May 31, 2011

Redesigned Flash by Jim Lee

Category: Flash News — By

The USA Today article about DC’s upcoming reboot includes a drawing of the Justice League with Jim Lee’s new costume designs…but not the entire image. Aquaman, Wonder Woman, Superman and Green Lantern are all visible, but the Flash and Batman are both off-panel, but it turns out that the article thumbnail on the newspaper’s home page shows the Flash’s mask.

I got the impression somewhere on Twitter that the full image appears in the print version of the article.

Update: I was in such a rush to post this that I forgot to comment on it. The only thing that really stands out in this picture is the chin guard (which was my least favorite element of the Walter West Dark Flash costume). The seams will get lost in the detail when drawn by most artists, and the earpieces change all the time anyway.

Update 2: SpeedsterSite found a copy of the full Jim Lee Justice League image. Here’s the Flash:

Oh, look, there’s that yellow outline around the circle, which Ethan Van Sciver so carefully added to Wally West’s costume in order to distinguish him from Barry Allen.

Update: You can see more of the costume in Francis Manapul’s cover for Flash #1.

DC: Back to Square #1

Category: Flash News — By

USA Today confirms that DC is in fact relaunching everything at #1 in September, and Geoff Johns and Jim Lee are relaunching Justice League.

It looks like it’s a bit more than simply a coordinated jumping-on point like One Year Later or the post-Zero Hour #0 issues or a more thorough reboot. Jim Lee has “spearheaded the redesign of more than 50 costumes to make characters more identifiable and accessible to comic fans new and old,” and Dan Didio says, “This was a chance to start, not at the beginning, but at a point where our characters are younger and the stories are being told for today’s audience.”

Further details about individual series and characters will follow on The Source over the next week.

I guess the first rule of Flashpoint has been rescinded.

More importantly: DC will begin releasing comics digitally on the same day as the print editions go on sale.

As for what this means for the Flash franchise…I don’t want to jump to any conclusions, but I’m beginning to suspect that one of my worst-case scenarios for Flashpoint is actually going to happen.

Update: Newsarama posts a letter DC sent to retailers about the revamps, including the following explanation:

We have taken great care in maintaining continuity where most important, but fans will see a new approach to our storytelling. Some of the characters will have new origins, while others will undergo minor changes. Our characters are always being updated; however, this is the first time all of our characters will be presented in a new way all at once.

More details will be announced over the next month, with full September solicitations on June 13.

Updates: CBR has a round up of what we know so far. USA Today has an interview with Geoff Johns, Jim Lee and Dan Didio. More breakdowns at Weekly Crisis, Comics Alliance. The Beat has a round-up of creator & retailer reactions.

May 30, 2011

Rogue Comic Shop

Category: Fun — By

I moved recently, which meant finding a new comic shop. After my first visit, I pulled the car away from the curb and looked up to see this:

Hmm, where have I seen that name before? Ah, yes!

May 27, 2011

Geoff Johns Leaving The Flash after Flashpoint (UPDATED with commentary)

Category: Creators, Flash News, Opinion — By

While DC still isn’t saying much about what happens after Flashpoint (“The first rule…”), they’ve just made an announcement about the Flash:

But like issue #12 was the final issue of THE FLASH by Johns, the final issue of FLASHPOINT will conclude Johns’ run on FLASH titles for the foreseeable future.

Geoff Johns wrote a long run on The Flash (vol.2) starring Wally West in the early half of the last decade, then returned in 2009 for the miniseries Flash: Rebirth and Blackest Night: The Flash, and the short-lived series The Flash (vol.3) starring Barry Allen, culminating in the Barry Allen-centered Flashpoint.

So what is coming up for The Flash after Flashpoint?. We don’t know much (see that first rule again), but DC’s subscription service says The Flash #1 is coming in September (thanks to Deron Morgan for asking them!). This may fit in with the rumors of a line-wide post-Flashpoint renumbering, or it may simply be the logical choice to launch The Flash (vol.4).

UPDATE: Some Thoughts

I’m of mixed feelings on this. On one hand, I’ve been disappointed with the relaunched series. There’s quite a bit about the Rebirth-era Flash that I haven’t liked, and my favorite aspect, in fact, was the fantastic art by Francis Manapul. So bringing in someone new — perhaps someone more interested in telling stories about a speedster than telling me how wonderful this particular speedster is — is probably something I’d welcome.

Plus with his job as Chief Creative Officer, chances are that Geoff Johns has been awfully busy, which may have contributed to the now-infamous delays.

That said, what stands out the most for me about The Flash vol.3 are the missed opportunities. I wanted to read “Murder in Gorilla City.” I wanted to read those backup stories featuring Wally West (I’m still waiting to see him “kick ass,” as Geoff Johns promised a year and a half ago) and those Kid Flash solo stories by Sterling Gates. I wanted to read about Abra Kadabra’s other enemies scattered across the centuries. I thought “Mara Thawne” was a cool name for a villain. Presumably, we won’t even see The Flash: Secret Origin, which Geoff Johns has said on several occasions that he wants to do.

Most of all, I wanted to believe (wasn’t convinced, but wanted to believe) that everything I didn’t like about Geoff Johns’ take on The Flash was part of a long-term plan that would have some sort of payoff. For that to happen, he had to be committed to the character long-term.

Now we know that Flashpoint is the endgame. That’s a lot for the next four issues to live up to.

May 26, 2011

Interview: Cary Bates on Flash, 1979-1985 – Part Two

Category: Creators, Interviews — By

Welcome to the second part of our interview with legendary Flash writer Cary Bates!  A DC Comics luminary, Bates’ first Flash story appeared in 1968, and he was the regular writer on the book from 1971 – 1985.

Last week we discussed the genesis and impact of the Death of Iris Allen story arc, which we have also been annotating here at the site.  This week we’ll look at the implications of that story and the final days of the Flash title, as well as Bates’ upcoming work for DC Comics, both Flash and otherwise.

Read the rest of this entry »

Exclusive Flash Converse Available for Preorder

Category: Collectibles, Flash News — By

Converse has FINALLY gotten around to making an official pair of DC Comics licensed Flash Chuck Taylors. Chuck Taylors were a style of shoe first created in 1915, with the current incarnation being popularized in the 70s. Converse has released several different kinds of shoes over the years featuring DC Comics characters including Batman, Superman, and Green Lantern. To my knowledge the closest we got to having a pair of Flash Chucks before was if we made them ourselves:

 

Now Flash and Converse fans finally have an official pair of shoes to rock:

Available exclusively through popular online shoe website, Journeys. The shoes are currently available for pre-order to ship in June, although I think they have gone through their initial stock because my order is back-ordered until July. I’m crossing my fingers that the order goes through, there is no telling how many of these shoes are available. They are pretty affordable at $59.99 so if you plan on ordering them I would do it asap.

Anyone else plan on ordering a pair of these? How many of you would actually wear them?

Thanks for reading,

-Devin “Flash” Johnson