The Rogues Rise In The Flash #72

by Tony Thornley

The beginning of a superhero’s career wouldn’t be complete without the origins of their greatest enemy as well. The Flash #72 shows us the beginnings of the best group of supervillains in comics.

Joshua Williamson, Howard Porter, Hi-Fi Color, and Steve Wands continue to show us Barry’s first adventure, and his first conflict with what will become the Rogues.

Barry defeats his first supervillain, mostly through pure dumb luck. He takes the experience and uses it to continue to learn and grow as a hero. That’s not the only thing that grows though, as his relationship with Iris evolves and deepens. However, a chance encounter with several future Rogues could change his life forever…

This is another well written chapter. Williamson gives us a great, if a bit by-the-numbers, retelling of Barry’s origin. His depiction of Barry’s newfound confidence and his new relationship with Iris is well done. The big thing that elevates the issue though is in the brilliant cliffhanger.

Here’s the thing about this storyline – most origin stories are frustrating because we’ve seen the story dozens of times before, but here the time travel element has added a layer of chaos in the story. It makes the issue’s catastrophic cliffhanger really feel like a danger to Barry. Could this change the Flash as we’ve seen him so far, or is it a previous unseen element of his history? It’s a great bit of unknown in a story we may have thought we already knew all about.

I really don’t know what else I can say about Howard Porter’s excellent art. The newest element of this issue is that he is able to show Barry grow and mature, even just in the course of a large spread full of panels. He really does know how to draw the Flash better than many artists, and sets himself further apart more with each issue.

Barry Allen ends the issue in dire straits and I am genuinely excited to see how he gets out of it.

The Flash #72 is available now from DC Comics.

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