11 January 2017

Faster than a DC Bullet: Project Crisis!, Part LIX: The World of Flashpoint featuring the Flash

Comic trade paperback, n.pag.
Published 2012 (contents: 2011)
Borrowed from the library
Read September 2016
The World of Flashpoint featuring the Flash

Writers: Scott Kolins, Adam Glass, Sean Ryan, Sterling Gates
Artists: Joel Gomez, Scott Kolins, Rodney Buchemi & José Marzán Jr., Ig Guara & Ruy José, Oliver Nome & Trevor Scott
Colorists: Brian Buccellato, Mike Atiyeh, Artur Fujita, Stefani Rennee
Letterers: Sal Cipriano, Dave Sharpe, Carlos M. Mangual, Dezi Sienty

It seemed to me that the volume of The World of Flashpoint featuring the Flash would have the most to do with Flashpoint proper given that it features the Flash, which I think is why I read it last. Actually, it doesn't really shed that much light on Flashpoint. (I don't think so, anyway-- keep in mind I actually haven't read Flashpoint yet!) There's a short "Reverse Flash" story written by Scott Kolins (a longtime collaborator with Geoff Johns on The Flash) which seems to be laying some groundwork for what will come in Flashpoint, but also is somewhat redundant with the Reverse Flash story contained in The Road to Flashpoint (which was illustrated by Kolins). I'm not well-versed enough in Flash lore to know how much of what is contained here-- the Reverse Flash manipulates the Flash's childhood a little bit-- is new information, and how much is a reminder of old information. I did quite like Joel Gomez's artwork, however; it reminds me of Kolins, as well as other frequent Johns collaborator Francis Manapul, and the stuff featuring kid Barry Allen is especially cute.

You can't change history. Not one line! Except when you can.
from Flashpoint: Reverse Flash #1 (script by Scott Kolins, art by Joel Gomez)

The other story that seems to be directly tying into Flashpoint proper is "Kid Flash Lost," about young Bart Allen winding up in a dystopian future ruled by Brainiac alongside Hot Pursuit, who in Road to Flashpoint was an alternate-Earth Barry Allen, but whose equipment and identity has been taken by Patty Spivot, a forensic scientist who also appeared in Road to Flashpoint. This story doesn't take place in the world of Flashpoint like most other World of Flashpoint stories, but rather has Bart jumping through time, trying to find Barry Allen and help him put time back together. It's nothing incredible, but Sterling Gates writes a decent little story of an optimistic little kid maintaining his outlook in the face of a pessimistic universe and doing what he has to do to help his idol put things right, complete with Crisis on Infinite Earths throwback. I assume this will tie into Flashpoint in some way, like Bart shows up at the climax and tosses Barry some speed force. This seems to also be an ending point of Bart Allen, a character I don't know much about, but do know was sorely mishandled in the period between Infinite Crisis and Flashpoint.

By the time I write this caption, I have read Flashpoint. This has nothing to do with anything. I guess it happens between panels.
from Flashpoint: Kid Flash Lost #3 (script by Sterling Gates, art by Oliver Nome & Trevor Scott)

The other three stories here are mostly just more glimpses of the alternate world of Flashpoint, and I didn't find any of them terribly interesting. "Citizen Cold" shows us that in a world without the Flash, Captain Cold is instead "Citizen Cold," hero of Central City, but despite some quality Scott Kolins art (he also writes the story), the story doesn't really say anything interesting: the alternate Cold is still an asshole who is cruel to women.

The Hero of Central City.
from Flashpoint: Citizen Cold #1 (script & art by Scott Kolins)

Even more unpleasant to read is "Legion of Doom," one of those World of Flashpoint stories that's basically just about how cruel people are in the world of Flashpoint. Like, do I really need three issues of this gross shit? It is nice to get a glimpse at how heroic Cyborg is in this world (he's been a side character in tons of these stories, but this is the closest he gets to the spotlight), but other than that this tale produces little of value.

The same goes for "Grodd of War," where we learn Grodd's gorillas control all of Africa in the Flashpoint timeline. It's most more gratuitous, uninteresting violence.

So, in the end, the balance of this collection is a little odd: two stories (four issues) that might or might not add something to our understanding of Flashpoint, three stories (seven issues) that seemingly don't, and none of them are really standouts. At this point, though, I just want to get to the real deal!

Next Week: Finally! The main event is upon us! A race against time to solve the mystery of the Flashpoint!

No comments:

Post a Comment