Tag Archives: Flash 75th Anniversary

Flash 75th Anniversary Collection on Wednesday

Flash: A Celebration of 75 YearsFlash: A Celebration of 75 Years arrives in stores on Wednesday. The $40, 480-page hardcover* collection features stories of all the major Flashes, from Jay Garrick to Barry Allen to Wally West to Bart Allen and back to Barry again, from the Golden Age through the New 52.

We looked at the stories included a few weeks ago — feel free to check out the list, our commentary, and join in on the discussion.

Update: To clear up a little confusion that came up on the Facebook thread, the book ships to comic stores this Wednesday. Bookstores get new releases on Tuesdays, so Amazon and other stores that get it on the bookstore schedule will have it next Tuesday.

*DC’s website says softcover, but Previews World and Amazon both say hardcover, and given the page count, I’m inclined to believe the latter until I see a copy.

What’s in Flash: A Celebration of 75 Years? Now we know!

Flash: A Celebration of 75 Years

Amazon has a list of the contents for Flash: A Celebration of 75 Years, a deluxe hardcover coming out in April. I’m pleasantly surprised to see that the actually cover seven and a half decades. I was afraid DC would take their usual route and forget about anything before 1956 or between 1987 and 2008, but it’s a good sampling of all the Flashes.

I’m interspersing the contents with my commentary:

“Origin of the Flash”
FLASH COMICS #1 (1940)
Writer: Gardner Fox, Artist: Harry Lampert
Cover by Sheldon Moldoff

The story that started it all: The origin of Jay Garrick. Not necessarily the best of the series, but certainly the most important.

“The Secret City”
Writer: Robert Kanigher, Penciller: Carmine Infantino, Inker: Frank Giacoia
Cover by Evertt E. Hibbard

A Golden Age adventure story, and one that always sticks in my mind. Guest star Dr. Flura went on to appear in several more stories before the decade was out, including the one that introduced the original Star Sapphire. (Yes, she was a Flash villain before she was a Green Lantern villain.)

“The Planet of Sport”
Writer: Robert Kanigher, Artist: Evertt E. Hibbard

I don’t think I’ve read this one, but I recognize the cover. I believe it had something to do with alien gladiatorial games.

“The Rival Flash!”
FLASH COMICS #104 (1949)
Writer: John Broome, Penciller: Carmine Infantino, Inker: Bernard Sachs

Another classic, which actually introduced the idea of a reverse-Flash long before Professor Zoom.

“Mystery of the Human Thunderbolt!”
SHOWCASE #4 (1956)
Writer: Robert Kanigher, Penciller: Carmine Infantino, Inker: Joe Kubert
Cover by Carmine Infantino & Joe Kubert

It’s hard to argue with the first appearance of Barry Allen.

“Meet Kid Flash!”
THE FLASH #110 (December 1959-Jnaurary 1960)
Writer: John Broome, Penciller: Carmine Infantino, Inker: Joe Giella

Or, for that matter, the first appearance of Wally West.

“Flash of Two Worlds!”
THE FLASH #123 (1961)
Writer: Gardner Fox, Penciller: Carmine Infantino, Inker: Joe Giella
Cover by Carmine Infantino & Murphy Anderson

The cover for Flash of Two Worlds should be used as an illustration for the word “classic.” The story brought us Earth-2, the multiverse, the continued existence of Jay Garrick and the Justice Society, and the enduring popularity of the Shade, who would otherwise have been a forgotten one-off from the 1940s who created darkness using an air filter. No, really.

“The Conquerors of Time!”
THE FLASH #125 (1961)
Writer: John Broome, Penciller: Carmine Infantino, Inker: Joe Giella
Cover by Carmine Infantino & Joe Giella

Not the first Flash time travel story (Jay Garrick traveled through time himself), but the first to be epic in scope. Aliens try to invade in the future, and to ensure their victory, they alter the past. It’s up to Flash and Kid Flash to save the day.

“Superman’s Race With the Flash!”
SUPERMAN #199 (1967)
Writer: Jim Shooter, Penciller: Curt Swan, Inker: George Klein
Cover by Carmine Infantino & Murphy Anderson

The first Flash vs. Superman race. This one’s on ComicsAlliance’s recommended list for the Flash 500 sale.

“Stupendous Triumph of the Six Super-Villains!”
THE FLASH #174 (1967)
Writer: John Broome, Penciller: Carmine Infantio, Inker: Sid Greene
Cover by Carmine Infantino & Murphy Anderson

Classic Rogues story and another classic cover.

