The Flash season 7 continues with its 9th episode, “Timeless.” In the previous episode, Frost’s (Danielle Panabaker) trial took place, which put all of Team Flash on edge. Despite Team Flash’s best efforts, Frost ultimately pleaded guilty so she would not have to take the metahuman cure. Meanwhile, Barry (Grant Gustin) and the Speed Force (Michelle Harrison) conducted an investigation on the other forces, which lead to a deadly encounter. In this week’s episode, Barry and Iris (Candice Patton) deal with the aftermath of the Speed Force killing Fuerza (Sara Garcia). With Barry and Iris not seeing eye-to-eye on how to handle the situation moving forward, they decide to take different approaches. Barry, with the help of Timeless Wells (Tom Cavanagh), plans to go back in time and prevent the Forces from ever being created. Iris and the rest of Team Citizen decide to find the Speed Force and see if they can reason with it. Meanwhile, Cisco (Carlos Valdes) and Kamilla (Victoria Park) have an honest conversation about their future.
It’s been well established in The Flash that time travel is a complicated thing to do as it can cause unexpected changes. The Flashpoint storyline lead to so many changes and caused a major rift between the original members of Team Flash that took a while to repair. With the plot of “Timeless” dealing with time travel, it doesn’t make sense for the show to do something that’s considered taboo. It contradicts everything that was already set up while also lowering Barry’s character development since he’s well aware of what he’s caused whenever he time travels. While the show finds another way for him to time travel, putting the emphasis on Wells, it feels like lazy writing to include the “magical MacGuffin” that will make it possible. A more straightforward confrontation with the different Forces would have been a much more enjoyable plot instead of including something that has already been shown.
Barry and Iris being on opposite sides in “Timeless” was an interesting element to show. On one hand, seeing them fight makes them feel like a normal couple. It is rather rare for the show to ever show the two of them fighting over anything; the last time any argument between them took place was during season 5. The show has done an excellent job of painting them as the perfect couple, but adding this argument makes their relationship much more authentic. On the other hand, seeing them argue was strange, especially since they rarely argue during any scenes that they have together. That’s not to say they need to argue in every single episode, but there haven’t been enough arguments between them to make this one less surprising. It’s also surprising that an argument this big was written during the show’s 7th season rather than being included in earlier seasons.
It was announced last week that both Valdes and Cavanagh were set to leave The Flash this season. While it’s disappointing to see two of the show’s original members leave the show, it does make sense for their characters to exit. Both of their characters have had numerous storylines throughout all 7 seasons so far, and there doesn’t seem to be anything left for their characters to do. Having Wells appear in “Timeless” was a bit of a letdown, especially since the show had done an incredible job at setting up his departure. This episode began to set up Cisco’s departure, but it’s still undecided as to whether his character exit will be changed. If it does play out in the direction that the episode has set up, it’s quite underwhelming. However, it allows his character to make a choice for himself rather than continuing to stay. The episode also did an incredible job at showing that Team Flash could survive without him, which is difficult to say but proved to be very convincing as it was happening.
Ultimately, “Timeless” delivers a lackluster plot, interesting interactions between the two leads, and perfectly sets up two of its characters’ departures. The time travel plot was disappointing since it was already established as a taboo but found a convenient way to make sure it happens. Seeing Barry and Iris argue was an interesting dynamic to include but also felt rather strange to see because of the nature of their relationship that’s been established since season 3. The departures of both Cisco and Wells were set in this episode, which makes for a bittersweet moment. The show will definitely be different without two of its original members.
The Flash season 7 airs new episodes every Tuesday on the CW Network.
The Flash Season 7, Episode 9 - "Timeless"
“Timeless” delivers a lackluster plot, interesting interactions between the two leads, and perfectly sets up two of its characters’ departures. The time travel plot was disappointing since it was already established as a taboo but found a convenient way to make sure it happens. Seeing Barry and Iris argue was an interesting dynamic to include but also felt rather strange to see because of the nature of their relationship that’s been established since season 3.