The Flash is confronted by a team of police officers from the future who dress like members of the Rogues. The charge? The murder of Mirror Monarch. Can the Flash escape these time cops and clear his name of a murder that hasn’t even happened yet?

The Flash #2
Written by Geoff Johns
Art by Francis Manapul with Joel Gomez
Colors by Brian Buccellato
Letters by Sal Cipriano
Edited by Eddie Berganza
Cover by Francis Manapul with Brian Buccellato
Variant Cover by Ryan Sook
Published by DC Comics

Previously in The Flash: Barry Allen’s back on the job both as the Flash and as a Forensic Scientist for the Central City Police Department. After a high speed chase with the Trickster, Barry Allen is brought up to speed on the status of the city while being shown to his work space at the CCPD. Just as he’s settling in, he gets his first assignment. The Mirror Master suddenly appears in a flash of light in the park and falls over dead. Arriving on the scene, Barry finds that the man behind the mask isn’t Mirror Master at all and is called away when another flash of light is reported elsewhere in the city. Changing into the Flash, Barry arrives across town in just enough time to be placed under arrest from a group of 25th century law officers accusing him of killing the Mirror Monarch.

WHAT HAPPENED IN THE FUTURE, STAYS IN THE FUTURE

The team arresting Flash calls themselves The Renegades and is made up of imitations of the Rogue’s gallery. Commander Cold calls the shots and makes the first move toward bringing Flash in by containing him in a blizzard. Flash breaks free as Trixster deploys a pair of robotic handcuffs that chase after him. When Flash tricks the cuffs onto Weather Warlock, he damages the flying time platform he’s riding which forces the team to return to their own time. The resulting temporal shockwave ages a near by apartment building causing it to crumble. Flash rescues the residents of the building and, after a brief visit to the library, rebuilds their apartments better than before. He even found time to replace a little girl’s doll.

Barry returns to the park just as the paramedics are carrying off Mirror Monarch. Barry explains to Iris his ability to fill his short term memory to capacity and that was how he was able to rebuild the apartment building from the information at the library. Barry says that he believes that this team is from the future and starts to wonder if Reverse-Flash could be framing him. Meanwhile at Iron Heights Penitentiary, the newly resurrected Captain Boomerang is rescued from a few broken limbs by Captain Cold and Mirror Master. However, when Boomer tries to escape, he finds his friends have lost faith in him and tell him he has to do it on his own to prove himself to them. Not only that but he has to make the Flash sweat.

Back at police headquarters, Barry reopens a case file on a convicted of murder when his mother swears that he was home with her at the time of the crime. His supervisor doesn’t like that Barry’s “wasting his time” with a closed case and proceeds to try to lecture him. Barry’s determination lands him in even more hot water when one of the other scientists discovers blood on Mirror Monarch’s glove. After a DNA search, the match says that the blood belongs to one Mr. Barry Allen!

A BRIGHTER SIDE OF HEROISM

The first thing I noticed that I liked about the new Flash comic is the interior art. I like the bright colors of the book and how it contrasts to my other favorite comics such as Batman. It’s not all sparkling fire hydrants and smiling faces, but it does have a certain charm to it. I think one of the tricks that Manapul uses to give this effect is by not over complicating all of his backgrounds. One panel has the cityscape in the background where the next panel could just be Barry’s face against a dusky grey sky. You still feel like it’s about to be evening but with the bright colors of Barry’s blonde hair and the golden sun reflected off the city windows, it balances the tones of the page nicely. This is one of the few books where I think a simpler background really works in its favor.

FEATS OF THE FEET

I must admit that I’m something of a novice when it comes to the Flash. The extent of my knowledge of him is based on the Justice League cartoons and the last team of the JLA (even though that was Wally). I’ve read him in some of the universe encompassing titles as well but I was still left WOW’ed after Barry rebuilt the apartment building in what must have been only a matter of minutes. I really enjoyed the rescue scene too. The only thing that I didn’t like was the seemingly ungrateful child. Her house just collapsed and Flash saved her life. He rebuilt a better home for her to live in and even got her a new doll and instead of thanking him for all of his heroic efforts and generosity, she complains that her new doll has the wrong color hair. Kids these days. Sheesh.

CALLING ALL DISPOSABLE VILLIANS

For a relaunch title, I have to admit that the villains seem to be very lack luster. Sure it’s interesting to see the hero versions of Flash’s gallery but ultimately you know that they’re just a gimmick and going to disappear as soon as this story is over and probably never be heard from again. Having Captain Boomerang break out of prison is a fairly obvious move that I would have liked to see wait until maybe a second or third story arc. With how fast they’re moving to tell a story with him, it makes me think that his resurrection isn’t going to last for too much longer. I get that they’re making the title “new reader friendly” but I was hoping for a bit more to showcase Flash’s character more.

CONCLUSION

I’m very much interested in becoming a Flash fan so I plan to stick with this title for a little longer. However, I’m not a fan yet. So far the first two issues have been rather fair. I really hope the story picks up more momentum (pun intended) but have to give this issue 3 out of 5 stars. It’s visual appeal is the only thing that makes it slightly above average.

