June 23, 2011
Welcome back to our series of Flash annotations, focusing on Cary Bates’ “Death of Iris Allen” story. This issue begins the third act of this arc, a key stretch of issues that would further redefine Flash and his relationship with his archenemy, Professor Zoom. Links to artwork and research are included throughout this post. For previous issues, click here!
UP TO SPEED: The psychic monstrosity known as Clive Yorkin is no more, buried alive during last issue’s climactic confrontation with Flash. However, any peace of mind Barry Allen drew from Yorkin’s demise was shattered by a phone call from Detective Frank Curtis: Allen’s friend, fellow cop, and fellow target of heroin smugglers…
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June 22, 2011
Just a quick note for those who haven’t seen it: CBR interviews Sterling Gates about Flashpoint: Kid Flash Lost. In addition to the current book, he talks about his connection to Bart Allen, how that grew out of a connection to Wally West, and the fact that he’s pitched a Kid Flash series to DC three times since 2007.
Two Flash-related books are coming out this week, both tie-ins to Flashpoint.
Flashpoint: Kid Flash Lost #1 of 3
FLASH FACT! Where is he? Or should we say when?
Written by STERLING GATES; Art by OLIVER NOME; Cover by FRANCIS MANAPUL
KID FLASH LOST is a FLASHPOINT mystery, as Bart and the mysterious character known as Hot Pursuit try to unravel what has happened when the world they wake up in is not their own. Bart will deal with many of the character threads set up in Geoff Johns’ “Road to Flashpoint” storyarc even as he confronts the greatest danger the 31st century has ever seen,” writer Sterling Gates told us.
(Preview & Article)
“The man I’d give anything to kill has to live…or I die.”
Written by SCOTT KOLINS; Art by JOEL GOMEZ; Cover by ARDIAN SYAF and VICENTE CIFUENTES
So, I attempted to get started on this review almost a week ago. But to be honest, I was at a loss for words, unsure what to say about the issue. I didn’t like it and didn’t dislike it either, somehow managing to fall into both camps at the same time. To find out more, see below the cut for spoilers.
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June 21, 2011
DC has released the covers for DC Retroactive: The 70s, the series of July one-shots featuring the return of classic writers to the interpretations of the characters that they wrote back in the day.
The cover for DC Retroactive: The Flash – The ’70s is by Benito Gallego, Sal Buscema, and Carrie Strachan. The book is being written by Cary Bates, who talked about it a bit in an interview with Speed Force last month.
It’s titled “Son of Grodd” and it explores the concept of fatherhood on two parallel tracks, one dealing with Grodd and the other with Barry….With this story, heretofore unspoken aspects of the Allen marriage will finally be explored in depth. At the same time, you’ll be seeing a new side of Grodd as we find out what kind of father he might have made back in the ’70’s.
There’s more in there, of course, so be sure to read the whole interview if you missed it the first time around.
UPDATE! Artist Benito Gallego dropped by to point out his original pencils for the cover!
DC released art from the upcoming Flash relaunch over the weekend at the Calgary Comic & Entertainment Expo, and guest Francis Manapul revealed a few scraps of information.
First up: This amazing splash page from Flash #1 at CBR.
Be sure to click through and see the high-resolution version. It’s absolutely incredible. (Have I mentioned how much I like Francis Manapul’s art lately?)
Bleeding Cool reports from the DC Nation panel:
Francis Manapul confirmed Barry Allen is the Flash, with no word on the rest of Flash family, but that to expect Wally West at some point. A new villain was created for first arc, but Grodd will be along shortly. The costume will stil be kept in the ring, but will form around him in a different fashion. Flash’s costume is generated in pieces and fits together along the seams of the Jim Lee design, with lightning comes out of the seams.
I’m glad to hear that the first arc’s villain really is a new villain, and it should be interesting to see how Barry deals with the newer, more savage Grodd of modern times (or will Grodd himself be re-invented again?).
