I’m also pretty sure there are some Kurosawa films I haven’t seen yet.

§ November 8th, 2013 § Filed under television § 17 Comments

So a long time ago, I missed one episode of the Flash TV series when it was preempted, at least in our area, for some news coverage, if I recall correctly. I never did catch a repeat of it during its original 1990-1 run, nor did I ever see it rerun during any of its sporadic syndicated showings. If it had any, that is…I’m sure it must have turned up on the Sci-Fi Channel or something, he said, not even bothering to type it into the Google search bar in his browser.

Anyway, 23 years later, I’m browsing Netflix looking for something to watch, and instead of finally getting around to Blade Runner, just on a whim I decided “hey, no time like the present to finally complete my watching of the Flash TV series.” Thus was disc 5, with said episode (#16, “Deadly Nightshade”) rented and, a day later, in my home.

I didn’t think this through very well. First, it’s been 23 years. Every episode of The Flash at this point is going to feel like an episode I haven’t seen. All I can recall from my original viewings is a hazy remembrance of Mark Hamill hamming it up as the Trickster, and some vague disappointment that Barry Allen’s science lab partner, played by Alex Desert, never put on a Kid Flash costume. (He might have in the one-shot tie-in comic, like in a dream sequence or something. ALSO A HAZY MEMORY.)

And thus, my second point: I’m not even sure if this was the episode I missed way back when. I’m fairly sure it is, but man, who knows. But here I am, a rented Netflix Flash disc in hand, and by God if it’s here, I’m going to spend some of the precious few moments I have left on Earth to watch it.

Of course, I was immediately reminded of the crazy muscle suit that star John Wesley Shipp had to wear, in that glorious Tim Burton Batman movie era where superheroes needed the super-padded treatment:

The “Deadly Nightshade” episode featured a (sorta) post Star Trek The Next Generation Denise Crosby:

…and a pre-Star Trek Voyager Jeri Ryan:

…as well as series semi-regular THE BELZ:

Good ol’ Richard Belzer, in a rare TV appearance that isn’t Detective Munch. And that’s the Deadly Nightshade (or someone claiming to be him, wink wink) on the right, there, a sort of pseudo-Shadow vigilante. In fact, listening to the D.N.’s dialogue in the pre-credits opener, I wondered to myself if this was one of the episodes noted Shadow storyteller Howard Chaykin cowrote, and when the credits rolled, well, sure enough.

Ultimately, it’s still a lot of goofy fun, even if the whole production screams “1990s” so much I half-expected Parker Lewis to synchronize his Swatch with the Scarlet Speedster.

Also on this disc: the episode where David Cassidy plays the Mirror Master. I know it’s a drastically different version of the character, but c’mon, it’s David Cassidy. Not a bad disc to get based on a completely irrational Netflix rental decision.

17 Responses to “I’m also pretty sure there are some Kurosawa films I haven’t seen yet.”

  • Old Bull Lee says:

    I can relate to the title of this post and every part of this experience. The hell with classic cinema, this is what Netflix is all about baby!

    This was a good show. The level of goofiness was appropriate for the character.

    It’s strange that the 1990s seemed like such a boom in superhero media, when it’s been dwarfed by the 2000s.

  • Adam says:

    Is there any way that assuming that the Belz ISN’T Detective Munch makes this show any better?

  • Snark Shark says:

    ” crazy muscle suit that star John Wesley Shipp had to wear”


    “David Cassidy ”

    I find Danny Bonaduce FAR more entertaining.

  • Philip says:

    Well now I just want to go binge-watch “Parker Lewis Can’t Lose.”

  • Thelonious_Nick says:

    Dude, you haven’t seen Blade Runner yet? Have you been put off by the 18 versions of it floating around or something?

  • SadClown says:

    … I really liked Day of Judgement… :(

  • Rob S. says:

    I wonder if Deadly Nightshade was any relation to The Clipper? He was another Shadow analogue that Mason Trollbridge was sidekick to (who showed up, in flashback, at least, in Wally’s book around the time this series was on the air).

  • caleb says:

    Did David Cassidy do a Scottish accent…?

  • JRC says:

    Nightshade was the best thing to come out of that series. Can I still hope for a team-up with him and the Grey Ghost?
    Also, Shipp did not need that muscle suit. Dude was ripped.
    Also, Flash really wasn’t that bad–when it was at its best. Shipp and Pays had some good chemistry. Show just tried to coast by on lazy scripts tho. I remember one episode where an Evil Scientist turned himself into a monster just to beat up homeless people…because his parents had been poor? Whaaa?

  • demoncat4 says:

    actully though its also been almost 23 or more years since i saw the series the way i understood it night shad was actully suppose to be the original wesley dodd sandman . but dc could not use sandman due to rights issues. though mostly i do remember mark hamil as the trickster and his out fit.

  • Old Bull Lee says:

    Indeed, Shipp had enough superhero physique of his own that he didn’t need the Michael Keaton Batman treatment.

    Speaking of that movie, that Danny Elfman Flash theme is AWESOME. There’s something about it that just says Silver Age.

  • salamurai says:

    I recall that one episode of The Flash aired on the night that Bush I had his choking episode, and on the East Coast it was joined “already in progress”. I have no idea which it was, I’ve never watched any of the Flash since it first aired.

  • Kelson says:

    I also remember the Nightshade episodes as being among the best.

    I don’t remember how I finally managed to see the end of the episode, but it must have been a rerun (or maybe my parents knew someone who had recorded it in another timezone).

    When the DVDs came out I did a full re-watch, and was surprised at how well it held up, dated as it is. It was also fun to spot actors whom I hadn’t known at the time (Hey, that’s the Dharma Initiative scientist from Lost!), though I can’t figure out how I didn’t notice that Jeri Ryan was in the same episode as Denise Crosby. Or, if I did, how I forgot it, because the other blogger to whom I sent screencaps for his reviews certainly commented on it.

  • That’s funny, I’ve had Blade Runner on my DVR for like 6 months now and still keep meaning to get around to watching it….

  • JRC says:

    I got the DVD set at Amazon discount price, and have slowly been picking through them in random order for giggles with my gal.
    Looking forward to the Trickster episodes, and the 2nd Nightshade installment.
    I remember one episode on air, cut to a school board meeting 5 minutes before the story’s end–I can’t imagine how bad the ratings must have been. I think it was the episode where he vibrates thru a wall? Haven’t run across it yet.

  • adam barnett says:

    I found the series aged surprisingly well… I actually enjoyed it when I watched it a few years ago more than I did when it originally ran. But then again, I had a real problem with the red boots. I’ve matured since then (arguably)…

  • Mars says:

    Netflix doesn’t have Blade Runner. Or a lot of other things.