Tomorrow, The Flash will be airing its 100th episode. Even though it won’t be the first Arrowverse show to celebrate this milestone (as Arrow hit this benchmark years ago), it is still an impressive achievement to commemorate.
To join in on the celebration, I thought I would put together a Top 10 Greatest Hits for the show. Which wasn’t an easy task as there were many fantastic episodes left off of my list. Anyway, let’s just get into it:
(I think this should go without saying but, Major Spoilers Ahead)
10) Enter Zoom
For my first shocking pick, I decided to go with “Enter Zoom” over the fan favorite “The Reverse-Flash Returns”. Although both of these episodes were standouts from the show’s second season, “Enter Zoom” featured one of the best jaw-dropping moments in comic-book television history.
The terrifying Zoom lurked in the shadows for much of the beginning of The Flash season two. All we knew about the villain, other than his voice and appearance, came from the residents of Earth-2. After failing to lay a trap for the evil speedster, Team Flash goes back to the drawing board. That is until Zoom makes his move, capturing reporter Linda Park (who had participated in the attempted ruse) and facing The Flash head-on after the Scarlet Speedster saved her.
What followed was simply a stunning scene of events. Not only was Zoom faster than Barry, but he manhandled The Flash for the entire fight. He even went as far as to break Barry’s back and beat him to near-death. Zoom then capitalized off of his destruction by taking Barry on a humiliating trip around Central City, taunting its citizens for believing in The Flash.
Although its first 30 or so minutes were your typical run-of-the-mill episode, the ending of “Enter Zoom” left fans speechless as they awaited what would come next from the now verified big bad.
Season five has been great so far but things could’ve been very different if it didn’t start strong out of the gate.
“Nora” was our official introduction to Nora West-Allen AKA the daughter of Barry and Iris. The character was first introduced in the crossover of season four and continued to stalk Team Flash throughout the year. With the character having a striking resemblance to the West-Allen couple, many fans were quick to predict that she would be the daughter of The Flash.
Even though this ended up being the case, our first official look at the character was simply a blast that brought back memories of the show’s beginnings. Nora is new to the speedster gig, much like Barry was in season one. Barry now takes on a mentor role similar to Eobard Wells in the same season, making their hero dynamic very compelling to watch.
This episode also brought up one of the show’s biggest mysteries, the newspaper article in 2024. It was revealed that Barry never returned home after disappearing with the Reverse-Flash, leaving behind his family in the process.
“Nora” was an episode that weaved its heavy drama and comedy together to perfection, making it feel like it was apart of one of the show’s earlier (and in my opinion better), seasons.
8) Flash vs. Arrow
You won’t find the awesome “Invasion!” or “Crisis on Earth X” crossovers on here as they weren’t true Flash-centric episodes. That wasn’t the case with the first ever Arrowverse crossover, “Flash vs. Arrow”.
Barry Allen debuted on our screens during Arrow season two. At the end of his arc, he returned home to Central City where he was struck by the lightning that gave him his superspeed. CW then greenlit a spin-off for the character, setting us on the path where we are today.
As someone who got into the Arrowverse with Arrow, a face-off between the two at the time sounded like a pipedream. A connected universe? Crossovers? Sounds too good to be true.
Well, “Flash vs. Arrow” proved me wrong. As the first crossover between the two shows, this episode was an achievement in its own right. We saw The Flash and The Arrow, along with their supporting casts, teaming up. We also got to see the two heroes duke it out.
Due to Rainbow Raider (who can manipulate people’s emotions) getting a hold over Barry, our protagonist began to grow more antagonistic towards his friends, most notably Eddie and Oliver. At the end of “Flash vs. Arrow”, we finally see the two DC Legends fight. The fight itself was expertly choreographed and executed, lasting as long it needed to in order to bring an end to the conflict. Although the fight ended as a draw for the heroes, it was certainly a win for the audience.
7) Rogue Air
Wentworth Miller’s Captain Cold was a favorite on The Flash since his debut in the early half of the show’s first season. With every appearance, you could tell that the villain was becoming more and more obsessed with The Flash.
All of that changed with the season one episode “Rogue Time”. Captain Cold learns of Flash’s secret identity, putting the two on a collision course. After an intense exchange, Barry and Snart come to an understanding. Snart can continue to steal and live free in Central City, as long as he does not kill.
Which leads us to the penultimate episode of the first season, “Rogue Air”. Now knowing of Eobard Wells’ plans to restart the Particle Accelerator, Barry enlists Captain Cold to help safely transport the meta-humans that have been trapped inside the pipeline. Ultimately, Snart betrays the team to break the prisoners out, teasing the formation of the Rogues Gallery.
Even though this episode may have made this list due to Captain Cold’s cunning plan, it wasn’t what everyone was talking about.
The final five minutes of “Rogue Air” was another showdown between The Flash and Reverse-Flash. Except for this time, Barry had help from Firestorm and Oliver Queen. This fight was pure comic-book television gold and truly showed off how strong the Reverse Flash was as a villain.
6) The Runaway Dinosaur
Closing out the first half of my list is “The Runaway Dinosaur”, which was Kevin Smith’s directorial debut on the series. Smith didn’t pull any punches here and delivered one of The Flash’s strongest episodes of its run thus far.
After giving up his powers to Zoom in order to save Wally West, Barry struggles to return to a normal life. Eventually, Harry Wells devises a plan that could give Barry his powers back. This plan fails and Barry is seemingly killed in the process.
Unbeknownst to the rest of his team at the time, Barry didn’t die. Instead, he was trapped in the Speed Force. There, he came face to face with the source of his abilities. The Speed Force was reluctant to return Barry his speed as it thought he was too careless and could use it for selfish reasons. This sent Barry down an emotional journey to reclaim his speed that ended with a short “rebirth” for the character.
To make sure I remembered everything correctly, I rewatched this episode last night. That was a mistake. Not because it didn’t hold up but because I was totally unprepared for the emotional moments. I’m a full-grown man but if you saw me about a minute after this episode you would have thought I was a little kid who just saw their first horror movie. It was tough to get through a few of those scenes in the Speed Force without tearing up a little bit (especially the parts with Barry and his mother).
Luckily, Smith and the rest of the writing staff knew they had to balance out these somber moments with a fun subplot. The rest of the team trying to get Barry out of the Speed Force while also dealing with a zombified Girder brought brevity to an episode that stands out as one of this show’s highlights.
That was part one of the Top 10 Best Episodes of The Flash. You can check out the Top 5 here.
Do you agree with my list? What is your favorite episode of The Flash? Let us know in the comments below!