I think this is the first mention I’ve seen that Wally West actually exists in the post-relaunch universe, but I wouldn’t hold my breath waiting for him to show up. DC’s used up all the benefit of my doubt regarding Wally over the last couple of years, just like they came dangerously close to using up all the benefit of my doubt regarding The Flash until they announced Manapul and Buccellato as the creative team.
Anyway, back to the costume. Bleeding Cool also has a set of blurry photos from the panel, originally posted at The Daily Blam, including another fully-colored view of the costume and a few panels of it forming up.
UPDATE: The Source has released a clear image of the costume in the post congratulating Manapul and Fiona Staples on their Shuster awards.
I like the boots better in this version. They look less clunky than they did in the Converse ad.
The mask still bugs me, though, not just the chin strap but the corners at the cheeks that have become narrow slits in this version. I think I figured out why: it makes his face look too closed. The closed-off look worked for Walter West and sort of works with Wally’s new costume, but in general I think the Flash’s face should be more open.
June 20, 2011
The 2011 Joe Shuster Awards were presented at the Calgary Comic & Entertainment Expo on Saturday, and Flash artist (and soon-to-be co-writer) Francis Manapul has won the award for Outstanding Comic Book Artist.
The summary reads:
In 2009, Francis Manapul adopted an ink-wash style that semi-renders his figures and backgrounds, and combined the new approach with his already solid skills as a comics penciler to add a depth and tonality to his environments that gives his work a unique quality. His work on the Flash in 2010 is both mature in its storytelling and some of the best use of his new technique so far.
The Joe Shuster Awards are given to honor outstanding Canadian comics creators, and are named after Superman co-creator Joe Shuster.
This is Francis Manapul’s second nomination (he was previously nominated in 2010) and first win for the award.
Congratulations to Francis Manapul!
June 18, 2011
Some weekend linkblogging…
June 17, 2011
DC has released previews of several Flashpoint issues coming out next week, including Flashpoint: Reverse-Flash and Flashpoint: Kid Flash Lost #1.
They also offer a little more information on The Source. Flashpoint: Reverse-Flash has a new, more intriguing catchphrase: “The man I’d give anything to kill has to live…or I die.” Writer Scott Kolins adds, “Flash’s arch nemesis sets up Flash’s greatest trial in this issue.”
As for Kid Flash Lost, Bart Allen also remembers the original timeline, and brings in Hot Pursuit to help…but is this the same Hot Pursuit? Sterling Gates explains:
KID FLASH LOST is a FLASHPOINT mystery, as Bart and the mysterious character known as Hot Pursuit try to unravel what has happened when the world they wake up in is not their own. Bart will deal with many of the character threads set up in Geoff Johns’ “Road to Flashpoint” storyarc even as he confronts the greatest danger the 31st century has ever seen.
One thing that makes these two tie-ins unusual is that they both focus on the main-timeline versions of the lead characters. It sounds like the Reverse-Flash book is a mix of origin story and creating the Flashpoint world, while Kid Flash will be facing the same kinds of questions that the Flash is facing in the main series, and Booster Gold is facing in his own book.
On a side note: it’s interesting to see that they brought back the One Year Later–era Flash logo for the Reverse-Flash one-shot.
June 16, 2011
DC has started running a series of ads for Converse shoes featuring different versions of their characters from the Golden Age through the upcoming September relaunch, under the slogan, “Classic Heroes. Classic Shoes.” The Flash ad, seen in pictures at Bleeding Cool, gives us another look at the new Flash costume, and our first view of his boots. [UPDATE: Here's a better scan that I made from Flashpoint: Legion of Doom]
Personally, I think the new boot design (like all the seams on the costume) is a bit busy, but I’ve seen far worse.
The poses are so similar that I’m pretty sure they’re all new art, but whoever did these drawings did a great job mimicking the styles of particular artists over the decades.
Update: We have an explanation for the boots! (Sort of.)