The Thinker’s plan is finally revealed. It’s not great.
After months of hearing about the enlightenment, we finally learn about DeVoe’s plan. And what a surprise, he wants to rule the world.
Okay, it’s a bit more complicated than that, shown through flashbacks of his relationship with Marlize. He believes that humanity uses technology as a crutch and any good that comes from it is overwhelmed by harm it causes. He wants to cause humanity to regress to a simpler state of being to help the species survive. In the early days of their relationship, a more optimistic Marlize is horrified when she discovers his plan and leave him. But all it takes it one admittedly bad incident, where warlords steal her water purifying machine during a volunteer gig in Africa, for her to join Clifford in his pursuit of this goal.
Both Neil Sandilands and Kim Engelbrecht do good work here, showing their changing relationship and perspective over the years. Sandilands in particular layers his flashback scenes with hints of DeVoe’s megalomania but still very much grounded. But in the present, as he steals pieces for his machine, killing anyone in his way, the true extent of his deviousness comes out. He needs the tech to create five satellites that will recreate the dark matter injection similar to Harry’s thinking cap, causing everyone on Earth to lose their higher-brain functions.
This plan is kind of ridiculous and dumb, the opposite of what it looked like DeVoe was going for all season. From the start of the season, it seemed like he wanted to elevate everyone’s consciousness to become like him, all logic and no humanity. That would be a much smarter plan. Instead, he wants to bring Idiocracy to fruition? Why? First off, the dark matter would likely only impact one generation. The Thinker is also middle-aged. What happens to the rest of the world when he dies? This plan has so many holes, you can drive an ocean liner through it. It’s another disappointing turn in the season-long arc that’s gradually lost steam as it’s moved forward.
Adding to this “fun” is tension in the relationship of Cisco and Gypsy. The strain comes from Breacher’s offer a job to Cisco. The couple spend most of the episode arguing, with Barry’s efforts to help just making things worse. Finally, they both reveal that neither of them wants Cisco to take the job. Gypsy is fine with their relationship as is, but Cisco wants more. He wants to wake up next to her and feels that he can’t do that in their current arrangement. But…why not? It’s called commuting. Cisco can breach anywhere on Earth between worlds. His commute is likely faster than a regular person’s. I don’t see why this is cause for the two of them to break up, but they do, cause drama.
Despite Team Flash’s best efforts, DeVoe gets everything he needs for his satellites. But he does lose one battle. Marlize has had enough of her husband’s ego and attitude and coldness. She grabs his old chair, traps him behind a force field and leaves him. She gets a great, long-earned kiss off when she throws his words back at him, that he’s nothing without her. It’s a cool moment in an overall lame episode. With a subpar master plan from The Thinker for our heroes to stop as well, it doesn’t look like it’ll get much better. But The Flash is full of surprises. Let’s see if the writers can pull this off for the remaining few episodes.
- In a move that we should all be grateful for, Harry does not keep his condition a secret for the next three episodes. Instead, his intelligence drain starts to become noticeable and him and Cisco tell the team. He’s frustrated but when asked by Joe to distract Cecile, he discovers a useful partner. She can read his thoughts faster than they disappear from his mind. They work together to help figure out what DeVoe is creating. It’s a nice way to give Cecile something to do besides be pregnant.
- Meanwhile, Caitlin is getting more and more reckless in her efforts to bring back Killer Frost, to the point of putting herself in DeVoe’s path. Not a great idea. It looks like her attempts will come to a head next week with the return of Amunet.
- Earth-19’s police force’s tag-line is “Breach on!” That’s ridiculous and great.
- The reason Joe asks Harry to distract Cecile is to surprise her with a baby shower! Wally sent the happy couple a bassinet that used to be owned by Moses, which is perfect. But another gift is delivered by that same strange girl who keeps popping up. Oh, and she’s a speedster! Hmmm…