Tag Archives: Rogues

The Rogues are BACK! Review of THE FLASH #14

The Flash’s Rogues have always been my favorite group of bad guys in comics. Not Batman’s, not Superman’s, and certainly none from that “House of Ideas” publisher across town. There was always something special about this group of blue collar crooks. But, different storylines over the years (particularly the New 52) made significant changes to how these villains have been portrayed.  Now, writer Joshua Williamson gets his chance to take on the best bad guys in comics…and how does he deal with all of this history? He embraces it all…pretty much beginning to end, and makes it work in a very solid issue of THE FLASH! Want to know more? Follow us after the jump!

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“Date Night” – Review of THE FLASH #13

You asked for it, you got it – a young Wally West feature story! Wally is on patrol, keeping Central City safe so…Iris can have a date night with Barry! All this and Tar Pit too! And…this story starts a new arc called “Rogues Reloaded” so you know big things are coming up soon. It’s an (almost) perfect issue for young Wally fans and more. Want to know more? Follow us after the jump!

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“Under the Gun” – Review of THE FLASH #51

Flash #51A quick word…apologies for the late review. Now, let’s get to what you REALLY want to know…

The Riddler has played what we thought was his trump card…but is that he has up his sleeve? Things are looking bad for The Flash, as Riddler has gotten just enough trust from the gullible officials of Central City that he has been able to place the entire town in a chokehold.  Now, with the help of the Rogues (well, mainly Trickster with some help from Riddler), Barry has been cornered. What happens next? Follow us after the jump for more!

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THE FLASH #50 Review – Jail time for Barry?

Flash 50 CoverAs we left last issue, a mysterious benefactor gave Trickster the means to capture The Flash on behalf of the Rogues, deputized temporarily by the Central City Police Department. They have finally captured the man Captain Frye believes to be a public menace…now what? How can Barry get past this situation? Who is behind all this? You will get at least some of the answers in this over-sized anniversary issue. What to know more? Just follow us after the jump…

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The Enduring Appeal Of Flash Villains

Why do people like Flash villains so much? They’re arguably just as beloved as the Flashes themselves, and even many comics creators rank them as being among the best rogues galleries in comics.

There are many reasons for this, some of which simply come down to them being very memorable and entertaining characters, and in some cases even lovable (your mileage on the latter may vary, however). You might be surprised by how many dedicated fans there are of the Rogues and/or the Reverse Flashes. But there are other reasons for their popularity as well.

Firstly there are the villains’ powers or gimmicks, most of which complement or neutralize the Flashes’ speed. The Reverse Flashes obviously match the speed of their nemeses, allowing for some extraordinarily epic races and forcing the heroes to get faster or more creative with their powers. The Flash television series has shown this quite well, with Barry Allen being pushed to go ever faster to combat the superior speed of Eobard Thawne and Zoom. And many of the Rogues’ powers combat speed in some way by slowing down motion, such as Captain Cold’s cold gun and the Turtle’s kinetic black hole. Still others have devised inventive ways around the Flashes’ speed, such as Mirror Master’s near-magic mirror tech, the Top’s vertigo power, and the Pied Piper’s hypnosis. They’re all extremely well-suited to fighting the Flash, and are very good at what they do. Several of the Rogues have noted that fighting other heroes almost seems like it’s happening in slow motion because they’re so accustomed to combat with speedsters.

Another reason for the villains’ popularity is that they’re an excellent contrast for the Flashes’ heroism. The Reverse Flashes — particularly the obsessive Professor Zoom, who’s alternately been a tremendous fan of Barry Allen and at other times wanted to take his place — show us just how terrifying and awful the Flashes could be if they were bad people (or in Zoom’s case, deranged). The Reverse Flashes are a dark mirror to demonstrate the noble qualities of the heroes. This was especially hammered home when Professor Zoom murdered Barry’s mother and we saw that tragedy didn’t twist him as it did Hunter Zolomon.

In the same vein, the similarly poor upbringings of the Rogues and Wally West showcase the differences between them; Wally came from a broken home and still became a hero, while the Rogues became anti-social criminals and at least some attributed it to their dysfunctional early lives. Wally said of Double Down “Like most Rogues he blames his predicament on someone else”, and that seems to be the key difference between him and them.

Flash 132 And finally, a major reason for the popularity of at least some Flash villains is the ‘gentleman thief’ aspect many of them embody. Not all of them are like this, of course, but the Rogues have held that appeal since the Silver Age (at left is a letter published in Flash v1 #132, circa 1962) and it’s only become more pronounced in the modern era with the establishment of Captain Cold’s Rogue Rules. Many fans like them for their principles even if they don’t always live up to them, but the Rogues are just as human and fallible as the rest of us. The fact that they even care about rules sets them apart from many other villains, and makes them distinctive and easier to root for. Readers can genuinely care about Captain Cold and want him to succeed when he has a set of ethics and refuses to cross certain boundaries.

So there are good reasons for the enduring popularity of Flash villains amongst readers and creators, and their success is no accident. They’ve been well-crafted over the years to highlight the strengths and weaknesses of the Flashes, and are interesting characters in their own right. It’s been wonderful to see some of them finally appear in live action television over the past two years, and hopefully they’ll continue to be showcased and introduced to an entirely new audience in the years to come.

On the Run in January’s Flash #48

Flash #48

DC Comics’ January solicitations are rolling out, including:

THE FLASH #48
Written by ROBERT VENDITTI and VAN JENSEN
Art by JESUS MERINO
Cover by IVAN REIS and JOE PRADO
Coloring Book Variant cover by DEREC DONOVAN
On sale JANUARY 27 • 32 pg, FC, $3.99 US • RATED T

In the aftermath his recent clash with Zoom, The Flash finds himself on the run…from the law! And the task force charged with arresting him is made up of his enemies, The Rogues!

Update: Current Flash artist Brett Booth confirmed on Twitter that he’s leaving the book at the end of the current story arc. Booth came on board with Venditti and Jensen in April 2014.