The Flash #49 The Flash War

Written by, Joshua Williamson
Art by, Howard Porter
Colors by, Hi-Fi
Letters by, Steve Wands

Recap

In the previous two issues of this arc, The Flash War, Joshua Williamson has been developing this idea that Wally is desperate to return to the Speed Force so that he can save his twins who have been trapped. The dilemma has to do with consequences. Who will get hurt by Wally’s attempt to save his family? Williamson has used time travel, Wally’s arch nemesis Hunter Zolomon, and members of his rogues’ gallery, like Commander Cold, to further the story.

This issue begins, Amanda Waller meets with Steve Trevor and uses him to implore the Justice League to stop Wally and Barry who are causing damage due to the turbulence created by their high speeds. The Justice League believes that The Speed Force or the Multiverse is breaking apart. Superman is not fast enough to catch them and the Green Lantern, Hal Jordan, almost breaks his ring trying to stop them. Meanwhile, Barry implores Wally to stop pleading with him to consider how badly history was affected by Flashpoint.  Wally sees Barry’s reasoning as a contradiction and asks, “Why are you allowed to save your family and I am not?” Furthermore, Wally states that Irey and Jai are still alive; Barry’s mother was dead when he went back in time to save her. Barry tells Wally that he has been working with Batman to investigate The Speed Force since their time-traveling adventure (*see The Button).

Eventually, Wally and Barry go so fast that they break the Force Barrier. Wally is confused and angry that he didn’t find his children. Zoom arrives and informs Wally that it was his plan all along to use him and Barry to break through The Speed Force barrier. Zoom educates Barry and Wally that he knows more about the Speed Force than they do. He pulls out an original Flash ring and suits up as The Flash. Zoom informs them of the additional powers that they’ve unleashed by their actions: The Sage Force and The Strength Force. Zoom grabs them both stating, “I’ll kill you both to spare you from your futures.”  

Overall = 9/10

Final Impressions

Howard Porter’s art remains gorgeous. He does such a great job drawing the lightning and The Speed Force, which greatly enhances the enjoyability of the book for me. The tension in the story is created through Wally’s willingness to do anything to save his family. Fans of The Flash know that this is a failed, albeit honorable, motive. The curveball comes with the introduction of the new powers. I like this twist as long as it plays out in a way that’s interesting and doesn’t do damage to The Flash universe. I enjoyed the tie into The Button mini from a year ago. Williamson is expanding on themes introduced in the Rebirth one-shot through the introduction of Wally’s lost children. In addition, the conflicts created by Barry lying to Wally by not including him in his plans is tangible and seem reasonable, which intensifies the story. I highly recommend this book to fans of DC and The Flash!

9/10

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REVIEW OVERVIEW
Overall
9
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Tom Zimm
I am a licensed clinical social worker and trauma therapist that works with children. I've been interested in comic book heroes since I was a young child. However, it's been in the last 3-4 years that I've been making the weekly trip to the local comic book store to redeem my pull list. DC's Rebirth really won me over, especially Geoff Johns' 80-page book. My favorite properties include The Flash and The Incredible Hulk. My criteria for a good comic book include taking stupid and fun seriously while remaining self-aware.