- "I'm sorry. I can't let you hurt anybody else. But why? Why did you want to kill me?"
"He promised he'd take me home if I killed you."
"Who? Who promised you that?"
- —Atom Smasher reveals to The Flash why he wanted to kill him
"The Man Who Saved Central City" is the first episode of the second season of , and the twenty-fourth episode overall. It aired on October 6, 2015.
|Picking up months after the Singularity attacked Central City, Barry is still struggling to forgive himself for Eddie's death. Concerned about putting his friends in danger, Barry has pushed everyone away and has chosen to protect the city on his own. When a meta-human named "Atom-Smasher" attacks the city, Iris tells Barry that he needs to let his friends help him protect the citizens of Central City. Meanwhile, Cisco helps Joe with his Anti-Meta-human Task Force.|
- Grant Gustin as Barry Allen/The Flash
- Candice Patton as Iris West
- Danielle Panabaker as Dr. Caitlin Snow
- Carlos Valdes as Cisco Ramon
- Tom Cavanagh as Professor Eobard Thawne
- Jesse L. Martin as Detective Joe West
Special guest stars
- Victor Garber as Professor Martin Stein/Firestorm
- Robbie Amell as Ronnie Raymond/Firestorm
- Rick Cosnett as Detective Eddie Thawne
- Dominic Purcell as Mick Rory/Heat Wave
- Wentworth Miller as Leonard Snart/Captain Cold
- Teddy Sears as Jay Garrick
- Vito D'Ambrosio as Mayor Anthony Bellows
- Isabella Hofmann as Clarissa Stein
- Patrick Sabongui as Captain David Singh
- Adam Copeland as Al Rothstein and Al Rothstein/Atom-Smasher
- John Wesley Shipp as Dr. Henry Allen
In a dream, Barry saves the day with Firestorm in capturing Captain Cold and Rory. He then heads to S.T.A.R. Labs and somehow everyone is safe and alive. Afterward, Barry shakes off the dream, to reveal that he is alone. As he speeds off, he knocks down envelopes. Six months have passed since the singularity.
Joe heads to a crime scene and awkwardly talks to Barry over the body. Joe then asks if he is going to Flash day. From a distance, someone takes a picture of Barry as he leaves the crime scene.
At the precinct, Cisco talks to Singh about a way to take down meta-humans. Cisco reveals that Caitlin is now working for Mercury Labs. Iris walks up and asks about Barry. Joe suggests she talk to him. Iris notices a photo of Eddie on the wall of heroes.
Inside Jitters, Barry was speed fixing the place when Iris walks in to talk to him. Barry disagrees with going but Iris tells him she believes in him.
In the past, Barry remembers running to stop the wormhole from destroying the city. Stein suggests to Ronnie of a way to help Barry. Whilst Caitlin doesn't want him to go, he says that he has to try so he and Stein merge into Firestorm and head out to help. The duo split apart and Barry helps Stein down but Ronnie dies as a result of the split in the middle of the storm. Barry looks sad at the flyer for the Flash Day.
The next day is the Flash Day. Joe and Cisco stay behind by a CCPN truck. Cisco spots Caitlin from a distance.
The mayor speaks to everyone. A man in a black hoodie makes his way through the crowd. When the Mayor mentions giving a key to the city to the Flash, he at first doesn't show. He then speeds in, much to the appreciation of the chanting crowd. As he is about to take the key, someone throws a truck towards the mayor. Barry speeds him to safety and then heads after the meta-human. He isn't able to defeat him and Cisco tries to capture him with his device but is not successful.
Barry grabs propane tanks and throws them at his opponent. Joe shoots the tanks in mid-air and the explosion causes their attacker to revert to his smaller size. It is revealed that the man at the power plant is the same one who was there.
Iris suggests that Barry can't work alone anymore.
Caitlin is at Mercury labs when Cisco shows up to talk to her. She refuses to go back but does in fact help.
Barry is met with a lawyer who tells him that he has to watch a video message from Wells and that S.T.A.R. Labs, which he now owns, won't be his for much longer.
