The Flash Recap: True Colors

Season 4 / Episode 13 / The CW

Last week, we knew things weren’t looking good for our hero — and this week’s episode shows us just how much danger Barry Allen is really in.

Warden Gregory Wolfe is strolling through the metahuman section of Iron Heights showing off his collection to Amunet, the worst example of a white woman with dreadlocks we’ve seen since Anne Lamott Ani Difranco the last time she made an appearance. Hazard, Top, Killg%re, Dwarfstar — all the bus metas captured by the Flash — and Barry himself are all potential merchandise. So which one would Amunet like to purchase? “Eeny, meeny, miney, all of them!” Of course.

Ralph Dibney

Ralph heads back to his private office to find Earl Cox passed out on his couch. Earl is an even slimier PI than Stretch was when we first made his acquaintance, and he’s got an unethical get-rich-quick scheme that involves providing cover for a cheating criminal. When Ralph is like, “Nah, I’ve turned over a new leaf. I have friends now,” dude basically gives him the, “You’ll be back” line, and we can see that his words — about Ralph’s new friends eventually ditching him has hit their mark.

When Iris shows up (in a bathrobe? What’s going on here?) with Cecile for her visit with Barry at the prison, the warden tells her that he’s in isolation after an incident. Luckily Cecile can still read minds and knows the warden is lying. Cut to S.T.A.R. Labs, where Iris and Cecile have tipped the rest of the team off that something’s rotten in the state of Denmark. (Harry’s an absentee know-it-all this episode, off somewhere checking on Jesse.) Joe wants to jump bad and get Barry, but his lady talks him down — there’s no way for him to pull this off without looking both biased and unstable.

In walks Ralph, still pissed off after his visit from his old colleague. As he rants about him to Team Flash, they watch in disbelief as Stretch’s gut expands, face changes, and voice changes: he’s apparently a Mighty’ Morphin’ Stretchy-Ass Motherfucker, but he morphs into Earl Cox right in front of them without even realizing it. The question is can he CTRL-Z out of it — and he can! And that means he can also shapeshift into someone who can get Barry out of Iron Heights.

Change Ain’t Easy

DeVoe and his wife are watching what’s happening — they’re tapped into the security cameras so they can keep tabs on our speeder. Marlize is upset that Wolfe’s scheme with Amunet has thrown a wrench into their plans. She asks her husband what he’s going to do, and he says he doesn’t know — see, his mind is too infinite to bother with details or some shit like that. He finally says that what matters is what Barry is going to do while watching him on a monitor pull the stuffing out of his pillow, rub it in…something, and flush it down the toilet. Prison staff come to unclog the toilet — it’s full of “hair” (or so it seems to be). Barry uses this opportunity to swipe a couple 9V batteries.

Ralph is practicing turning himself into Wolfe, but that’s not going so well. He looks like a Picasso painting.

The team gives him a pep talk and BOOM, he’s him. Unfortunately, seems it might take a little work to get the whole body to work as it’s supposed to.

Barry’s pretending to be himself working on a 6th grade science fair project. He put the batteries in a bottle of water and uses the resulting acid to cut through the panel that controls the locks on their cells. They’ve got to get out of there before Wolfe and Amunet complete their deal. Becky/Hazard doesn’t want to leave; she’s scared. Barry reminds her that her powers will be used to hurt people if she stays. Barry then tells them that the metahuman containment wing of Iron Heights is built over the old prison, and that’s the way for them to escape.

There seems to be some discord in the the Devoe evil lair household. Clifford’s just not the same man he used to be, and Marlize doesn’t seem to appreciate the upgrade. He tries to read her thoughts and finds a melody playing there — the first song they danced to decades ago. Most importantly, that song isn’t as significant to him as it used to be, and it keeps him from reading her thoughts. Is this intentional? DeVoe may be an evil genius, but his wife’s not stupid.

Let’s Break Him Out!

Ralph-as-Wolfe is hanging out at that shady bar Caitlin used to work at while exploring her frostier side waiting to meet up with Amunet. Her henchman Norvok comes through, asking him rudely why he’s there, and the team reminds Stretch remotely that Wolfe is a badass who wouldn’t put up with being spoken to like that. He scares dude off instead, but then notices that his mask is slipping, so to speak: one of his ears turns back into Ralph’s ear, and it takes some effort to more fully inhabit Wolfe’s face again.

As Barry and his meta refugees wander through the old prison, they run across a maintenance guy in the tunnels. Three out of four of his fellow convicts are ready to send the poor guy to live on a farm upstate, but Barry talks the crew out of murdering him. One solid punch, and he’s out. All they need is some duct tape to keep him secure.

When StarbuckAmunet finally meets up with Wolfe to talk business, she smells a rat, but Ralph remembers the swagger he’s supposed to have. Unfortunately, his ears start sliding down his face like’s he’s a pile of Silly Putty left out in the hot sun and he just barely escapes a bouquet of blades that Amunet sends flying his way. Cut to Wolfe on the phone telling her that the prisoners are still locked up like they’re supposed to be — while standing in front of their empty cells. The second he’s off the phone he yells, “I’m mad as hell and I’m not gonna take it anymore!” “Find them!”

