The Flash will be hitting a major milestone on Tuesday, December 4th with its hundredth episode. It’s always a celebration when a show hits it. It allows for syndication rights to kick in, which means that the actors can get a boost to their income. Or, at least, that’s how we understand it.
Even though The Flash has had its rough patches over the years, we still need to salute the episodes that truly stood out in the series. These selected episodes strike a balance between The Flash’s lighthearted nature with some of the more dramatic moments. It shows just how well the series can work under the right circumstances.
Needless to say, we don’t think any of the DeVoe (Neil Sandilands) heavy episodes will land on the list.
With that in mind, here are our Top Ten Episodes of The Flash. The ranking is in no particular order and will not be numbered. These are just ten really, really good episodes of the show.
A show can live or die by its pilot episode, it is the thing that sets the tone for the series. It draws in fans and sets everything up. The Flash has an excellent pilot. From Barry (Grant Gustin) dealing with his new powers to the tag with Wells (Tom Cavanagh) at the end, the pilot really sets the bar for the series. It shows that light-hearted fun can co-exist alongside Arrow’s darker tone. We even saw Oliver (Stephen Amell) smile like an excited little kid! That alone is pretty awesome.
The most recent episode to appear on this list, “Nora” may not be the most memorable episode. It does, however, signify a needed change in direction for the series. After the depressing slog that was fighting DeVoe, the season five premiere promises something a bit lighter. While Nora (Jessica Parker Kennedy) could be a bit much in the hero-worship of her dad, it was still a great character-driven episode. Plus, Cicada (Chris Klein) immediately makes a terrifying impression in the final moments of the show.
While DeVoe was a horrible season-long villain, the fourth season did have a lot of excellent episodes. Unsurprisingly, they were ones where the villain’s presence was minimal. Taking place over the course of five-minutes, “Enter Flashtime” is one of the tensest hours that the show has ever produced. Mainly, it comes down to Grant Gustin’s performance. You can feel Barry’s exhausted desperation throughout the episode as he tries to save his family and the city, growing increasingly alone as he cannot have support the entire time.
Some people may call Barry a dumbass. This episode, however, boils down the essence of Barry’s character with his determination and heart, finding a spot of hope in the most hopeless moments. It’s a stand-out episode for the series.
Sooner or later, fans knew that Caitlin Snow’s (Danielle Panabaker) more villainous half, Killer Frost, will make herself known. While it was teased over the earlier seasons, it came to fruition in season three. Before Killer Frost was Caitlin’s snarky older sister that she shared a body with, she was ready to be pure bad guy. Her official introduction in “Killer Frost” provided a great segue into the “Invasion” storyline and showed a stellar performance from Panabaker.
Plus, it’s directed by Kevin Smith. What’s not to love?
“Flash vs Arrow”
“Flash vs Arrow” marks the first proper crossover between both shows. Technically, there’s the introduction of Barry in Arrow season two. This is the first time the two shows crossed over together. It led to some pretty stellar moments all around, especially when Barry and Oliver fought. It was a great nod to some of the early forms of crossovers in comics. Two heroes meet. Two heroes fight, for some reason. Two heroes are friends at the end. While later crossovers will get more involved, this still set the precedent for everything to come.
“Run, Iris, Run”
Another excellent, relatively DeVoe-light episode from the fourth season, Iris (Candice Patton) has been given Barry’s powers. Barry now is powerless. Iris gets to experience what her husband usually does on the day to day basis. The episode is more of a chance for Iris to shine and experience a new perspective while doing so. Patton does some great work due to it, proving that she would make a badass superhero herself.
While we’ll probably won’t see Patton suit up again, Iris West has more than proven that she’s not oe to be messed with.
“The Runaway Dinosaur”
One of the best episode of the second season, “The Runaway Dinosaur” allows Barry to make the conscious choice to be The Flash, after all he has lost. Stuck in the Speed Force after trying to regain his powers, Barry has to face his most painful moment: the death of his mother. The Speed Force rightly recognizes that Barry is trapped by those memories. He can’t truly move on in his life if he doesn’t make his peace with it.
Granted, the Speed Force should have probably waited until Barry lost both those parents to impart that lesson. It’s especially true if it was trying to stop Flashpoint. Even so, it was a beautifully directed and written hour, showcasing the psychology of our main character. There’s not many episodes that will focus on what is going on just in Barry’s head. It was kind of nice to experience that.
“Girls Night Out”
This episode of The Flash is simply fun. The ladies of Team Flash, plus Felicity Smoak (Emily Bett Rickards), get together for Iris’ bachelorette party. Then chaos ensues as Caitlin’s past catches up to her with Amunet Black (Katee Sackhoff). Watching as these ladies try to stop Amunet and save the city is endlessly cool. It’s also fun to see them all bounce off each other. Plus, it does give Iris and Caitlin a much needed chance to bond.
Meanwhile, with the guys, we got to see Barry drunk. That will always be one of the best moments of the show ever. Fight me on it.
This is arguably one of the greatest television crossovers, never mind the Arrowverse. Not only does it advance the plot of both The Flash and Supergirl, it allows both series to get in touch with their light-hearted roots. That’s honestly something that both of them shows needed at the time. Gustin and Melissa Benoist never shared a scene together on Glee. Their chemistry is something to never be denied because Barry and Kara have one of the sweetest cross-dimensional friendships of all time.
The musical numbers were great. Darren Criss was pitch perfect as the Music Meister. Kara and Barry learned some lessons about trusting their hearts. Barry proposed to Iris with a song. Like, bro, it’s awesome.
“The Flash Is Born”
One of the standouts from season one and the series as a whole, after several episodes Barry truly embraces his heroic destiny. “The Flash Is Born” not only has Barry naming himself, but Barry facing against his past. Maybe having him battle an old bully would be a bit redundant, but Tony Woodward (Greg Finley) acts as more of a stand-in for all of Barry’s own insecurities. Sometimes, you just need super sonic punch those in the face, in one of the best moments of the show.
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