The Flash family deals with all their issues – and not all of them involve supervillains trying to kill them. 

Previously on THE FLASH… 

The West-Allen clan and their friends are going through a whole lot in this episode. Barry is trying to get his daughter to listen to him, while Iris laments the fact that Nora wants little to do with her. Joe and Cecile struggle with being parents again. Cisco is still getting over his break-up and Caitlin is debating whether she should track down her dad while Ralph discovers that her mom is the one who forged his birth certificate. 

Oh, and there’s a new metahuman who can encase someone in a weird substance and squeeze them into a meat cube who is squeezing out weapons dealers to take all the powerful equipment for herself. 

It’s like an episode of THIS IS US with super powers! 

The second episode of the season was surprisingly chill, filled mostly with character beats as Team Flash gets used to having Nora West-Allen, Barry and Iris’ daughter from the future, around along with all the other changes going on. The only one who doesn’t seem to have anything going on is Ralph, who eagerly jumps in to help Cisco and Caitlin deal with their baggage. 

All the emotional growth bookends a meta – who Cisco calls Block because he’s off his game – who’s trying to steal some serious firepower. The team manages to take a break from their personal soap operas to track her down using comic book science and Barry and Nora manage to take Block out as XS remembers the lessons her dad was trying to teach her. 

Team Flash seems to have only had trouble finding and defeating Block because they lost their satellite during the battle with The Thinker, but she presented no challenge at all once they went face-to-face with her. The bigger issue is what happened after she was cuffed. 

Our new mysterious big bad – who confronted last week’s villain, Gridlock, at the end of the episode – returned this week, and got considerably more time on screen. We start the episode with his taking Gridlock’s power away from him and subsequently killing him. And he returns to use his Flash emblem knife to kill Block. When Team Flash tries to stop him, the villain cancels out the powers of Flash, Vibe and Elongated Man and probably would have killed Barry if XS didn’t return to the scene. 

The villain is also officially named Cicada, which triggers a heavy negative reaction from Nora. She knows all about her dad’s biggest villains, and it sounds like she’ll have a story to tell the team next episode. 

The second episode of the season was more about advancing the myriad character arcs that were introduced last week, and I’m really OK with that every now and then. Instead of dragging things out so each development gets its own episode, just throw a waste pitch to move things forward. 

Hopefully we get more action next week, though, and not have a whole episode debating whether Nora should tell the team about Cicada so as to not risk the sanctity of the time stream.