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THE FLASH Recap: Gypsy Arrives in the First-Rate “Dead or Alive”

THE FLASH Recap: Gypsy Arrives in the First-Rate “Dead or Alive”

Editor’s note: This post contains spoilers for the latest episode of The Flash! Proceed with caution, speedsters. For reals, if you haven’t yet watched this week’s episode, “Dead or Alive,” we highly suggest you do so before proceeding. Okay? We good? Let’s go.

If any episode of The Flash thus far this season can serve as an example of much how the show has improved since its sophomore year, it must be “Dead or Alive.” The fact that it introduces a new DC Comics superhero to the TV Universe is really just icing on a most satisfying cake. But, since we all love icing…

When Gypsy first appeared in October 1984’s Justice League of America Annual #2 (by writer Gerry Conway and artist Chuck Patton), she had the misfortune of arriving at one of the less exciting times in the League’s history. But in the decades that followed she emerged as something of a fan favorite, due in no small part to her membership of such teams as Justice League Task Force and the Birds of Prey. Typically depicted as a metahuman illusionist, the version of the character we meet this week on The Flash is a government bounty hunter with powers similar to those of Cisco (which in turn serves to give him an all too infrequent taste of the action spotlight this week).

Sent by the powers that be on Earth-19 to retrieve H.R., who has broken their world’s law against interdimensional travel, Gypsy’s more than ready to squash anyone who gets in her away. But when Cisco steps in to defend his friend via trial by combat, she’s forced to acquiesce. Well, at least we’re meant to think she’s forced. But she has enough of a soft spot for the young metahuman that her climactic tussle with him serves first and foremost as foreplay. It’s a welcome break from the show’s often hurried storytelling and character development to devote an entire episode to relationship building, be it between Cisco with his new flame and Wells, Iris and Wally, or Julian and the entire team. Plus, guest star Jessica Camacho has such a natural chemistry with Carlos Valdes that it’s a easier to root for their characters’ pairing than it was for Cisco and Lisa Snart or Cisco and Kendra Saunders. She’s quickly risen to the top of my lists of actors I’d like to see in recurring roles on this show.

The Flash -- "Dead or Alive" -- Image FLA311a_0062b.jpg -- Pictured (L-R): Jessica Camacho as Gypsy and Carlos Valdes as Cisco Ramon -- Photo: Diyah Pera/The CW -- © 2017 The CW Network, LLC. All rights reserved.

As for the rest of “Dead or Alive,” it doesn’t miss a beat. The ongoing storyline concerning Savitar takes a step forward through a series of believable choices, both large and small, from the regular cast of characters, starting with Iris. She decides that if she does have to die in a few months’ time she’d prefer not to wind up like her mother, whom she sees as having made little impact on the world. So she enlists a newly empowered Wally to help her stop a local arms dealer, much to Joe and Barry’s chagrin. Though when their self-appointed mission proves successful, Barry realizes that Wally could be the key to saving Iris’ life in the future.

Unlike many an episode in the show’s second season, however, none of this talk of mortality buries “Dead or Alive” under a mountain of gloom. H.R. and Cisco provide a reliable stream of one-liners, Caitlin takes a moment to offer some sisterly skepticism to her longtime colleague regarding Gypsy, and even Iris and Wally get to have some fun, misdirecting Joe so they can carry out their task. His reaction when she makes him think she’s pregnant only to reveal she’s considering getting a dog is exactly the kind of spontaneity that’s all too often missing from their relationship.

Speaking of relationships, Barry and Wally’s might soon be put to the test, as the two begin training together in an effort to boost the latter’s speed. Is the younger speedster taking on too much too soon? And just when will Joe find out about all this? You know where I’ll be next Tuesday.

The Flash 2

Accelerated Particles

— Apparently Die Hard, like The Godfather, exists on every Earth.

— Though soap operas do not?!

— Of course Cisco is into LEGOs.

— Julian too gets a chance to prove his worth this week, when he advises Cisco on how to defeat Gypsy. In essence, he serves as the team’s metahuman sports analyst. A good thing, too, because his interpersonal skills are hilariously weak. Though I’m starting to wonder if he and Caitlin will be the next office romance at STAR Labs.

— “Slow down there. Let’s just talk about this like two adults. Over coffee. Or dinner. If you prefer that there’s a great Thai place up the road, if you like Thai. I’m Cisco by the way. You must be Gypsy. It’s nice to meet you.”

— Great to see the show find a way to keep working Earth Supergirl (and its Catco set) into the proceedings with a minimum of fuss.

— “Just a regular guy. A regular, single guy.”

What did you think of this week’s episode? Let me know in the comments below or on Twitter (@JMaCabre).

Images: The CW

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