The Flash’s ‘Blocked’ Proved Who We Are Always Rooting For
If “Blocked” made us realize one thing, it’s that we are always rooting for the WestAllen family
The best thing about this week’s episode of The Flash? Seeing our Team Flash overcome difficult situations in good faith. Nora (Jessica Parker Kennedy) proved to the best daughter/student to Barry (Grant Gustin) after he decided he would teach her how to become a better speedster — since he won’t be there in the future to do so. Throughout the episode, the two were faced with metahumans that put her abilities to the test, but sometimes fell short. But don’t worry! The younger West-Allen defeated her “first baddie,” as she so enthusiastically put it!
Last season, Iris (Candice Patton) reignited her love for journalism, and this episode, we’ve seen Iris do a lot more reporting than ever before. Using her investigate skills, she took it upon herself to dig deeper into Cicada (Chris Klein), who came face to face with Team Flash this week. It was so refreshing to see Iris, and only her, to have a hand in discovering this season’s villain. If anything, she did more work this episode than the entire Team Flash combined!
RELATED | The Flash Roundtable 5×01 “Nora”
Promoted as a series regular for season five, Cecile’s (Danielle Nicolet) telepathic powers are starting to deteriorate, which makes her question whether or not she can be a great mom without them. This episode had some great Cecile and Joe (Jesse L. Martin) scenes, which solidified their stronger bond even more.
Have you ever had a 27 step plan to get over a breakup? Luckily for Cisco (Carlos Valdes), who is still dealing with the fallout of his relationship, Ralph (Hartley Sawyer) steps in and puts his list to good use. The two, including Caitlin (Danielle Panabaker), embark on a journey to help Cisco get back to his vibey ways.
Here to discuss villains, journalism, and more if our The Flash roundtable!
Tatiana (@myrcellasear)– Entertainment journalism wannabe and an avid pursuer of comics.
Muna (@candiceswest) – Passionate admirer of TV shows and Westallen.
Jessica (@newsflash52) – Lover of all things DC, especially The Flash and Iris WestAllen, and podcast host for Ladies w Gumption.
Alexis (@alexiswaverider)– Hope we are less screwed in 2018.
Cami (@tarcamwat)– Love sci-fiction, superheroes, strong female characters and sensitive male characters.
1. Cicada made his villainous appearance! How do you think he will be a game changer for Team Flash?
Tatiana (@myrcellasear): It seems to me that Nora knows him, perhaps even on a personal level. Could he have come back with her from the future by accident? Or perhaps she has heard his legends and doesn’t know how the team defeated him. He seems to be ruthless and has an agenda that doesn’t really involve The Flash himself – so far – so it’ll be interesting to see how bloody things get.
Muna (@candiceswest): I think he’ll be a game changer for the team because he’s not like the other big bads they’ve faced in the past years. Cicada gains his powers from metahumans but he’s not actually one himself, which is why it’ll be harder for them to defeat him. Team Flash is going to have to figure out another way to defeat him than they usually do, and I look forward to seeing that!
Jessica (@newsflash52): Cicada obviously has a very specific motive to strip metahumans of their powers and kill them. We don’t know much of his background yet and why he has a vendetta against metas, but I think, if something happened to his children or family due to metahuman influence, it would make Cicada quite a compelling villain and powerful threat to Team Flash. His lightning bolt acts as a grounder, negating metas around it from their powers, and I think Team Flash might rely a little too much on their powers and other tools of convenience (like the STAR Labs satellite) to solve crime. Taking on a villain that can render their powers useless sounds like a formidable challenge to Team Flash.
Alexis (@alexiswaverider): I think we’ve started to see that in characters like Cisco, whom I believe will be losing his vibe powers. I hope Cicada sets his sights on Ralph next. The only metas on that team should be Barry and Nora. This way, our season bad and villains of the week actually come across as credible threats to the team. Cicada has already shown that he has a soft spot for children by hesitating to finish off Barry after he heard Nora call Barry “dad.” I think this will bring the question of family and legacy into play for the rest of the season. I’m glad they’re fleshing his character out and making him more nuanced which always makes for a better villain. In fact, I hope he ends up being an antagonist than a straight up villain. That said, I don’t know if he has the staying power for a season-long villain, but we’ll have to wait and see.
Cami (@tarcamwat): I love that Cicada is a serial killer of metahumans. I’m not quite sure if he himself is a meta or if all of his powers derive from his lightning bolt dagger, but I like the fact that all metahumans are in danger. I’m looking forward to digging into his mind and see his backstory unfold. What triggered him? He certainly didn’t want to kill Flash in front of his daughter. Much to unearth here.
2. Reporter Iris is back in action! What is nice to see her step into that role again?
Tatiana: I think this is more reporting, or at least investigating than we’ve seen Iris do in a long while. I was very happy to have her hitting the pavement in search of the truth, and it was of the show to intersect her plot with the main villain. I hope we get more moments like this interspersed throughout the season because it’s a great way to showcase her skills, as well as help Central City, feels like its own character.
