On the airfield, Flash races against a drone that Cisco has devised
to help test his speed. Caitlin objects to the danger, but Harrison
points out that it’s only an exercise. The Flash calls for Cisco to fire
a missile from the drone, and then leaps up and catches it in the air
in mid-flight and throws it into the sky to explode harmlessly. He then
comes over and eats some energy bars, and worries that he’s still not
fast enough to beat the Man in the Yellow Suit, who Cisco has dubbed
Reverse-Flash. Harrison assures Barry that he’ll be ready, and Barry
takes to the airfield for another training exercise.
That night, Len Snart freezes the door to a car warehouse and rams it with his car. He and his new partner, Mick Rory, easily break through the brittle metal and get out. Snart explains that the cars are all imported from Europe, but admits that he has no intention of stealing them. He tells the impatient Rory that the silent alarms went off as soon as they broke in and the police should be there shortly... along with Flash. However, the hero doesn’t show and Snart realizes that the hero isn’t coming. When Rory complains, Snart tells him that he’ll still get to do his thing and they drive off.
Later after the police secure the crime scene, Joe, Eddie, and Barry arrive and confirm that nothing was stolen. Barry examines the metal and realizes that it was flash-frozen, and he and Joe realize that Snart is back in town and that he was trying to lure Flash to the warehouse.
At an abandoned warehouse, Rory is flicking a cigarette lighter on and off, and Snart tells him to be careful. Rory figures that Flash is long gone, but Snart is confident that the hero is still in Central City. He then explains that they’re going to steal a painting, “Fire and Ice,” from Osgood and Rachel Rathaway. The Rathaways flew to Paris and bought the painting for $25 million, and are flying it back to Central City.
At S.T.A.R. Labs, Barry tells the scientists that Snart is back in town and wants to fight Flash. Harrison warns Barry that he has to ignore the villain and focus on improving his speed. When Barry objects, the elder scientist reminds him that the last time he fought Snart, a train was derailed and Barry just managed to save the passengers. He suggests that it’s a matter of priorities and that Snart may give up if Flash doesn’t challenge him, and offers to work with the police.
At the station, Iris drops in on Eddie and reminds her boyfriend that they’re moving in together in three days. Barry comes in and sees them together, and avoids them to find Joe in his lab. Eddie notices Barry and asks if Iris is fine with they’re moving in, and she assures him that she is. Upstairs, Barry tells Joe that Flash won’t be helping in the manhunt. Joe reminds Barry that he wants to help people, not just bring his mother’s killer to justice, but Barry refuses to take time away from stopping the man who hurt his friends, saying that it’s a matter of priorities.
When Joe goes home that night, Iris is packing for the move. Barry comes in a minute later and Iris gives him the backpack he had as a child, complete with the comic books he owned back then. She abruptly walks away and Joe asks Barry what’s wrong. Barry explains that he told Iris about how he really feels about her, and it’s been awkward ever since.
Harrison arranges a meeting with Captain Singh and his men, and Cisco demonstrates a modified ballistic shield that he’s created with a heating element to resist Captain Cold’s icy blasts. The officers are skeptical of S.T.A.R. Labs after the scientists almost blew up the city. Harrison lets Cisco handle the situation, and the young scientist admits that they screwed up, but now they want the chance to make things better. He demonstrates that the shield work, but Singh isn’t so sure. Meanwhile, Joe talks to Harrison privately and suggests that Flash could help. Harrison says that it’s a matter of priorities, and Joe realizes that Barry said the same thing earlier. The detective wonders if Harrison is trying to influence Barry, but Harrison just wheels away.
When Barry goes to the lab, he finds Caitlin looking up references to the word “Firestorm.” She explains that Ronnie said the word before he flew away, and Barry tells her what he said to Iris. Caitlin admits that things weren’t predictable once she started dating Ronnie, but she got used to them and that it was better than before. Distracted, Barry suggests that “Firestorm” might be an acronym. Caitlin finds a scientific paper concerning Fusion Ignition Research Experiment and Science of Transmutation Originating RNA and Molecular Structures, and Barry reads the 800 pages at superspeed. He then tells Caitlin that it was co-written by Jason Rusch, a grad student at local Hudson University.
The Rathaways land at the airport in their private jet and Osgood’s executive assistant Ethan informs him that Hartley called. Osgood says that he doesn’t have a son anymore, and Captain Cold steps out and fires his gold gun. After getting their attention, Captain Cold tells them to call 911. The police quickly arrive and confirm that their shields work against Captain Cold’s weapon. However, they’re not ready when Cold’s partner Heat Wave steps out and opens fire on them with another of the stolen S.T.A.R. Lab weapons. This one fires blasts of heat, and their shields are useless against it. Heat Wave quickly goes out of control, admiring his fiery handiwork, and Joe manages to shoot the heat gun. Cold orders his partner to grab the painting and leave. Using the flames as cover, the villains make their escape.
When he hears about what happened, Barry arrives at the station and confirms that Joe is okay. The detective tells Barry what happened and tells Barry to make sure Flash makes the two villains regret ever messing with him.
