Flash is the fastest ever

The Flash: Fastest man in court in the episode The Trial of The Flash

In The Trial of The Flash, Barry is faced with a charge that leads to a futile trial. In addition to solid court drama, the episode also impresses with many calm character moments. The secondary plot, however, has a radioactive metahuman to offer.

Even the fastest man in the world is not immune to the mercilessness of the American legal system, innocent or not. After the winter finale Don't Run of the fourth season of The Flash ended with Barry (Grant Gustin) being held responsible for the murder of Clifford DeVoe (Neil Sandilands) and consequently taken into custody by the authorities, we are now racing in the episode The Trial of The Flash through the trial of this murder, in which the accused should not have high hopes of being acquitted. Understandably, the burden of proof is overwhelming and Barry's alleged resolution, after he repeatedly attacked DeVoe and his wife Marlize, is more than established.

We also get a little "Metahuman of the Week" story that comes to an almost catastrophic end, but the focus is mainly on the trial of the "cold-blooded murderer Bartholomew Henry Allen". And we rarely see something like that in “The Flash”, which is why the little excursion into the “legal drama” genre feels quite refreshing. This is mainly limited to scenes in the courtroom, where Cecile (Danielle Nicolet) does her best to convince the jury of the innocence of her client, while her counterpart, prosecutor Anton Slater (Mark Valley), has almost too easy a game To draw Barry as the monster who stabbed esteemed college professor Clifford DeVoe.


Phil Chipera - who is delivering his first ever work as a director for a TV episode with “The Trial of The Flash”, after having already gained a lot of experience as an assistant director or second unit director - captures the dynamics of this court hearing well, it expresses itself but due to time constraints also something on the tube. Normally, such a case is likely to drag on a little longer, no matter how clear the evidence is. It is well known that the mills of justice grind more slowly, but for dramaturgical reasons an exception is made here, as is often the case with other representatives of the genre. Within this framework of Barry's trial, some memorable scenes develop that deal with the characters and their valuable relationships with each other and what it means if Barry should be convicted. Because it seems clear early on that there will probably be no happy ending.

Wolf in sheep's clothing

At first, of course, nobody really wants to believe this. Nobody wants to give up hope and expects a small miracle that Barry will somehow still be let off the hook. But if you take a look at the points that can lead to the charges against Barry, it looks dark for the young forensic scientist. Anton Slate - cast in an excellent casting coup with Mark Valley, who starred in a good 70 episodes as defense attorney and later prosecutor Brad Chase in Boston Legal - nailed Barry down to the jury: There is really everything to suggest that Barry committed the act. Cecile is still trying to illustrate the undisputed, good qualities of her client, but at the latest when Marlize (Kim Engelbrecht) pulls off her big show of tears, the cake is eaten.

While part of the team has to take care of another problem and Iris (Candice Patton) seems paralyzed for her and her husband because of her powerlessness in this stressful situation, Joe (Jesse L. Martin) wants to take action. Together with Ralph (Hartley Sawyer), he collects incriminating evidence against Marlize in order to turn the tables, which she skilfully fends off. Whatever they try, the inevitable is getting closer: the conviction of Barry Allen. No wonder, because an opponent like the Thinker (by the way, Domenic's new body now has the upgrade that he can read minds) is prepared for all eventualities and has long since calculated the outcome of the whole story. He is sure of triumph.

Enjoy the show

And the makers actually pull it off. No surprise witness can save Barry Allen, he only has one option: to make a testimony himself, which would mean, however, that he would have to lie to protect his secret identity. And he doesn't want that. Once again the honesty and respectability of our main character is shown, who is ready to show the same strength as his father Henry did, who was also wrongly sentenced to a long prison term. The only question is whether Iris can be as strong as Barry, it is extremely upsetting that their relationship and young marriage is destroyed in this way. Why not just tell the truth?

"I, Barry Allen, am the Flash." For now, this should help Barry, but what then? He is absolutely right that this revelation would make himself and his loved ones vulnerable. And he cannot answer for that. In a beautiful scene in the middle of the courtroom, time stands still for a moment when Barry gives his Iris confidence and strength. At the moment they cannot prevent Barry from immigrating to the kittchen. And they still don't know how to stop DeVoe and get Barry out of trouble. However, trust in your own abilities and strengths will show you a possibility. That sounds terribly clichéd and melodramatic. On the other hand, the “stuff” from which The Flash is knitted is absolutely d'accord, while the whole thing is convincingly supported by the cast.

Cool down

The waves that Barry's condemnation makes go beyond the relationship between himself and Iris. Joe's little storyline, for example, shows how difficult it would be for him to see his foster son behind Swedish curtains. The collaboration between him and Ralph to help Cecile defend Barry gives me something unexpected: a Ralph Dibny who acts like a full-fledged, complex character and makes a real impression for the first time. His last appearances were pretty annoying to me, be it his overused function as a comic relief or the many uncomfortable, sexist comments. In The Trial of The Flash, however, the character shows that there is more to it. And that you can take an example from her.

