This week’s episode of The Flash gave us a glimpse at a fun idea: Barry Allen has to pose as a criminal to keep an eye on Lewis Snart, so he throws on a leather jacket and tries to pull off this deception. The fact that this was such a small portion of the episode shows that The Flash is unwilling to be as silly as it probably should be. The ridiculous things in this episode, like the fact that Lewis has access to tiny bombs you can implant in people but can’t find a more lucrative use for this advanced technology than pulling off simple heists, would be much easier to overlook if the shower embraced being fun and ridiculous.
“Family of Rogues” also suffered from putting an exhausting amount of effort into forcing romantic tension on everyone. Cisco Ramon and Lisa Snart have a genuinely intriguing relationship and I enjoyed their emotional connection a lot, even if it was very heavy-handed. They worked the best of the romantic relationships in this episode, but their kiss still felt sudden and like the show would rather have instant gratification than really develop a relationship.
Barry’s relationship with Patty Spivot had all the elements of a great friendship. Her nervously giving him her phone number felt sudden. The show has been locked into a strange problem where it seems like Barry should probably date casually at least a little before getting with the woman he’s obviously destined to marry, but we saw in his relationship with Linda Park that his feelings for Iris West seem to create an obstacle. His relationship with Patty seems doomed to fall into the same trap.
The most ridiculous romantic tension in the episode was between Caitlin and Jay. They worked as colleagues and having a small, understated spark between them could have worked. But, the scene when Caitlin seems absolutely desperate for him to stay just stood out as odd. She’s a scientist, part of a superhero team and a grieving widow. She can be attracted to Jay, but in this scene it felt like the gravity and stakes of the situation were completely lost on her as all she thought about was spending more time around a cute boy and it just rang untrue.