Written by Geoff Johns
Art by Francis Manapul
The long-awaited conclusion of “The Dastardly Death of the Rogues” is here! And while it doesn’t exactly end with a bang, it does race to a satisfying finish. Mysteries are revealed, conflicts are resolved, and events that seemed unrelated turn out to be connected, with teases for upcoming events.
It’s been a fun story, one I really didn’t expect going into this series. I do think it could have been told just as effectively in less time — maybe 4 parts instead of 6. This storytelling style isn’t going to lose much when DC drops the page count from 22 to 20 next year.
Francis Manapul’s artwork is amazing, as always. I really can’t add more to what I’ve already said about it, so I’ll focus on the story, and since this is the conclusion, it’ll be hard to say much without spoilers…
Super-heroes usually keep their real identities secret so that the enemies they make in their heroic persona don’t go after them in their personal lives. It’s interesting that the future Top was motivated by Barry Allen’s actions, and struck at the Flash because of his civilian identity. It goes along with the whole pattern of reversals established from the moment the Renegades showed up as heroic versions of the Rogues.
Speaking of the Rogues, I kind of agree with Trickster: I really was expecting something more spectacular from the giant “In case of Flash break glass” mirror.
The Judge seems a bit…obsessive. Given his thoroughly masked face, and the fact that he seems to be investigating our time period and the temporal fissure, I’m guessing that we’ll see more of him down the line leading into Flashpoint…and that his identity will turn out to be significant in some way. (Does anyone else think his gavel looks Kirby-ish?)
I liked the fact that everything in this story turned out to be connected. When Barry first reopened the Hicks case, it seemed like a simple character beat: show that the police are rushed and careless, show that Barry is methodical and wants to make sure justice is actually just. It turned out to be the motivation for the whole story. (That motivation, and in fact the whole portrayal of time travel, veers seriously into Timey Wimey Ball territory, but that’s a topic for another post.)
On the other hand, the reveal (after two issues) of what Iris found in Barry’s files doesn’t quite live up to the expectations set up by her reaction. Sure, evidence of police negligence leading to a wrongful conviction is a significant discovery, but it seems to be well-known that Central City’s cops are more interested in getting a conviction, any conviction, than in getting the right conviction. Her reaction made me expect some sort of active corruption.
That said, it was kind of refreshing to see that Director Singh, while still a jerk who wants things done his way or the highway, is at least the kind of jerk who recognizes when he’s been wrong and corrects for it. It just takes a lot to convince him.
All in all, a good first story for the new series.
when DC drops the page count from 22 to 20 next year
Readers were so horrified by the idea of spending $3.99 on their comics that DC decided it was more important to keep the cost down than keep the content the same.
So next year we get less content and more ads, but the books stay at $2.99.
I was aware of the price drop, but not the page removals…
…I pay like $5 for my normal-sized comics anyway.
I suspect they were hoping most people wouldn’t notice the lower page count.
I thought these first six issues were achingly average.
Hopefully, we start seeing more of the Speed Family in this book. At the moment I’m still not convinced Barry HAD to return and replace Wally.
And for the record, I’d rather lose 2 pages than pay an extra buck per comic.
I agree that Barry didn’t have to return and replace Wally…but if he was going to do it anyway, I’d much rather read an adventure like this than something darker like Flash: Rebirth.
Its a good conclusion after #5 was the worst in the arc. Top motives and identity were a big let down.
Top motives and identity were a big let down.
I read the first 5 issues again before reading the last one, and I have to say, when read in one sitting, it’s a very satisfying first story arc. Of course I love Barry and everything he does, but I think it’s a good return for him and a good future is ahead 🙂
Agreed. I just finished reading all 6 issues again, and to me it read better as a whole. Much like a lot of story arcs I read these days.
Yay! I can get on here again! (Page is loading extremely slow for some reason.)
I didn’t know about the page cut either. Have this fear that the two pages cut would have contained the kind of stuff I love more than most plots…the little “inconsequential” yet satisfying things like Wally’s tickle fights with Linda or his opening self-deprecatory remarks and…. damn. Would rather have paid more and had those and similar included. This is disheartening. Naturally they are going to start it right when Wally is FINALLY going to be more than just a ghost in the background.
Well…on that last…I’m hoping. If there’s one thing I’d learned about comics as a tot was to not trust the cover artwork. Just because Wally is on #9 doesn’t necessarily mean that he will be IN #9 for more than a cameo. Ditto for Flashback….and I don’t trust Speed Force’s appearance until I see it for sale with a dollar sign next to the text.
I want Wally! Barry is nice and all, but it’s like comparing pumpkin pie with coconut creme with imported German chocolate shavings on top. Not the same.
Barry doesn’t do tickle attacks or run stupid self-commentary in his head!
It’s all so darn far away. I feel like breaking out singing “Tomorrow” from Annie the Musical.
I meant Flashpoint. See? I’m already thinking Flashpoint is just more Barry flashbacking with little Wally/Jay/Bart and it’s subconsciously leaking into my writing.