‘The Flash’ Season 9 Episode 5: Recap & Ending Explained

‘The Flash’ Season 9 Episode 5: Recap & Ending Explained

The new episode of The Flash was released, bringing us closer to the end of the notable Arrowverse TV show. Season 9 big villain is Red Death, and with the help of her Rouges, she’s been able to wreak havoc across Central City. In the first part of the episode The Mask of the Red Death,” we saw “The Benefactor” truly becoming Red Death, the speedster’s true origin, and Team Flash making hard decisions. 

The Mask of the Red Death, Part 2,” continues Red Death’s quest to take over Flash’s timeline, the mystery around the supposed death of Chillblaine is unfolded, and Barry’s efforts to find a way to defeat Red Death are at full force. We also get a guest star appearance and reference to other Arrowverse shows. If you are interested in our most recent Flash episode recap, stay with us until the end. Beware of spoilers for Episode 5, Season 9 of CW’s The Flash.

Red Death and her crew continue to have the upper hand over Team Flash

After the destruction of the Cosmic Treadmill in the previous episode, Red Death decided to go on a rampage. The evil speedster and her group of rogues infiltrate the CCPD, where Captain Kramer is cornered by the villains and detained by meta cuffs. After failing to use her powers against the speedster, the evil, alternate version of Batwoman promises to come on top and show everyone what true justice really is.

‘The Flash’ Season 9 Episode 5: Recap & Ending Explained

At STAR Labs, Allegra isn’t happy with how the Team Flash Rouges left Mark Blaine for death while the former villains defend their actions. In the meantime, Barry still suffers from the lack of Speed Force after he was used for Cosmic Treadmill, and the Rogues are skeptical, knowing Red Death will come after them. Iris seeks help from Cecile to locate Red Death using her powers, and she succeeds with difficulty. However, while locating Ryan Wayne with her powers, Cecile accidentally locates heavily injured Mark Blaine in the Red Death’s old lair.

Once again, the Rouges are reluctant to help and save Mark Blaine, but when Khione steps in and shows her courage and resolve to find Mark, the group agrees to go and help Team Flash. Joe talks with Cecile, and despite saying he is fine, his wife notices that Joe is far from okay emotionally.


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At CCPD, Red Death manages to hack into the CCPD satellite and use it to gain control of the Central City and upgrade Red Death’s suit, giving her the power to send her avatars all over the city to establish control over the citizens. Khione is determined to save Mark, but Barry stops her saying that she is an important part of Team Flash and that they don’t want to lose her.

Flash with Rogues go to rescue Mark, but they fall into a trap, where Red Death takes the last of Flash’s speed force and tells him that he made a grave mistake three years ago – after Crisis, Gorilla Grodd lost his sentiency and his tribe, which “pushed” him to work with Red Death. Of course, this makes Barry’s life even harder, and once again, it feels like the Red Death will prevail in her efforts to take over the timeline.

‘The Flash’ Season 9 Episode 5: Recap & Ending Explained

After they save Mark, Flash and Rogues discuss their chances against Red Death and realize they will lose without Barry’s speed force. They eventually depart and conclude they would rather be with their loved ones and die than be an easy target for Red Death.

Mark is barely alive and unconscious in the STAR Labs, and in her conversation with Iris, Khione admits she feels useless and can’t do anything to help her team. Iris reassures her that she can and will find a way, prompting her to kiss Mark and wake him up from a coma… yeah.

All in all, this part of the episode had some comically bad sequences that we will discuss at the end of the article, but at least we got Gorilla Grodd back in the show – for now.

Joe and Barry have a great conversation

The episode’s theme is getting clearer, with insecurities and helplessness at the forefront. Joe, Barry, Khione, and Rouges expressed their fears of being unable to protect other people and defeat the evil force of the Red Death. Joe feels unsettled after sensing how Cecile helps Team Flash with her powers while he is standing at the side.

‘The Flash’ Season 9 Episode 5: Recap & Ending Explained

Joe and Barry have a heartfelt conversation, where each man expresses their insecurities and helplessness in the chaos that looms over Central City. Joe tells Barry he cannot help Team Flash and that he considered a move with his family to Keystone. After Joe continues his grievances of being “useless” to the team, Barry tells him he is part of the family and reassures his father figure that he is more important than he knows.

