The Flash #750 – Joshua Williamson, Geoff Johns, Francis Manapul, Brian Buccellato, Marv Wolfman, Scott Lobdell, Writers; Stephen Segovia, Scott Kolins, Francis Manapul, Riley Rossmo, David Marquez, Artists; Rafa Sandoval, Brett Booth, Pencillers; Jordi Tarragona, Norm Rapmund, Inkers; Arif Prianto, Michael Atiyeh, Ivan Plascencia, Alejandro Sanchez, Luis Guerrero, Colorists
Ray – 9/10
Ray: Flash #750 is one of the anniversary specials that DC will be rolling out in the coming months. This is the smallest one, coming in at only eighty pages instead of the usual hundred, but it may also be the best – there isn’t a single true dud among the six stories in Flash #750, featuring two stories by Josh Williamson, three stories by iconic Flash writers, and a cap story by Wally West’s current writer Scott Lobdell, leading into the next big event.
It all starts with an excellent oversized story from Josh Williamson, Stephen Segovia, and Rafa Sandoval, as Barry gets back to normal life after the events of Rogue’s Reign. Central City is repairing itself, Wallace and Avery have returned to their teams, and Barry has paid tribute to the late Commander Cold and reconciled with Iris. Iris is working on an article about the ordinary people Flash has saved over the years, leading to a great series of splash pages showing how Flash has saved people’s lives in only seconds. It’s mostly a day-in-the-life story, until the ending, where Godspeed shows up to warn Barry about Paradox – only to lure him right into a trap. This is a great character-driven issue but one that escalates into a tense thriller towards the end. We’re looking at a great next arc with a terrifying new villain.
Next story is by Geoff Johns and Scott Kolins, and it seems to take place in the timeline of his old run – we only see the Flash briefly, but it’s Wally and he’s married with twins. And happy and not a murderer, likely. But the focus here is on Captain Cold, as the blue-collar villain Johns wrote him as. Mostly concerned with getting back in time to see his hockey game, he patronizes his favorite corner store only to wind up in the middle of a robbery with a reckless young criminal. It’s a compelling read that reminds us of how good the Rogues were when they were a family of tech-based criminals with a sense of honor.
Next up is a short story by the creative team of Manapul and Buccellato, the team that launched the New 52 Flash. It involves Barry showing up for a date with Iris, late due to crimefighting again, which launches a discussion of whether the city needs Barry as the Flash. In a totally normal approach to the situation, Barry decides to explore the multiverse and see other worlds where he didn’t become the Flash. This includes a world where Grodd was the Flash, a world where Iris was the Flash, and a world where Flash only exists in comic books. It’s a fun concept that mostly works to show off Manapul’s art.
Next up it’s Marv Wolfman’ and Riley Rossmo’s turn, and they do a classic Barry story where he faces off against Mirror Master. But the villain’s illusions in a carnival fun house take a twisted turn, and start transforming Flash into bizarre versions of himself from the Silver Age. Remember the issue where Flash had a giant head? The issue where he was turned into a giant puppet? Wolfman remembers, and Rossmo gets to have a lot of fun drawing some strange comic book body horror in a segment that also shows some real out of the box thinking as Flash outfoxes the villain.
Josh Williamson and David Marquez take on the fifth story, featuring an unexpected Flash – Jay Garrick, as he enters the fray as a hero inspired by Wonder Woman’s example in the recent Snyder/Hitch story. It’s a great tale that has him go up against the Thinker as well as the growing sense of despair caused by WW2, but it’s interesting – who is writing the eventual Justice Society title? First Snyder kicked off this narrative, and now Williamson picks it up. Either one would be a great choice, given how good these stories have been. I expect Alan Scott is next in Green Lantern’s special.
Finally, it’s Scott Lobdell and Brett Booth’s time to close out the story with an epilogue to Flash Forward. Wally now has the Mobius Chair and the power of Doctor Manhattan under his control, and he uses it to investigate the timeline. There he finds a series of anomalies indicating that time is repeating itself and the chaos is getting worse. This is probably the weakest story overall, heavy on exposition and really just a lead-in to the FCBD issue, but Brett Booth getting to draw some of the most iconic moments from DC history is a visual feast.
Besides that, we get a host of gorgeous pin-ups. This is a tight, exciting anniversary issue where there isn’t a page of wasted space. There aren’t as many iconic Flash creative teams as other properties (partially due to Mark Waid being gone from DC and unlikely to return), but the teams they chose all deliver an excellent tribute to the Flash and his network of speed-powered heroes.
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Disclaimer: GeekDad received this comic for review purposes.