One of many pieces of Flash news from Comic-Con that just didn’t sit right with me was the news that Barry Allen and Iris West were being retroactively split up for the New 52, and that Barry would be “playing the field.”
Really? This is the guy who, after Iris’ untimely death, when he finally forced himself to move out of the house where he lived with his late wife and try to get on with his life, promptly fell for the new girl next door. The idea of him dating someone else isn’t preposterous, but a player? That seems a little far-fe—
Oh, wait. Never mind.
(Seriously, though, this is one of the things that bugs me, because in my opinion, the Barry/Iris relationship should be central to the character(s). It might bother me less if DC wasn’t undoing the Lois/Clark marriage at the same time. I still haven’t decided whether to actually put together a post listing all the announced elements I do and don’t like and why.)
DC has released a preview for this week’s flashback comic starring the Scarlet Speedster of the Seventies.
DC Retroactive: The Flash (1970s)
The Flash may be able to save cities from tsunamis and stop criminals in their tracks at the blink of an eye, but he’s just found out that his super-powers come at an incredible cost. And when arch nemesis Gorilla Grodd strikes at the heart of Barry Allen, he’ll use every weapon he can think of against him…including Barry’s wife.
RETROACTIVE: THE FLASH – THE ’70s features a classic tale from the 1970s as well as a new one written as an homage to the decade. From the cumulative creative teams of Cary Bates, Benito Gallego, Sal Buscema, Martin Pasko, J.L. Garcia Lopez and Dan Adkins, don’t miss this one-shot when it hits stores tomorrow.
Newsarama interviews Cary Bates about his work on The Flash and Justice League of America back in the 1970s, and his upcoming DC Retroactive specials revisiting those books.
With the books closer to release (DC Retroactive: The Flash: The 70s comes out next week), he’s able to say a little more than he did in our interview back in May, plus of course we weren’t asking him about the JLA! There’s some strange spoilery information about “Son of Grodd,” but what really caught my eye was what Bates said about the timeframe of the DC Retrocative books:
The deadlines for the retro books were very tight, so once I signed on I had to come up with the plots for both books within 24 hours.
24 hours! Wow! I’d gotten the impression that the Retroactive specials were a last-minute addition to the schedule, and this seems to confirm it. My suspicion: After DC decided to push full-steam-ahead on the reboot/relaunch/whatever it actually is, they decided to give the previous versions of the major characters a “last hurrah” before moving on.
When you’re done reading the Newsarama interview, jump back and check out our two-part interview in which Cary Bates talks more about his 1970s Flash run, the Death of Iris Allen, and where The Flash would have gone if it hadn’t been canceled during Crisis on Infinite Earths.
DC has released the covers for DC Retroactive: The 70s, the series of July one-shots featuring the return of classic writers to the interpretations of the characters that they wrote back in the day.
The cover for DC Retroactive: The Flash – The ’70s is by Benito Gallego, Sal Buscema, and Carrie Strachan. The book is being written by Cary Bates, who talked about it a bit in an interview with Speed Force last month.
It’s titled “Son of Grodd” and it explores the concept of fatherhood on two parallel tracks, one dealing with Grodd and the other with Barry….With this story, heretofore unspoken aspects of the Allen marriage will finally be explored in depth. At the same time, you’ll be seeing a new side of Grodd as we find out what kind of father he might have made back in the ’70’s.
There’s more in there, of course, so be sure to read the whole interview if you missed it the first time around.
UPDATE! Artist Benito Gallego dropped by to point out his original pencils for the cover!
Welcome to the second part of our interview with legendary Flash writer Cary Bates! A DC Comics luminary, Bates’ first Flash story appeared in 1968, and he was the regular writer on the book from 1971 – 1985.
Last week we discussed the genesis and impact of the Death of Iris Allen story arc, which we have also been annotating here at the site. This week we’ll look at the implications of that story and the final days of the Flash title, as well as Bates’ upcoming work for DC Comics, both Flash and otherwise.
One of the seminal writers in DC Comics’ history, Cary Bates has crafted adventures featuring comics’ greatest characters for all or part of six decades. From his years as one of the main Superman scribes to 2010’s The Last Family of Krypton, he has left his mark on the world’s finest superheroes, experimenting with the genre and storytelling to stunning effect.
His first Flash story, 1968’s “The Flash – Fact or Fiction,” has been collected numerous times among the Greatest Flash Stories Ever Told. But that tale is, literally, just the beginning. After taking over as full-time writer in 1971 with Flash #209, Bates spent an amazing 14 years on the title until its cancellation in 1985. He also authored the memorable Flash stories featured in Adventure Comics and the DC Special Series in the late 1970s.
With Showcase Presents: The Trial of the Flash set for a July release, we’ve been running annotations of Bates’ Flash issues that laid the groundwork for the Trial story and the final years of The Flash. We’ll take a break over the next two weeks to hear from the man himself, and learn how he took a character ensconced in Silver Age sensibilities and created an emotionally-charged super-saga far ahead of its time.