The Flash Review: “Invasion”

Let’s Kick Things Up A Notch

Aliens have landed on Earth-1 with illinetntions. A lot of them. Claiming to come in peace, while wrecking up the place. That’d make a great premise for a movie. Preferably starring Dolph Lundgren, but I digress.  The Flash , “Invasion”, properly kicked off the multi-show crossover event on the CW. I know Supergirl was supposed to start the festivities, but Kara’s story was far more self contained, with Barry and Cisco only making an appearance at the tail end to recruit Supergirl.  It was back at STAR Labs that things really got going, and Barry had to face up to what Flashpoint has done to others in the Arrow-verse. 

On the plus side of things, “Invasion” didn’t waste much time trying to assemble the crew. In fact, right after the aliens touched down, it wasn’t long before Barry ran over to Star City to get the Arrow gang, and put out the beacon for The Legends, and while they were saying their hello’s shifted dimensions to scoop Kara. It all took about 5 minutes. The real focus of this episode, at least for the front half,  was seeing how the group dynamics have changed since these teams were all together. The three original Arrow-verse shows have suffered tragedies, and alterations over the last year that needed to be addressed. Like Captain Cold dying and how Sara has taken her sister’s absence. Which brings us to the major dramatic beat in “Invasion”; how Barry altered everyone’s lives.

We knew immediately following Flashpoint, that Barry’s actions had ripple effects on everyone in the Arrow-verse. Most notably, Diggle having a son instead of a daughter, and Stein finding out he had a daughter he’d never known about. It was nice that Barry had to face some real scrutiny for his actions. Everyone on The Flash , except for Cisco, has more or less accepted that things are different, but since it’s the world they’ve always known, they’re not really living in a changed world. The Legends and Arrow teams took Barry to task not just for altering time, but for feeling like HE was the only one that could. Which hit hard considering The Legends literally time travel as a standard means of conveyance. They have every opportunity to alter space and time, and don’t do it. Barry went and messed up practically on whim. As he is wont to do.

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“Invasion” also served to establish other threats beyond the Dominators themselves. Of course they may have power in numbers, but this super team of speedsters, assassins, and metahumans should be more than capable of thwarting (kids still say that, right) their plan. Things got a little hairy when the Dominators were able to turn a bulk of the team bad. Kind of a cliche, but effective nonetheless, especially since Supergirl was on team baddie. I’m sure that will come into play down the line, but it was a small taste of what could happen. It also shook up the action, and allowed some characters to flex their muscle. Oliver may be a formidable fighter, but he’s not king of the mountain anymore.

The Flash serving as the true launching point for this huge crossover made sense, and the episode skipped over awkward introductions and dramatic infighting in a believable way. Yes, they’re all upset and disappointed in Barry, but aliens are still attacking Earth, they can deal with him later. It’s actually that last bit that made the Wally B-story so annoying. I get the concern on letting him just join up as a crime fighter, but being so apprehensive about it after everything they’ve been through just seems silly, especially since there’s no real way to stop him. Methinks there’s a heel turn on the horizon.

Still, “Invasion” was strong fan service that’s sure to continue on Arrow. I love the big band beat downs, and CW is delivering on all fronts.

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