The Tick Recap: “Fear of Flying”


After five episodes of watching Arthur struggle with his desire to be normal and stop The Terror, “Fear of Flying,” finally sees him embrace his inner hero.

While the inner war between his two selves has finally been resolved, Arthur finally needs to face the two opposite forces in his real life: The Tick and Dot. With the two attempting to pull him in different directions, he is finally forced to make a choice regarding whether he wants to be in the fight or back on the sidelines.

“Fear of Flying,” picks up right where the last episode left off, with Arthur escaping Ms. Lint by using his suit. Unfortunately, he can’t figure out how to exactly work said suit which leaves him stranded up in the sky. Finding a phone app in the main menu of his suit, Arthur quickly phones Dot in hopes of reaching The Tick. The ensuing conversation is comedy gold, with the latter assuring his sidekick that he won’t mention anything to Dot as she’s standing right beside him. Of course, she won’t be deterred that easily and quickly dons her coat to drive the blue hero to wherever her brother’s in trouble.

Since the beginning of the series, there’s been some lingering discomfort between Dot and The Tick that has mainly gone unaddressed because the two haven’t spent time together. In “Fear of Flying,” the two characters who have the most influence over Arthur’s life are forced to work together to save their mutual loved one. While The Tick encourages his friend to shoot for the skies and believes in himself, Dot prefers a more pragmatic approach because she doesn’t want to lose her brother. Neither of them comes off as “better” than the other, but unfortunately, Dot gets the short end of the stick when Arthur chooses to listen to his friend’s advice over hers.

Finally learning how to control the suit, he lands in a field with the help of an angered Overkill. He learns that the anti-hero discovered that The Terror was alive via Arthur’s Reddit page, which finally fills the burgeoning hero with confidence. In another particularly funny moment, Dot and The Tick come speeding in but the sibling reunion breaks up the impending fight that the two heroes are prepared to have. However, the entire group is interrupted by Ramses’ and his Pyramid Gang showing up trying to get the suit back. Arthur finally gets the confidence to confront the thugs who have been following him around and to confirm that The Terror is alive somewhere.

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The ensuing battle between the two sides in “Fear of Flying,” is full of laughs with The Tick and Overkill forced to team up despite their differences in fighting. While the two of them try to take down the gang in their own way, Dot admits to her brother that they’ve all been wrong about him being crazy. Despite this, and their victory against Ramses, she begs him to step back from the situation to allow the “real heroes,” to save the day. Yet, Arthur is in too deep and he knows he needs to see this through for his own sanity which leads to a big rift between the two siblings.

Returning with the two heroes to Dangerboat, Arthur is ready to focus on the task at hand rather than wallow in the pain of disappointing his sister. The team discovers his suit is part of a weapons system meant to combat a foreign element, however, “Fear of Flying,” ends before anything more can be revealed. While all of this excitement is happening, Ms. Lint receives a surprise visit from her old friend and mentor: The Terror. Thus confirming what Arthur has been trying to convince people of all season, that this villain is very much alive and has a plan in place.

While not as great as the previous episode, “Fear of Flying,” does give a good emotional payoff to Arthur’s arc all season. While it would have been nice to see Dot join in the fight to stop The Terror (every superhero team needs a medic!), her desire to protect her brother coupled with Valorie Curry’s acting keeps her from falling into the cliché “loved one who tries to stop the hero” trope. With only one episode left in this season, one has to wonder whether The Tick is headed towards an epic final battle or a smaller victory to finish off this excellent freshman run.