Speed Force

Flash news from Comic-Con

DC released a lot of information over the weekend in San Diego, which I’ve pieced together from CBR, Newsarama, and reports from fans’ conversations with Dan Didio, Francis Manapul and others.

Writing the Flash

Francis Manapul and Brian Buccellato talked at Sunday’s New 52 panel. Newsarama reports:

Brian “When Francis approached me and asked if I wanted to cowrite Flash with him I said hell yeah! But I was also nervous, because we’re both unknown quantities as writers”

Francis: “You should be scared that we’re writing this thing, but fear translates into excitement. We’re gonna take him into new directions and portray speed in new ways you haven’t seen before. We’re gonna be showing you what it’s like to be the Flash. If I could, I’d get you all yellow boots and put you in them, but this is the closest to that we can do. You’ll see what he can do physically and what he can do mentally”

Brian: “We have a really strong metaphor for the way Barry Allen thinks,” and how his mind moves just as fast as his physical body.

“I do want to say we have written things before. There is a history of writing, but not in the forefront. You’re not taking a ride with a bunch of guys who just said “hey we’re gonna write and see what happens” Brian assured the crowd.

CBR adds:

“It’s a very personal story,” said Manapul, adding that the tone they set is exactly how they felt when first starting out on the book: excited and fresh.

“We are putting ourselves in Barry Allen, we are not trying to reinvent him,” said Buccellato.

Newsarama again, Francis: “Our first arc, a lot of the stories are going to be a little bit longer, so we can establish what the new world order is. After the first arcs there will be more one and done stories, I’ve read them from some of the other writers”

Art Style

DC discussed Flash at their Friday Justice League Panel. According to CBR:

After Johns admitted that giving up “Flash” was difficult, Manapul said that he’s looking forward to write the character he’s enjoyed drawing. Buccellato, co-writing with Manapul, admitted taking over from Johns was intimidating.

Johns described Manapul’s art as “JH Williams meets Francis Manapul,” and said there would be inset or call-out panels on many pages illustrating how fast the Flash thinks. “Every panel can be something he’s looking at or thinking about, they’re all options,” Johns said. Buccellato added that “there are downsides to thinking so fast, too.”

Newsarama clarifies Geoff Johns’ remarks: “Flash thinks so fast, so in the middle of the page you’ll see all these insert panels of his options and then the next page will be what he really does.”

Manapul said that the Flash will now put on his suit by having his ring shoot out pieces of the costume, which he runs toward and which bind to each other in the heat. Manapul said.

Newsarama’s report (reformatted):

On the new costume ring, Manapul: “When I got the designs from Jim, I’m just trying to work off what he had done. There were these end seams on it and I wanted to have the costume appear in a different way. The ring will shoot out and he will run towards it and pieces of the costume will form together and pieces of the suit will be fused by the speed and electricity. And that’s why, when he’s running, the seams seem to light up.”

CBR adds: “It was a new DC, so I wasn’t sure if I could do this. So I just did it anyway,”

DC also released a gallery of concept art.

The Rogues

On Saturday, TheFlashReborn met Francis Manapul and Dan Didio and got to ask questions about the future of the Rogues. Again, reformatted for clarity:

Francis Manapul and Brian Buccellato are wanting to concentrate on new villains & new characters at first (duh). They’re gonna introduce the Rogues one at a time bc they’ve gotten so used to acting as a group that they’ve lost their individual flavor. Also they (Dan) wanna get rid of the technical aspect & make their powers natural.


Newsarama at Sunday’s New 52:

Barry/Flash will be facing “In the first arc a brand new villain group,” [Mob Rule].

“We will be introducing the rogues slowly, we want to focus on what makes each one of them dangerous to Barry Allen. The Rogues have broken up, you won’t know why. Captain Cold is the only one trying to get them back together. He’ll be coming back and forcing them to work together”

Supporting Cast & Returning Characters

On Sunday, a fan asked if Iris was dead. According to CBR

“Iris is alive,” confirmed Manapul, saying that in the comic Barry Allen and Iris went out in the past but it never progressed and he is currently single. Director Sing, Captain Fry, and Forrest will be involved in the comic added Manapul, as well as Gorilla Grodd and there are plans to bring back the Pied Piper.

Wally West

It turns out that the fans asking about Wally West at Thursday’s DC: The New 52 panel were none other than @SpeedsterSite and @BitterWallyWest.

Incoming co-writer Brian Buccellato responded to disappointed fans of Wally West on Twitter, encouraging them to give the new series a try anyway.

I think the key response is this one.

@SpeedsterSite talked extensively with Dan Didio on Friday, and reported on his conversation via Twitter. I’m stringing them together as a paragraph to make it easier to read.

You will not be seeing Wally for the foreseeable future. Dan stated that the Perez era TT were very difficult to deal with because of their age. Dan specifically stated that Wally’s kids were a big reason why he’s off the board. When asked why Iris and Jai were aged up in the first place, Dan admitted poor planning.

Dan told me that with Black Lightning having two teenage kids made the decision to choose Static easier. With those two characters being so similar they felt Static provided more potential.

Dan mentioned that Donna Troy is off the board as well, especially because her similarities to Diana are too great. He said its hard and very difficult to accept but eventually the Perez era will be gone.

When Kyle Rayner’s new book was brought up, Dan said it’s much easier to branch out with Green Lantern than most titles. Dan also said that they realize they are pushing the limits of the Bat books and that they may be “dwindled.”

We were able to record some of our conversation so hopefully the audio isn’t horrible. Also, he gave me two poker chips.