The Flash — “Hear No Evil” — Image Number: FLA902b_0093r — Pictured (L – R): Grant Gustin as Barry Allen, Brandon McKnight as Chester P. Runk and Candice Patton as Iris West-Allen — Photo: Bettina Strauss/The CW — © 2023 The CW Network, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

You know, I actually liked this episode.  Dare I say, I enjoyed “Hear No Evil” more than the season opener.  It felt like classic The Flash.  What made this show good in the earlier seasons wasn’t just the whacked out comic book plots, it was the chemistry and camaraderie of the cast.  All of them working together, defeating the foe of the week in nail biting fashion, then taking time at the end to celebrate their win, even with doom looming on the horizon in the traditional episode end cliffhanger.  It’s been the heart of the show.  That heart has been sorely missing for a while. 

Okay yes, this episode again was light on plot and focused more on character moments.  I’m okay with that, because I feel like we were due to catch up with the characters.  They’ve been through a lot!  I’d probably get bored with this every week, but it was a nice refreshing change here.  Basically, we had a supersonic fiddler that fell on the mustache twirler side of the spectrum, but considering she was working with Captain Boomerang, the plot ended up being serviceable.   Their purpose was nicely revealed at the end, so the villainy justified it’s existence in between all the other character drama.  It’s also nice that with only 13 episodes, they are pushing the villain stuff faster rather than dragging it out.  

When they had the Caitlin “twist” last week, my expectations were very low.  That’s why I was surprised by how well the story developed.  I figured you’d get Caitlin or Killer Frost light and that was that.  Khione, aka the other Snow sister, made a big impression on the gang with her peaceful demeanor and empathic sensibilities, which was especially remarkable since they were all grieving hard over the loss of Caitlin.  I couldn’t believe they were all having an open conversation about sacrificing this new person to bring either Caitlin or Frost back without of course, consulting the very person they were talking about!  Hello, human being anyone?  Of course it took the adult in the room, Cecile, to stop the others from having their silly conversation and ask the real questions.  She gave Khione the choice instead, and luckily Barry and Iris were around to hear it and realize how stupid they were being.  

Khione and Cecile were so weird together, and it was really fun.  I see where Cecile formed an instant connection because she couldn’t read Khione’s thoughts, but when they were jumping all over each other in giddy glee, I’m sitting here thinking these are the two level headed people in this story?  Think about it, is Cecile not being able to feel or hear anything from Khione a good thing?  Or is that a warning sign?  What could she be hiding?  Meh, probably nothing, I just want to see them get nuts together.  

It was really cool to see Hartley Rathaway again, but it is final season, so you’ve got to bring back the recurring characters.  I’m glad they worked him in.  I always preferred him when he was an ally,  but I still miss the glasses though.  This time, he’s a better person because of love.   Aww, how sweet.  It goes to show, even the biggest jerks deserve love.  He earned the loyalty of his team at the club, not to mention Team Flash, so he’s really come full circle in this series.  I actually liked his scene with Khione and how taken he was with her, so much so he got himself in some trouble with Mark by destroying the cryo-chamber to defend her.  Will that come back to bite him?  Will there really be time for that?  Better yet, do we want to see time wasted on that?  Just go away Mark.  Make it simple. 

The question is, will we get tired of Khione’s peace-love-dope act and long for the return of Caitlin, or Frost, or both?  Yes, probably.  I have a feeling there’s going to be a happy ending for all these Snow sisters.  Of course I’m expecting a happy ending for everyone, so I could be wrong.  But how can they be sisters if they were all living in one human being?  I’m sure someone can event a plot twist to split them all up like they did Caitlin and Frost.  All they need is another time travel plot that can be twisted to suit the story.  Again, how much time have we got?  

At least some time was given to Joe’s random proposal to leave Central City.  He’s tired of Cecile being in the face of danger all the time.  He’s ready for a calmer life.  I adore how these two talked it out like adults.  All I was thinking was that this lady can sense feelings and read thoughts of everyone, not to mention is harboring some really wicked powers right now.  She ain’t settling down for an apple pie life unless those two go to a deserted island.  Of course by then she’ll learn to fly and an island isn’t going to help either.  

Yes, it was schmaltzy, but I did enjoy the little party at the club in the end.  Barry dances like an awkward white guy!  With Iris and Joe around, you would have thought they’d teach him some moves.  Just like in Seinfeld, it was a full body dry heave.  Allegra and Chester are still dancing, literally, around each other, but they’ll come around I guess.  They have 11 episodes to figure it out.  I just loved that everyone was smiling and having fun.  That needed to happen. 

As a final note, I’ll mention the big reveal at the end.  I’ve got to admit, it was a cool visual.  The costume designed for Red Death is quite awesome.  A red version of Batman, which makes sense since this is an evil Batman from another earth?  I think, if I read that right.  The no failure option was pretty damned creepy, but villains be villains.  Still not sure what sort of power those stolen gadgets are offering, but hey, sometimes the right posture is all you need to get started.  Fake it until you make it I guess.  

Overall grade, a B+.  C- for plot, A for character stuff.  

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