We have just completed a spectacular FLASH: YEAR ONE and now return for another high-profile arc, “Death and the Speed Force”! Notice it’s not “death OF the Speed Force”…though make not mistake, the Speed Force is dying. How can Barry turn this around? How can her turn the relationships he’s damaged around? And, how does all this fit in with DC’s The Year of the Villain? Follow us after the jump to learn more!
Barry has regained a lot of lost memories during Year One, and he also has a new perspective on life. It’s time to right a bunch of wrongs – and it’s time to try and repair some relationships as well. Avery (the Flash of China) and Wallace (Kid Flash) have been holding things down in Central City – and they are not exactly thrilled to see Barry’s return. Still, Barry convinces them to follow him to the newly repaired Flash Museum. It’s back to its former glory…with a twist.
That twist is a hidden Speed Lab, accessed by phasing through a painting in the museum. (No word here on how Commander Cold got in, but let’s go past that). Steadfast is also there, and helps Barry explain to the rest of the crew how the Speed Force is dying. That’s why every speedster is slowing down. And, right now no one knows exactly how to stop that.
To make things worse, the Black Flash arrives! More on that in a minute…but first…
Elsewhere, we see a revamped Captain Cold helping our Mick Rory from a tight situation. He explains his new look and new tech – and extends the offer to Heat Wave that Lex Luthor earlier gave him. They are set to “get the band back together”. We will definitely see more of that during The Year of the Villain. But, back to Black Flash…
Usually, the Black Flash appears when a speedster is ready to die/enter the Speed Force. Not this time. He is after…Steadfast! Black Flash wants to eradicate the other new forces…and that’s where we stop our story today.
- Artist Rafa Sandoval joins writer Joshua Williamson on this story, with inks by Jordi Tarragona and colors by Tomeu Morey. Sandoval’s take on Flash is a little more muscular than we’ve seen lately, reminding at times of some Wally art from both the comics and the JLU animation. What I had to take a second look about was all the teeth…comics usually just give one big white mouthful without definition. Here, we often get an almost photorealistic set of teeth on our characters. It makes Flash sort of jump out of the page, and no complaints of that here.
- Williamson continues to write an exceptional story for The Flash. There are still repercussions for Barry, things he needs to rebuild in his relationships. I’m glad to see that this issue hasn’t just been glossed over. This just makes Barry more human without taking away from his heroic persona.
SUMMARY: It’s hard to top YEAR ONE, but we do have a solid start to a new arc that looks to have a big impact on the Flash mythos. I’ll give this a 9/10 – but of course, that’s just my opinion. What do YOU think? Leave your comments below!