The Flash, S1 Ep05 – Plastique

After taking a week-long hiatus The Flash returns with an explosive new episode. A new meta-human who has the ability to make things explode with only a touch has been discovered. Her name is Bette Sans Souci (Kelly Frye), but you can refer to her as Plastique.


Bette Sans Souci & Barry Allen

Unlike the other meta-humans Barry has encountered this season, Plastique is not portrayed as a villain, but a woman on the run from a corrupt U.S. Army General by the name of Wade Eiling (Clancy Brown). It is later revealed that Plastique, a former bomb specialist, is being hunted by Eiling so he may take advantage of her immense power.

This puts The Flash and his team in an awkward position since while they might want to help Plastique learn to control her powers, they do not want to gain General Eiling as an enemy. Harrison Wells’ past relationship with Eiling plays a huge factor as to why this is the case.

I appreciated seeing Barry attempt to help Plastique deal with the trauma of her new powers. She could’ve made a decent addition as a new hero (despite her villainous comic book origins) and Barry saw this. Unfortunately, Wells had other plans for her.

By the end of the episode, while secluded from the other team members, Wells convinces Plastique to the fight Eiling and bring him down. Considering Wells knows the future, when he makes a decision like this we can be certain that there is a significant reason for it. Sadly, Plastique, the only meta-human discovered who isn’t robbing banks or murdering innocents, is shot and killed by Eiling. This leads to Barry having to carry her dead body and bring it as far away from Central City as possible because she will explode. Considering Barry learns to run fast enough to literally run on water, we have to wonder if Wells knew of said outcome. Either that or he wanted Eiling to be killed for what happened to his pet Gorilla, a.k.a. Grodd, as evident by the episode’s stinger scene. Yes, DC fans, rejoice! Grodd will be making his way to The Flash soon enough.

Aside from the Plastique storyline, this episode also focused on Iris West’s current obsession with The Flash and her blog dedicated to him. Iris blogging about The Flash plays out a lot like Lois Lane writing reports about Superman. While Barry and Iris’ father Joe West are always pleading with her to quit the blog, Iris remains determined to uncover the truth about Central City’s new superhero. The situation even led to a scene very reminiscent of the Superman films, in which Barry Allen as The Flash confronts Iris on a rooftop. Barry vibrating his vocal chords and masking his voice to hide his identity was a nice touch.

Sadly, even though it is revealed that Iris has been researching The Flash to help Barry in his search for the impossible, her decision ultimately leads to the two of them taking time away from each other. This decision struck me as odd considering Barry never gives her a good reason to stop investigating other than saying he has moved on from researching the impossible. Maybe just the fact that her blog is apparently hurting him enough will make her stop.

Barry can't get drunk

Barry can’t get drunk

While there was some somberness to this episode, there was also a lot of humor. As usual, Cisco plays up his role as comic relief crushing on Plastique and even surprising himself by coming up with her meta-human name rather quickly. We also find out that Barry can’t get drunk which is humorous, but unfortunate when going out drinking with his new friends. By the end of the episode Caitlin creates a highly potent 500-proof liquor for Barry which works, but only for a short moment.

As far as action goes, that side of the episode was very entertaining. The episode kicks off with Barry running up the side of a building to save a window washer and then running on water to save Central City from an explosion. In between we were given some neat glimpses of Plastique using her powers during her escapes from General Eiling or testing them out at S.T.A.R. Labs.

Overall, this week’s episode was another satisfying addition to a terrific first season of The Flash. It is unfortunate that the first well intentioned meta-human other than Barry died, but at least Barry was able to surpass his limitations and the episode introduced a new, imposing villain in General Eiling. I’m sure he will pop up again.

Next week Barry will face off against a man of steel. No, not that man of steel. Check the official promo for “The Flash is Born” below to see what I mean and feel free to let us know what you thought about “Plastique” in the comments.