Flash #2

by Aaron Reese on July 18, 2016

flash #2
Written by Joshua Williamson
Art by Carmine Di Giandomenico
Published by DC Comics

This should have been better. Flash #2 has some of the most cliched writing you'll find this side of a 1950s Superman comic. At one point, Barry actually says, "That might be easy, but it wouldn't be right" follwed up by "We need to do things by the book." That is some paint-by-numbers writing right there.

For as much as DC doesn't want readers to believe Rebirth is a reboot, it sure seems like a reboot. The Flash has a new best friend who never existed before--a young detective named August Heart. In the New 52 reboot, Barry Allen's lifelong best friend, Manuel Lago, turned into a delightful villain called Mob Rule. He was invented for that reboot. Adding characters to a reboot makes sense, but, so far, writer Josua Williamson looks like he's reading from an old playbook, instead of aiming for originality.  Last issue, August was granted superspeed at a particularly tense moment. He finally learns the name of an organization that may have something to do with his brother's murder. He has been looking for clues about them for years. The police started investigating them in conjunction with a recent robbery. Barry is investigating them. No one has turned up anything on them and one of their henchmen only tells August that their name is Black Hole when he's about to kill him. Then, inexplicably, the next scene with Iris West, she knows the name of the organization and is blabbing it about like it's common knowledge. It makes no sense. Anyway, right as August is about to die, he's struck by lightning and starts dishing out supersonic punches.

As a reader, you may find yourself thinking, "omg, why do we need another speedster?" After all, we already have Flash, two Kid Flashes, Jesse Quick, Zoom, Reverse-Flash, Earth-2 Flash, Max Mercury and a slew of others. Does DC really need another speedster? However, Flash #2 is still part of the opening act in Williamson's story and it has some intriguing revelations. I've not exactly been inspired by his writing thus far, but based on the final pages of this issue, I'm willing to be patient with his over-arching story.

Carmine Di Giandomenico's art has a frenzied, scratchy quality that fits nicely in a flash comic. It's like an even split between manga and American cartoon art with a dash of traditional comic art thrown in. It's fun and energetic, which is what Flash comics should have. His work is worth checking out. While issue #2 has a few good moments and an intriguing cliffhanger, this Flash series needs to take advantage of the kinetic artwork and the momentum gathered at the end of the issue so the cliches don't weigh it down (It worked for The Losers. No one cared about the cliched writing because the pace flew too quickly for anyone to notice).

Our Score:


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