DC Comics recently released information about the upcoming landmark 80th anniversary of the Fastest Man Alive, The Flash, as reported here at MajorSpoilers.
I always enjoy the fact that several people have thought the Scarlet Speedster was too powerful, so he was killed a few decades back. Yet today’s Flash comics are some of the very best stories featuring the character I’ve ever read.
CELEBRATING FLASH’S BIG ANNIVERSARY
There have been a lot of anniversary celebrations going on recently, including Action Comics #1000, Detective Comics #1000, and Marvel Comics #1000. Each one has sold well, so it makes sense that DC would want to honor another of their core characters.
A recent news release from DC talked about this upcoming event:
In this 80th Anniversary of the hero, DC Comics will pay appropriate homage to the hero who is rapidly approaching a comics milestone with the release of the momentous The Flash #750 an 80-page prestige format issue which will feature some of the greatest talent in the comics with contributions from Geoff Johns, Marv Wolfman, Francis Manapul, Rafa Sandoval, Jordi Tarragona, Stephen Segovia, David Marquez, Bryan Hitch, Riley Rossmo, Scott Kolins and Michael Moreci among many others.
The landmark issue will also feature multiple variant cover releases by some of the best artists in the business, characterizing “The Flash” through the ages. At the center of the issue will be the launch of a brand new original story and arc, “The Flash Age”, that will introduce a new threat to the fleet-footed speedster who is determined to destroy The Flash’s legacy. This is a story that has been building as Barry Allen continues to struggle with understanding the shifts in the Speed Force, but with the arrival of Paradox, everything is going to change!
The names that leap out at me are Geoff Johns, Marv Wolfman, and Scott Kolins, all of whom have done excellent Flash stories in the past. It’ll be fun if Johns and Kolins reunite for a Barry story.
I’m happy this is happening now because, ever since he has taken over writing for The Flash comic, Joshua Williamson has had one of the most creative runs on the character ever, in my opinion. Here’s what he had to say about the upcoming anniversary:
“The Flash is one of my favorite DC characters,” says Williamson, “so it’s an honor to work on The Flash #750 with so many returning Flash legends! It’s a showcase of awesome talent, each telling a story that celebrates what we love about the Flash and the Flash family. And what a perfect place to kick off our next epic storyline “The Flash Age!” 2020 is going to be a big year for The Flash. It all starts in this massive issue.”
As much as I loved Mr. Johns’ storytelling on the book, he spent a lot of time focused on the Rogues. Granted, they’re interesting characters in their own right, but I would have loved to see more about Barry. Still, he did rework Barry’s history significantly, but spent way more time on the Flash’s foes. I often wonder what would have happened if he had devoted more issues to the Scarlet Speedster.
Williamson has achieved what I consider the perfect balance between past and present, and even future, really. The stories flow so effortlessly from storyline to storyline, and he continues to come up with fresh, creative tales to throw at Barry and those around him. That Williamson is penning Batman and Superman as well these days is a good sign! If they hadn’t put Robert Venditti on Justice League, I would have wanted Williamson on there!
INTEGRATING FLASH ELEMENTS BOTH PAST AND PRESENT
The fun thing I love so much about Williamson’s Flash is that he’s not afraid to integrate well-known parts of the character’s history into the stories. He often cites “Flash Facts,” for example. And he’s done a fantastic job on working with and reworking the Rogues.
Not only that, but Williamson has introduced fascinating new characters into the series, including Godspeed, who has appeared on The CW show as well. But nothing sits still too long, appropriately enough, and just when you start to get comfortable with something, that element gets shaken up. I think that’s good for a comic featuring a speedster!
The DC release concludes with the following paragraph:
The Flash #750 features an all-star collection of writer and artist including Marv Wolfman, Geoff Johns, Bryan Hitch, Francis Manapul, David Marquez, Riley Rossmo and more with a host of artists paying tribute to the career of “The Fastest Man Alive”. The 80-page prestige format issue hits stand on February 26, 2020, and retails for $7.99.
I’ve read other speedsters in comics, such as Quicksilver in Marvel, but they just don’t seem to be as fleshed out or have the storytelling appeal that Barry Allen does. If someone takes on a hero and only thinks of lowering his or her powers, well, somebody else probably should be creating those stories. It’s a challenge, I’m sure, but Mr. Williamson proves you CAN come up with great stories centered on a high-power hero.
If you haven’t been reading The Flash lately, I would recommend that you check out what’s going on in that comic before February’s big event.
What do you think? Are speedsters too powerful? Should they have limited power potential? Or is the sky the limit? Whatever your opinion, feel free to express it in the space below!