Monday, January 30, 2012
The Flash #5
That's never stopped The Flash before!
Last issue, we learned all about the lameness of Mob Rule! And one of the issues before that, we learned that if The Flash learns how to meditate just right, he can think super fast which somehow allows him to see the future!
He also had a minor crossover with Captain Atom over in Captain Atom's comic. I'd stay away from that stinking pile of manure, if I were you Flash! Run far away from that comic! Ha ha! There was also something about a tank that was in the middle east where Flash met Captain Atom and then it appeared in the Badlands in South Dakota in The Flash comic. I have no idea how the tank got there. Perhaps Captain Atom isn't turning things into other things at all! Maybe he's teleporting things away and teleporting other thing in to take their place. Hmm? HMMM?!
Fuck Captain Atom. His comic doesn't have much longer anyway. Let's get back to The Flash!
Here's an early page that shows the super villains breaking out of the high security jail. And the female journalist who was caught up in the whole shebang.
I really like the panels set over the image of the tiny people climbing down the cliff to the bay to escape jail.
I really like the art in this comic. What's more, the artist and the inker are co-writing the book. So just about everything you see on the pages is the work of Francis Manapul and Brian Buccellato (Wes Abbott does lettering!). And the comic has some fun stuff going for it. I actually think this comic can make the biggest jump up the rankings as soon as this Mob Rule storyline is over. The only reason The Flash is currently ranked 12 out of 16 comics I've read is they're spending way too much time on Mob Rule. Hopefully this comic will end that storyline and we'll get a real Super Villain of the Month in these pages instead of this friend of Flash whose clones just want to live crap.
Thankfully, Flash notices the ice in the river and he heads off to investigate the prison. Because ice always means Captain Cold! It also means The Flash gets to run into some actual super villains that aren't nice guys! Here we see him doing something to The Folded Man, Tar Pit, and Girder!
This is the same thing that crazy inmate did to Clarice Starling in Silence of the Lambs.
Actually, I think The Flash removed all the ice from the frozen guards and then threw it at the villains. It's hard to tell exactly though because The Flash unfreezing guards looks like this:
So far, I think The Folded Man is the only new villain name I like. And I like the way he looks! I'm excited to learn more about him. Of course, he may not be new. But I'm taking a wild guess he is since Girder and Tar Pit sound like stupid new villains!
Bukakeing the villains left them in an unconscious and disgusting heap for the guards to take care of. But Flash does explain that he used friction to thaw the guards. Who would have guessed?!
Oh, and I'm giving this issue 2 Speed Force Points for Iris West (who Flash saves from those villains he splooshed) saying that a story she was working on 'got put on ice' due to Captain Cold and her telling The Flash, "Guess you've gotta run."
I didn't know he could give speed piggy back rides. Won't her face melt off?
Afterward, The Flash hunts down Dr. Elias and Manuel and Mob Rule. Elias has a set-up that will use Manuel's body as a source to rewrite the DNA of Mob Rule so they stop dropping like flies. But something goes wrong. The machine is working but it's also about to explode.
So The Flash makes a choice. They don't show him use his super thinking see the future power, so maybe he's giving that up for now since it almost got him killed. So he makes a spur of the moment choice.
Manuel doesn't want to be saved because the machine is working. The Flash is afraid Manuel is going to die if he doesn't redirect the blast. I'm guessing the DNA rewrite takes some time to work and as soon as The Flash redirects the energy the machine is emitting so the blast is redirected, the DNA rewrite stops working.
So The Flash chooses to ensure that Manuel lives. He chooses to let all of Manuel's clones die. And he apologizes to Manuel for choosing Manuel.
I don't know if The Flash made the right decision. The clones were autonomous beings who never asked to be born in the first place. They just wanted to live and Manuel was trying to help them. The Flash could have grabbed Dr. Elias and rushed him out to safety. But instead he interferes so hundreds of people die.
I guess The Flash can live with it by doing some philosophical mental gymnastics. They weren't real people since they weren't born like real people. They weren't real because they were just clones of a single guy.
But The Flash propels the blast up into the sky. The clones drop dead from their DNA flaw. And Manuel isn't happy.
Looks like The Flash has just created his nemesis! Manuel still has the power to make clones, so look for him to return in a costume next time!
And the comic ends with a revelation that is instantly going to boost The Flash up the rankings. It answers the question I mentioned earlier about the tank. And it answers the question about where the EMP blast came from in the first place that knocked the plane out of the sky. And it shows that The Flash is just a big fat menace to DC's continuity!
I'm a bit disappointed that Barry doesn't seem the slightest bit perturbed by the fact he chose to let all those clones die. Hopefully when Mob Rule returns, Manuel will get Barry to think about the fact that he actually just chose to save one man over hundreds simply because that one man was practically family to him.
Batman never would have done that!
I also think I'll let the Speed Force Points Rating drop. Manapul and Buccellato seem to have gotten a firm grasp on this character and don't feel the need to drop sly asides every few pages about the fact that The Flash runs fast.
So good job, fellas. And even though I found all of the Mob Rule extras boring, and I think his name suckity suck suck sucks, I like the overall arc of his story here and his relationship with The Flash. Now when he returns in costume, he'll be bringing substantial amounts of meat to the feast. In honor of Mob Rule's name, I used a shitty metaphor!
Also, yay! Captain Cold next issue!
Captain Cold toasting to The Flash's imminent defeat with Green Coleman Lantern.