This week, Arrow viewers got to enjoy a Count Vertigo-less episode, along with a healthy dose to DC Universe crossover. "The Scientist" introduces Oliver and company (no, not that Oliver and Company) to Barry Allen, who comic fans will immediately know as the alter ego of The Flash (played by Glee alum Grant Gustin).
So what is the new famous face in town like? Well, he's… young. And doesn't appear to be The Flash just yet. Barry rolls into town after an extra-mysterious break-in at the Queen wear house, claiming to be in on official assignment from Central City's police department. Barry is a forensic scientist and ready to solve some mysteries. Even higher on Barry's mystery to-solve list though, is the identity of the vigilante. As it turns out, Barry's mom was killed in a "blur" (he could not have vagued up his description if he tried) and his father got the blame.
Meanwhile, however, Barry proves himself to be excellent at helping to solve the mystery at hand. He provides some great insights, like the thief being one very strong person instead of a group. The thief is trying to recreate a drug that Oliver encountered – and eradicated – during his time on the island.
Oh, and Malcolm Merlyn is still trying to threaten Moira Queen into telling Thea the truth about her father (i.e. that it's him), but Moira is busy diving back into life as the head of Queen Consolidated and not approving of the women her son chooses to sleep with.
Overall, I was into everything about the episode, aside from the main plot. The break-in, the drug — all of it was so closely tied to the island storyline and, frankly, I'm tired of the island. I start to zone out every time we go there because if I wanted to watch Lost, I'd watch Lost. Arrow works best when we're in Starling City with the characters we've come to love. So without further ado, here are two things that really worked from this week's episode:
1. Barry Allen. I'm not a comic expert. My first introduction to the fact that Barry Allen was even The Flash's alter ego was in Catch Me If You Can, and I don't know much more about his comic book personality. As an outsider, however, I have to say I'm happy with the character. I know just enough to get the winks at his future persona (like begging not to dance because he's "not good on his feet"), but not enough to have preconceptions about how he "should" be. Arrow's Barry is nerdy, and he talks a little too fast but in an endearing way. He's also crushing hard on a certain Starling City blonde.
2. Barry and Felicity, sitting in a tree… Barry also serves as a non-Oliver love interest for Felicity. The hints at her and Oliver as a thing have been getting thicker and thicker lately, and it's nice to see a foil come into the mix (especially since I personally prefer Felicity and Oliver's barbs platonic). Barry and Felicity are both nerdy and nervous and kind of adorable.
Image: The CW