The team at STAR Labs is reeling from the loss of Barry. Cisco tries to track Barry down while Harry calls for Jessie and Wally to come out. When they don’t get an answer, they find the two lying in the hall. While Wally comes to, Harry finds that Jessie’s heart has stop. After some tense moments, she takes a breath but remains unconscious. Joe takes a less responsive Henry to oversee Jessie as a doctor. Cisco then touches Barry’s suit to see Barry alive inside the Speed Force.
Barry wakes up in his childhood room with everything still the same from before his mother’s death, including a book called The Runaway Dinosaur. He walks downstairs to find Joe examining the murder site. Barry greets him as Joe, but he responds that he is not Joe. Barry recognizes that this world is not real, leading Joe explaining that they simply wanted to make him comfortable. On Barry’s confusion, Joe offers to explain, revealing it to be the Speed force itself, the source of his powers. Barry is shocked at the revelation and asks to be sent back to his friends. He sees a being racing around the house, a being that Joe states he must catch if he wants to return home.
Cisco and Henry inform Harry that Barry may be inside the Speed Force. Henry demands that Harry helps get his son back, though Harry is unsure how to do that. Joe takes Henry aside and instead suggests for Henry to help Jessie so that Harry can be more free to help Barry. Henry warns that while Joe still has Wally and Iris, Barry is all he has left. Henry, nevertheless, monitors Jessie and finds that her vitals are normal except for the fact that she won’t wake up. Iris recognizes this state from Barry’s first accident, leading to Cisco remembering that Wells (the fake one, Eobard Thawne) tended to Barry. Henry advises Cisco to retrieve the files on the treatment which is revealed to be in their makeshift morgue.
Cisco: It’s not a morgue morgue. It’s like a poor man’s morgue. Morgue-ish.
Cisco explains to Iris that they have kept a morgue to keep their dead metahumans which may have been experimented on by the fake Wells. He looks for the files on Barry’s treatment when Iris hears a noise from the back. From the hall, Tony Woodward reemerges after being supposedly dead. He rages and escapes the lab to the shock of both Iris and Cisco.
Barry chases the figure until he reaches the park. There, he encounters a figure of Iris who advises him to sit. She reminds him that this was the place they first kissed, something that should be a happy memory for him. Barry reminds her that it wasn’t real and questions why they keep bothering him. She responds that his powers were gift, something that he then threw away. Barry responds that he only did that to save someone, just as he always had. Now, his friends are in danger without his help. If the Speed Force is upset with him, Barry questions why he had his powers in the first place. Iris responds that he is the Flash.
Cisco and Iris return to the lab to inform the team on Girder’s return. From the electrical stimulation of the explosion, his body was reanimated and now walks as a zombie with his powers still intact. Harry recognizes what’s happening, leading Joe to convince Harry to continue working on a way to bring Barry back while Henry looks after Jessie. Harry then starts to work while Cisco plans to stop Girder. Girder, meanwhile, takes out a vehicle outside Big Belly Burger.
Harry creates a way to stimulate Cisco’s vibes using the same machines used to open the breaches. From that, they plan to allow Cisco to enter the Speed Force and call to Barry. From there, they can bring Barry back home. Meanwhile, Barry continues to argue with the Speed Force on why it continues to toy with him. Over his shoulder, he sees the breach and hears Cisco calling him back home. Iris reveals that he can return home through the breach, but he will not regain his powers. With that predicament, Barry refuses to go with Cisco and continues to chase the figure.
Though that plan failed, the team continues to try and stop Girder who is moving through buildings and trashed Jitters. Joe questions why Girder is just moving through things, but Henry explains, through his experience with a fellow inmate returning to his girlfriend, that sometimes people act on familiar territory. Iris then recognizes that Girder is likely searching for her. With that knowledge, Iris believes she can lure Girder into a trap as he begins to head to the West House.
