A lot of fans have been complaining that the effects of Heroes In Crisis, the currently running event series hasn’t affected the regular DC Universe yet. One particular place that’s been glaring is the pages of The Flash. That changes with this issue.
Joshua Williamson, Scott Kolins, Luis Guerrero, and Wes Abbott bring us this tale of loss. It also continues to build the new mythology Williamson has been building since his first issue.
Barry faces the fact that Wally West, his former sidekick and one of his best friends, is apparently dead. As he copes with that news, he’s confronted by Godspeed, the speedster who was one his partner at CCPD. As he works through his grief through the confrontation, Barry gets an assist from Bart Allen, his future grandson, and Godspeed retreats to the base of an unseen manipulator…
Williamson continues his streak of plot advancement and world building. However, beyond that, he shows in this issue how well he understands Barry Allen as a character. Barry’s reaction to Wally’s death feels so authentic and relatable, but it’s unique to him because we as human beings can’t race off to the Speed Force to try to find a deceased loved one. Iris’s reaction is completely different, but it’s also so human and real that it shows Williamson’s range as a writer.
This issue may be a career best for Kolins. The opening two-page spread- Barry standing in front of the Sanctuary, Wally’s costume in his hands- is absolutely breathtaking, and it’s made even better by Guerrero’s color work. They both go on from there to show both emotional impact of grief and some fantastic super-speed action.
For readers waiting for emotional payoff to Heroes In Crisis, here it is. And for those who might have been missing the character work of earlier in the series, this is a great study of grief, from multiple perspectives.
The Flash Annual #2 is available now from DC Comics.