The Flash recap: 'Don't Run'

The Flash

TV Show
run date
Grant Gustin, Danielle Panabaker, Candice Patton
The CW
Current Status
In Season

Last week’s epic crossover “Crisis on Earth-X” was fun, exciting, and brought out the best in both the Arrowverse as a whole and The Flash itself. Unfortunately, that means that anything that follows it is likely to be a bit of a letdown because it’s hard to compete with your favorite heroes teaming up to fight evil super-Nazis. And that’s exactly what happened with The Flash‘s midseason finale. “Don’t Run” had the unenviable task of reinvesting us in this season’s story line, which it struggled to do. That’s not to say the episode was necessarily bad, though. In fact, it included several strong character beats.

It’s Christmastime on The Flash, which means Team Flash is about to face some trouble from the season’s big bad. This year, the team gets hit with a double whammy: Amunet Black returns and kidnaps Caitlin, and the Thinker abducts Barry. Obviously, the loss of both Barry and Caitlin presents a challenge to Team Flash, especially for Iris as team leader because she has to decide how to best use S.T.A.R. Labs’ resources to solve this problem. At first, she decides they need to focus on finding both Barry and Caitlin, which definitely puts a strain on their satellite.

In the first of this episode’s many twists, it turns out that Amunet wants Caitlin and not Killer Frost. Even though it sucks to be kidnapped, this news must make her feel slightly better, because right before she was taken, Caitlin was upset about the fact that Cisco, Ralph, and Harry were having so much fun with her icy alter-ego, to the point where they even had inside jokes. But Amunet actually requires Caitlin’s medical skills — Amunet accidentally injured a telepathic metahuman named Dominic (Kendrick Sampson) while she was trying to capture him, and now she needs to Caitlin to remove the black metal that’s stuck in his neck and save his life.

Caitlin is obviously reluctant to perform the surgery because she doesn’t have the necessary equipment, but Amunet gives her an option: surgery or die. Even though Caitlin can’t use her powers because Amunet slapped a meta-power dampener on her risk, that doesn’t mean Caitlin stops fighting. Using Dominic’s powers, Caitlin and Dominic try to escape, but it’s all for naught because Amunet catches them.

Rather than punish Caitlin and Dominic for trying to escape, Amunet, who realizes Caitlin feels powerless compared to Killer Frost, tries a different tactic to motivate Caitlin to help her: a pep talk. Amunet reveals that before she became this successful businesswoman, she was a stewardess who was constantly being sexually harassed by pilots — but then, the accelerator explosion happened and she was “powerless no more,” and she got her revenge on the pilots. She tells this to Caitlin to point out that unlike her, Caitlin was special before she got her powers, and that she knows Caitlin can figure out how to save Dominic’s life — or else, you know, she’ll end up dead. On the one hand, this pep talk successfully fleshes out Amunet as a character, but on the other, it feels like the writers read all of our tweets about how much we love Killer Frost and set about trying to convince us that Caitlin was cool, too. 

Meanwhile, Barry finds himself trapped inside a prison in the Thinker’s sanctuary. Although DeVoe refuses to reveal his plans to Barry — because they’re too complicated for Barry to comprehend — he assures him that by the end of this experience, he’ll learn there are no happy endings. Joe and Harry show up at DeVoe’s home to question him, but they obviously don’t find Barry because DeVoe is many, many steps ahead of them. So Barry remains trapped in the prison. (NEXT: The Thinker’s plan is revealed)

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