Running into danger

Joe could falsify evidence and would be no better than Clifford and Marlize DeVoe, who are enjoying this perverted game. And even if he could help Barry in this way, at some point what he did would catch up with him. He would be unfaithful to himself and would have to live with that decision forever. He's too good for that. In other words: better than most, especially better than DeVoe and his wife. Ralph can sing a song about this feeling, as he once lost everything that meant something to him through a similar act. Rightly so, mind you. But it's not just about material loss. It's about the integrity of one's conscience. And so, Ralph “manipulates” Joe extremely adroitly to do the right thing, no matter how painful it is. But they are not allowed to use the methods of their opponents to help Barry. You will find another way.

How exactly Barry can be freed from his predicament remains open to speculation. Once again, the DeVoes throw around cryptic threats and promises that Barry's imprisonment is part of a grand master plan that the little ghosts from Team Flash have no idea what to expect. It's all a bit monotonous and repetitive, although I can get something out of the performances by Kendrick Sampson and Kim Engelbrecht. The duo is already clearly heading in the direction of the mustache-twirling villains, but Sampson in particular has his own charisma, while Engelbrecht clearly enjoys switching from grieving wife to ice-cold villain in no time at all.


Speaking of villains. The aforementioned "Metahuman of the Week" is less of a mean villain with low intentions, but rather a helpless everyone named Neil Borman (Ryan Alexander McDonald), who is not really aware of what his abilities are and what chaos they lead to pull. In the end, the Metahuman "Fallout" is a walking atomic bomb which, due to its radioactivity, causes radiation poisoning among other people and, in the worst case, detonates, which would amount to a nuclear catastrophe. Here, too, you can be sure that the all-calculating Thinker has his finger on the pulse, because now, of all times, when Barry's process is entering its decisive phase, Fallout comes into play.

It is at least conceivable, because in thought of the city and its residents, Barry throws away his last, minimal chance to perhaps get a milder verdict after all, when he dashes out of the hall and faces fallout. Once again he makes a great sacrifice: thanks to him, the nuclear disaster is prevented, but his absence from reaching and pronouncing the verdict casts a bad light on him - if it had made any difference at all. Anton Slater (who, by the way, led the indictment against Barry Allen in the "Flash" comics, after he had killed the reverse Flash) is complacent, while Barry once again carries the burden of the world on his shoulders and a high price for it paid.

Seek inhumanity, seek heroism

It is very noticeable how much the adulation for our title hero is here, but what can you say about it? Ultimately, everything applies. We quickly forget the momentous, often ill-thought-out decisions our protagonist made in the past and concentrate on what an incredibly good person he is. And somehow it works. We recognize Barry's unique worth. Mainly thanks to the very successful montage at the end of the episode, when Barry is harshly judged and condemned by the responsible judge, while Captain Singh (Patrick Sabongui) simultaneously honors the Flash who once again saved the city and its people. These two sides do not go together, but the blatant injustice that Barry accepts without protest cannot be changed at the moment.

Not beaten yet

As an observer, I feel addressed by this and by the noble, selfless character of Barry. Perhaps because it is a basic virtue of a hero figure to sacrifice himself and "The Flash" is a very classic hero story that uses this rule (for some) or this cliché (for others). In the end, again, you don't evade and actually lock Barry away, for life, with no chance of parole and, moreover, in the same cell that his father moved to the Iron Heights Penitentiary. One cleverly refers to the great drama that had driven Barry for a long time and not let it come to rest. Now he can take an example from his father and draw hope from his path, one of the most difficult tests in his life so far awaits him.

Of course, Barry could escape immediately if he wanted to. But what does he get from a life on the run? That wouldn't have helped his father, and it doesn't help him or his loved ones either. What Barry needs now is trust in his friends, in Iris. Just as Henry Allen trusted his son to one day pull him out of this dark hole. With a view to the rest of the season, I now hope that those responsible dare to take their time and not force the solution to the problem - we all know that Barry will sooner or later be at large again - will not be too rushed. You can work with this new starting point and tell stories for which there may have been less time before. We can be curious what will be made of it. At the start of the second half of the fourth season of The Flash, I definitely like this direction.

Trailer to "The Flash" -Episode 4x11, "The Elongated Knight Rises":

The item The Flash: The fastest man on trial in the episode The Trial of The Flash was published 4 years ago, on Wednesday, January 17th, 2018 by Felix Böhme under the URL https://www.serienjunkies.de/the-flash/4x10-the-trial-of-the-flash.html#review.

More articles from the Serienjunkies editorial team