Muna: I’ve been wanting to see Ace Reporter Iris West back in action again since season one, so it was really nice to see that again in this episode! We saw Iris develop the Central City Citizen last season, and I really hope the writers incorporate the development of her blog as well as her journalism in the upcoming episodes of the season!
Jessica: Loved seeing Reporter Iris go after the Lang story, which led her to the Big Bad of the season. I think her talk with Joe about handling Nora spending so much time with Barry really helped concentrate her energy into things she can control, like digging into a story. I liked that she took the Lang/Gridlock homicide story straight on, and that Captain Singh was willing to give her to scoop off the record because it was Iris. The guard at the hospital mentioned reading her blog. It’s nice to keep getting that confirmation from Central City citizens that Iris’ metablog is a main source of information. Plus, Iris’ investigative instincts and creative thinking helped Barry and Nora track down the villain of the week with the Channel 5 doppler weather satellite. I hope these little aspects of Iris’ skill set continue to get used in more episodes this season. Team WestAllen for the win!
Alexis: Reporter Iris was the highlight of the episode for me. We got to see Iris come up with a story, search for leads, investigate, interview the police captain, victims, and witnesses and she still led Team Flash. More importantly is the fact that her research led them to the season’s big bad. Iris is multifaceted and this is the professional aspect of her everyone wants to see and the one thing the show has been missing. It was so easy to integrate her journalism into the main plot and is something I hope we see every episode all season long.
Cami: I almost cried when I saw Iris show up at the crime scene and get the scoop on Cicada and then pursue it throughout the episode. It was so fantastic! I loved her using Barry’s computer to sneak into CCPD’s files. That was so cute. I can only hope that this continues throughout the season. It would be wonderful if she discovered Cicadas true identity, but with Sherlock Wells and Ralph, I know the likelihood of that is slim.
3. Would you ever participate in Ralph’s 27 step plan to recovery?
Tatiana: Some of those actually sounded like fun! I would definitely watch Beaches with him and find myself in Thailand before realizing that the love of my life would still be in it if that’s what they were. Unless, of course, Ralph expects me to pay for the trip. And I think we know he does.
Muna: Haha, not at all! Although his 24 step plan may have helped Cisco, I doubt it’d help me with post-relationship feels.
Jessica: Well, the “Find yourself in Thailand” set sounds pretty nice. Also, I think I saw a mention of a Corgi beach festival on the list that sounds pretty fun. And who doesn’t love a good makeover montage? While most of the steps sound a little silly, the main point is to get to step 27. All the other steps are just a way to release and help you prepare for step 27. There’s a method to Ralph’s madness, or I’m just giving him way too much credit lol.
Alexis: To be honest, I wasn’t paying much attention to that but if it’s fun then I don’t see why not.
Cami: Listen! Ralph has been great this season! His comedic timing has been on point and he hasn’t overwhelmed the show like last year. Yes, I would be down for 27 steps plan. It’s being with your friends and talking things through that will help you get over a bad break up like Cisco’s.
4. Cisco finally realized that Cynthia isn’t the one. Do you want them to work it out, or do you think he should move on?
Tatiana: I did want them to work out, but I liked the Cisco and Caitlin scene so much that I think I’m allowing it to be their closure. Cisco was never going to move Earths and neither was Cynthia, so realistically how far can they take it?
Muna: A part of me says yes because I loved Cynthia and Cisco together last season. Yet the other part of me believes that they should just move on, because they’re both on two completely different paths in life. They need time and space apart if there is ever going to be a chance of getting back together.
Jessica: Cisco may have come to that conclusion, but I’m still in denial! I’m not ready to move on from the Cynco ship yet! I will always hold out hope that they find their way back to each other, but I also want Cisco to be emotionally healthy and happy. So, whatever is best for Cisco is what I want for him.
Alexis: Naturally I want them to work it if only because it keeps another woman of color on the show and Jessica and Carlos work so well together. However, for logistical reasons, I understand why the writers have to have him move on.
Cami: I love Cynthia so I always hope for her return and for things to eventually work out between her and Cisco. Should Cisco wait around? Nope! He needs to have fun and meet other people.
5. Cicada was so close to killing Barry, but stopped when he saw Nora. How do you think the two are connected?
Tatiana: I accidentally answered this already, but I think that Cicada’s reaction was due less to Nora herself and more to him having a child of his own. The SDCC trailer showed him setting his dagger down in what looked to be a children’s room. It was super creepy, and made me think he’s a twisted family man with a vendetta of his own.
Muna: I believe he recognizes Nora from the future. Since Nora time traveled, she may have changed the timeline and made Cicada appear earlier than he should’ve. Cicada most likely recognized Nora from the future, and she may be the key to defeating him.
Jessica: Either Cicada knows XS, which means he’s from the future too, or he connected Nora screaming “dad” to a memory he has. Again, we don’t know much about Cicada’s backstory yet, but, from what little we do know, it seems like something separated Cicada from his family and that’s what is driving him. Realizing Barry is also a parent may have triggered him into sparing Barry’s life, for now.