The conversation sparks an idea within Flash, who remembers that he once convinced Grodd that he could be a hero and has faith to do it again. Flash encounters Grodd, which concludes in the Gorilla being “a hero” the Earth needs, and gives Flash part of Speed Force that was given to him by Flash himself. The Flash restores his powers with Speed Force and goes to Central City, where he encounters Red Death.

The epic fight ensues between Red Death and Flash, and Flash is overwhelmed by the evil speedster. Just as she is going to kill Flash, Rouges come back just in time and help Barry. Red Death seems like a victor in the fight against Flash and his group of Rouges, but an unexpected ally comes in and joins the fight.

Gotham City’s finest is here!

Just as the Red Death is going to Team Flash, Gotham City’s protector, Batwoman arrives and disables Red Death’s suit with her Batarang. Ryan Wilder arrives in the flesh and shows off her combat skills, and with the help of Flash, disables Ryan Wayne’s suit and defeats her.

Flash and Batwoman have a cool reunion, and the scene ends with a humorous moment when Batwoman asks the Flash if it is always busy like this in Central City. Barry and the Rogues reply it’s only Wednesday.

Afterward, Team Flash confirms that Red Death is in custody in the ARGUS facility, and they know she is from another timeline. Barry reveals how he got his powers back with the help of Grodd and confirms that Gorilla is actively trying to be heroic and find his missing tribe members. Ryan Wilder says goodbyes to Team Flash, but not before complimenting and expressing awe towards Iris’ work and mentioning they should hang out – with Kara and Alex Danvers—cool moment for Arrowverse fans and a reference to other notable superheroes of their universe.


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Joe and Cecile find common ground and decide that Joe and Jenna will move out, while Cecile will stay in the city helping Team Flash and conduct her work as a lawyer in Central City. They will see each other on the weekends and have time for themselves.

West-Allen family is getting a new member

The episode ends with the West-Allen family and the rest of the Team Flash having a farewell gathering for Joe and some members having a heart-to-heart talk with each other.

Joe expresses gratitude and sadness that he won’t see his family and Team Flash daily and makes a toast for good future times. Mark feels out of place in the gathering, and Barry reassures the man that he is now part of “the family” – Team Flash.

Chester and Allegra finally get together with a passionate kiss in the middle of the West household while Barry is stunned, not knowing when that happened. While the love birds continue their intimate moment, Iris gets dizzy, and everyone wonders what’s happening.

‘The Flash’ Season 9 Episode 5: Recap & Ending Explained

Suddenly, Khione drops a bomb on Team Flash that Iris is pregnant, and everyone congratulates the happy future parents.

Overall, the episode was… underwhelming. I know that The Flash isn’t the best television show, but it seems that every plot point in the episode was rushed. Red Death is absolutely terrifying in the comics, and the character had a promising debut in the Arrowverse, but how she was defeated doesn’t sit well with me. I suppose, since the character is imprisoned in the A.R.G.U.S. facility, it means that Ryan Wayne will appear again in the season, especially knowing that there are 13 episodes planned for the final chapter of The Flash show. 

‘The Flash’ Season 9 Episode 5: Recap & Ending Explained

The way the show utilized Rogues from both sides was interesting, and it’s good that they got more screen time in the Red Death arc. However, one of the biggest disappointments this season was Khione. Danielle Panabaker needs to work with “bread crumbs” this season, and it’s disappointing how showrunners treated her character, which has been part of the show since its beginning. There are hints that Khione will get her own arc at the end of the season, but if they really wanted to do something useful with the character Caitlin Snow, Killer Frost, or even Khione, they should’ve stayed dead. Khione’s kiss awakes mark Blaine, and frankly, I find that extremely comical because that “silly” scene is the most useful thing Khione did this season. 

Despite the Red Death storyline being finished, we still have eight more episodes, and we will continue the farewell season of The Flash with episode 6, titled “The Good, the Bad, and the Lucky,” airing on March 15.

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