Even the title of this episode refers to the 90s biggest show — F.R.I.E.N.D.S. If that’s not the biggest spoiler then this recap probably is. Cisco was already making enough pop culture references since the show’s inception, it’s about time he got to live it. Sorry to disappoint though, neither Cisco nor Team Flash faces anything, to an extent, as Marty or Doc do in Back to the Future (1985), it’s only the references again. Sigh.
After the Speed Force reveals there are cosmic forcers like herself, essentially ‘on the loose’ to destroy it, Team Flash has been trying to build tech that would be capable of detecting their locations. This episode begins with Cisco and Chester testing out equipment on the outskirts of Central City while Killer Frost moves into Caitlin’s house, and Barry still enclosed within the cryopod. Just when Chester gets the sensor to work, it fuses. But at the same time a green-colored force field creeps up on the two and entraps them. What they don’t realize is the dome is a time capsule from the 80s. They technically time-traveled to 1985, leaving them tech-less since most of the tech they owned was invented after that! Strangely their sensor survived that time blast.
With the van and smartphones gone, the two decide to hit the nearest locality Masonville which coincidentally is where Chester grew up until he moved to his grandmother’s place. When they reach the town, they notice the most absurd things: Blockbuster still in business, people wearing funky clothes, and a sign that reads 1998. Chester starts flipping out but Cisco is clearly not vibing, his experience with time traveling as we’ve learned from the past, has always ended with some kind of a disaster. On the flip side, these time capsules released dinosaurs and ancient warriors into the City. The force field was not strong enough to teleport people backward/forwards in time, it was bringing the era upon people, a concept of time— EPR Paradox —that Tony Stark was worried about in Avengers: Endgame. I know, I shouldn’t bring up Marvel wiki here but I did so deal with it. But, but, in The Flash, the time dome doesn’t change people based on the decade they are in, it only changes the environment. Okay, enough Physics.
Cisco and Chester presume the time dome is the work of a meta so they begin a manhunt in Masonville using the detector, the only piece of tech that’s left with them after the blast. They even go to the extent of blending in with the 80s crowd, so much so they also make a huge reference to Fresh Prince of Bel-Air (1990)! They succeed in finding a kid who knew about The Matrix (1999) before it was to release but he wasn’t the meta they were looking for. They never explain who this kid is, or if he’s actually a meta or not? But when he realizes he’s caught, he panics and the green force field wipes across the room again, ‘resetting time’ as he calls it. This time the detector fuses but protects Chester from losing his memory, unlike Cisco who thinks he’s a 7-year-old kid! Fortunately, references to Game of Thrones (2011) brings his memories back.
To repair the detector, these two visit a local store to buy electronic supplies but encounter Chester’s father buying the last power convertor that they needed. This is a great introduction to Chester’s life, we never learn where he comes from or how he came to be. His father, like himself, is an inventor. According to Chester, he was never around to be with him or teach him things. When trying to negotiate a price for the convertor, he finally learns his trash-digging motto: one man’s trash is another man’s treasure for recycling computer parts comes from his father. Sigh. They then proceed to repair the detector together. Sigh.
After a heartwarming day with his father, Chester returns to team up with Cisco to find the kid again. But turns out it was Deon Owens (Christian Magby), a jock who bullies this kid, is the fourth cosmic force— the Still force, someone way worse than a meta. In fear of leading a 9-5 life, Deon had decided to travel back in time to remake his decisions but nothing seemed to be working in his favor. He destroys Cisco and Chester’s detector and starts expanding his force field perimeter. Then he disappears.
Things go back to normal but we have no idea what Deon’s next move is, where or when he is. Barry is out of the cryptopod and is brought up to speed with the City’s latest mishaps. Cisco goes all out and names these forces— the Still Force, Sage Force, Strength Force along with the Speed Force that’s already been established. Let’s find out next week!