S.T.A.R. Labs got thrown for a loop this week. Melting Point in and started mixing things up.
After staying up way too late, Harry’s new idea for beating Devoe is to create the same thing Devoe did to get his genius. He shows the team security video footage of Devoe getting hit by the dark matter with his special Intelligence Booster on. I love that the security footage even has a selfie mode apparently, getting a lovely shot of Devoe’s face from down by his hip. Most security cameras don’t offer such useful angles.
The team all agree that Harry should go for it. I mean, what could possibly go wrong when sending a ton of dark matter through his brain. The one dissenter is Cisco. He refuses to give his okay on this, saying it’s too dangerous. I’m kinda loving how Cisco and Harry are like an old married couple. Cisco doesn’t want his work husband to get hurt. Harry asks him to help, but he refuses with Harry saying he’s going to do it anyway. Of course he is. Why wouldn’t he? He’s never wrong.
Irish and Ralph have a heart-to-heart, but it doesn’t go well. Ralph is scared and spiteful and lashes out at Iris saying she obviously can’t understand what it’s like to be putting her life on the line when she’s sitting safely behind the desk. Foreshadowing much?
At the local bank, meta Erik Frye is using his incredible fire powers to convince hostages to get down and then melts through ten inches of solid steel. Before he can take the money, an unknown man tries to talk to him, talk him down from his crime. It earns him a punch to the face that sends him sprawling to the ground, into another person. When Frye prepares to fry the guy, he realizes his powers are gone. He gets tackled by a security guard and the man he punched has seemingly vanished.
Harry’s first attempt at his Intelligence Booster doesn’t go well. He feels smarter and can answer probability questions, as well as use analytics to answer what kind of underwear Ralph is wearing before he even asks the question. The answer is none, by the way. Unfortunately, he doesn’t predict that his new thinking cap will catch on fire, which it does.
Cisco learns that the unknown man at the bank is Matthew Kim, an EMT at the local hospital. Joe and Iris go out to find him, but he’s worried that they’re gonna try to steal his powers. He grabs Iris and holds a scalpel to her neck. Thankfully, her arms are free and she is able to hit the panic button on her phone and The Flash is there a moment later. In his attempt to save Iris, he grabs Matthew’s arm and shoves him back. The contact causes him to absorb Barry’s powers, but since he’s holding onto Iris with his other hand, the speedster ability travels straight through him to her. He escapes while they try to figure out what to do with Iris’s new abilities.
They learn that while Frye was not a bus meta, Matthew Kim is. Now they have two people to find – Matthew and whoever ended up with Frye’s powers. Cisco comes up with Melting Point for Matthew’s meta name and the team gets to work, training up Iris.
Barry pouts a little, feeling like everything he has is being taken away. Iris reminds him that he still has her. At least until the alarm sounds and she takes off. There’s a fire at a high rise with five people trapped inside. Iris heads off to save the day while Barry tries to figure out how to work a desk chair. She easily saves the people, but finds putting out a fire is not so easy. She gets trapped under a piece of debris and can’t phase through because she hasn’t learned how yet. Cisco has to create a breach and save her.
They know that Barry needs to have his speed back, but Caitlyn said there’s no way for her to reverse it. If they want things back the way they should be, they need to find Matthew.
Cisco finally agrees to help Harry with his Thinking Cap/Intelligence Booster on two conditions. Those conditions being: 1) no using dark matter, and 2) if Harry turns into a mad scientist, Cisco gets to send him back to his Earth. In agreement, they get to work.
Link to image for next paragraph – https://i.imgur.com/jpj6NBm.jpg (Max Adler as Jaco Birch)
The gang finds Frye’s missing powers. Who has them? Of course, Glee’s former closeted bully, Dave Karofsky, or as he’s known in Central City, Jaco Birch. Matthew attempts to talk him down like he did Frye, but as it turns out, Matthew gave Birch the powers at the bank by falling on him. Birch knows not to let him get too close. Iris runs off to be a hero and manages to save Matthew Kim and simultaneously locks in him in meta-dampener cuffs.
Birch gets a little out of hand and starts a fire tornado. Technically, it’s a thermal cyclone, but fire tornado sounds way cooler. Iris needs a plan so Harry uses his new and improved Thinking Cap/Intelligence Booster and runs through all the hundreds of possibilities. The only one that ends in success is for Iris to run on the water and create a tidal wave to put out Birch’s hundred-foot fire tornado. Somehow she manages this without causing water damage to surrounding buildings. Heroic and thoughtful.
Birch goes with Joe and Matthew heads back to the lab with Iris. He fixes Barry and Iris and says it’s the last time he’ll use his powers. He was trying to help save the city, but he’d only made it worse. He thought he’d been given the power to use for a higher purpose. They ask him to join the team and he accepts.
Iris and Ralph have their heart-to-heart, part two, and it goes much better this time. Ralph says he was wrong about Iris not putting her life on the line and admits that he’s scared. Iris explains that she’s been in his shoes before, with Savitar. Her death was foretold. It wasn’t even a maybe. It was a definite. She chose not to let the fear lead her life. It buoys Ralph’s spirits and he decides to finally leave the lab again. Iris’s experiences also bring her back to her own passion and she starts blogging again.
Against Cisco’s advice, Harry pushes the Thinking Cap/Intelligence Booster to twenty percent past the safety limits he’d set before Cisco finally shuts it down. It was enough time though because Harry now knows who the two remaining bus metas are.
It looks like we’ll be seeing one in the next episode, titled “Null and Annoyed” and directed by Kevin Smith. Assumedly, we’ll get to meet Null, a meta who has some gravity-defying/controlling powers. Unfortunately, that’s still three weeks away. We are going to be Flash-less until April 10th, but it looks like they’re coming back with a bang.