Admiral Vel has won. The only hope for the universe is Wally West… and everyone he accidentally murdered! So, that’s awkward. Your Major Spoilers review of The Flash #796 from DC Comics awaits!
THE FLASH #796
Writer: Jeremy Adams
Pencilers: Roger Cruz, George Kabadais and Fernando Pasarin
Inker: Wellington Dias, George Kambadais and Oclair Albert
Colorist: Luis Guerrero, Matt Herms & Pete Pantazis
Letterer: Rob Leigh
Editor: Chris Rosa
Publisher: DC Comics
Cover Price: $3.99
Release Date: April 4, 2023
Previously in The Flash: It’s the final moments of the One-Minute War! Cornered by the evil Admiral Vel, the Flash family is on the edge of defeat. But some surprising allies give the speedsters one last chance to change the outcome of the war, once and for all!
IT’S LOOKING BLEAK FOR THE FLASH FAMILY
After the shocking end of the last issue (where Wally West was faced with all the heroes he accidentally killed during Heroes In Crisis, as well as The Gold Beetle), the third Flash is prepared to lead them as reinforcements against The Fraction’s invasion. Back on Earth, Barry Allen finds himself standing alone against The Admiral, but is barely able to hold his own in combat until he rips off the alien’s Speed Force harness, only to find that Vel is still able to move a super-speed. This turns his own people against him, revealing that he is an organic conduit like The Flashes. With a little coordination, the various speedsters gather, racing in circles to destroy the spire than keeps them from traveling in time, but when Admiral Vel moves to kill them, he realizes that he counted one Flash too few. “Me. The Flash!”, yells Wally West, “the guy who’s about to kick your @$$!”
“YOU’RE A PARADOX”
The resolution of the threat is actually quite clever on Wally’s part, leading to the end of one minute and the war, reminding us that while he’s not the first Flash, he’s spent nearly his entire life in one costume or another. The story in this issue not only ties up the crossover, but provides closure to more than 30 issues of story, bringing back Ugh, the Caveman Flash, Gold Beetle, and more. With so many players, it is hard to keep things straight without a scorecard, but the final pages of the book give two of the speedsters some closure. As much fun as the story is, the art is much more of a mixed bag, with one art team (it’s never clarified who does what) offering slick art with satiny colors and another doing impressionistic, scratchier art. It does help to give the Barry and Wally portions of the storyline their own visual feel, but the lack of visual cohesion affects my appreciation of what the issue’s story achieves.
BOTTOM LINE: THAT’S HOW YOU WORK AN ENDING
As a fan of ’90s DC, the epilogue that reunites Impulse and Max Mercury for a new adventure is itself worth the price of admission, but The Flash #796 gives The One-Minute War a satisfying conclusion, even with some artistic wobbles and a few too many characters in play, earning 4 out of 5 stars overall. No matter what happens next, though, this arc will be memorable as the one that saved every single victim of Heroes In Crisis, so it’s doing the work of the angels.
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THE FLASH #796
Wally West gets to showcase his heart, his smarts and what a lifetime of super-speed will teach you, closing up the One-Minute War with style.
Worth it for the epilogue with Max Mercury and Impulse alone...