Alexis: It points to a tragic backstory for him, one where he lost his child presumably to a metahuman which would explain his grievances towards them and why he’s dedicated to absorbing their powers and killing them. I believe that family is the driving force for him and will be for Barry throughout the rest of the season. From Cicada’s perspective, he’s doing all this in the name of family and to see that no other parent has to lose a child at the hand of meta-humans. It will be interesting to see how many atrocities he’s willing to commit in the memory of his dead child.
Cami: Theory time! Metahumans caused Cicada to lose his family and now he’s taking revenge, but he has a soft spot for parents and their offspring. So no killing them in front of each other.
6. Caitlin discovered her mother signed off on her dad’s death certificate. Are you surprised her mother was involved?
Tatiana: Disappointed but not surprised, as they say. I hope her parents had a good reason that involves protecting Caitlin in some way, because that’s just ridiculous.
Muna: Not at all, her mom was a bit fishy and hesitant last season when Caitlin approached her with her powers. I’m just curious as to why she hid this huge secret for so many years.
Jessica: Yes and no. I guess, seeing as how the death certificate is fake, it was easier to assume her dad signed his own fake death certificate because he wanted to disappear. Otherwise, why not just come back sooner? There doesn’t seem to be a lot of love lost in the Snow household, so I’m not necessarily surprised to find out Caitlin’s mom is involved. It just puts a different spin on the situation now because it seems now as though her mom forced her dad out of Caitlin’s life, possibly for her benefit? I guess we shall see.
Cami: Not surprised. Caitlin’s mom has always been shady as heck. I think her mom is hiding a lot of things. We’ve only scratched the surface.
7. Did you understand Cecile’s frustration when it comes to her powers?
Tatiana: This was probably the best use of Cecile’s power storyline so far. It was really sweet to hear her concerns over being a perfect parent, and especially to have her faith in herself restored thanks to Joe’s wise words. Bless that man and his fatherhood.
Muna: Yes I did, and I understand where she’s coming from. As she mentioned to Joe, she’s had a special connection with her baby even before she was born and it suddenly was taken away. It’s going to take her some time to understand Jenna without her powers, but with or without her powers, Cecile is a great mother!
Jessica: I think, as a new mother, Cecile’s frustration is understandable. For most new parents, the fear of the unknown is daunting. Although it’s not Cecile’s first rodeo, so to speak, it is still daunting to have the responsibility of raising a child. Her powers of telepathy made everything easy, so the fact that she’s losing them is like losing a security blanket. I think Joe had some really sage advice for her.
Alexis: Totally. She had a special bond and constant connection to Jenna through her powers and to have that link severed abruptly — I’d imagine would be hard for anyone, but I think she’ll rediscover that one doesn’t need powers to be a good parent, Joanie is a perfect example of that. But I think it also has to do with the fact that for a brief period of time she felt special because of her powers just like most members of Team Flash and losing that ability must make her feel like she’s back to being your regular Average Jane and inconsequential. My hope is that as the season progresses, she learns that you don’t need powers to matter or be a hero — Iris and Joe are testaments to that.
Cami: I completely understood Cecile. She didn’t want to lose her gifts. And knowing exactly what your crying baby wants is a tough gift to give up. It makes mom duties so much easier.
This season is really setting up the importance of family and legacy
One thing that we didn’t see coming is Barry divulging to the team about his whereabouts when he disappears in 2024. Instead of waiting for a few episodes, the show proved that Barry grew as a person from that scene alone. It was heartbreaking to watch Iris’ reaction, as she quickly stated the team would figure out how to change the future. After all, if there’s anything good this does, it’s kicking the future in the butt!
After attempting to “cure” Cisco, he and Caitlin sat down at Jitters to have a heartfelt conversation, in which Cisco admits Cynthia (Jessica Camacho) isn’t “the one.” We don’t know if it were intentional or not, but the scene made us realize that we’re rooting for Cisco and Caitlin to become a couple — yup, we said it! Our KillerVibe hearts did a total backflip, and we have to say the two have a great foundation if they were ever to become one.
Cicada still remains to be the most interesting villain thus far for Team Flash, coming to toe to toe with the team and nearly killing Barry. However, thanks to Nora, Cicada was merciful with his life and instead walked away. Does this mean Cicada has a heart? Does it mean he’s connected to Nora in some way? The popular theory, as shown from our roundtable, is that Cicada is a human whose child’s life was taken by a metahuman. This season’s villain being a metahuman proves that his villainous journey is already a gamechanger for Team Flash, and his mortalness won’t stop him from winning.
Though “Blocked” wasn’t as heartfelt as the premiere, the episode did a great job in balancing the plot for each of our beloved characters. It was refreshing to see Nora and Barry doing their own thing, Iris investigating alone, Cecile and Joe bonding, and the rest trying to help Cisco. It makes us realize that this show could be really great — greater than it already is. It truly had the necessary components to be a great season.
Next week when the show returns, Cicada proves to be a pain for Team Flash in “The Death of Vibe.” We are sticking around to find out what this means for our beloved Cisco!
The Flash returns Tuesday, October 23rd on The CW.
As Iris put it, “Go Team WestAllen!” NerdeekLife will be continuing our weekly roundtables when The Flash returns next week. Until then, check out our past coverage – catch up on roundtables, news, reviews, and more, all about The Scarlet Speedster!