The Flash #1 Review


Joshua Williamson, Carmine Di Giandomenico, Ivan Plascencia, Steve Wands, Karl Kerschl

Barry Allen is back! In every way that matters, the new Flash team hits the ground running.

While the Flash Rebirth one-shot felt more like an extension of the Rebirth one-shot itself, it nonetheless offered a tantalizing peak at what Williamson and Giandomenico had in store for the character.

Barry Allen has a lot on his plate but he’s not slowing down in his personal life or either of his profession’s. This explains why he’s late all the time, he’s juggling so many different tasks. He can’t rest, there’s too much to do and if he fails means someone loses his help, closure to a crime or even their lives. He’s not without friends, like August the man who found Barry after his accident. Soon, Barry will have a chance to return the help that August have given him on that stormy night.

This is very much how a typical issue of Flash should be, mixing Barry’s roles as a superhero and crime scene investigator (constantly underutilized in the comics and the show) and showing why the Flash is such a great hero. He makes time for people on the street as he’s zooming around the city, because as someone with superspeed he has more time than most and gives it freely to those who need it. Williamson tapping into that is a good indication of his grasp on the character and why he’s so skilled as a writer, he’s very good at humanizing his characters. Also crafting inventive plots, Nailbiter and Birthright are very engrossing reads for individual reasons. Like he does with those series, I’m betting a key component of his run will be raising the tension every month with some key twist. Now, that may describe the goal and procedure of every monthly comic, but Williamson does it with two. Every. Single. Time. He’s an expert at it, so I have the utmost confidence in what he can bring to a character whose all about acceleration.

On art, I was pleased to see Giandomenico’s visual storytelling look smoother and brighter than the preceding one shot. It’s also sharp in clarity, if not line. It’s hard to describe, as it pops visually thanks to Plascencia’s vibrant coloring but Giandomenico’s pencils here feel much more accessible. The way he depicts Central City is something to behold, whether he used a model or not, it looks like an actual city with huge highways, off ramps and towering skyscrapers. Williamson describes it as a city that never stops, and Giandomenico’s art reflects that. It looks like a city that moves as much as the Flash, albeit at a slower speed. The way Barry’s speed is shown is also impressive, with a streak of light seen moving through the city from a bird’s eye.  The storytelling with Barry investigating a crime scene is also top-notch and compelling, with the use of a lower camera at an angle when Barry shifts through evidence looking for clues. When even the “normal” parts of a superhero comic are entertaining, that’s when you know its good.

Williamson and Giandomenico have both met and raised my expectations for this title here. It’s everything I wanted from a Flash comic, which once again fits the art. It is flashy in a good way. I can’t wait to see what happens next in the coming weeks. If the quality stays this good, I will have no problem buying it twice a month.

Rating: Poor, Fair, Good, Great, Excellent

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