SUPERGIRL / CERT: 15 / SHOWRUNNER: TODD HELBING / STARRING: GRANT GUSTIN, CANDICE PATTON, DANIELLE PANABAKER, CARLOS VALDES, TOM CAVANAGH, JESSICA PARKER KENNEDY / RELEASE DATE: SEPTEMBER 23RD
Special Features: Villains: Mode of Persuasion / Two featurettes / Deleted scenes / Gag reel
With Nora West-Allen (Kennedy) – the daughter of Barry Allen (Gustin) and Iris West (Patton) – arriving from the future to leave jaws agape at the end of the previous season, The Flash’s fifth year sees Barry and Iris having to get to grips with being parents, while a whole host of nefarious metahumans continue to cause chaos in Central City. Not just that, though, for the villainous Cicada (Chris Klein) is on the scene as the season’s big bad. Said villain has a hatred for metahumans, and just so happens to have the unique ability to strip such superpowered sorts of their own unique abilities.
Having seen The Flash serve up some utterly fantastic villains over its run to date, sadly Cicada ranks as likely the worst season-long ‘big bad’ to date for the series. Whether it’s Chris Klein’s cringe-inducing delivery or the way that the character’s arc was all a bit so-so, Cicada just ended up feeling bland for the most part.
Fortunately, while the overarching villain of the season may have been a major misstep, the character of Nora West-Allen was a fantastic addition to The Flash’s fifth season. Jessica Parker Kennedy played the future daughter of Barry and Iris brilliantly, and she quickly becomes one of the season’s most enjoyable characters as her arc takes her on a roller coaster of a journey. Likewise, the arrival of their daughter in the present day means that Barry and Iris have their own emotional ups and downs, particularly in how Nora idolises her father while being resentful towards her mother. As such, the relationship between Barry and Iris actually takes a little bit of a backseat at times, with the spotlight being more on the duo’s roles as parents.
With the addition of Nora West-Allen, that also means that we get to see and hear all about the future – and fans of superhero shows tend to always love to see what could be lying down the line. That glimpse into the future is always fun in The Flash, and it’s just one hugely enjoyable element of Season 5. And it’s fun that likely best sums up the majority of the show’s fifth season.
For the first time in a couple of seasons, The Flash seems to have a renewed energy and sense of fun. Characters such as Ralph Dibny (Hartley Sawyer) and Cecile (Danielle Nicolet) now feel pivotal to Team Flash, while Tom Cavanagh arguably steals the show with yet another different take on Harrison Wells – this time Sherloque Wells of Earth-221.
All in all, it’s another good season in the books for The Flash – but you can’t help but think the season could’ve have been so much more if there was a genuinely engaging villain at the centre of the action.
Rounding out this home release, the Villains: Mode of Persuasion offering is a delightful addition that offers a look at some of the greatest rogues recently seen across the various DC TV shows. Other than that, the bloopers are as entertaining as they always are, and the other featurettes are a decent watch.