Robert Venditti, the incoming co-writer of the Flash series, appeared at DC’s New 52 panel today at WonderCon. CBR was there to provide coverage of the event, and here are some of the Flash-related highlights. There are possible spoilers revealed here, although nothing major. The creators seem to be keeping most details close to the vest for now.
As their three-year artistic, two years everything, Flash run comes to a close, Francis Manapul and Brian Buccellato have begun the transition into their new Gotham digs over in Detective Comics. Yesterday, as part of an interview with Newsarama and a post over at DC HQ, details continued to emerge on the team’s final act.
First, here is a plot summary and preview page (above) from Flash #25 via DC Comics:
In THE FLASH #25, you’ll meet a young Barry Allen before he’s realized his full potential as the Scarlet Speedster. A recent graduate from the Police Academy, Barry finds himself partnered with Harvey Bullock in Gotham City when he volunteers to go help the city deal with the chaos brought on by the events of “Zero Year.” But Harvey is not thrilled with working with someone so young and inexperienced, leaving Barry to team up with Gotham Gazette intern Iris West to help solve the case of a mysterious drug appearing on the streets of the city that is causing people to spontaneously burst into flames. And it’s in this first meeting between Barry and Iris that the “will they or won’t they” tension is introduced to their relationship.
The comic book world is remembering one of the greats today: the legendary Nick Cardy passed away last night at the age of 93. He leaves a legacy of timeless work at DC Comics and beyond.
Known mainly for his eye-popping, dynamic and even psychedelic cover art on the original Teen Titans series, the Superman family of titles and Aquaman, Cardy was also an incredible interior artist. He amassed over 330 story credits between DC and Quality Comics, including a plotting credit on three issues of Bat Lash. From romance titles to westerns to superheroes, Cardy captured the wild imagination and design perfection embodied by the greatest of DC Comics’ concepts and characters.
Cardy’s work graced the cover of Flash 17 times. Here, we present all 17 covers in order of publication, as well as some select sketches and Teen Titans covers. Thank you, Mr. Cardy, for these eternal classics!
Flash News from Two (Media) Worlds! Friday saw the unveiling of a new image from the upcoming DC Entertainment animated feature Justice League: War, featuring Christopher Gorham as The Flash. Meanwhile, over at Newsarama, writer Christos Gage spoke about his upcoming standalone story in Flash #26!
Justice League: War is adapted from the opening arc of the New 52 Justice League series, written by Geoff Johns. It is currently set for an early 2014 release.
Over on Earth-Print, Gage has the task of helming the first issue due after the Francis Manapul/Brian Buccellato team take their final bows on the title as a duo (Buccellatto will be writing issues 27 – 29 solo). For more on the roots of Gage’s Flash fandom and what to expect from his “Flash Out of Water” tale, follow the jump!
They spoke to USA Today about focusing on the “detective” side of Batman, introducing additional supporting cast to “focus on the importance of family to Bruce Wayne,” and Batman’s obsession with protecting Gotham City. “Unlike other heroes who protect their home because they want to, Batman has to. He’s going to be such a fun character to sink our teeth into.”
Brian Buccellato stresses that they have a “gritty and dark side” more suited to Batman than their lighter take on the Flash and Central City. Readers concerned that the book will be too bright for Batman may want to look outside DC Comics to Buccellato’s solo writing on Foster at Dog Year Comics and and The Black Bat at Dynamite.
The article doesn’t say exactly when Manapul and Buccellato will be taking over the book, and but it’s after Detective Comics #27, which will be a special anniversary issue.
No word yet on the new Flash creative team.
Update: Rob S. points out in the comments an interview at CBR in which the team talks about their approach to Batman, and mentions that Brian Buccellato will stay on as solo Flash writer for three more issues.
Well, it’s official: One of the longest runs of the New 52 is coming to an end with Flash #25. From Brian Buccellato’s blog:
If you’ve seen the solicits for FLASH #26, you may notice that Francis and I are not listed as the creators… That’s because (as strange as it sounds to even us) we’ve reached the end of our Flash run. #25 is the final chapter in what’s been an incredible journey with the fastest man alive. Fun times!
We were REALLY honored to have the opportunity to usher Barry, Iris, Patty, Lenny, Forrest and the entire Flash universe into the New 52. We’ve lived and breathed Barry and are sorely gonna miss him, but after 3 years and over 30 issues (annuals, zero, Villains Month), we felt it was time to Move Forward and take on a new creative challenge.
Before anyone points out that it’s only been two years since the New 52, remember that Francis Manapul and Brian Buccellato were the art team on the Brightest Day-era Flash series written by Geoff Johns before Flashpoint. They’ve been on the character since early 2010. At today’s DC Comics, that’s an astonishingly long run!
Unlike other high-profile creative changes that have made news recently, this appears to be an amicable split. Brian Buccellato remains as writer on Forever Evil: Rogues Rebellion, and then there’s this:
Francis and I will be moving on to a NEW regular DC series that will hit stores in MARCH 2014. We can’t tell you what the series is (yet), but we are super excited about this new sandbox we get to play in!
March 2013 should be about the time Forever Evil wraps up. No doubt DC will be launching several new series at that time.
As for who’s next on The Flash, a new creative team hasn’t been announced. Christos Gage and Neil Googe are doing a one-shot for Flash #26.
I’ll miss this team on The Flash, but I feel a lot more content about this news than I did when Geoff Johns left — ironically, because I was more satisfied with the New 52 Flash than the Brightest Day version. The post-Rebirth Flash was a study in frustration and missed opportunities, with long waits and a lackluster ending.
Here? By the time “Reverse” wraps up next month, Manapul and Buccellato will have delivered on everything they set out to do.
They re-established Barry Allen and his supporting cast.
They revamped the Rogues, Grodd and Reverse Flash.
They re-established the Speed Force as something that you might be able to explain without a PowerPoint presentation.
Sure, I would have liked to see more new villains (we got Mob Rule and Dr. Elias, and that was really about it), and I really wish we’d gotten to see that cold case story that editorial canned in order to get the Captain Cold story out sooner. But it feels like, once the last few issues are out, the Manapul/Buccellato run will be a complete run on the book.
In addition to their upcoming series together, Brian Buccellato is continuing to write Forever Evil: Rogues Rebellion at DC, The Black Bat at Dynamite, and Executive Assistant: Iris at Aspen.
One last THANKS to all the Flash fans out there that gave Francis and I an honest chance and stuck around for the ride. You know who you are. You guys make this job worth all the crazy deadlines and sleepless nights! Thanks again… we can’t wait to tell you what’s next!
We’re looking forward to it!