REVIEW: ‘The Flash,’ Season Six, Episode 16 – “So Long and Goodnight”

Reading Time: 3 minutes

Joe (Jesse L. Martin) and Barry (Grant Gustin) have a heated exchange.

The Flash, CW’s series about the Scarlet Speedster, returns from a brief COVID related hiatus to continue its sixth season with “So Long and Goodnight” After successfully exorcising The Reverse Flash from his friend Nash (Tom Cavanagh) last episode,  Barry Allen (Grant Gustin) finds himself struggling with his depleting Speed Force.  Meanwhile, Ralph (Hartley Sawyer) continues his investigation into the elusive Sue Dearborn (Natalie Dreyfuss) and Joe West (Jesse L. Martin) becomes a target for Black Hole.

After a pretty intense Nash-focused episode last time, “So Long and Goodnight” does a great job balancing the various plot threads and bringing them together. For example, Barry’s emotional struggle with his decrease in speed drives his actions, leading to intense with Joe. Of course, Barry isn’t necessarily wrong about being overly cautious about his family, particularly after losing his daughter in the previous season.

While Barry’s anxiety about his powers could simply have been used in previous seasons as the main plot component, here they act as a weapon for both Mirror Iris and Eva (Efrat Dor) in their ongoing plan against Black Hole. Mirror-Iris is tasked with helping to reduce Barry’s abilities, and his refusal to do so during an emotional scene leads to a big confrontation. Candice Patton continues to delight as both versions of Iris – with the evil version using her memories to attack Barry where it hurts “Now I’ve lost my parents too.”  These arguments may be devised by an evil-doppelgänger, but it’s going to be interesting to see how this affects their marriage overall.  

Joe’s dedication to his job means that Black Hole wants him dead, which introduces new fan-favorite Rag Doll into the mix. Rag Doll is one of the Flash’s most visually interesting villains, and it’s no surprise the team decided to bring this (literally) twisted villain back for this season. After an intense kidnapping sequence and realizing that he is in fact in real danger, Joe decides to voluntarily go into witness protection – providing a lovely, sad interaction between him and Barry. One of the key relationships in the show from the beginning was the father/son relationship between Joe and Barry, and it’s nice to see that again this season with these two terrific actors. With Joe gone, Barry is the one who has to help protect his family, and even seems to be wearing the notorious ‘Joe West Beanie’ – maybe a nod from the writers?

Ralph Dibny (Hartley Sawyer) reunites with Sue Dearbon (Natalie Dreyfuss)

One of the most enjoyable parts of this episode though has to go to Ralph and Sue’s subplot, which continues to delight. The show has been building up to this fan-favorite couple for so long, it was acceptable to be worried about whether that promise would ever be delivered on-screen. But thankfully the chemistry between Hartley and Natalie is superb and their casual dig-to-flirt ratio provides for some great comedic scenes, particularly when Cisco (Carlos Valdes) finds himself accidentally third-wheeling during a heist – providing gems like “she fancy, you fancy!”. 

Overall, “So Long and Goodnight” is a great entry to the season and does a great job of highlighting its incredible cast’s talent. In particular, Grant and Candice are able to test their skills by effectively testing their character’s marriage. The writers also manage to utilize comic relief in the subplot, while not detracting from the key plot and drama.

The Flash will be back with a brand new episode on Tuesday, April 29thth on the CW Network.

‘The Flash,’ Season Six, Episode 16 – “So Long and Goodnight”
  • 8/10
    Rating - 8/10
8/10

TL;DR

The Flash, CW’s series about the Scarlet Speedster, returns from a brief COVID related hiatus to continue its sixth season with “So Long and Goodnight” After successfully exorcising The Reverse Flash from his friend Nash (Tom Cavanagh) last episode,  Barry Allen (Grant Gustin) finds himself struggling with his depleting Speed Force.  Meanwhile, Ralph (Hartley Sawyer) continues his investigation into the elusive Sue Dearborn (Natalie Dreyfuss) and Joe West (Jesse L. Martin) becomes a target for Black Hole.