As Joshua Williamson’s time on The Flash draws to a close, he continues to set the bar extremely high for creators who will write the Fastest Man Alive after him. A great example is The Flash Annual #3 from DC Comics, guest starring the Suicide Squad.
THE FLASH ANNUAL #3
Written by: Joshua Williamson
Art by: Stephen Segovia, Brandon Peterson, Carlo Pagulayan, Jason Paz
Editor: Mike Cotton
Publisher: DC Comics
Cover Price: $4.99
Release Date: June 17, 2020
SOLICITATION: From the pages of Suicide Squad, Task Force X and Captain Boomerang are on the loose, and the Flash is in hot pursuit! But is he really the hunter–or the hunted? Barry Allen may be the Scarlet Speedster, but at the end of this crossover issue, will he still be the Fastest Man Alive?
WHAT IS IT ABOUT CAPTAIN BOOMERANG?
One of the best things about the Flash is his Rogues’ Gallery. And probably the best part of that group is Captain Boomerang, a villain who has been getting the attention of Flash writers for years. In this annual, he’s once again at the center of attention.
It makes sense that the Captain would be the main focus of the Flash. He’s been a long-standing foe of Barry Allen for years, and even though he’s in the Suicide Squad these days, whenever the Flash runs into him (sorry, had to say that!), he’s who the Flash needs to look out for. Boomerangs always come back, right?
That’s not to say the rest of the Squad don’t get their fair share of attention. They do! I’m also enjoying Tom Taylor’s run on their own title, so it makes sense that Williamson, who is flexing his team-up muscles a lot these days, would give them some love as well.
The framing sequence for this book is Boomerang recounting a recent Squad mission when they encounter the Scarlet Speedster. What makes things dicey for the Captain is that he ends up squaring off against Deathstroke as well. They need to be careful with this character or he’ll end up like the Borg were in Star Trek: The Next Generation. They showed up and were defeated so many times that the novelty wore off. Deathstroke is in something of the same situation. He keeps getting knocked down by various others, including Batman. He’s close to becoming a yawner when he shows up. “Him again?” can be our reaction.
Digger, though, is quite the schemer, and when he faces off with Deathstroke, it’s still something we care about. Seems that Boomerang has been working on his efforts to be a “good” guy after all, and it makes us care when he’s truly outclassed by Slade Wilson. Digger is also quite the teller of tall tales, hence the “Tall Tale” name of this story, and why people listening to him don’t necessarily “buy” what he’s saying.
Williamson juggles all the various characters adeptly, and we get to see Flash using his speed extremely well. I’m always reminded how Barry was once killed because he was “too powerful.” Not when Mr. Williamson writes him, he isn’t!
Barry remains the truly best “good” guy around, and he gives Digger a chance to prove he’s a hero. Does Boomerang take advantage of this? Well, you just have to read the book to find out!
When people draw the Flash, they often don’t portray super-speed very well. However, the several artists on this annual do a great job of it! We feel the way Barry moves and runs, and we seem to be standing still in comparison.
I thought the various facial expressions were also well done. Even when Digger’s face has taken quite a beating, we can still understand what he’s thinking and feeling. Well done!
BOTTOM LINE: Williamson Rocks the Flash!
I hear that Mr. Williamson will be taking on Justice League soon, and I’m looking forward to it! I mean, if DC is smart, they’ll let him write a Flash story whenever he wants to in the years ahead! I know *I* would buy it!
This was yet another great example of how the Flash has been shining under Williamson’s guidance. I hope the next person taking over will build on what has been established, and keep the Flash racing forward!
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Flash Annual #3