By Mina Haq
This week’s episode featured a very special guest star: “Arrow’s” Felicity Smoak (Emily Bett Rickards)! Felicity arrived in Central City and proved to be an asset for the S.T.A.R Labs team as they faced a threat whose origins were more close to home than they expected. While she fit into the professional team very well, she shook up Barry’s personal life a bit when she met Iris, leading to the normal amount of awkwardness that usually ensues when Felicity and Barry are concerned.
Barry’s mission so far has been pretty cut and dry, at least as cut and dry as fighting bad guys using super speed can get. He fights crime and captures meta-humans in order to keep Central City safe, and he’s been doing a decent job of it. However, this week’s villain isn’t a meta-human. Leonard Snart (aka Captain Cold, played by Wentworth Miller) is just a regular bad guy with a pretty big advantage: A cold gun. This leads to pretty drastic consequences for Barry, since cold is the exact opposite of speed and this weapon is one of the only things that can really hurt him.
Snart’s goal is pretty standard until Barry stops him from stealing an expensive diamond, making the “Red Streak” his new enemy. So, he acquires the cold gun from the only place with the technology to create such a powerful weapon: S.T.A.R. Labs. It turns out that before Cisco really trusted Barry, he created the cold gun as a precaution to stop Barry if he needed to.
In much less dramatic news, Iris is still struggling to resolve the conflict between her father and Eddie. Even though Joe said he was okay with Iris and Eddie dating, he’s still giving both of them the cold shoulder. Iris also takes Barry’s love life into her own hands, organizing a supremely awkward double date with herself, Eddie, Barry and Felicity at a trivia night in the city.
The double date is cut short when Joe gets a visual on Snart at the museum holding the diamond and Eddie is called in to work, meaning Barry is called in to action. Unfortunately, thanks to the cold gun, Barry isn’t able to get to Snart in time and Snart kills someone amidst his quest for the diamond. Barry, not used to failing just yet, has difficulty coping with his role in the man’s death. To make matters worse, when he finds out that Cisco created the gun it throws a wrench in their team dynamic.
Unsurprisingly, Felicity is the voice of reason for everyone. She tells Barry that he needs to understand where Cisco was coming from because it took her a long time to trust Diggle and Oliver when she first joined Team Arrow, and that he shouldn’t make an already lonely lifestyle lonelier than it has to be by isolating his team. She also tells Cisco, Caitlin and Wells that they need to have Barry’s back no matter what, all while hacking into the Central City network and finding out where Snart is, allowing Barry to go after him.
While Barry is fighting Snart on a train, Cisco gets hit by a stroke of minor genius. He, Caitlin and Felicity show up to help Barry with a “prototype cold gun” with twice the power (Spoiler: It’s actually the S.T.A.R. Lab’s vacuum cleaner), scaring Snart away from hurting Barry any further. Even though Snart gets away with the diamond, Barry is safe and the team dynamic is restored (with no little amount of help from Felicity).
The West family dynamic is also restored after Joe tells Iris exactly what it is about her relationship with Eddie that’s bothering him. Apparently, it’s hard to trust your partner knowing that he’s in a serious romantic relationship with your daughter. Who would’ve thought? Not Iris, apparently, but she still apologizes and they reach some sort of understanding about the whole ordeal.
Unfortunately for everyone in the S.T.A.R. Labs team, Felicity has to get back to her own team over in Starling City. She and Barry share a pretty emotional and very adorable goodbye on her train ride home, during which they both confide in each other about their respective “unrequited” romantic issues with Oliver and Iris. They might be perfect for each other, but that won’t stop them from pining for people who are their complete opposites. Still, they share a somewhat platonic yet still heartwarming kiss goodbye, or until the next crossover at least.
The episode wouldn’t be over without the weekly final cryptic scene, but in a shocking turn of events it doesn’t feature Wells this time! Instead, it shows Snart recruiting a new, equally evil sounding partner, meaning this is definitely not that last we’ll see of Snart.