Here’s what’s happening in the world of television for Tuesday, May 5. All times are Eastern.
The Flash (The CW, 8 p.m.): Ostensibly the big story for this week’s episode of The Flash is the emergence of a new speedster (yes, another one) in Central City. But after last week’s solid “Liberation”—an episode that finally clued the real Iris (Candice Patton) into the nature of her captivity and gave the Mirror Iris (also Patton) a hell of a battle—it’s tough to care about anything but what’s happening inside all that glass. Here’s Scott Von Doviak:
The badass version of Mirror Iris resurfaces in her showdown with Barry as her arms become liquid mirror swords straight out of Terminator 2. It’s one of the more entertaining battles of the season, and Patton is clearly having a blast (Gustin maybe not so much, as Barry gets the sharp end of it a few too many times). In the end, Barry wins not with his powers but his emotions, as he convinces Mirror Iris that she has self-worth beyond being an extension of Eva and she tells him to find his real wife. Her realization is short-lived, however, as Eva quite literally shatters her to pieces.
Patton also shines as the real Iris, who finally figures out after all these weeks that she’s been Eva’s prisoner all along. Is the final scene where Barry and Iris talk to each other through the mirrors, knowing the other can’t hear but professing their eternal love of across time, space, and dimension, more than a little corny? Obviously. But Patton and Gustin both go for the big emotional moment and make it work on its own comic book terms. That’s what happens when The Flash is really working.
And yes, okay, sure, there’s a new speedster. Scott will recap it all. [Allison Shoemaker]
Can you binge it? All episodes except those of the current season can be found on Netflix.
DC’s Legends Of Tomorrow (The CW, 9 p.m.)
Hamlet (Metropolitan Opera Streaming, 7:30 p.m., available for 23 hours): Ambroise Thomas’ retelling of one of Shakespeare’s greatest tragedies includes a justly famous mad scene for Ophelia, and that alone would make this production worth watching (as many, if not all, of the Met’s nightly free streams are). And hey, until 6:30 p.m, you can still catch yesterday’s offering, Mozart’s Le Nozze di Figaro, starring Renée Fleming. [Allison Shoemaker]
Natalie Wood: What Remains Behind (HBO, 9 p.m., premiere): Natalie Wood was a brilliant actor, the rare performer who was able to transition from child stardom to a successful career as an adult. But her legacy has been overshadowed by the mysterious circumstances surrounding her 1981 death by drowning at the age of 43. The HBO documentary Natalie Wood: What Remains Behind appears to be an effort by Wood’s daughter Natasha Gregson Wagner to set the record straight. As producer, interviewer, and interviewee, she adds her own memories of her mother, along with those of other family members and friends like Mia Farrow and Robert Redford. Gregson Wagner also sits down with her stepfather, Robert Wagner—the man she calls “Daddy Wagner”—who the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Office named as a “person of interest” in her mother’s death. The film fares best when focusing less on Wood’s famous romances and more on her fascinating career: She took on studio heads at the age of 20 to get more control over the movies she made, eventually becoming one of the most powerful women in Hollywood at a time when such power was practically unheard-of. Unfortunately, the film devolves into a granular exploration of the night Wood died, seemingly in an attempt to remove Robert Wagner from suspicion. Natalie Wood fans may walk away from What Remains Behind wanting to know more about her career, rather than the night that tragically ended it. [Gwen Ihnat]