Warning: this review contains spoilers. You can find my all of my reviews of The Flash here.
“The New Rogues” was a wonderfully enjoyable episode of The Flash, even if its long-anticipated villain fell a little short of expectations.
Mirror Master is one of the Flash’s most prominent Rogues, so it was great to finally have him on the show. And there was a lot to like about him, from Grey Damon’s performance to his besuited appearance. Unfortunately, “The New Rogues” treated him less like a Captain Cold or Trickster-level threat, and more like a standard villain of the week. A character like that deserved more, and I can only hope The Flash is building him up to that status.
That aside, “The New Rogues” was a success, largely thanks to how entertaining it was.
“The New Rogues” was full of light-hearted goofiness, and it was delightful. How could it not be, when it involved things like Barry being trapped inside a mirror and Wells recruiting alternate-Earth doppelgangers to replace him on Earth-1? Those two storylines were a bit disjointed, but individually they were very fun.
Yes, we saw 3 alternate-Earth versions of Wells, each more outrageous than the next. Mime Wells! Cowboy “Hell’s” Wells! On any other show, this would have been outrageous. But this is The Flash, and this kind of craziness is welcome, especially after the dourness of Season 2. Plus, Tom Cavanagh was a hoot in these new roles. I’m glad The Flash addressed its need for a new Wells every season in-universe, because in reality Cavanagh is too valuable to let go.
Speaking of which, Wells and Cisco were at the top of their game in “The New Rogues”, and that’s saying a lot. They competed over naming villains (“Mirror Master, boom!”), bickered over gadgets, and dropped one-liners like “I care for you too… you jackwagon!”
Even the romantic drama was part of the fun this week. Where normally it would cause unwelcome tension, Barry’s discomfort over kissing Iris in front of Joe was played for laughs. Which was the right move, as it played to the strengths and chemistry of Grant Gustin, Jesse L. Martin, and Candice Patton. (In addition to addressing the weird semi-incestuous nature of their relationship in a humourous way.)
Meanwhile, Jesse’s first adventure had the usual “fail the first time, feel down, get a pep talk, succeed in round 2” story arc. Straightforward, but not bad. And it was nice to see Barry in action with his first sidekick. Jesse’s enthusiasm also played a major role in making the character and her story work.
I should also mention how great it was to see Wentworth Miller as Captain Cold again. Even if it was just in a flashback and a hologram.
On the topic of cold, “The New Rogues” left us with yet another Killer Frost tease. I look forward to seeing it all pay off, hopefully sooner rather than later.