When you talk to comics book fans about one of the defining aspects of the DC Universe, it’s often mentioned that the DC heroes are like a new pantheon of gods. However, of that pantheon, the two most human heroes are undeniably Batman and the Flash. How better to explore the human failings of heroes than in a crossover between the two?
Picking up from Batman #64’s cliffhanger, The Flash #64 comes to us from Joshua Williamson, Rafa Sandoval, Jordi Tarragona, Tomeu Morey, and Steve Wands.
Framed by narration from both Barry and Bruce drawing comparisons between each other, the duo dig into Gotham Girl’s attack on the Flash museum. It leads them to a mostly abandoned island in the Caribbean. There they find the facility that may have created Gotham and Gotham Girl as well as some horrible revelations about the foe they may be facing.
I know some Batman fans feared that having Williamson write the entirety of this crossover meant that it might be inconsequential to that series. However, he cleverly roots it in the continuity of what Tom King has done in the last two and a half years, making it a story about trauma and not just “Barry is different than Bruce” like it seemed on the surface. Barry forcing Bruce to confront his flaws was also a great move, rooting the story in the human cost of their actions.
I’m so happy to see Sandoval back on this issue. He’s quickly become my favorite of the current team of Flash artists, and with Tarragona and Morey, the issue looks great. They convey so much in simple changes of facial expressions and body language, but also are able to portray excellent action, with the opening splash page being a major highlight of the issue for me.
The Flash and Batman have been an underutilized pairing in the DC Universe, and I’m so happy to see the DC bullpen realize that. This sort of story should be an annual tradition, and the creative team proves why in this issue.
The Flash #64 is available now from DC Comics.