics. I would’ve thought him to be a polar opposite to Barry Allen. As we get deeper into his character we find out Thawne’s a pretty decent guy and I’m not at all against his and Iris’ relationship flourishing into something more.

Barry after inhaling some Mist

Barry after inhaling some Mist

“Things You Can’t Outrun” revolved around a villain named Kyle Nimbus, whom Cisco refers to as The Mist. It’s interesting to point out that Anthony Carrigan, who played The Mist, will also play the villain known as Victor Zsasz in an upcoming episode of Gotham. Like the two villains-of-the-week before him, there wasn’t much to Kyle Nimbus. I think this is going to be the case for a while, at least until we get to see Wentworth Miller come into the series as Leonard Snart, a.k.a. Captain Cold. Still, seeing Nimbus transform himself into a poisonous gas on the whim was cool to see on screen and I like seeing Barry Allen, with the help of his team, think of new ways to beat his villains that don’t just involve punching them to they fall down. The addition of a S.T.A.R. Labs prison to contain these meta-humans is also a nice touch for the series.

The episode ended off with yet another hint at Harrison Wells’ true persona. The flashback scene that concluded the episode took place during the day of the particle accelerator incident. We see him enter that same room he entered in the pilot where he saw the newspaper from 2024. This time we see Wells watch Barry get struck by lightning in Barry’s lab, suggesting that not only has he had Barry under surveillance since before the accident, but he also knew what was going to happen to Barry. It’s clear that Wells has purposely targeted Barry to turn him into The Flash, but his true motives have not been revealed. As much as I enjoyed this conclusion I really hope not every episode of The Flash ends with Wells doing something sinister. That can get old really fast.

“Things You Can’t Outrun” turned out to be another satisfying episode. The only downside to this episode was the lack of dimension in the villain, but its a small complaint as this episode featured a lot of character development amongst the main cast. The Mist was taken down a bit too easily in the end which made the conclusion feel somewhat anti-climatic, but the special effects were top-notch. I really hope that the production value doesn’t drop in the second season. “Things You Can’t Outrun” even introduced some new ideas to the series like Barry shaking his face at a rapid rate to hide his secret identity from his father, which I’m guessing is something that will happen again in future episodes. Also, SPOILER ALERT, Robbie Amell’s Ronnie Raymond will return as the DC Comics hero, Firestorm. After seeing Ronnie’s brief introduction in this episode I’m looking forward to seeing how The CW pulls off his superhero persona.

Next week Emily Bett Rickards of Arrow will guest star as Felicity Smoak. Check out the extended promo for “Going Rogue” below and feel free to let us know your thoughts on “Things You Can’t Outrun” in the comments.