The Flash returns to shelves with his second annual in the New 52, this time joined by Green Lantern Hal Jordan. Check out our review!
Twenty-plus issues into the New 52, there is still much about the history of these characters that is unknown. In Justice League #2, we see that Barry Allen and Hal Jordan had some sort of history together. With this annual issue, Brian Buccellato finally tells the story of how these two iconic characters met in the new continuity. Bringing this story to life is Sami Basari on pencils and inks, with colors by Stellar Labs. We also get a backup story by Nicole Dubuc (writing) and Cully Hamner (art). Combine that with last week’s #22, and we end up with a lot of Flash goodness in one month!
With the multiple team-up books that DC has and will eventually launch, namely Superman/Batman and the upcoming Superman/Wonder Woman, can we please get a Flash/Green Lantern title? While it might not be the best title this week, it is certainly one of the most enjoyable. The chemistry between Barry and Hal is electrifying – a testament to Buccellato’s improving writing abilities. Their relationship feels genuine, (playfully) butting heads and calling each other out like a couple of regular guys. Sure, they have superpowers. But at their core they are a couple of regular guys with real, fleshed out personalities.
Sami Basari does an admirable job providing primary art in this oversized issue. His art style is similar to that of series regular Francis Manapul, but is still distinctly his own. The action sequences are well choreographed and beautiful to look at, and the quieter moments, the few that we get, do not detract from the pace of the story. And the coloring by art studio Stellar Labs is outstanding. Their use of a wide range of colors makes for a very enjoyable experience.
The back-up by Dubuc and Hamner is solid, but it is a noticeable drop in quality from the primary story. The Barry/Hal stuff was so good that I was left wanting more, but instead was given a fairly average short story. Seriously, give us more Barry and Hal.
The Flash Annual #2 is a great standalone issue that builds the world of the New 52 continuity. Buccellato’s writing continues to improve and Basari’s artwork is a joy to behold. For those of you that have not picked up The Flash, this annual is something you should check out. It’s a fun and accessible comic that all annuals should strive to emulate.