Rating: ★★★☆☆

The Author

Brian

Brian

Ah, comics! Is there anything they can't do? I've been reading comics since the second grade when my friend lent me a copy of Spider-man where a strange black alien ooze broke Eddie Brock out of the jail cell he shared with Cletus Cassidy. I mostly read Spiderman and the X-men in my youth until a TV show named Batman the Animated Series came along. It took me until the issue of Hush subtitled "Punch Line" to buy a DC comic though. Since then, I've been reading and collecting nonstop.

Favorite comics: Superman/Batman, Batman, Detective Comics, anything by UDON, and Buffy: the Vampire Slayer
Favorite writers: Geoff Johns, Dwayne McDuffy, and Gail Simone
Favorite artists: Ed Benes, Ian Churchill, Alvin Lee, Jim Lee, and Dustin Nyugen
Favorite "can read anytime" book: JUSTICE

Previous post

Review: Killing the Cobra: Chinatown Trollop

Next post

Major Spoilers Adventures #44: So, how was your weekend?

10 Comments

  1. arcee
    May 17, 2010 at 1:03 pm — Reply

    Great review! Thank God you all are back!

  2. Brian
    May 17, 2010 at 4:21 pm — Reply

    Thank you! While we’re working out the kinks, we’re all still here and working hard for you all (especially Stephen).

  3. ~wyntermute~
    May 17, 2010 at 6:32 pm — Reply

    Seeing as barry’s BEEN DEAD SINCE 1980-whatever, don’t you kinda think they have to make this “new reader friendly” since the people who were buying pulpies the last time he was The Flash are probably nearing retirement age? Well, I’m exaggerating, but still… “Barry Allen” hasn’t been here for 20-ish years, the ‘built-in audience’ has thinned out, one would think. :)

    • Brian
      May 17, 2010 at 7:36 pm — Reply

      I more than understand being “new reader friendly” to the character (which they don’t really get into) however they’re being “new reader friendly” to his abilities. Abilities that have been essentially passed down from one flash to the next. As I recall, Impulse/Kid Flash/Flash had the same mental ability even (minus the sudden memory loss). My point is: Why introduce us to super powers that his legacy has displayed in his absence? Why not introduce us more to the man instead?

      I never read Barry Allen. I’m a Bart and Wally kind of guy. I’m learning about Jay now. But I still feel like I have no idea who Barry is/was. He seems as characteristically blank to me as Hal Jordan.

    • May 18, 2010 at 8:06 pm — Reply

      Seeing as barry’s BEEN DEAD SINCE 1980-whatever, don’t you kinda think they have to make this “new reader friendly” since the people who were buying pulpies the last time he was The Flash are probably nearing retirement age? Well, I’m exaggerating, but still… “Barry Allen” hasn’t been here for 20-ish years, the ‘built-in audience’ has thinned out, one would think. :)

      Welcome to the Church of St. Barry, Geoffjohnscopalian sect.

  4. Katzedecimal
    May 18, 2010 at 9:45 am — Reply

    I don’t like the direction that Johns is taking with Captain Cold; lately the man’s been giving feminine hygiene products a bad name. And you just know this “Trixster” character is secretly a cereal killer. Oh come on, it’s *Flash*, it had to be said! That’s the one thing Johns’ *hasn’t* brought back from the Silver Age — the puns. Sheesh, Johns, the puns were the best part!

    You really *don’t* get the sense that Barry has been dead for years and has effectively woken up in the future, do you? Rude little kid doesn’t even provoke a reaction and you’d think it would cause at least some blinkyblinking. The man disappeared in a time when a computer was a huge clunky beige thing with two floppies and a green screen, and returns when phone booths have disappeared because everyone’s carrying these little flat touchy things that don’t even look like phones; he vanished when hair bands were walking on sunshine, and returns when rappers beat joyfully about killing cops — and there is no culture shock whatsoever? For all intents and purposes, these stories could just as easily be about Wally, it really does feel like Barry’s just been slotted into Wally’s place. And all Johns has done has been to remind me of why I never liked Barry Allen in the first place.

  5. brainypirate
    May 18, 2010 at 10:38 am — Reply

    “Having Captain Cold break out of prison is a fairly obvious move that I would have liked to see wait until maybe a second or third story arc. With how fast they’re moving to tell a story with him, it makes me think that his resurrection isn’t going to last for too much longer.”

    ??? When was Capt. Cold resurrected? Or, How am I misreading that second sentence?

    • May 18, 2010 at 11:41 am — Reply

      Appologies. Must have been a dyslexic moment late at night. I meant to say Captain Boomerang.

  6. May 18, 2010 at 11:41 am — Reply

    Wrong “Captain” … lol

  7. Ravishing Richie
    May 18, 2010 at 12:07 pm — Reply

    I’m curious where this is heading.Barry rebuilding the apartment complex reminded me too much of when Wally rebuilt the Keystone city bridge in Johns first run of the Flash. Awesome trick nonetheless and the speedsters share certain abilities.I’m sure we will see bits and pieces of Barry as the story progresses. I can’t wait to see the Rogues in full steam, because I haven’t seen a team of villains that just want to survive modestly and that works as good as they do.I’m curious what the Rogues did to inspire the Renegades and I’m looking forward to “Flashpoint” in 2011.

You know you have something to say, say it in the comment section