This week has already seen
two three new interviews with the Flash creative team. In pieces with Comic Book Resources, Newsarama, and now Comic Vine, Francis Manapul and Brian Buccellato pull back a small corner of the curtain on their new iteration of the Reverse-Flash!
The duo eliminates at least one suspect, while providing some insight into the motivations and look of Flash’s new opposite-number. The Newsarama (and Comic Vine) interviews also feature a first look at preliminary pages from Flash #20! Check out all of the chilling, UPDATED details after the jump!
First off, answers in both interviews confirm Wally West is not the new Reverse-Flash. We’ll go in order of publication, starting with the CBR piece.
On the influence and Flash legacy of the late Carmine Infantino:
Buccellato: We don’t pretend to be walking in his footsteps. That’s historical and monumental. We’re just happy we get to tell our stories and hopefully people who read his work and enjoyed what he did will enjoy what we do to because we try to be respectful of everything that came before, especially his work. I mean he created a whole new world for comics, didn’t he?
Manapul: That’s the thing too, when Brian and I were first plotting out the stories we read a lot of those issues he had worked on collected in the “Showcase” books. Those were a huge influence on us in terms of trying to recapture that feel, the sense of imagination that those books had. His influence on not just this book but also the industry in general has been monumental, so I don’t think we should be in anyway compared to what he’s done!
On the look and power source of the new Reverse-Flash:
Manapul: We wanted him to look scary. That’s the basic thing that we wanted. Reversing the color, it’s a classic idea and there’s a reason for it; since this is a brand new character we were able to make his costume rise out of the story of how he got his powers. What’s going to be really exciting is we’ll see Flash and the way his costumes comes on and comes out of his ring and it latches onto his skin — Reverse Flash comes out in a different way, it’s a lot more visceral and I think it’s going to be really exciting to see on the page. I don’t think that readers have seen something like that before for Reverse Flash.
Buccellato: It’s not an arbitrary decision, the look and feel of it. There’s definitely a story point to it, so hopefully people will like it.
Manapul: It’s directly tied to how he gets his powers.
On the influence of past Reverse-Flashes:
Manapul: We’re essentially creating our own mythos with this Reverse Flash. Obviously he’s extremely inspired by the Reverse Flashes of the past but we thought the best thing to do was to try to create him from scratch and take it in a new direction.
On plans for Wally West, with a question for readers:
Buccellato: We don’t have any plans, there’s no plans for Wally. Who knows what the future holds — but not right now! [Laughs] I have a question for the CBR community out there: would they rather see Wally West as a villain and have him in the universe or not see him at all? I wonder what people think about that. Is it enough to just have a dude with orange hair whose name is Wally West? Or do you want the character and the person that you really loved as a teen who was under Barry’s wing and became the Flash and became the greatest speedster of all?
Onto the Newsarama interview! Make sure to check out the exclusive art.
On the relationship between Iris and Barry:
Buccellato: They’re definitely in the sights of Reverse Flash. And Reverse Flash has a reason for it.
Nrama: So the fact that they’re both targets is going to throw Iris and Barry together. How would you describe their relationship right now?
Buccellato: There’s chemistry and attraction there. In the past, she compromised their future by trying to service her brother. She made a bad judgment call. But early on, she had feelings for him.
Manapul: And all those feelings are still there.
On Kid Flash’s upcoming Flash debut:
Manapul: I’m not sure I want to say too much about that. Let’s just say the Flash may, or may not, save Kid Flash from the Reverse Flash. Or he might think he’s in danger and try to send him a warning. I don’t know.
Nrama: Ah… because Reverse Flash is targeting people affected by the Speed Force, Kid Flash could be in danger. Maybe.
Manapul: I guess you’ll find out when the issue comes out.
UPDATE: Now, the latest information from the Comic Vine appearance!
On Barry’s personal life and bar-tending gig, looking ahead:
Francis Manapul: Basically issue #20 is a great jumping on point for new readers. We’re really establishing Barry’s civilian life, with him being with Patty and his job in the precinct working on the cold cases. He more or less has an ideal life until all these Speed Force murders start occurring. A lot of people that he cares about are in danger and he has to figure out who Reverse Flash is before all these people get killed.
CV: So Barry’s not going to be bartending anymore?
FM: No, he will not.
BB: Not for the foreseeable future. I don’t think he actually quits his job but he won’t be there for a while.
FM: He’ll use it when he needs a little bit of extra cash. Barry’s practical. I don’t think he’ll burn any bridges.
More on Kid Flash’s upcoming appearance and his relationship to Barry:
FM: If my understanding is correct, this meeting might set off a series of events that would go deeper into where Kid Flash came from. I believe Scott [Lobdell] has plans for that. We’d love to have him more in our book but obviously he’s staying in the TEEN TITANS universe at the moment. But yeah, in this interaction much like you do, Barry will raise all of these questions to Bart and whether Bart will answer them or not is going to be up to him.
Manapul on his return to the title:
FM: Obviously I’m coming back with 20 and we’re going all the way up to 24. Me and Brian were discussing before, I think this arc is going to be our best story yet. We’ve had a good year and a half to really solidify who Barry Allen is. Now we’re gonna really delve into the personal life that he’s created. How is he going to hang on to this good life he currently has? I think that’s something a lot of us can relate to. Hopefully the readers will enjoy us messing around with his semi-almost perfect life. Well, perfect for the first three pages of issue 20 anyway.
Phew! Lots to take in here, even if you have Speed Mind access. Make sure to check out the full interviews, including more on the thematic ties to “Move Forward,” the upcoming Flash Annual #2 and how much R-Flash to expect in next week’s Flash #19, over at Comic Vine, CBR and Newsarama!