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Subj: The Flash #29 - On the Job.
Posted: Tue Aug 29, 2017 at 07:02:22 pm BST (Viewed 209 times)
With increasing confidence Joshua Williamson develops the dual life existence of Barry Allen with Confidence and an ever growing strong grasp on how the best comicbook plotting actually works.
Even if you are new to this series and this is your first book Williamson's opening page is conceived and presented in such a way that it immediately arrests the readers attention, with a point-of-view introductory and accompanying narration from a battered and exhausted Flash we follow the unseen hero into his alter-ego's apartment. Follow the pages progression as a ragged red clad hand pours a bath, adds ice and with a full page shot overleaf a dramatic and artistically well conceived overhead shot of the beaten Flash laid out in relative sanctity at last in said bath. Quite why Barry would step in in full costume is a question left unmentioned....
If The Flash has any unique trait as a series then it has to be the fact that it is one of the few superhero books from DC and Marvel who's central character still operates two distinct lives - the public superhero, and the private person behind the guise who values his anonymity and a life free of constant public scrutiny. The Flash may be Central City's celebrated renowned hero but his is still a life troubled by difficult decisions and events that are not always kept within his control. After a clash with arch-rival Eobard Thawne Barry's powers have been left altered and unpredictable. Dangerous even. How the hero adapts to this and what impact the sudden loss of daily use super-speed has on both his lived is now the study of Joshua Williamson's latest storyline, and yet unreliable super powers is just one spoke in the books narrative, somewhere out there is a new mastermind terrorising the City, someone arranging for super-criminals to create carnage.
On the face of it it' all routine Superhero 101, indeed for those familiar with the original series of Barry Allen's all of this will be familiar territory, one can easily see Carmine Infantino's impressionistic 1980s hand illustrating those first few pages for example, where the flavor departs however is in overly graphic panels showing the autopsy of some anonymous individual that would have been far better left out of the book, the scenes in question are simply not appropriate for this series and some good sense from both artist and the editors should have been exercised in the matter.
Still, an enjoyable read, artist Pop Mhan deserves special mention here for impressive visuals and lending the series a visual identity it really hasn't much had thus far. If he were to stay on the series a while few could complain at the results...