The Flash Review: “Paradox”

Barry, Chill Out

Alright, so Barry ended up in what appears to be the lizard tongue timeline on tonight’s episode of The Flash. “Paradox” no only explored the differences between this timeline and the one Barry ultimately wants to get back to, but just what how others view his selfish acts of heroism. Which is to say, they didn’t really like them all that much. 

I get it, change is hard. No one likes it when their cable provider switches all the channel blocks out of nowhere, but you know what you don’t do, you don’t go throwing Molotov cocktails through at their headquarters to make changes happen. You may not get the desired effect. That lesson was drilled into Barry’s head repeatedly during “Paradox” as he realized just how much damage his meddling has done. Namely, that just because things are a little off for him, doesn’t mean he has the right to go play Mr. Fix it. At least not the time traveling version.

Before getting to ramifications on The Flash, I have to address what Barry may have done to the fine folks over on Arrow. When Barry went to the other smartest person he knows, and only person he could tell, Felicity Smoak, she showed the right amount of concern, but also came off a little skittish while Barry was looking for key differences between the timeline he knew and the one he’s currently in. Everything on that side checked out fine, well, until Barry noticed that baby girl Diggle was now baby boy. An innocuous change, but only a hint of what else could be going on in Star City or even the rest of the DC TV Universe. I don’t think they’ll let the butterfly effect reverberate too far in the interest of continuity on each individual show, but it could explain a certain Supergirl and her presence.


Barry taking the time to learn as much as possible about the world he was in provided equal parts drama and comedy. Both stemming from Barry putting his foot in his mouth and looking like a complete loon to people that couldn’t understand why he was behaving so strangely. What “Paradox” really had to get across was that things could be “better” and that Barry was the only one who could fix it. That’s when Barry decided he’d had enough of his family being split, his  friends hating him, and being partnered up with Draco Malfoy, opting to try and….re-murder his mother?

Yeah, i’m not exactly sure what his plan was going to be, and i’m glad Jay Garrick had decided to keep an eye on the speedster. He tried to give Barry some sound advice about messing with the space time continuum, using the greatest tools a diner could provide; a cracked teacup. For what it’s worth, Barry did finally come around after a good amount of hemming, hawing and scoffing. I guess it’s tough to take things in when you’re talking to a guy that’s a doppelganger for your dead dad. Oh, and a diner was playing Dawson’s Creek in the middle of the day. I get that it was supposed to be 1998, but have some respect. Although, it would have been kinda funny if they played a scene that John Wesley Shipp was actually in.

Further time shenanigans are off the table, for now, so Barry took to trying to mend the broken fences that make up this version of his life. There were some early successes, but it’ll obviously be a little while before everyone comes around. As Cisco said, it’s messed up that Barry has no problem breaking the laws of man when it comes to his own family, but is fine with leaving everyone else lives in shambles. I’m sure he’ll get back to his timey wimey exploits once he finds out that Caitlin is Killer Frost in this timeline.


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