At their hideout, Rory repairs his heat gun and Snart, Furious, draws his cold gun and threatens to shoot him. Rory draws his gun and Snart points out that he lost it just like he did on their last job. The pyromaniac figures that Snart has an obsession of his own—Flash--and they should just take the painting and leave Central City. Snart tells him to go if he wants with the painting, but he plans to set up permanently in Central City... and they need to fight Flash to do it. He offers to share the city with Rory, and the pyromaniac torches the painting and asks how they are going to lure the hero. Snart confidently assures his partner that Flash has partners as well.
Caitlin arranges to meet Jason at Jitters and asks him about Project FIRESTORM. Jason looks around nervously and starts to bolt, but Caitlin begs him to help her find her friend. They sit down and Jason explains that he worked with Professor Martin Stein on a transmutation project. They had some initial success and then Martin ordered additional tests that proved successful as well. However, the university threatened to shut them down and Martin released his research papers to the project. When he went to a friend to get private backing, he disappeared and the Army showed up the next day and confiscated all of the project research. Once she learns everything she can, Caitlin goes back to her car. However, Captain Cold freezes it and Heat Wave grabs her.
At S.T.A.R. Labs, Barry is contemplating his training treadmill when Harrison comes in and wonders if Barry blames him for pushing him to train. Barry says that he’s an adult and can make his own choices--and mistakes--and thanks Harrison for pushing him to be better. Harrison says that Barry pushes him to be better, just as Cisco calls and says that he’s been going over the blueprints on the heat gun he designed. As he explains that the two guns could cancel each other out, Joe calls Barry and tells him about Caitlin, and Barry speeds off to the parking lot. Seeing the frozen car, they realize who is responsible and head back to the station. Eddie has checked Rory’s fingerprints and confirmed that he was an arsonist who worked with Snart a year ago. The job went bad and Rory lost control, burning half of his body. Rory escaped and hasn’t been seen since. As they talk, Captain Cold overrides all of the broadcast signals and announces that Flash is real and that they’re going to fight at sundown at an address... or Caitlin dies.
At the warehouse, Rory ties Caitlin up and she notices that he’s burned. The criminal says that the fire merely revealed his true self, and offers to do the same thing for her. Caitlin refuses to back down and Snart interrupts, telling Rory that it’s time to go. Rory gags Caitlin and then sets an incendiary booby-trap before leaving with his partner.
Joe calls Barry at S.T.A.R. Labs and tells him that Flash is on. He wonders if Barry is ready for Flash to be exposed for the world, and Barry says that he’ll see Joe soon. He then runs to the cordoned-off street address, and the two villains step out and shoot at him. Flash takes evasive action but Cold freezes a fire hydrant, and the resulting ice wall blocks the speedster. Recovering, Flash takes cover behind a call, while Harrison calls to remind him that he has to trick the villains into crossing the beams of their guns. Heat Wave sets the car on fire and Flash runs away as it explodes.
Iris arrives at the police cordon and watches with Eddie as Flash zooms back and forth, trying to get between the two villains.
Cisco calls Joe and explains that he’s checked the CCTVs and pinpointed Caitlin’s location. They go to the warehouse and break in, but Cisco sets off the bobby trap. Joe manages to tackle Caitlin just in time as the incendiary goes off.
On the street, Flash runs up a building to avoid his opponents’ weapons, moving beyond the cordoned-off area. The hero drops to the street but Cold hits him with a shot, and Eddie grabs a shield and runs to Flash’s aid. Cisco’s shield does the job and Flash speeds him out of the way. He realizes that speed isn’t the answer and Harrison agrees, and then makes himself an easy target. Cold and Heat Wave open fire on him, but Flash manages to keep going until he’s directly between them... and the beams cross. The backlash knocks both villains down. When Cold tries to get to his gun, Flash steps on it. The villain admits that Flash caught him by surprise and beat him... this time. Eddie arrests them and Flash thanks the detective for his help and then speeds off.
At the station, Eddie and his men bring Snart and Rory in, just as Barry comes in. He congratulates Eddie, who says that they owe Flash, and then gives the villains’ guns to Cisco as he arrives. Singh shakes Cisco’s hand and as Barry leaves, the police officers start talking about the Scarlet Speedster.
The next day, Barry and Eddie carry out the last of Iris’ boxes from her home. Eddie invites Joe to come over any time and goes out to the truck, and Barry banters with Iris, saying that he can see the future and that he knows she and Eddie will be happy together. He also predicts that eventually he and Iris will be best friends again, and Iris, smiling takes a photo of her and Barry with her. Once she leaves, Barry tells Joe that he’s okay, and Joe admits that he knew Iris would move out some day. He suggests that Barry might move back in and Barry agrees, superspeed to his apartment to get his luggage.
As Snart and Rory are transported to Iron Heights in a van, Rory irritably points out that his partner’s plan failed. Snart says that everyone has seen Flash and now things will change. An explosion knocks the van off the road and Snart tells Rory that it’s all part of the plan... and greets his sister as she rips open the door.
Written by Gadfly on Jun 23, 2019