It may seem a rather odd choice for The Flash to switch from its recent rather emotional and darker tone in the ongoing story of the struggle against Savitar to a rather bubbly and whimsical episode, but that’s just what happened and, while tonally it did feel a tad strange to switch from one extreme to the next, the very thought of Grant Gustin and Melissa Benoist, among others, channeling their musical backgrounds would feel oh so right.
Leaving behind the core season three story arc in favour for a second crossover with Supergirl, The Flash this week presented us with the villain The Music Meister (Glee‘s Darren Criss), an individual who would force both Barry and Kara into a world where they would literally have to sing and dance their way out of in order to survive. Cue plenty of razzle dazzle, some extremely pleasing singing numbers and an epic team-up between Team Flash and the DEO. No show does it like this one…
Thrusting a themed episode at such an important period in a television series is certainly one hell of a risk, especially with The Flash in recent weeks breaking new ground with its deep, emotional core due to the possible developments of its Savitar-driven future. That being said, Duet provided just what the doctor ordered, with that undeniable partnership of Gustin and Benoist bringing nothing but a smile on the face.
With their respective relationships having broken down in recent episodes, one may have half expected the possibility of a spark of romance between Barry and Kara, but instead some great decisions were made to prove that this episode would work in almost every aspect. Forced into a musical by Music Meister, they would need to navigate their way through songs and some familiar gangster families to ultimately come out with the realisation that the ones they love are worth sticking through thick and thin with.
Along the way, the episode would serve up some fantastic treats. Who knew Victor Garber could belt out a tune?! And that moment where Jeremy Jordan suddenly burst out into full song, wow! It was wonderfully blissful to see the cast really embracing this very different type of episode, especially with a few surprises along the way.
Clearly latching into the immense popularity of La La Land‘s recent cinematic run, it felt a rather inspired move for such an episode to occur and along with it came some truly wondrous songs. From Melissa Benoist opening the songbook with a beautiful rendition of “Moon River” to our new favourite song “Super Friends” and capped off with the tender “Runnin’ Home To You” – incidentally written by La La Land‘s own Benj Pasek and Justin Paul – we couldn’t have asked for more. Our only criticism of the episode itself would be the slightly rushed handling of Wally’s mindset following the Speed Force escapade, but when you’ve got so much joy within one episode it was hardly a deterrent.
Joyful, triumphant and an episode we just didn’t want to end, “Duet” was a dose of the greatest tonic from two of the best superhero TV entities around and here’s hoping we get another one very soon. Now pass us the tissues, that final scene was goddamn emotional!
The Flash airs on The CW on Tuesdays.