“Death of an Immortal!”
THE FLASH #215 (1972)
Writer: Len Wein, Penciller: Irv Novick, Inker: Dick Giordano
Cover by Neal Adams

Barry Allen and Jay Garrick vs. Vandal Savage. Epic.

“Deadly Secret of the Flash!”
THE FLASH #233 (1975)
Writer: Cary Bates, Penciller: Irv Novick, Inker: Tex Blaisdell
Cover by Dick Giordano

Barry Allen vs. Eobard Thawne in the distant future, with Iris Allen’s life at stake. Followed up in…

“The Last Dance!”
THE FLASH #275 (1979)
Writer: Cary Bates, Penciller: Alex Savuik, Inker: Frank Chiaramonte
Cover by Dick Giordano

The death of Iris Allen. This issue literally changed EVERYTHING about the series.

“A Flash of the Lightning!”
Writer: Marv Wolfman, Penciller: George Perez, Inker: Jerry Ordway
Cover by George Perez

On one hand it’s an odd choice because it’s not a Flash series, but come on — the death of Barry Allen. Have I used the word epic enough yet?

“Happy Birthday Wally”
THE FLASH #1 (1987)
Writer; Mike Baron, Penciller: Butch Guice, Inker: Larry Mahlstedt
Cover by Butch Guice & Larry Mahlstedt

Wally’s first solo outing under his own title. At first I thought this was a weird choice, but then I thought about what’s in this story: Wally runs across country to deliver a heart for a transplant patient, but runs into Vandal Savage along the way, and how it really established how different and how much more *personal* Wally’s series would be.

“The Unforgiving Minute”
Writer: William Messner-Loebs, Penciller: Mike Collins, Inkers: Frank McLaughlin & Donald Simpson
Cover by Carmine Infantino, Mike Collins & Murphy Anderson

Hell yeah. Updated version of Wally West’s origin, told through the framing device of the hero talking to his psychologist. Messner-Loebs doesn’t get nearly enough credit for his character work on this series.

“Flashing Back!”
FLASH #0 (1994)
Writer: Mark Waid, Penciller: Mike Wieringo, Inker: Jose Marzan, Jr.
Cover by Mike Wieringo & Jose Marzan, Jr.

Can I get another “Hell yeah?” Wally West is lost in time and has a conversation with his younger self that really sums up who he is.

“Rogue War: Conclusion”
FLASH #225 (2005)
Writer; Geoff Johns, Penciller: Howard Porter, Inker: John Livesay
Cover by Howard Porter & John Livesay

It’s a bit odd in that this is the end of a much longer story, but it’s also a crowning moment of awesome.

“Lighting in a Bottle Part One: Flashback”
Writers: Danny Bilson & Paul Demeo, Penciller: Ken Lashley, Inkers: Kwl Studio; Norm Rapmund; Marlo Alquiza; Jay Leisten
Cover by Ken Lashley & Greg Parkin

This is the only real quibble I have: I like that they included a Bart Allen as Flash story, and this is his first outing in the suit, and yes, it’s where the awesome Kubert cover for the collection comes from, but it’s a terrible example of Bart in general or of Bart as the Flash. It was specifically written as Bart being in an awful place so he’d have to step up and become a hero by the end of the story.

“Lightning Strikes Twice”
Writer: Geoff Johns, Artist: Ethan Van Sciver
Cover by Ethan Van Sciver

On one hand Barry Allen’s return has some of the same problems as “Lightning in a Bottle,” especially in terms of characterization, but I remember reading it and thinking it was awesome. The first time through, anyway. (IMO, Flash: Rebirth really took a nosedive as the series went on and basically turned into 6 issues of rearranging furniture for the subsequent relaunch, and I’d much rather recommend “The Dastardly Death of the Rogues” to anyone new to the Flash.)

“Flashpoint Part Five”
FLASHPOINT #5 (2011)
Writer: Geoff Johns, Penciller: Andy Kubert, Inkers: Sandra Hope & Jesse Delpergang
Cover by Andy Kubert & Sandra Hope

This one’s a little iffy, but given that Flashpoint was a slow burn building to the finale, it’s a better choice than the first issue.

THE FLASH #9 (2012)
Writers: Francis Manupal & Brian Buccellato, Artist: Francis Manapul
Cover by Francis Manupal

If I had to choose one issue from the New 52 run so far, it would absolutely be a Manapul/Buccellato issue. I’m not sure it would be the first Grodd issue, but as with “Happy Birthday Wally,” the more I think about it, the more representative it is of this version of Barry, and this version of his powers.

