(Disclaimer: Spoilers for The Flash below. Continue at your own risk!)
Fresh off the heels of the wildly successful Arrowverse crossover event; Team Flash must discover Dr. Alchemy and Savitar's motives, before it is too late. We got a lot of information on Julian "Albert" Desmond's origins. We also saw the welcomed return of John Wesley Shipp as Jay Garrick. However, the biggest reveal in this episode involved the future of one of Barry's closest relationships, and the doomed nature of it.
Watch the promo for "The Present" below:
It's no secret that #Flashpoint has been a looming presence over the entire #Arrowverse this season, and it continues to haunt Barry Allen at every turn. The Dominators were a direct result of Flashpoint, along with the scourge of Savitar. More consequences of Barry's time travel exploits continue to mount as the season unfolds.
With all that's happened regarding Flashpoint, The Flash episodes have become increasingly convoluted. So, instead of trying to grasp all the concepts of the mid-season finale, we're going to focus specifically on Savitar, and how his future actions will dictate the rest of the season — more specifically, him killing Iris West.
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Savitars' Origins: The God Of Motion
#Savitar was the focal point of this episode — even though there were many side stories involving almost all of the core characters. We learned that he was the very first speedster, and also why he has a certain interest in Barry. His origin — as told by Julian Albert — is a very old one, and involves him becoming the embodiment of speed itself.
We learned that Savitar can only exist when the "Philospher's Stone" is exposed — which is encapsulated in some sort of magic box. His connection to the stone explains why "The God of Speed" is not around all the time, and why he needs Dr. Alchemy's assistance. Team Flash exploited this trait to contain Savitar, and channeled his essence through Julian, thereby learning his motives (which was super convenient, and also served as an effective piece of exposition).
His motives on the other hand — at least the ones that involve Barry Allen — are all too familiar to fans of the show. As it turns out, Savitar shares similar goals to Season 1's big-bad, the Reverse Flash. Barry is again paying for the mistakes made by his future self, who supposedly defeats Savitar in the future, trapping him for a very long time.
The Death Of Iris West
Now technically she's not dead yet, but after an accidental jaunt into the future, Barry receives a glimpse of what's to come, witnessing his future self — 5 months from now — try to rescue Iris from the clutches of Savitar.
The altercation goes south pretty fast, and Savitar skewers Iris with his giant arm blade. Jay Garrick then pulls Barry back to the present time, and convinces him not to go try and rescue Iris. This bleak future will test Barry's confidence in himself, and his ability to tempt fate — hopefully without creating another Flashpoint.
A Taste Of What's To Come
If we have learned anything this season, it's that you don't mess with the timeline. Unfortunately, Barry has learned this the hard way. This season showed us that time operates much like Newton's third law of motion: every time you fuck with time, it fucks you right back. All Barry wanted to do was save his parents, and so far he's been through hell because of it. By making just one alteration to the past, The Flash caused aliens to invade Earth, he unleashed the "God of Speed," and also changed his own future exponentially.
The rest of Season 3 has undoubtedly just been laid out in front of us. Barry is now "on the clock," and has only five months to figure out how to change the future. The focus of this season has now pivoted from Barry regretting his decision that created Flashpoint, to him trying to escape fate, by saving Iris. Everything that happens from here on out is Barry proving that he controls his own destiny, and every belief he has will be put to the test.
This season of The Flash hasn't been the strongest, and it's only headed more off the rails. Flashpoint was once thought of as an awesome idea, but now has become a terrible burden on the entire season. Though Barry only spent one episode in the actual Flashpoint timeline, the repercussions are haunting him ad nauseam.
Hopefully, the rest of the season will be Team Flash facing the future, without the past looming over them. As fans, we are hopeful that Barry witnessing the death of Iris, will motivate him to stop fucking with timelines. Maybe we'll move past Flashpoint by the end of the season, and get to enjoy one of the other great story lines from the comic books. As always, you can catch The Flash, Tuesday's 8PM/ET on The CW!
Sound Off! Do you think Barry can change the future and save Iris? Let it be known in the comments section below!