Barry chases the figure to a gravesite where he is confronted by an image of his father. Barry rebukes the image questioning how it could remark on Barry giving up his powers when it was to save someone. The Speed force replies that it knows that Barry has saved countless lives, but he’s never been able to handle the place they are now: his mother’s gravesite.
At the West’s home, Joe and Iris keep an eye out for Girder while Joe awkwardly questions Wally on the incident. Wally is otherwise fine, but Joe drops his mug to see if he developed any abilities. The mug shatters, eliminating chances of Wally also gaining speed. Finally, the two spot Girder, and Iris begins to lead him to STAR Labs.
Iris: I bought that mug!
Henry remarks to Barry that he never visited his mother’s grave, likely because it would have made her death real. Barry responds that he’s always known it was real, but he couldn’t accept that he chose his life over hers. Henry responds that by choosing his life he became the Flash and save other valuable lives. Barry responds that he could never be at peace with her death and once again demands to go home.
Iris and Joe arrive at STAR Labs where Cisco develops a new electro-magnetic machine to take down Girder. With the reverse energy, they can hopefully negate the energy that brought Girder back to life. However, once they spring it on Girder, the machine fails. The three then run to the base with the particle accelerator along with Henry, Harry, and Jessie and barricade themselves behind the door. With no other hope of defeating Girder, their only chance is to bring Barry back.
Barry finally stops at his childhood home and confronts and image of Nora, his mother. Barry rejects this image, but Nora responds that they only wanted to help him accept her death. She responds that he has to learn to accept it since even the Flash cannot outrun the tragedies of life. Barry then breaks down and admits that he misses her. Nora responds that she would have been proud of the man he became.
Cisco and Harry begin to fire up the beacon when Cisco recalls Barry’s expression. He remembers that Barry looked like he didn’t want to return, meaning that they need a way to convince him. Henry offers to help Cisco, but Iris instead intervenes and helps Cisco create the beacon to call Barry.
Barry then sits with his mother who recounts the book The Runaway Dinosaur. Barry reveals that he has the story memorized about a dinosaur whose mother responds how much he loves her. Under new acceptance, he finally captures the figure which turns out to be himself as the Flash. Then, he sees the rift and hears Iris’s voice calling him home. He finally reaches into the breach to grab her hand and returns home. Immediately, Cisco fills him in on Girder’s return, forcing Barry to act quickly. He takes Iris to distract Girder and once again leads him to the electro-magnets. He runs around to create a charge for the machine, causing it to short out Girder and save the lab.
Barry also returns to see Jessie unconscious. Under instinct, he touches Jessie using the Speed Force, and she wakes up questioning what happened. They ask how Barry knew it would work, but Barry reveals that even he didn’t know. Henry then takes Barry’s vitals to ensure that he is okay. With everything that happened, Barry then choose to have some hope for their fight like his dad had hope for him. Henry then responds that after what happened he has decided to stay in Central City with his son.
In the end, Barry finally visits his mother’s grave with Iris. He lays flowers as well as a copy of The Runaway Dinosaur on the site. Iris remarks that she didn’t like the book since it reminded her of what they never had: a mother who stayed. Barry, however, remarks that instead of thinking about the things he lost, he wants to remember the people he still has. That includes the people at STAR Labs as well as Iris. He remarks that regardless of what their relationship is, Iris will always be the one to guide him home. The two then embrace.
Meanwhile, at the police precinct, Jay confronts Caitlin on where her loyalties lie. He states that if she stays, she chooses him. However, if she leaves, he will treat her with the same mercy he will treat her friends. He awaits her answer after he addresses and army of metahumans bent on taking over this planet.
- Jason Mewes, a Kevin Smith regular, makes a cameo appearance as the man whose car Girder trashes.
- This is actually Greg Finley's second portrayal as a zombie. He recently played on iZombie!
- Cisco quickly asks Iris "Is iZombie still behind you?" during the plan. Could this be a reference to the fact that the fellow DC show comes behind The Flash on the Tuesday lineup?
- Did anyone else enjoy the episode directed by Kevin Smith himself?