Review: THE FLASH #84
[Editor’s Note: This review may contain spoilers]
Writer: Joshua Williamson
Artist: Christian Duce
Colours: Luis Guerrero
Letters: Steve Wands
Reviewed By: Derek McNeil
The Flash #84: “Rogues’ Reign” part three! The Speed Force is out of control, but the Flash must learn to harness it again if he’s to stand a chance against the powered-up Rogues! With the freshly crowned King Cold leading the charge to hunt the speedster down, all hope seems lost…or is it? An unexpected ally and the save of a lifetime comes to our hero in the form of one of Cold’s oldest and most trusted friends-is this icy betrayal what the scarlet speedster needs to turn the tide and set the world right?
The Flash has allied with Golden Glider to end the reign of her brother King Cold. Their plan involves gathering shards of a specific mirror of Mirror Master’s. In The Flash #84, Flash and his allies attempt to get the shard held by Weather Wizard.
It’s interesting to see some of the Rogues willing to side with the Flash against Cold. There seems to be a realization that Cold has gone too far and needs to be stopped. In fact, Leonard Snart himself seems to be having similar doubts about Lex Luthor’s plans for the entire Multiverse.
Historically, the Rogues have been fairly low on the scale of evil. They haven’t often gone beyond thievery or destruction of property. In fact, Cold has made them adhere to a code of not killing in the past – well, apart from their murder of Bart Allen, but that was in the pre-Flashpoint continuity.
In fact, Lisa Snart explains to the Flash that they are like a family. They protect each other, like Barry protects the people close to him. “You know, you’re not that different from the Rogues,” she tells him. She also opines, “The Rogues and you could have set aside our differences a long time ago. If only we took the time to get to know each other.”
This issue, we also learn more about what’s wrong with the Speed Force. Barry describes it as “super-charged” and that he and the other speedsters “need to relearn how to use our powers.” He makes a fruitless attempt to do so, but only Golden Glider’s newly discovered power to suppress the Speed Force manages to keep the Speed Force under control.
The idea that Golden Glider can suppress the Speed Force is something that might spell trouble for Barry at some point in the future, assuming that she keeps this ability past the end of the Year of the Villain storyline. They may be working together against Cold, but it’s inevitable that the Flash will face as a foe in the future.
Weather Wizard states that he, Glider, and Heat Wave have a plan to help Barry stop Captain Cold, but that “you aren’t going to like it.” This sounds ominous and makes me wonder what the rebellious Rogues have planned.
Also, I have to commend the stunning artwork of Christian Duce. I especially was impressed how he was able to visually convey the Speed Force’s extremem overcharged state within a single panel.
Williamson’s run on The Flash had been somewhat divisive among fans up to Year One, but has been solid ever since. I haven’t seen anything that I would characterize as a misstep since. Every issue demonstrates that he understands the essence of the character.
Joshua Williamson’s epic run on The Flash just keeps getting better and better. I look forward to seeing how he resolves the brewing civil war amongst the Rogues and what repercussions this will have for Barry and his allies.