While they’ve left out stories that really deserve to be included (like “Nobody Dies”), it’s hard to argue with most of their choices. Most of them are good, all of them represent an era of the Flash, and all four major Flashes appear — even Bart!

I’m definitely picking this one up. How about you? What do you think of this collection?

Thanks to @ZetaTweetz for the link!

DC Variant Covers Go All-Flash in January!

DC has announced the theme for January 2015’s variant covers, and in honor of the Flash’s 75th Anniversary, the theme is: The Flash!

Each of the 22 covers is an homage to a classic comic book cover, made a little…Flashier.  And the variant for The Flash #38 is, appropriately enough, a Howard Porter take on Flash of Two Worlds!

Flash 38 Cover Variant by Howard Porter

Images via CBR, IGN, ComicVine, Newsarama and HitFix. Here’s the list of credits according to Newsarama:

Batman/Superman #18 by Jim Lee
Action Comics #38 by Dave Johnson
Aquaman #38 by Steve Rude
Batgirl #38 by Aaron Lopresti
Batman #38 by Tony Daniel & Tomeu Morey
Batman & Robin #38 by Dave Bullock
Batman/Superman #18 by Jim Lee, Scott Williams, & Alex Sinclair
Catwoman #38 by Ty Templeton
Detective Comics #38 by Josh Middleton
The Flash #38 by Howard Porter & HiFi Color
Harley Quinn #14 by Bruce Timm
Grayson #6 by Jock
Green Lantern #38 by Dog Mahnke & David Baron
Green Lantern Corps #38 by Bill Sienkievicz
JLU #8 by Karl Kerschl & Dave McCaig
Justice League #38 by Tony Harris
Justice League Dark #38 by Kelley Jones
Justice League United #8 by Karl Kerschl and Dave McCaig
New Teen Titans #6 by Michael Allred & Laura Allred
Sinestro #9 by Ethan Van Sciver & Alex Sinclair
Supergirl #38 by Michael Avon Oeming & Rico Renzi
Superman #38 by Kevin Nowlan
Superman/Wonder Woman #15 by Ivan Reis & Alex Sinclair
Wonder Woman #38 by Terry & Rachel Dodson

Check out the full gallery after the jump. Which ones are your favorites? Continue reading

Flash Collections for 2014-2015 – 75th Anniversary, Omnibus & More

*whew* Comics Beat rounds up DC’s upcoming collections, and there’s a ton of Flash stuff coming up!

The Flash: A Celebration of 75 years
Gardner Fox, Geoff Johns, Carmine Infantino
On Sale Date: January 20, 2015
$75.00 USD / $85.00 CAD
400 pages Hardback
Comics & Graphic Novels / Superheroes
9781401251789, 1401251781

Summary: Introduced in 1940, The Flash burst onto the comic book scene with an explosive debut akin to his super-speed powers. He was an instant smash-hit success, as the lightning bolt insignia upon his chest became synonymous with the term “superhero”. Even as seven decades have passed, The Flash is still a vibrant part of the DC Comics lore and an integral part of the genre.

THE FLASH: A CELEBRATION OF 75 YEARS collects a wide range of stories featuring the Scarlet Speedster, ranging his seven decades as a mainstay in the DC Comics universe. From the original Flash, Jay Garrick, to his successors Barry Allen and Wally West, the mantle of this beloved hero has made him burst beyond the printed page into a pop culture symbol. This anthology graphic novel collects stories from the industry’s legendary talents, including Gardner Fox, John Broome and Geoff Johns.

This is totally going on my wish list for next year! I hope it’s more than just a collection of stories (though I’ll get it for that anyway), and has articles about the artists and writers and characters over the years. I’d love this to be a combination of Greatest Stories, Flash Companion, and DC: 75 Years of Modern Mythmaking. I also hope that it actually does justice to all the Flashes. The last “Greatest Flash Stories” collection was short on page space and focused almost entirely on (a) early Barry Allen and (b) a giant team-up one-shot from the 1970s.

The Flash Omnibus Vol. 1
Robert Kanigher, John Broome, Carmine Infantino
On Sale Date: September 30, 2014
$99.99 USD / $112.00 CAD
864 pages Hardback
Comics & Graphic Novels / Superheroes
9781401251499, 1401251498
Summary: This massive title collects the earliest Silver Age adventures of The Flash, just in time for his debut as the star of the new series THE FLASH on the CW network. Stories include the origin of The Flash, the first appearances of his sidekick, Kid Flash, fellow detective The Elongated Man, and much more.
Collects SHOWCASE #4, 8, 13 and 14 and THE FLASH #105-132.

