While lacking major action, this issue of the Flash sets the stage for an intriguing tale.
The Flash War has come to a close, but the aftermath could be just as destructive. During the war, Hunter Zolomon broke barriers to the DC Earth, bringing forth new forces. Alongside the Speed Force, the Strength Force and Sage Force appear and empower Hunter. Both Flashes put aside their differences and worked together to take down Hunter. When the dust settled, however, Hunter was missing, and hypertime was closed off. The Flash family soon falls apart, leaving Barry alone to investigate the forces Hunter had unleashed. If the Speed Force allows its users to run at faster than light speeds, what can the other two do?
**Some Spoilers Below**
The Flash heads to the House of Heroes, the center of the DC Multiverse, to meet with other Flashes. He hopes to find an answer amongst the multiverse, but his universe is truly the first mention of any other forces. Disappointed at the lack of solutions, Barry goes home to continue his investigation. Meanwhile, the Trickster is being convinced by the police to finger a corrupt prison warden when he gets attacked by hired goons. Before they have a chance to murder him, The Flash runs in to save him. Before the goons get away, however, the time-displaced Commander Cold comes in to help Barry.
This is a decent opening issue for the new arc, but not without its problems. While the idea of the other forces getting explored is an interesting angle to go at, we don’t get much of it visually. Yes, we see The Flash investigating the new Forces, but the Strength Force doesn’t appear until the very end of the issue.
The mystery of the Forces and the case against the corrupt warden are laid out as the base of the story. While that usually isn’t a problem, especially since it is an interesting story, there isn’t much action to get us hooked. We have a pair of humans who recreate Parademon technology and try to kidnap the Trickster. That concept alone could have expanded into a fight scene that spanned across Central City. Instead, they’re defeated quickly and in dull fashion. It’s obvious this issue was meant to set the stage, and while it did the job, I can only hope for more action next time.
While I will miss Porter’s art, the new art team does a good job here. Christian Duce takes over for illustrating this issue and does a great job in designing the characters and powers. The Para-Angels were different enough to stand out from the original Apokoliptian foot soldiers but maintain similarities. Along with them, the Flash looked terrific whenever using his powers. The lightning pops off the page along with The Flash thanks to the fantastic colorwork of Luis Guerrero. Overall, the issue looks nice, and I can’t wait to see more.
Despite the lack of any major action sequences, I thought this comic was good. The stories that are laid out are interesting enough to keep readers invested for next issue. The art is nice, being both creative and colorful, perfect for The Flash series. The investigation of the new Forces has begun, and if the ending of this comic implies anything, it’ll be a wild ride.