Iris wants to go to Iron Heights and stop the deal between Wolfe and Amunet to rescue Barry. Ralph is a bit shook from his earlier meltdown and doesn’t want to come with. The rest of the team try to pep-talk him into it, but this time he’s done and leaves the lab.

Meanwhile, Becky/Hazard bandages Barry’s hand — and identifies a fracture. It’s been a while since he’s thrown a punch without the Speed Force backing him up. That shit hurts! She’s ready to go straight now, though she doesn’t know what to do when she gets out. Becky realizes that Barry seems to care about people, and he waxes poetic for a bit about how some metas use their powers to help people instead of hurt them. At this point, I’m wondering if she’s going to turn into some Big Bad the second they get clear of the containment unit that suppresses their powers.

Decide Who You Are

Ralph is drinking himself into a stupor back at his office. Caitlin comes to visit, and when she sees how pathetic he is, figures she’s going to need some reinforcement to end his pity party. So, she does what any good friend would do and smashes a liquor bottle and cuts herself. (Man, I thought I had some ride-or-dies….) That’s just enough trauma to bring out Killer Frost, who lets Ralph know that he’s not going to lose his friends for fucking up — she should know. This does the trick, and makes Ralph realize a way he can help. More importantly, his, “Thank you, Frosty Oprah” took me out.

In the meantime, Killg%re finally gets the metas through the door and into the old gymnasium, where their powers return. But there’s Wolfe waiting for them. He’s nothing up against three metas who have no problem dropping bodies. It might have been curtains for ol’ boy, but before we all get to cheer the worst prison yard beatdown since, well, a couple episodes ago, Wolfe blows Barry’s cover and tells them he’s the Flash. You know, that goddamn superhero who put them all in prison in the first place. This crew apparently holds a grudge and shift their ill intentions to Barry. Hazard stands up to them, though, and protects him. It’s kind of funny watching her do an almost-“I Dream of Jeannie” intense stare to summon good luck while casting her bad luck on all of them. It’s a Three Stooges worthy performance.

Amunet shows up, and Hazard does it again, knocking her down and taking out her team. Unfortunately, though, DeVoe shows up in the Floating Rascal, hits the metas with a blast that disables their powers, announces he’s everyone’s destiny, and sends his Doc Oc arms out to grab all the metas by the head to absorb their powers. Barry sprints over and grabs Hazard’s hand, wanting to save her, and OH SNAP! “Hello, Mr. Allen.” It’s another episode of Invasion of the Metahuman Body Snatchers: DeVoe is now a Becky. Literally.

He/she then kills the warden, seemingly for the hell of it, and breeches out of there just as Vibe and Killer Frost arrive. Barry refuses to go with them — he’s not leaving prison until he can do so legally. He’s taking his cue from Hazard, who made a decision about who she wanted to be. (Dammit, Barry. Why you gotta be so…good?) So, he phases back into his cell and marks another day on the wall.

Being Good Pays Off

But our episode isn’t done yet. In a courtroom, Cecile is bringing yet another appeal to try to free The Flash. Just as the impatient judge is about to deny it, OG DeVoe enters the courtroom, very much alive, and claims that while he was stabbed, he woke up in his own home. And since he’s not dead, Barry couldn’t have killed him. Oscar winning performance, Ralph! Your ears didn’t do that thing at all this time.

And with that, The Flash is free! Cue the bubbly and lots of hugs and threats of Aunt Esther’s meatloaf back at the West home. But Barry is worried. DeVoe could have taken the bus metas’ powers at any time, right? What was he waiting for. At which point Ralph walks in and they all turn and stare at him like he’s what’s for dinner. Well, maybe not their dinner. But DeVoe’s. Surely DeVoe’s.

Back at Casa Archvillain, DeVoe/Becky is also toasting to last night’s success. Marlize isn’t in a celebratory mood, though. After all, he didn’t capture all the bus metas, just four of them, and they killed Wolfe, which wasn’t part of the plan. But DeVoe won’t be trifled with and slips his wife a mickey when she’s not looking. Welp. We knew DeVoe was bad, but I thought maybe just mass-murder bad, not Bill Cosby bad.

Oh, well.

Cover image: Pictured (L-R): Dominic Burgess as Ramsey Deacon, Grant Gustin as Barry Allen, Chelsea Kurtz as Mina Chaytan, Derek Mears as Slybert Rundine and Sugar-Lyn Beard as Becky/Hazard — Photo: Katie Yu/The CW — © 2018 The CW Network, LLC. All rights reserved

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  • Lauren Wheeler writes poetry, fiction, and about the places where the personal, the political, and pop culture intersect. She works on self-driving cars in San Francisco and lives in Oakland with her partner, a five-year-old, and two brown dogs. Michonne is her alter-ego.

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