The Flash season 8, episode 2 review: Armageddon, Part 2

The Flash -- "Armageddon, Part 2" -- Image Number: FLA802a_0076r.jpg -- Pictured: Grant Gustin as Barry Allen/The Flash -- Photo: Katie Yu/The CW -- © 2021 The CW Network, LLC. All Rights Reserved
The Flash -- "Armageddon, Part 2" -- Image Number: FLA802a_0076r.jpg -- Pictured: Grant Gustin as Barry Allen/The Flash -- Photo: Katie Yu/The CW -- © 2021 The CW Network, LLC. All Rights Reserved /

“What could cause me to turn my back on everything I’ve sworn to protect?” Spoilers for The Flash season 8, episode 2 follow.

Despero gives The Flash seven days to defy fate and save the world, and himself, from destruction and apocalypse.

So, to start his fight against destiny, Barry has to keep himself from losing his mind on day one.

Here’s what went down in The Flash season 8, episode 2: “Armageddon, Part 2”.

One bad day

The premise of this episode is straight out of The Joker’s playbook. What if one bad day can change who a person is at their core? Can a day be so bad that it will completely change who a person is and what they’re capable of? This is exactly what Despero tells The Flash will happen to him, claiming that it will send him on his path to destroy the world.

And well, the episode does a good job of making the case that this day is just absolutely awful for Barry. Starting off, the Scarlet Speedster is suspended from his CSI job as he suddenly has been accused of being an accomplice to Black Hole and their machinations in Central City. It’s sudden and it comes out of nowhere with really no explanation at all, but it’s definitely a nice beginning reason as to why Barry might to start to lose his sanity.

Then, right afterwards, STAR Labs is shut down due to a radiation leak and the team has to leave and delete all of their data, including Gideon. But that’s not the real turn. That comes with the revelation that Joe has been dead for the past six months and Barry doesn’t remember. It’s a twist that could easily go wrong, but the episode does a great job of making the revelation as horrifying as it needs to be.

Psychics abound

The first two episodes of this season really are going all-in on the psychic villains so far. Obviously, there’s Despero who, unlike his comic counterpart (who is an unapologetically evil despot), is portrayed as a much more sympathetic antagonist rather than straight villain. However, there’s just enough here that makes everything about him seem off and that there’s more than meets his third eye. The way that he just psychically follows Barry around throughout the episode is very creepy and makes you think of a stalker just waiting for an excuse to pull the trigger. It’s unsettling and the episode plays into that very well.

As for the other psychics though, in the first episode of the season, we obviously had Queen, but now we have Xotar.  Xotar is really nothing special in the grand scheme of things and, like the Royal Flush Gang, she just feels like another villain of the week that would fit into seasons 1 or 2. However, the relative safety of that villain of the week formula plays well into diving into the actual uneasiness of that the episode has going for it. It lulls you into a sense of safety and, by the final ten minutes, it just completely pulls the rug out from under you incredibly well.

Lightning in The Flash season 8

Then we get to the end of the episode and we get to see the person that Barry had the best chemistry with in the Arrowverse since Oliver and Kara, Black Lightning. He’s in the episode all of one minute and it’s absolutely great and leads into a compelling cliffhanger for the third part of “Armageddon.”

The second episode of this Flash event isn’t quite as strong as the first, but it’s still incredibly enjoyable and ends on a fantastic note.

The Flash season 8 airs on The CW on Tuesday nights at 8:00 p.m. ET.

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What did you think of The Flash season 8, episode 2? Have you been enjoying the “Armageddon” event? Let us know in the comments below!