I’m less enthused by this collection. The same material has been reprinted in several volumes of Flash Archives, Flash Chronicles, and Showcase Presents: The Flash. Every time DC comes up with a new reprint format, they start over at the beginning. The only reason the Showcase books got past the mid-1960s is that they did an extra volume focusing on the Trial of the Flash. I’m beginning to wonder if DC will ever get around to reprinting that 20-year gap between the mid-1960s and the Trial in the mid-1980s. Those stories aren’t even available digitally yet.

That said, if you don’t have the out-of-print Flash Archives, this is a good place to start. And the timing should get them into bookstores ahead of the Flash TV show if it gets picked up.

New 52 Collections

Forever Evil: Rogues Rebellion
Brian Buccellato, Scott Hepburn, Patrick Zircher
On Sale Date: September 30, 2014
$16.99 USD / $19.99 CAD
192 pages Paperback / softback / Trade paperback (US)
Comics & Graphic Novels / Superheroes
9781401249410, 1401249418

Summary: A tie-in to the crossover event FOREVER EVIL! The Rogues-the Flash’s gallery of villains-call no man boss, but a new evil threat might not leave them much choice! Will they fall in line, or refuse and risk certain death? Will the Rogues be able to take on the Crime Syndicate together?

Written by THE FLASH scribe Brian Buccellato, FOREVER EVIL: ROGUES REBELLION brings the Scarlet Speedster’s infamous foes into unfamiliar territory: as heroes! Collects issues #1-6, THE FLASH #23.1 and #23.3.

Interesting that they’re going straight to TP on the Forever Evil tie-ins.

The Flash Vol. 4: Reverse (The New 52)
Francis Manapul, Brian Buccellato
On Sale Date: February 3, 2015
$16.99 USD / $19.99 CAD
176 pages Paperback / softback / Trade paperback (US)
Comics & Graphic Novels / Superheroes
9781401249496, 1401249493

Summary: The fourth volume of Brian Buccellato and Francis Manapul’s New 52 breakout hit – The Flash!

A mysterious and powerful Speed-Force killer has left a trail of bodies in his wake and only Barry has the power to stop him. But when the killer stays one step ahea Barry finds himself face to face with the Teen Titans and Kid Flash for the first time. All this will lead to a confrontation with the Flash’s most deadly foe, The Reverse Flash!

This final volume of Francis Manapul and Brian Buccellato’s mammoth run on the Scarlet Speedster is here in THE FLASH VOL. 4: REVERSE. Collects issues #20-25, REVERSE FLASH #23.2.

The HC is out in August 2014.

The Flash Vol. 5 (The New 52)
Brian Buccellato, Patrick Zircher
On Sale Date: February 3, 2015
$14.99 USD / $17.99 CAD
144 pages Paperback / softback / Trade paperback (US)
Comics & Graphic Novels / Superheroes
9781401249502, 1401249507

Summary: The fifth volume of the New 52 breakout hit – The Flash! Find out how Barry Allen adjusts after his epic battle with The Reverse Flash! Also, find out how The Flash and Green Lantern first met in THE FLASH Annual #2 included in this volume.

Collects THE FLASH #26-29 and THE FLASH Annual #2.

This gives the Manapul/Buccellato run a solid set of books: Four volumes of Manapul/Buccellato, one of Buccellato solo writing with other artists, and Rogues Rebellion, allowing a clean start for the new team with volume 6.

Teen Titans Vol. 5: The Trial of Kid Flash (The New 52)
Scott Lobdell, Tyler Kirkham, Art Thibert
On Sale Date: February 10, 2015
$16.99 USD / $19.99 CAD
208 pages Paperback / softback / Trade paperback (US)
Comics & Graphic Novels / Superheroes
9781401250539, 140125053X

Summary: New York Times best-selling writer Scott Lobdell continues his tenure on Teen Titans with this latest volume tyng into the cataclysmic events of FOREVER EVIL.

The Teen Titans’ fall through the time stream as seen in FOREVER EVIL. But is this the help they’ve been looking for, or are things about to go from bad to worse? Plus: The secrets of Kid Flash’s origin begin here!

Collects TEEN TITANS #24-30, TEEN TITANS Annual #2.