- "Well, I'm sorry, Jay. If this is the only way to save everyone in the city, I have to."
- —Barry Allen to Jay Garrick
"Enter Flashtime" is the fifteenth episode of the fourth season of , and the eighty-fourth episode overall. It aired on March 6, 2018.
|When a nuclear bomb detonates in downtown Central City, Barry, Jesse Quick and Jay Garrick slow down time by entering Flashtime. As everyone in the city is frozen, the three speedsters push themselves to the breaking point to save the city and everyone in it.|
"Enter Flashtime" begins with a closeup shot of an exhausted Barry sweating vigorously. He goes to Iris and reveals to her that he can't spare her this time.
We see a flashback to eight minutes earlier where Cisco and Iris are preparing Barry to be able run fast enough to catch to DeVoe when he's teleporting away. Cisco enjoys a break, while Barry and Iris talk about setting aside some effort for their own life. Barry concurs and chooses to reserve a spot for dinner at a sentimental spot.
Wells calls them to the Cortex to disclose to them that DeVoe's been anticipating taking the powers from the bus metas for a long while. As they're talking, Wells' daughter, Jesse Quick appears.
Wells pulls his daughter aside and the two talk about Jesse's mother. Jesse accuses their stressed relationship on her dad's failure to appropriately lament over her mom's death.
Team Flash gets ready for a gunfight that has broken out at a distribution center. We see outfitted aggressors shooting their weapons at Joe and a crew of ARGUS operators. One of the aggressors opens a delivery compartment in the distribution center, where we see an nuclear fission engine is being put away.
Barry, Jesse, Cisco, and Caitlin show up on scene and deal with most of the shooters, yet it's past the point of no return, the instigator has just set off the nuke.
Barry and Jesse — speeding up to buy themselves time — try to come up with a way to stop the nuke. Barry makes reference to that Jay Garrick may know what to do and Jesse hurries off to Earth-3 to get him.
Barry brings Cisco into Flashtime and the so he can try breaching the nuke onto a dead Earth. However, with his body incapable to deal with Flashtime, Cisco cannot open a breach. Barry leaves Cisco in ordinary time and hurries back to STAT Labs to ask Harry for a solution. Harry thinks they could stop it by bringing the nuke into the Speed Force and have it explode there.
Jesse shows up with Jay and after hearing Barry's arrangement of bringing the nuke into the Speed Force, Jay is uncertain, saying that detonating the nuke in the Speed Force could destroy it, de-powering every speedster in the multiverse. Jay suggests that the nuke could be cooled down, potentially to the point of completely freezing it.
The trio of speedsters head back to the stockroom and bring Killer Frost into Flashtime to have a go at freezing the nuke, yet like Cisco, her powers don't work. Jesse suggests that they could throw lightning at the nuke, shocking it. As they begin accelerating, Jay trips and needs to exit Flashtime to recuperate.
With Jay out of condition, Barry and Jesse return to STAR Labs once more and contend on what to do straight away. Barry takes a stab at persuading Jesse to bring the nuke into the Speed Force, however, she opposes this idea. The two acknowledge they're easing back down as the nuke's core begins to develop in size quicker. Barry persuades Jesse to use the remainder of her speed to go back to Earth-2. Jesse talks to her father one last time before the nuke goes off, but runs out of energy and exits Flashtime.
Barry then speeds back to Iris in the Cortex, where we see a similar scene from the opening of the episode.
Iris brings up that Cisco and Caitlin deceived the Speed Force with the quark sphere, and if Barry can find it, he might be able to use it to stop the nuke. He enters the Speed Force, finds the sphere, races back to the stockroom and throws it towards the nuke's core, and like Iris anticipated, the sphere is able to stop it.
Time slows back down to normal, everybody begins moving at typical speed once more, and Joe discovers Barry dropped on the distribution center floor. Joe goes to ensure Barry is okay, and Barry comes to following a couple of moments.
Back at STAR Labs, Joe shows the group a video found at the distribution center showing who set off the nuke. The culprit is identified as Veronica Dale of the Eden Corps, an eco-terrorist, fear-mongering group.
Jay strolls in to say goodbye to the group, as he needs to return to Earth-3 to prepare another speedster to succeed him. Somewhere else, Jesse discloses to her father that he doesn't need to clarify why he can't discuss the death of his better half.
Caitlin and Harry go to Jitters to snatch some espresso. They're talking when their espressos thumped over by the mystery girl we've seen twice previously.
- Grant Gustin as Barry Allen/The Flash
- Candice Patton as Iris West-Allen
- Danielle Panabaker as Dr. Caitlin Snow/Killer Frost
- Carlos Valdes as Cisco Ramon/Vibe
- Tom Cavanagh as Dr. Harry Wells
- Jesse L. Martin as Detective Joe West
Special appearance by
- Cisco refers to Barry as "Miyagi", referencing the character from The Karate Kid franchise.
- Cisco refers to the nuclear bomb as their "Ark of the Covenant", referring to the legendary object's depiction in the 1981 film Raiders of the Lost Ark, from which a pillar of holy fire rises and shoots oncoming soldiers.
- Barry calls Iris his "lightning rod". This is a reference to the concept introduced in The Flash: Rebirth; a speedster's "lightning rod" is his or her loved one who can help him or her escape the Speed Force and return to a certain point in time.
- The group responsible for attempting to set off the nuclear detonation is identified in a video message as the "Eden Corps", with their leader being Veronica Dale. In the New Earth comics, Dale was one of the leaders of the Eden Corps, a terrorist organization that was indirectly responsible for Oliver Queen's death.
- The concept of "Flashtime" was created for the series.
- In an interview, John Wesley Shipp stated that the studio hired over 100 mimes to help with the "Flashtime" scenes, where the extras were to remain frozen in time. In those scenes however, CGI wasn't an option due to all of the interaction between moving and frozen people in the episode.
- The equation written on the board in the Speed lab at the beginning of the episode, 3x2(9yz)4A, is the speed equation that Barry created to increase his speed in order to defeat Zoom, which he went back in time to get help for in "".
- In the comics, the same formula was also used by Johnny Quick to create his speed.
- When Barry is in "Flashtime", he is using a pen to write on a glass screen. However, the pen's ink would simply not flow fast enough to allow him to use it. Furthermore, Barry drops the pen and it appears to fall at normal speed, instead of appearing to fall in slow motion as one would expect. Even if the pen had been brought into the Flashtime state to allow him to use it (though no suggestion is ever made that Barry can do this with inanimate objects), the pen would have still fallen at the rate determined by gravitational pull (9.81 m/s^2).
- From the time the button was pressed until the bomb went off would have been less than 5 nanoseconds. Barry made the one-way trip between S.T.A.R. Labs and the hangar 4 times, so he would have to travel at nearly 5000 times the speed of light to accomplish this feat, even if the two facilities were next door to each other.
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