Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.

The Flash speeds toward the Crisis On Infinite Earths in its mid-season finale

Danielle Nicolet, Candice Patton, Carlos Valdes, Grant Gustin, Danielle Panabaker, Jesse L. Martin
Photo: Katie Yu (The CW)

Here’s what’s happening in the world of television for Tuesday, December 3. All times are Eastern. 

Top pick

The Flash (The CW, 8 p.m., mid-season finale): If you’d told us months ago that on this earth, the first half of The Flash’s bumpy sixth season would close with a genuinely frightening two-parter—not just whoops-a-jump-scare frightening, but sincerely unsettling—we’d have told you to go ahead and grab the little universe-jumping garage-door clicker that Cisco made so you can mosey on back to your own world. “Dark”? Sure? Scary? No way.


Well, shut our mouths.

Okay, maybe the teeth don’t look so scary there, but in context: Genuinely unnerving! It’s a new mode for a show that’s been around long enough that such things are rare. Here’s Scott Von Doviak on last week’s “The Last Temptation Of Barry Allen, Pt. 1:

Before the season began, the showrunners assured us that Bloodwork would be the scariest of all Flash villains, a quality that hadn’t truly manifested until tonight. Even in this episode, Sendhil Ramamurthy isn’t particularly terrifying as Ramsey; he mostly comes off as smug and condescending. But as Barry’s dark night of the soul unfolds, director Chad Lowe (who has appeared on Supergirl and directed a couple of its episodes) brings an unsettling, nightmarish quality to the proceedings. Those aren’t words I ever thought I’d write, but that’s the way it plays out. There’s some haunting imagery along the way, including a graveyard populated by the casualties of The Flash since the very beginning, but it’s the sound design that really gets under the skin: a combination of chimes, whooshing noises, and burbling arcade music straight out of Logan’s Run unlike anything the series has done before.

Scott has thoroughly brushed his teeth and is ready to recap. And while this may be the mid-season finale of The Flash, both it and Scott will return next week for the Crisis On Infinite Earths.

Regular coverage

Arrow (The CW, 9 p.m.): mid-season finale

Wild card

Tiffany Haddish: Black Mitzvah (Netflix, 3:01 a.m.): If you’re a fan of one of the busiest women in show business, then this is what they call a no-brainer:

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About the author

Allison Shoemaker

Contributor, The A.V. Club and The Takeout. Allison loves television, bourbon, and dramatically overanalyzing social interactions.