“The End of the Road”…and a New Beginning! Review of THE FLASH #40

This issue is titled, “The End of the Road”…but while the Future Flash story line IS wrapped up here we get some major developments that begin a whole new chapter in the life of Barry Allen. This is an issue you WILL want to read more than once, one of the best issues in the Venditti-Jensen-Booth era of our favorite speedster!

SOME SPOILERS AHEAD

The reason for that truly cool blue Flash uni was to deal with the threat Future-Flash is facing right now – the mysterious villain known as Overload. Future-Flash has tipped his hand in front of Patty, Iris, and all of Central City and revealed his murderous nature, but will he kill yet again in such a public manner?

Thankfully, Future-Flash has figured out that his set-things-straight-before-they-can-happen approach only makes things worse, and he finds a most interesting way to deal with Overload. (On a personal note – in 2000 I lived in a town that was hit by a tornado. We thought the towers for our phones were hit – not so. It was just that over 90% of all phones were active as people tried to find out if their loved ones were okay, and it temporarily shut down an overloaded system. Why would I tell you this? Read this issue of THE FLASH and you’ll know why).

Future-Flash isn’t the only person who has tipped his hand to his true nature. Selkirk has shown himself to be a very bad guy as well, and is determined to sacrifice Present-Barry to get what he wants…access to super-speed! This sets up a battle that goes on both inside the Speed Force and back in Central City as well. THAT battle wraps up the Future-Flash story…but sets up some big developments for future issues.

Now, I’ll give you two spoilers….but only if you REALLY want them…ok? Those spoilers will come AFTER the summary, in case you want a final word or two on this issue before finding out more. As for the artwork:

WOW! Great artwork throughout by Brett Booth (pencils), Norm Rapmund (inks) and Andrew Dalhouse (colors)! The page layouts were inventive, the action scenes were exceptional, and the expressions were spot-on. And, the design of [REDACTED] is a great re-imagining of this character.

SUMMARY: An action-packed, satisfying conclusion to the Future-Flash storyline.  But, it was actually so much more than just a wrap-up issue. This script sets a lot of the New 52 Barry’s life on its ear, and what we will come back to in June will be a much different status quo for the Scarlet Speedster. The artwork was stellar as well, in a great issue that should have Flash fans buzzing all the way to June.

– Now for those who just need a spoiler or two –

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Okay, you asked for it!

1. Patty and Present-Barry break up. Patty knows that this Barry isn’t the “All-New, All-Murderous Flash”, but she can’t get out of her head that it’s the same face (and also a version of the same person). This opens up a world of possibilities for Barry’s personal life moving forward, though I’m sure some Barry-Patty fans will NOT be happy with this change. (For the record, I have enjoyed the Barry-Patty relationship, though I’m a long time Barry-Iris fan).

2. PROFESSOR ZOOM! The last word from Future Flash was a name…Thawne! And, as Selkirk is forced back into the Speed Force, we finally meet the new version of this classic character. The redesign is enough of a nod to the past to make this old fan happy, but there is still a fresh take from Booth, Rapmund and Dalhouse that works for me. Can’t wait to see what happens next – you will want to grab this issue for the last page alone!

 

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3 thoughts on ““The End of the Road”…and a New Beginning! Review of THE FLASH #40

  1. veronica

    I never liked Patty, I was turned off by the character ever since Geoff Johns had her throwing herself at a very married Barry in Road To Flashpoint. Buccellato didn’t do much better with her during his run, She just came across as your prototypical loserish nerdy girlfriend who couldn’t believe that she scored the quarter back, and as a result was really possessive. I couldn’t see why Barry liked her, well maybe apart from the fact that she stroked his ego. In all she never seemed like a partner for Barry and more like a place holder until Barry and Iris could get their act together. Like most fans I want Barry and Iris to be together, but not like this. The ending of the Patty and Barry relationship just rings hollow and comes across as hamfisted. And makes me wonder if the end was dictated by editorial to fit the show. I strongly get the feeling that they are looking to set a ‘Flash family’ tone for the books.

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