The Flash is back this week! And Barry has to deal with a lot; His private life with Iris, his partner Kid Flash, and of course, Reverse-Flash’s body. Oh yeah. and Hal Jordan helps him out. This review will have light spoilers so for those who aren’t reading this series yet, there are plenty of reasons why you should!
This issue starts very soon after the end of “The Button” story-line, with Barry investigating Reverse-Flashes body. Before reading, I was mindful of this and started to get a bit worried that the issue would suffer because of the expectations set issues before. I was wrong though, as writer Joshua Williamson was able to keep the momentum forward and prove that he is one of DC’s best writers working today. The first page immediately grips you, with dialogue that seems genuine and even pretty funny at times.
This week’s issue focuses on Barry, more without the costume than with, and his personal life with Iris West. He has to do deal with the fact that he’s dating her while keeping his alter-ego The Flash a secret. Perhaps one of my few gripes with series so far is how he long he has kept a huge part of his life away from her. Sometimes I think it makes Iris seem kind of gullible, even when Williamson writes her as a very smart and strong willed character. I have a feeling however that she will find everything out very soon and maybe even in the next issue.
Something I loved about this issue is how it showed not only the inner workings of Barry’s mind after the significant events from before. He is so desperate to make sure his family and friends are safe that he’s thinking about how Reverse-Flash could come back in any minute. Even on his birthday, where he is greeted by his friends, including a very famous superhero.
Hal Jordan comes to visit him and it solidifies how much of a good friend he is. I love how such a big character in the DCU can crossover into another series and make it personal. Although they do some fighting by the end, the whole ordeal felt real and it really grounded the characters.
The art in the issue is frenetic and matches really well with the action. Although it took some time getting used to, I’m really impressed how much I have grown to like this type of art. It’s different from other comics and it feels very appropriate for the story of The Flash. The ending contains a twist that I saw coming and I wished Williamson took a bit longer before revealing. Even then, I found it difficult to find things I didn’t like about the issue.
In conclusion, I seriously recommend picking up this series and getting caught up. There’s a lot of enjoyment to be had and you will find yourself invested in the story/characters. I had a couple of issues with it this week but there is definitely enough for me to keep reading.
Rating: 9/10 “Very Solid”