After the man leaves, Barry puts the drive by his computer when he receives an alert about S.T.A.R. Labs and people being there. He rushes there and finds Iris, Joe, Stein, and Cisco were inside. Barry is upset that they are there but Iris says that he can't deny them to help. Barry speeds off to catch him, leaving his comms behind.
He arrives as the man is sniffing chemicals inside a chemical plant. The man and Barry begin to fight with the man saying that someone had sent him his way. They hacked into the alarms, allowing Barry to head out. He passes out inside S.T.A.R. Labs.
In the past, Joe tells Barry that it is okay to be sad, resulting in Barry hugging Joe.
Barry wakes up to find he is on a hospital-like bed with Joe being the only one with him. Joe tells him that he can't work alone and can't blame himself for everything.Joe tells him to rebuild things that matter.
Barry heads to Mercury Labs to talk to Caitlin. Barry apologizes for not saving Ronnie and she tells him that she blames herself for his death. It was due to her not wanting to leave in the past that she blamed herself. He goes to grab a tissue and shows her the flash with the living will. They end up watching it together. In it, Harrison Wells/Eobard Thawne confesses to killing Nora Allen. He ends up calling everyone and the video is sent to the D.A. who could release Henry Allen.
The team then decide to work together and made a Flash Light. Barry decides to have the meta follow him and Barry heads to a nuclear plant. They end up locking him in for the radiation, with Barry watching from outside. When the radiation is cleared out, Barry heads in and apologizes to the man. He asks him questions and learns that a person named Zoom would bring him home if he killed the Flash.
A few days later, Henry Allen is freed to a waiting Barry. They head to Joe's where a welcome home party is waiting for him. During the party, Stein proposes a toast and talks about Kadima, which means forward. Barry talks to his father about getting a place and getting his license back. However, Barry soon realizes that his dad isn't going to stick around. He says that the man is the only family he has left but Henry disagrees as everyone in the other room is his family.
The next day Barry heads to S.T.A.R. Labs and meets up with Joe who is waiting for him. Joe gives him the key after they talk about him dropping his dad at the train station. They head further in and discuss the upgrades. That is when a mysterious shadow enters and when he reveals himself, it is the guy who had been taking pictures of Barry. He tells Barry that his world is in grave danger.
Filming began on July 7, 2015.
- Cisco describes Barry as having gone "Lone Wolf McQuade", a reference to the 1983 film of the same name in which the protagonist prefers to work alone.
- Barry receives numerous letters from Weathersby & Stone LLP, a reference to Jordan Wethersby (Victor Garber) and Eli Stone, the two lead characters of Eli Stone, which was a TV series created by Greg Berlanti and Marc Guggenheim.
- Cisco states that the distress signal he created to lure Atom-Smasher was likely inspired from a comic book he read. This is a tongue-in-cheek reference to the Bat-Signal of the Batman comics.
- The Bat-Signal would appear 4 years later in .
- Though some would assume the title of this episode refers to Barry, it is heavily implied in the episode that it actually refers to Ronnie Raymond, who gave his life to close the singularity above Central City.
- This episode marked Logan Williams' last appearance on before his death in 2020.
- The Flash Day scene when Flash is given the key to the city is a nod to the Death of Superman panel when Lex Luthor watches Superman receive the key to the city on "Superman Day".
- This episode's antagonist is named Atom-Smasher. In the show's pilot, Iris jokingly called the particle accelerator an "atom smasher".
- It's confirmed in this episode in Eobard's video confession that the date Nora Allen was killed is March 18, 2000.
- In Season 1's "", it was established that Al Rothstein was one of the people killed when the particle accelerator exploded. In the beginning of this episode, Al was alive (until his double killed him) and Cisco also states he wasn't even in the city when the event happened.
- The newspaper Barry reads in his lab when the lawyer arrives is dated Thursday October 8, 2015. At the end of the episode, the newspaper reads Wednesday October 7, 2015 when Henry Allen is released.
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