The Flash officially wraps up the “Forces” arc with its season 7, episode 11, “Family Matters Part 2.” In the previous episode, Barry (Grant Gustin) trains Alexa (Sara Garcia) to use her Strength Force powers to take down the Speed Force (Michelle Harrison). Deon (Christian Magby) teams up with the Speed Force to take down the other Forces. Psych (Ennis Esmer) goes on a rampage to get revenge on those who wronged him in the past. Finally, Joe (Jesse L. Martin) makes a life-changing decision after making a surprising discovery. In “Family Matters Part 2,” Barry, Iris (Candice Patton), and the rest of Team Flash come together to stop the Speed Force from destroying the other Forces and Central City. Meanwhile, Joe deals with giving up his badge and feeling as though he can no longer protect the people close to him.
Fans of The Flash have been vocal about the decreasing quality of episodes throughout the “Forces” arc. However, “Family Matters Part 2” found a great way to end a consistently underwhelming arc. The emphasis of the Forces being a family makes much more sense once they all come together to stop the Speed Force. Putting the act of being a family into action rather than just talking about it does a lot more to make it less ridiculous. In addition, the big climactic battle, as well as the CGI, looked incredible. It will remind fans of the fights that Barry had with Zoom and Savitar in previous seasons. The set-up for the climactic fight was paced well and upped the stakes in such a way that hasn’t been seen since season 3. On top of that, the writing in the episode gave every member of Team Flash something to do.
Throughout “Family Matters Part 2,” Joe’s storyline continues to increase his character development. Giving up such an important part of who he is because of one person’s actions to target metahumans is something fans would have never seen Joe from season 1 do. However, seeing multiple members of his family become metahumans and doing many great things for Central City set the foundation for why he thinks metahumans shouldn’t be targeted. However, his struggle with feeling helpless is understandable, especially since he had an entire police department behind him. Joe struggling with this is something the show should explore more, especially since both Nora and Bart will be making appearances in the final episodes of the season.
With The Flash being a superhero show, it’s no surprise that events involving one of its central characters are changed for the plot’s sake. For instance, both Flashpoint and the Crisis cross-over event brought on major changes without making everything that leads to those changes seem unimportant. However, “Family Matters Part 2” makes a major change between Caitlin and Frost, making “The People V. Killer Frost” a completely unimportant episode. With Frost being gone, it opened up the possibilities for Caitlin’s character to develop since she would have to deal with a major element of her life being taken from her. It could’ve also opened up the possibilities for more of the show’s budget to be used for bigger fights rather than Frost’s costume and powers. Plus, Team Flash continues to be packed with multiple members, even with two original members leaving. Bringing back Frost won’t help give all of its members the necessary screen time on the show.
Ultimately, “Family Matters Part 2” does an incredible job in wrapping up the “Forces” arc and continued to give Joe immense character development. However, Frost’s appearance puts a dent in the episode and makes a previous episode in the season completely unimportant. Had that part of the episode not been included, this may have been one of the season’s best episodes.
The Flash Season 7 will continue with a new arc starting on June 8th.
The Flash Season 7, Episode 11 - "Family Matters Part 2"
“Family Matters Part 2” does an incredible job in wrapping up the “Forces” arc and continued to give Joe immense character development. However, Frost’s appearance puts a dent in the episode and makes a previous episode in the season completely unimportant. Had that part of the episode not been included, this may have been one of the season’s best episodes.