About Julian Albert
I’ve seen lots of people complaining about Julian’s characterization recently, and I can understand why. He hasn’t really found his place on the team, outside of “Caitlin Snow’s love interest.”
I can see why that would be frustrating, but for me, at least, it makes sense?
This is a man who spent years unable to trust his own mind, losing hours of his life at a time, using sarcasm and rudeness to keep people at bay.
He was completely lost, and this team, Team Flash, they found him. They SAVED him from Savitar, and offered him a place on their team, even after everything he did, (albeit unwillingly, but we’ve seen that he still blames himself,) all the ways he hurt them.
But he still JUST came out of an incredibly traumatic situation. He’s still lost.
He sort of attached himself to Caitlin, maybe a little more than was healthy. (This coming from a passionate Snowbert shipper, by the way.) She sought him out, she showed him kindness… She GAVE HIM a place on the team.
And yes, there was darkness in her. He knew what that was like, all too well. He had a ton of emotional issues he needed to deal with, the fall-out of Alchemy and Savitar, and instead, he focused on Caitlin’s issues.
I think, on some subconscious level, he was locking onto her to keep from having to deal with his own trauma.
And for awhile, it worked. She was getting better, they were growing closer… Yes, the thing with the Stone hurt, and he shut her out, but they were moving past that.
His life was finally feeling stable.
Then, Caitlin “died,” and Killer Frost was unleashed.
Everything fell apart.
Savitar was free, (and could turn Julian to Alchemy at any moment, surely that wasn’t far from Julian’s mind,) Caitlin was destroying everyone and everything in her path, Iris was still going to die, Jesse had left… It was all a mess, and Julian had to be blaming himself for all of it. He ripped off the necklace, after all.
Every day, things seem to get worse, and the emotional issues caused by Alchemy, the ones he never dealt with, rise to the surface more.
Julian, like many other characters on the Flash right now, is having an emotional overload.
Yes, he’s snapping at people, at in the last episode, his attitude toward Cisco wasn’t ideal.
Yes, he’s acting desperate and scared, BECAUSE HE IS.
He’s scared of losing the woman that, at the very least, he cares deeply for.
He’s scared of losing the team that he only just now found. (The family he was accepted so quickly into.)
He’s scared of losing his mind to Savitar once again.
I doubt he’ll always be “reduced” to fretting about Caitlin, but right now, that’s all he has.
It’s like a mantra in his head, I think: “If I can just get Caitlin back, everything will be alright.” Even though this is now much bigger than Caitlin Snow.
If he sticks around for the next season, I think we’ll see more of him finding his place on the team, and finding who he is as a person, but for right now…
He’s a lost boy, scared because his world is falling apart again.
Just like Cisco, and Barry, and Wally.
The difference is, they’ve already found their place.
The only place Julian knows is by Caitlin’s side.
Give him time, guys. Please.