Review: THE FLASH #753
[Editor’s Note: This review may contain spoilers]
Writer: Joshua Williamson
Letters: Steve Wands
Reviewed By: Derek McNeil
The Flash #753: In this “Flash Age” interlude, the Fastest Man Alive must find the Reverse-Flash to stop Paradox’s annihilation of the Flash legacy. But catching a time-traveler is extremely difficult, and the Flash’s quest to find Eobard Thawne takes him to tragic moments in time he never thought he’d have to revisit.
It seems that Barry Allen Flash stories always come back to the Reverse-Flash. Barry has one of the most robust rogues galleries of any hero, so much that they are know as the Rogues Gallery. But Eobard Thawne is Barry’s arch-foe, as Lex Luthor is to Superman or the Joker is to Batman. Eobard Thawne killed Barry’s mother, framed his mother, and even killed Iris in the original DC timeline.
So, the last thing that Barry would want to do is to team up with the Reverse-Flash. Unfortunately, Thawne is the only one who stands a chance at defeating Paradox. Thus, Barry need to enlist Thawne’s aid.
And even worse, Barry has to return to the most horrific event of his life to find Thawne. We are presented with the heart-wrenching scene of Barry standing outside his childhood home while Thawne murders his mother, holding himself back from preventing this tragedy.
The Flash #753 starts with a recap of “The Many Deaths of Eobard Thawne”. The Reverse-Flash seems exempt from the permanency of death, dying and returning repeatedly. This makes me wonder if Barry and possibly other speedsters have the same ability. Barry died during the Crisis on Infinite Earth and eventually returned. Barry has also been absorbed into the Speed Force and returned, as has Jay, Wally West, and Bart Allen. Could DC’s speedsters actually be immortal?
I’m a big fan of time travel stories, so I was pleased to see that both Barry and Paradox are relying on an long time Flash comics staple, the Cosmic Treadmill. Time travel has mostly proven disastrous for Barry since his attempt to prevent his mother’s murder caused the Flashpoint. timeline, which led to the New 52 timeline.
However, could Barry, working with Thawne against Paradox result in correcting the timeline somewhat? There have been hints in Flash Forward, and The Flash #750 hinted that the timeline needs some fixes, giving Wally West the task of doing so. It would be nice to see Henry and Nora Allen’s pre-Flashpoint lives be restored to how they were pre-Flashpoint.
I must also add that the art from Howard Porter and Brandon Peterson is absolutely gorgeous in this issue. They have perfectly captured Barry’s iconic look. And you can see the palpable malevolence coming from the Reverse-Flash. Also, they do a masterful job of conveying the kinetic energy of the Flash and the other speedsters.
I have liked Williamson’s Flash story since the beginning in The Flash: Rebirth #1, but he has really hit his stride with Year One. Since that turning point, I haven’t had any issues with Williamson’s story. The Flash #753 doesn’t even present me with any minor quibbles.
It appears that Barry will have to make a truce with his worst enemy to defeat Paradox. But can Barry actually trust Thawne to keep the truce? I can hardly wait to see how this unlikely team fares against Paradox in the coming issues.